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Railaco – Our Sister Parish in East Timor

Railaco – Our Sister Parish in East Timor2020-08-12T22:20:56+10:00

While the wider Jesuit community in East Timor is ‘nation-building’, we at St Canice’s have been making what is seen by the people in Railaco as a monumental commitment to their welfare, healthcare, nutrition, and educational needs of their children since 2004.

We would like you, our St Canice’s Community, to better understand the activities in Railaco that are supported by your generosity. Through your largesse we can continue to fund a feeding program for babies and young children, a mobile medical clinic that visits remote communities, and eleven specially-trained teachers at the secondary school.

The annual funding for these programs is approximately $70,000.  In the fifteen years since inception of the special relationship, the St Canice community has raised in excess of $800,000.

St Canice’s has made the sure foundation with Railaco Jesuit Mission

Upon withdrawal of the Indonesian Occupation Forces at the turn of this century, the East Timorese people were left without any government, teachers, doctors, civil servants, and any form of enterprise. Not only scorched earth, but the East Timorese people were left with virtually nothing.

In creating a sister parish relationship with the Railaco Jesuit Mission in 2004, St Canice’s joined the East Timorese people on their long road to building better lives by creating opportunities and bringing hope. This was done through supporting a Children’s Feeding Program, a Mobile Medical Clinic, and a Secondary School.

In effect, in 2004, we planted an acorn and continued nurturing it through to the present day. Now, we can see a beautiful oak, with many branches – branches supporting more developments that will improve the lives of the families of Railaco and give them hope for a brighter future. New donors are stepping-up to fund these additional developments.

The humanitarian works of the Railaco Jesuit Mission continue. St Canice’s remains committed to supporting the daily ‘bread and butter’ requirements of the Mission; ensuring that children receive a nutritious meal, families see a doctor, and students receive the best secondary education. At the same time, other donors are funding new growth opportunities.

St Canice’s has laid this sure foundation. And we thank you all for your ongoing support.

June 2022

‘Upholding Fullness of Life on Earth’ in Railaco

‘Upholding Fullness of Life on Earth’ in Railaco sounds grand at first. But it’s anything but. This is one pillar in the Apostolic priorities of our sister parish in Railaco. Elaborating on tis, the parish priest, Fr EJ Gerilla SJ, tells us that ‘Some poverty in parts of the parish is beyond imagination’. Feeding children and providing a mobile medical clinic is part of the parish response to this. Education at the parish secondary school NOSSEF raises the bar to get rural kids a real chance in life, both academically and formed to be ‘men and women for others’.

Back to Railaco after 3 years

Fr Bong is still negotiating impossible roads to take the mobile medical clinic to communities without medical services from the government. At a far distant village, we parked under a tree, and Fr Bong consulted with 80 mothers and babies in an old tin shed, also used as a church. Across the way, the government clinic stands shuttered—no medicines for the people! Our continuing support is crucial.

May 2022

NOSSEF 20th Anniversary Video

Fr. Hyoe Murayama SJ Director of NOSSEF shares a special video marking the 20th anniversary of the Secondary School in our sister parish of Railaco. It highlights the St Canice’s connection, and the foundational role that so many of our parishioners, past and present, have played. Thank you.

March 2022

February 2022

My “Best” Christmas and New Year Celebrations – Philip Heng SJ

Fr Phillip Heng SJ, a Singaporean Jesuit, has recently arrived in Timor from Singapore to join the Jesuit Mission.He celebrated Mass at Christmas in one of the Railaco villages and has written a description of his experience. The story illustrates how important our sister parish relationship is in helping these people to obtain an education that will enable them to improve the quality of their life and improve the living standard of their nation. Your donations make this possible.