05/12/2018, 09.52
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Jakarta, four new diocesan priests ordained (Photo)

by Mathias Hariyadi

The young newly ordained are from Jakarta and come from parishes in the metropolitan area of ​​the capital. As the theme of their priestly ordination, they chose the phrase "Have faith and rejoice in Christ".

Jakarta (AsiaNews) - The archbishop of Jakarta, Msgr. Ignatius Suharyo Hardjoatmodjo, has ordained four new diocesan priests. The ceremony took place on May 8 at the parish of St. Laurentius of Serpong (Tangerang regency), in a church full of faithful, priests and relatives.

The newly ordained are Fr. Nemesius Pradipta, Fr. Ambrosius Lolong, Fr. Bonifacius Lumintang and Fr. Joseph Purboyo Diaz; they originate from Jakarta and come from parishes in the metropolitan area of ​​the capital. The first two attended the minor seminary of St. Peter Canisius of Mertoyudan, near Magelang (Central Java), archdiocese of Semarang. The others instead studied at a minor seminary of the archdiocese of Jakarta, the Wacana Bhakti of Pejaten. All then continued their philosophical studies in the Higher Institute of Philosophy of the capital and later at the Faculty of Theology of the Sanata Dharma University of Yogyakarta.

As the theme of their priestly ordination, they chose the phrase "Have faith and rejoice in Christ". Interviewed by AsiaNews, the four new priests recount their "spiritual journey".

Fr Ambrosius Lolong traces his vocation to the strong feeling of empathy towards his neighbor, which since childhood has characterized his family life. He declares: "When I was young, every time a family celebration took place at home, my parents used to ask me to deliver a package of food or other things to our neighbors. I then became an altar boy very early and then I entered the minor seminary because I was moved by the gestures of the priests".

Fr Bonifacius Lumintang was a difficult child, until he was impressed by a meeting with Msgr. Peter Turang, Archbishop of Kupang (province of East Nusa Tenggara). The prelate was in North Jakarta to celebrate Mass with a Catholic family. "It was the first time I saw a bishop in our area - the priest recalls - He gave me an apple, a fruit I had never eaten". On entering the seminary, Fr. Bonifacius had to wrestle with difficult moments: "During my studies at St. Peter Canisius I was assailed by strong home sickness, but those years I received a high quality formation". The priest was refused the first request to become a diocesan priest of Jakarta, but the one submitted a few years later "was finally accepted".

The first contact that Fr. Nemesius Pradipta had with the priests happened when he was a child enrolled in a self-defense course, organized at the parish of the Holy Family of Pasar Minggu (South Jakarta). "However, I have always received a Catholic education within my family", says Fr. Nemesius. In 1976, the late father was also a seminarian of St. Peter Canisius and his mother has been an activist of the Indonesian Catholic Women's Association (WKRI) for years. "When I was a seminarian - continues the priest - I was impressed by the two-day" pilgrimage "we held in seven parishes in Jakarta, during the probation period. Another formation experience was when they sent me to be a ‘secret scavenger' in Bekasi, among the 'professional' scavengers to earn my living ".

Fr Joseph Purboyo Diaz recounts: "I have always had talent and passion for music. That's why I wanted to become a musician, but God 'diverted' my path to become a priest. My first vocation flourished when I was an altar boy and then I entered the minor seminary of Pejaten. What made me so faithful in my priestly vocation is my 'probation', when I was asked to walk from Jakarta to Bandung for a few days and then a period as a teacher for children with special needs in Jakarta. Even life in Papua, where I spent two long years, was very important. I had to walk for hours even just to meet the Catholics of some remote areas, even though I was very ill with malaria".

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