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A Moving Farewell to a Missionary in Sudan


By Harambee - AFE  - 1 Comments
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Kolkata, Sep. 19. .   Khartoum:  Fr. Ferrington Poobalarayen, the Delegate of the Vice Province of Sudan, through ''Harambee'' of East African Province, shares the following touching details about the funeral service held in Khartoum for Fr. Patrick Soreng. Fr. Soreng had passed away on 16th September at Juba, South Sudan after succumbing to a massive heart attack.

''We had a very touching farewell given to fr Patrick Soreng. The Cortege proceeded from our Salesian Mission in Gumbo around 1.30 PM and we reached the Cathedral premises by 0145 PM.

The Eucharist was presided over by his Lordship Santo Pio. Fr Patrick's life history and profile was read by Fr Jacob Thelekkadan the Rector of the Community. And the bishop gave a beautiful homily. Obviously Fr Patrick was known to him in Khartoum and he highlighted his wonderful qualities as a Missionary and as a holy Priest. There were about 45 Priests concelebrating with him - both Religious and Diocesan clergy. The church was packed with Sisters and brothers and a lot of lay people. Many of our past pupils and christians from the North were there too. The Mass began at 2.15 and we finished around 5.30 pm.

Then the entire Church moved to Rejaf (about 7 kms) and we had the final rites. The entire congregation moved in a convoy with the Traffic Police Car at the head with all its siren blaring and clearing the way for the cortege. There were about 40 to 45 Cars belonging to various groups and Govt  authorities. The President of the Republic himself sent his personal representative for the funeral celebration. And a message was read  on behalf of the President Salva Kirr Mayar Dit. The School Students sang a very touching song to Fr Patrick ''God be with you till we meet again'' at the burial site. The song was orchestrated with sobs and cries. And to think that with a month and a half being in Juba Patrick has touched the hearts of these youngsters.

We finished the final rites by 6.00 pm and the members of the Salesian Family stayed on until the hole was completely covered and plastered. We laid all the wreathes we brought and said our own final Good Bye with prayers and blessing.

We reached home and all in the Mission (Salesians, Salesian Sisters, Caritas Sisters of Jesus, VSDB Sisters, Volunteers and Aspirants) came together for a Rosary service and concluded the evening with a Dinner as a family.

As we started our preparations for the funerals and other formalities I said a prayer to Patrick, ''please Patrick help us give you a fitting and beautiful farewell. We are so few and and to get things rolling was going to be difficult. Help us to go through all these with no hurdles''. Sure enough, all ended well and in a most astonishing way and beyond our expectations. Thanks Pat.

We hope to send some photoes tomorrow as we unwind ourselves and the Digital Cameras. Thanks for your prayerful support and messages of condolences and consolation. A very big Thanks to the Family members of Fr Patrick who were very supportive thoughout. God bless you all.

May the soul of Fr Patrick Soreng rest in peace, Amen!

Fraternally yours
Fr Ferrington SDB
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Tharakan Anto India Kolkata
says:
September 19, 2013

I was closely associated with Patrick while he was in India. We were together in formation for sometime since I am only two years senior to him. Pat had been very cheerful and friendly. His untimely demise was shocking to many of us here who knew him well. Thanks for all what you all did for him there in Khartoum. May he rest in peace.





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