MR-NET News #6


03 May 2001   

 SVD Mission Research Network  
Mission Secretariat - Rome  

Hello again from Rome and happy Easter Season. This is the first issue of MR-NET News in 2001 - other commitments at the generalate made it impossible to prepare this bulletin during the past several months. Many thanks for the email messages expressing appreciation for MR-NET News. I am happy to be online once again.

In this bulletin:

1. USC (Techny) - 2nd Meeting of Zonal MR-NET Coordinators
2. SIN (Hong Kong) - Lawless - Interreligio
3. Rome - Other SVD Email Bulletins


From 7-8 December 2000 a meeting of the MR-Net Coordinators and the Generalate Mission Secretary to review progress in the development of the MR-NET and to plan for the next tasks. The meeting was held at Techny, USA in conjunction with an International Mission Symposium sponsored by Techny to honor its 100th foundation anniversary. The previous meeting of MR-Net coordination was held at St. Augustin 11-13 March 1999.

The meeting covered the following 8 points:

In this issue of the MR-Net News I include some highlights of the reports made by the coordinators. A future issue will present the substance of the other points.

1.1 Generalate: Tom Ascheman - Since the last meeting in March of 1999:

1.2 AFRAM: Ireneo Barreto - Shortly after his appointment as "mission" coordinator for AFRAM he was named as prefect at the Common Formation Center - Nairobi. In the midst of many other pressing demands he has been able to make some limited progress:

1.3 EUROPA: Heribert Bettscheider - is also the Director of MissWiss at St. Augustin and much of his MR-NET activity is an extension of MissWiss responsibilities.

1.4 ASPAC: Bob Kisala - is working to organize the next meeting of ASPAMIR to be held in Mumbai from October 15 to 22. The theme will be "Urbanization and Mission in Asia."

1.5 PANAM: Christian Tauchner - works from his position as editor of Spiritus to promote the beginnings of the MR-NET in PANAM.

Primary focus of MR-NET: The sharing of the projects over the past year and a half have helped to clarify what we believe continue to be the primary focus of the MR-NET i.e.

[For more information about the meeting contact the MR-Net coordinators: 
AFRAM - Ireneo Barreto SVD,  
ASPAC - Robert Kisala SVD 
EUROPA: Heribert Bettscheider 
PANAM: Christian Tauchner SVD,

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Brian Lawless SVD has been working in Hong Kong for many years and has served as the editor of Inter-Religio Bulletin since 1992.  He sends the following lines about the network and the bulletin: 

"Inter-Religio, a network of Christian organizations aimed at promoting interreligious research and dialogue in Eastern Asia, was founded in 1982 by representatives from 16 institutes and centers in 8 countries of Asia. Since that time, it has held bi-annual conferences on topics related to interreligious research and has published a bulletin, also known as Inter-Religio, twice a year. 

"The first issue of Inter-Religio was produced on an electric typewriter by the then editor, Jim Heisig SVD. Technology has progressed in leaps and bounds since then and is reflected in the changing typeface used in Inter-Religio: from Courier, to Times Roman, to Baskerville, a brief flirtation with Garmond and back to Baskerville again, changes that were so easily made with the advent of desktop publishing.

"In keeping with developments in technology Inter-Religio has now moved to the web. The Bulletin (including all back issues) is now available for viewing and downloading in PDF format from the following web sites:  or

"A comprehensive index of authors and articles is available online with links to the respective back issues. Although not an SVD publication, it has close links in that it has had an SVD as editor since its inception, first Jim Heisig and then myself since 1992."

[You can contact Brian Lawless SVD, the Editor of Inter-Religio at: . The secretariat for the network is located in the Nanzan Institute for Religion and Culture at Nanzan University, Nagoya, Japan.]

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In addition to this MR-NET News there are currently three additional email bulletins which are sent out from various generalate offices.

Since November 1998 I have been producing a bulletin for mission animation (in Spanish and English) Beginning with the first issue of 2000, the bulletin is produced together with the SSpS Mission Secretary - Maria Adela Muñoz SSpS. The 26th issue has just been sent out.  The bulletin entitled SVD/SSpS Mission Animation Bulletin Board is intended primarily for SSpS and SVD Mission Secretaries and Mission Animators.  If you would like to receive this bulletin please contact me (Tom Ascheman) at .

Niels Johanssen, the Communications Coordinator, prepares an email bulletin that is sent to those with interest in communications ministry. If you would like to receive the Communicators Bulletin Board, please send Niels a message at:  His second bulletin (January 30, 2001) included the following notice:

Since the beginning of this year Carlos Lariosa, SVD has served as the general manager of Radio Veritas Asia. Other than Vatican Radio, it is the only continent-wide Catholic short-wave radio station broadcasting in 17 different languages. Daily there are four hours of Mandarin programming broadcast to mainland China in addition to the relay of the Vatican Radio Mandarin program.  There are also longer programs in Vietnamese, Burmese for Myanmar(Burma) and a daily program in Filipino for overseas contract workers, especially for those in Saudi Arabia where Christian religious activities are severely limited. After his return from Ghana (after 27 years of service) Fr. Lariosa served for half a year as assistant to the general manager who has recently retired. The Society is also responsible there for the Hindi language program which is mainly produced in Indore. Fr. Franz-Josef Eilers, our correspondent writes: “We hope that we also can involve some of our seminarians in the Radio for regency and apostolate!”

 T.K. Kurian, the Secretary for Formation and Education, sent out the first email bulletin for formators in mid-February  It is entitled SVD Formation News and Views. If you would like to be placed on the email list please contact Kurian at   His first bulletin included the following notice:

In February 2001 The General Council gave first assignments to 36 of our confreres, twenty nine of Indian origin, four of Brazilian, one each from Taiwan, Mexico and Ecuador. Fifteen confreres are assigned to PANAM, twelve to ASPAC, five to Europe and four to AFRAM.

(Note: First assignments are given each year in February and June to accommodate the different school years in the northern and southern hemispheres.  The larger group of appointments comes in June.)

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