With a little help from their friends
Local authorities help struggling pastoral school
Local governments in and around Atambua diocese in East Nusa Tenggara province have received praise for their contributions in ensuring the survival and growth of a pastoral school established in 2008.
The Pastoral School of St. Peter in Kefamenanu began life in a hall belonging to the North Central Timor deanery. It then moved to a building managed by the Missionary Sisters of Jesus, Mary and Joseph, which was in a poor state of repair after being damaged by fire.
Concerned with the situation, the district governments of Belu and North Central Timor provided 45 million rupiah (US$5,294) to go toward the renovation of the nuns’ building.
Then in October 2010, the government of North Central Timor district offered the school a four-hectare plot of land to build a new school building and other facilities including a library and dormitory.
Four months later, the Directorate for Catholic Community Guidance contributed one billion rupiah towards the construction project, which is well on the way to completion.
The Belu district government has also promised to assign lecturers to the school and help it build a dormitory.
“I’m grateful to both district governments for paying serious attention to this school. It is an example of what can happen when you build relationships,” the school’s headmaster, Father Yanuarius Seran, said.
He added that some people in the world have lost their faith in God. “This school was established to strengthen the faith of local Catholics,” he said.
Yoseph Inocentius Oematan, a lecturer, also praised the district governments.
As a result of their kind generosity, “I will always encourage myself to give my best to students studying in this school,” he pledged.
To Fransiskus Gregorius Naben, a student, the district governments’ contributions were meaningful.
“They worked together with the local Church to improve human resources,” he said.
Earlier, during a meeting with the school’s authorities, the head of North Central Timor district, Raymundus Fernandes, told them that his government is committed to helping people grow.
“I believe that what the local Church does is surely for the sake of the faithful, and it is not only for local people but also for all people of God,” he said.
The school now has 650 students, who are taught by 40 lecturers.
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