Guwahati Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil’s book “Never Grow Tired” published by the Pauline Publications, Mumbai, India sold out within three months. Two thousand copies of the book released on 28th June contains an anthology of Archbishop’s talks to seminarians, religious, priests, bishops and others urging evangelical boldness, pastoral strategies, and plain good sense. A second edition is already under way.
“His words come from profound convictions and are based on a lived experience of sharing the Gospel,” says his former Secretary Salesian Fr C.T. Lukose.
“Archbishop insists on community building, teamwork, good neighbourly relationships, attention to culture, painstaking effort, austere living, persuasive ways, fearless in opposition and tireless in pastoral commitment,” adds Fr. Lukose Director of Snehalaya, Guwahati, a major ministry for street children.
Archbishops’ Secretary and Chancellor Fr Varghese Kizhakevely states Archbishop Thomas has many surprises for the reader, including simple truths like “make better use to time, be punctual, keep things clean in the campus, cut down on expenses, attend to the environment, don’t forget self-care, accept troubles as normal life, don’t grow complacent with success, concede defeat as a part of a larger strategy, motivate youth, make friends of your enemies, opt for the radical dimension of the Gospel, announce Christ, try for the impossible.”
“This book ultimately turns out to be something like a handbook suggesting practical ways of translating the slogan Passion for Christ, Passion for Humanity into life,” says Pauline Sr Lissy on behalf of Pauline Publications Mumbai.
Excerpts from Book Review
In his review of the book ‘Never Grow Tired’ professor of Sacred Scripture and Spirituality, Salesian Father Dr. Jose Varickasseril says “with perspicuous dexterity the author cautions against doing things which do not ensure continuity in ministries undertaken, of seeking one’s advantage over that of the people one caters to, of drawing hasty conclusions from one untoward incident, of hurts that are even unconsciously inflicted upon others, and of the dangers inherent in success.”
“In a persuasive style Archbishop Thomas sets forth the benefits ensuing from the appreciation of the past and of not lamenting over the present state of affairs however perplexing they may appear to be,” assures Dr Varickasseril archbishop’s former pupil warning readers “not to take shelter in a glorious past that no longer exists.”
“Admiration for the pioneers of the past without emulating their dedication does not produce anything worthwhile. The author argues that reconciliation and peace are possible. He expresses his conviction that one can preserve freshness of life amidst the monotony one’s daily living,” insists Dr Varickasseril former Rector of Sacred Heart Theological College Shillong quoting the archbishop.
“Rather than speaking disparagingly about the ignorance of faith of the communities that one caters to, one ought to keep in mind that the superficiality of faith or lack of enthusiasm in a given community are a commentary on the type of “follow-up” that pastors are carrying out,” explains Archbishop Thomas who is at his best speaking on the good that issues forth from personal contacts and keeping in touch with Christian communities by visiting them.
Archbishop’s Personal Background
Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil, twenty-six years a bishop at Dibrugarh and Guwahati, was an educationalist and a youth worker in his earlier days. Having worked in Northeast India for more than half a century, he has developed a passion for the peoples and cultures of the region. With several books to his credit, he has written insightful articles on themes like Evangelization, Culture, Peace, Religious Life and Pastoral Ministry. An active evangelizer, he has also made a mark as a peace-negotiator and a prominent leader in civil society. At present he is engaged, among other things, in arousing consciousness about the need for ‘Probity in Public Life.’
Special invitee to the Synod of Bishops for Asia (1998) and the Synod of Bishops on the Word of God (2008), Archbishop Thomas is Chairman of the Evangelization Commission of the Federation of Asian Bishop’s Conference as well as Chairman of the Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI) Commission for Education and Culture. He is a member in the Post-Synodal Council for Asia; Member of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacrament, Rome; Member of the Congregation for Commission Consecrated Life, Rome.) Pope Benedict XVI appointed Archbishop Thomas member of the 15-member post-synodal (Synod on the Word) council.
Five of his earlier publications and best-sellers through St Pauls, Mumbai, include A Path to Prayer; Let Your Light Shine; Challenge to Culture; Thoughts on Evangelization; and Cultures: In the Context of Sharing the Gospel. END