The De La Salle Brotherhood is about to grow!
The District Council has approved Shahzad Moon Gill to take his first Vows as a De La Salle Brother.
The soon-to-be Br Shahzad was born to a Catholic family on 22 December 1999 in Faisalabad, Pakistan. He is one of three siblings.
He currently lives in Sri Lanka as part of the PARC Novitiate. In his application, he wrote about the year-long program.
“I found out this vocation is a call from the Heavenly Father. I learnt about the Evangelic Councils and our Institutional Vows, their importance, and their occurrence in my day-to-day life. In this religious community, I tried to accept a rule of life that stressed self-effacement and the abandonment of worldly goods and pleasures.”
He began the first steps of becoming a De La Salle Brother in 2016. In October, he will complete the novitiate.
While Shahzad will earn the title of Brother, he will still be in a temporary or probationary period that lasts one to three years. The period of temporary vows aims to enable the young Brother to grow in his vocation and to continue the formation begun in the Novitiate. It also consolidates his daily fidelity and prepares him for the perpetual profession. The Brother must therefore acquire the skills he needs on a professional and apostolic level, learn how to live in community and live out his consecration. At the end of this period of temporary vows, he can ask for admission for perpetual vows.
Gill acknowledged that becoming a De La Salle Brother is a big responsibility but said he is ready to move forward. He had many opportunities to grow in his spiritual understanding and learn from the community. He learned how the Brothers live in unity with people wherever they go, sharing their joys and helping with challenges others face.
“Through these years of formation, I realised how a Brother tries to spread the Good News through his daily actions and interactions with others,” he wrote. “He works through all the possible ways in the Church and gives his sure presence. I learnt about the people engaged with the inter-relationship between faith, culture and life based on the demands of the contemporary world.”
Shahzad was born and raised in Pakistan, so his year in Sri Lanka exposed him to different kinds of people and different cultures. He learned how to handle cultural differences respectfully and appreciate how diverse people adapt Christianity to their unique backgrounds.
“The life of Novitiate has helped me to thank God for all the wonders He has done in my life, particularly witnessing God’s love in the community and immersing into God’s grace through different immersion programs,” he wrote in his letter to Br Visitor, Brother Timothy Peter FSC. “In this period of time, I have experienced the support of each other, the true spirit of community living and a challenge to come out of my own comfort zone and love my Brothers. In the alive measure of my prayer life, I have unfolded the richness of God’s love and become able to seek Him in the face of poor and vulnerable people.”
He added that his relationship with Jesus Christ has grown significantly in the last year.
“I am delighted and overwhelmed by the power of our Lord Jesus Christ and what He has done in my life,” he said. “I experienced His bounteous love in my community, in response to my personal prayers, in my relationship with others and in finding Him confronting all my challenges of life. It has been a hard walk and He has taught me to grow in different areas of my life, and how faithfully I have submitted to do His will.”
Shahzad acknowledged the support of his parents and Novitiate staff throughout the process.
“Their love and support through their prayers helped me each day to unite myself with my ever-living God,” he wrote to Br Visitor. “With their genuine love and bundles of prayers, I was privileged to see the growth in all areas of my life. I profoundly and wholeheartedly admire the efforts of Novitiate staff who have journeyed with me throughout this year of discernment.”
Brother Felix Joseph FSC, Director of the Lasalle PARC Novitiate, wrote to Br Visitor to recommend that Shahzad be allowed to pronounce his First Vows. He said Shahzad is pleasant, well-motivated, and has a strong sense of belonging to the Institute.
“He is always grateful to the Brothers and the initial encounter he had with them in Pakistan,” Br Felix wrote. “He actively undertakes all community services, including gardening, account keeping, and caring for the sick.”
He noted Shahzad’s joy and piety during the Lenten season and his recent immersion program.
We are thrilled to count Shahzad among those who have taken their First Vows. He is one of several young Novitiates bringing the Good Word to the De La Salle Brotherhood, a kind and hardworking young man representing the organisation's future.
If you are interested in a future of educating and professing to people in need around the world, we encourage you to check out the website for more information on the Lasallian mission.