Journey of Roque Lobo towards the Permanent Diaconate
I am grateful for what my parents had inculcated in me and my other 4 siblings to have that sense of belief in God that slowly shaped our faith since we were young. My early education started at St. Joseph’s School, Vikhroli. I continued my higher education in Mumbai University and successfully completed my post-graduation in Physics (Electronics). Further I did a diploma in computers. Studying has always been a passion apart from my interest in sports, music, drawing and painting.
During my college years I was drawn to the Legion of Mary at St. Joseph’s Church, Vikhroli. I served in the Legion for a few years. This stint in the Legion of Mary did help me grow spiritually. My work experience has mostly been involved in the computer field. I loved my job and the challenges I had to face. I had to interact with people of many nationalities while working in the Middle East.I returned to Mumbai at the end of year 2000 and thought of taking life easy. But God seemed to have other plans for me. I saw God’s awesomeness unfolding in my life when he sent the right people to journey with me in encountering Him. I was elected to lead my community as a Parish Council member in June 2010 and was also appointed to be a part of the executive committee. In June 2011, I became the leader of the Prayer Group at St. Pius Church, Mulund. Being in the prayer group further helped me grow spiritually. I believe it was the grace of God that led me to respond to these initiatives. Witnessing my conversion story, reconciliation and growth in faith had given me clearer signs that God must have reasons for showing me all these.
I applied to become a candidate of the Permanent Diaconate in 2013 and was the only candidate selected. Managing full-time studies in the seminary and family life was a challenge but praise God, I have made it. For me the seminary formation has looked like a long journey but the years have flown by. The seminary has helped me, guided me, trained me and made me spiritually and pastorally strong as well as to have a holistic approach in all things. Regular recollections and retreats have helped me to reflect on my life. It has helped me to recognize the challenges of the world and prepared me to face them.
The philosophy and theology studies have enhanced my understanding of vocation and deepened my spirituality, broadened my horizons and equipped me to face the challenges that lie ahead. I have successfully completed my seminary studies. The pastoral courses additionally helped me to reflect theologically on my pastoral experience. I thank my Spiritual Director, the Rector, the Dean, the staff, the priests at various parishes and all others where I was posted for my pastoral work. I will be ordained a Permanent Deacon on April 28, 2018.
Candidate for Permanent Diaconate