Thank you, Fr. Nino! – Welcome Fr. Shanil!

 

Originally Published on OMIWORLD.ORG 

The vocation of the Oblate Communications Service is to help the Congregation, in faithfulness to the spirit of Saint Eugene de Mazenod, to share past and present experiences and to promote unity while respecting and valuing differences. In other words, the Service wants to make an important contribution to the communion between the General Administration and the whole Congregation and, at the same time, among the different Units, helping to create that family spirit so dear to the heart of the Founder. (OMI Information, No. 523, June 2012)

Fr. Nino Bucca, OMIAt the end of September 2014, Fr. Antonino “Nino” BUCCA concludes 11 years at the helm of the Oblate Communications Service as he moves on to a new obedience in the Mediterranean Province and Crocifisso Parish in Rome. Replacing him is Fr. Shanil JAYAWARDENA, originally from the Colombo Province in Sri Lanka.

During Nino’s tenure at the General House, we have seen many changes and innovations, especially in the offerings of the Congregation’s official website (www.omiworld.org) of which he has been the webmaster. One can find there a very useful electronic library of many Oblate resources: books written by or about Oblates; publications such as “Missions” (1862-1878); “Vie Oblate Life” (1974-2011); Études Oblates (1942-1973); Oblate Anecdotes; Interviews; Writings of Superiors General; OMI InformationOMI Documentation, theCommunique of the Central Government’s plenary sessions (all dating from the early days of the use of the computer at the General House); and many other resources for the study of the history and the charism of the Congregation.

During the 2010 General Chapter, Nino did a masterful job producing videos of the day by day proceedings of that important gathering. His video of the election of the Superior General received praise in other international media outlets for the openness and candor of the Oblate election process. (http://goo.gl/Noj4Fw)

Nino is also known for his creative way of working with young adults. Besides his work at the General House, he has offered his services ministering with students at the Sapienza University in Rome. For the past five years, he Fr. Shanil Jayawardena, OMIhas been chaplain at two schools of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, with a total of 1,500 students. He has also been the inspiration and also the producer of a musical version of the story of the apparition of the Virgin Mary at Lourdes. The production of “Aquero” has taken place for 18 years in Lourdes and various Italian cities. He was also the Executive Producer of an oratorio written for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the death of St. Eugene de Mazenod. “Mistral” was first produced in Rome at Divino Amore Shrine on 21 May2011 and then at the Oblate World Youth Days held in Madrid, Spain, in that same year. He has also produced three CD’s of liturgical songs, always with the collaboration of professional artists and musicians.

Nino’s replacement at the Oblate Communications Service, , arrived in Rome in June 2013. He has spent the past year studying Italian and following courses in the area of communications at the Pontifical Salesian University in Rome.

Born in Sri Lanka in 1981, he was ordained to the priesthood in 2008. Before coming to service in the General Administration, he ministered in his native country as a member of the Oblate preaching band “Nazareth” in Wennappuwa. He also led the Sri Lankan delegation for the Oblate Youth Encounter and the World Youth Day held in Spain in 2011.