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  NEWS UPDATES

AICUF STATE COUNCIL MEETING 2015

 

 

The All India Catholic University Federation conducted its annual state council meeting on the 14th of April, 2015 at 9:00am. The main objective of this meeting was to select the Convenor, Co- Convenor and the state team for the year 2015-2016 and  to briefly discuss the agenda for the year. The teachers present were Dr. Charlotte Simpson Veigas, the State Co-ordinator and Miss. Aprajita Hembrom, the Santhali unit Co-ordinator. Also present was Fr. Arokiasamy, the State Animator and Dr. Fr. Felix Raj, the State Advisor, along with the newly elected office bearers from different units.

 

The meeting began with a short introduction by Nixon Peter, the State part timer for the year 2014-15, after which all the newly elected officer bearers briefly introduced themselves and the office they hold. This was then followed by an orientation on AICUF by Fr. Arokiasamy, where he stressed upon the functioning and the activities performed by AICUF. He also discussed the thrust areas and the structure which is followed along with the main objectives as to why AICUF was set up. After this very inspiring talk by Fr. Arokiasamy, there was a short message given by Dr. Charlotte Simpson Veigas on BULLYING VS EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP. In her message she stated the importance of identifying what bullying is and to inculcate ways to eradicate it. The major differences between bullying and leadership were discussed in detail. The main characteristics of a bully were also specified and all present learnt how to deal with a bully.   During the talk there was an interactive session where questions were asked and the audience gave their opinion. This was really interesting and everyone present was truly enlightened and took part actively.

 

Soon after this  Dr. Fr Felix Raj was warmly welcomed and once again all the office bearers formally introduced themselves unit wise. This was then followed by a very inspiring and motivating talk by father, where he mentioned how AICUF originated and also identified the differences between AICUF today and AICUF when it first started. He stated the importance of working together as a team and building up AICUF and in creating awareness about it in the society at large. He posed various questions to the newly elected office bearers and informed us that it is essential for us to know the value of AICUF. After this very heartwarming speech by father the state team members were chosen. From every unit one member was selected to represent the state team. Then from amongst the state team the new National team member and the National council member were selected. The new NT member was Rajat and Walson was chosen to be the new NC member.

 

Soon after this the new part timers, convenor and co-convenor were selected for the year 2015-16. Ferris and Samantha were chosen to be the part timers and Twinkle and Kennie were selected as the new Convenor and Co-Convenor. The newly elected members were given a huge round of applause and were wished luck for their future endeavors and smooth functioning of AICUF. To celebrate this, a cake was cut and distributed to all present. Many pictures were also taken to capture the moment  to treasure it. After this the dignitaries took leave and everyone dispersed for a short break.

 

On returning from the break the newly elected part timers, Convenor and Co- Convener took over and started an informal discussion with the new office bearers and the state team. Initially the office bearers were asked to introduce themselves and state one strength and weakness that they possess. The results were truly interesting. After this, the agenda for the year 2015-16 was shortly read out and guidelines were given by the new part timers on how things have to be looked upon in AICUF. Then various suggestions were made by the unit members on how AICUF can be improved and create a greater impact on the society.  This was then followed by some strict instructions especially to the NT and NC members by Alexander who was the NC member for the year 2014-15 where he shared his experiences. All in all everyone present showed their great excitement and enthusiasm to work together for the betterment of our society through AICUF. With this the meeting came to a conclusion at around 12:45 in the afternoon and everyone present left happily with a feeling that they have a good chance to prove their worth and actually make a difference in this unjust world today.

 

AICUF NATIONAL COUNCIL

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AICUF PUJA CAMP

 

AICUF Retreat 2015

 

AICUF Retreat 2015

West Bengal AICUF conducted a one-day spiritual retreat for the students of St. Xavier’s College on Sunday, the 8th of February, 2015. Around 150 students from various departments of the college came together for a day of prayer and reflection. The retreat commenced with a hymn and short prayer by Rev. Fr. Gregory Monteiro, Regional Director of ICYM (Indian Catholic Youth Movement) and also the preacher for the sessions during the course of the retreat. Fr. Gregory, through his talks made the students understand the value of being a follower of Christ and the importance of embracing the uniqueness God has blessed each individual with. Other activities included various action songs enthusiastically organized by the office bearers of AICUF and the opportunity to receive the Sacrament of Penance. The students spent the second half of the day prepping up for Confession and taking part in the Eucharistic Celebration.  The retreat proved to be an enriching experience for all who had gathered as it embodied one of the primary objectives of AICUF: To help the students evolve spirituality rooted in God which flourishes in a rich humanization through the praxis: Involvement-Reflection-Involvement.

 

STATE PUJA CAMP REPORT

THE AICUF State Puja Camp was held in North Bengal St. Xavier’s College Campus, Rajganj from 30Th September to 5th October 2014. There were three AICUF units which included AICUF of St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata, North Bengal Xavier’s College Rajganj and St. Joseph College, Darjeeling. The theme was “ I am, I can, I will: Catalyst for change”

The following was the day-to-day schedule of the camp:

30th September

6pm- Students from St Xavier’s College Kolkata arrived in groups. The remaining groups arrived on 1st October. The Darjeeling unit also arrived on the same day

1st November

9am- Welcome dance by the students of North Bengal St Xavier’s College

9:30am- Inaguration session by lighting of the lamp

10:30am- Ice Breaking Session by Atman

1pm-Session by Joseph Rosario, celebrity chef who was 1st runner up on Master Chef India

2 pm-Sessions on the ACIUF history

4 pm-Sessions by Atman on “Leadership”

5pm-The students were divided into groups with particular leaders assigned for them

2nd November

7am-The day started with morning Mass

8am-The first session was taken by Fr.Paulus Ezhakunmen SJ, who spoke about the conditions of the people living in the tea plantations

10am- A debate was organized between various groups on the topic “Lesbian, Gays, Bisexual, Transgender”

2pm- Action songs were performed by Tracy Reid, Slyvian and other senior members of the AICUF

3 pm-Sessions by Prof. Aprajita Hembrom, the Santali Unit Co-coordinator

3rd November

9 am-The group was told to visit a particular village and inquire about their problems. Its purpose was to give them an exposure to the problems of people of the tea plantations

3 pm-There was a report sharing by each group about their experiences, observations and analysis of the various problems that people face

4th November

7am-The day started with meditation which was supervised by Manoshi

8am-Action Songs were performed by students

9am-The students were told to make charts which depicted whatever they had seen during the village exposure. They also had to explain their charts

1pm-Sessions on Women empowerment taken by Manoshi, Tracy and other SWC leaders

2 pm-Sessions taken by Fr. M.S Arockiaswamy on “Ignation Principles”

7 pm-There was a camp fire in which the campers enjoyed themselves with song and dance.

5th November

7 pm- Meditation

9 pm- Sessions by Nixon Peter, State Part-timer on “Addiction.”

10 pm-Sessions taken by Sudhir Kisku on “Bullying and Harassment.”

The camp was a very enriching experience for all.  Each one of the AICUFers went back to their destinations after having benefitted tremendously from the exposure.

 

 

AICUF celebrates the Feast of St. Francis Xavier

The West Bengal AICUF (All India Catholic University Federation) took initiative in organizing and celebrating the Feast Day Mass of Saint Francis Xavier on the 3rd of December, 2014. The day, which marked the 462nd death anniversary of the patron saint of St. Xavier's College commenced with Holy Mass at 8:30 am in the College Chapel. The main celebrant for this Eucharistic Celebration was Rev. Fr. M.S. Arockiaswamy SJ. The other co-celebrants were Rev. Fr. Dr. J Felix Raj SJ, Rev. Fr. Dominic Savio SJ and Rev. Fr. Benny Thomas SJ.

AICUF members of St. Xavier's College took active part in the choir and liturgy under the mentorship of Dr. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas, State Coordinator and Ma'am Aparajita Hembrom, Professor-in-charge of the Santali Unit of WB-AICUF. Introductory speech and welcome address was given by Aiswarya Ann Jomy. (Co-Convener, State Women’s Commission). The First Reading and Prayers of the Faithful were read by Samantha Raspin (Secretary, English Unit) & Atman Tete respectively.

Rev. Fr. Dr. J. Felix Raj SJ, State Advisor for WB-AICUF also extended his welcome to all who had gathered there on this auspicious occasion.

The day also marked the unveiling of a full sized marble statue of Saint Francis Xavier in the courtyard of the college. Among those who attended the program were students and faculty of both St. Xavier's College and St. Xavier's Collegiate School.
The celebrations came to an end after refreshments were provided to everyone who had gathered

 

 

26th  AICUF NATIONAL COUNCIL REPORT

AICUF FOR THE 21ST CENTURY

The 26th AICUF National Council was held from July 13 to July 15, 2014.

 

Day 1

The first day of the National Council started with a gathering at the entrance of the House where the council members were welcomed by Nikhil Manuel, the National Convenor of AICUF. This was then followed by a procession from the entrance of the AICUF House to the conference hall by singing the song ‘Itni Shakti Hume Dena Data’.  In the seminar hall we had a short prayer service led by Fr. Emanuel. We ended the service by singing the traditional AICUF hymn ‘We shall overcome’.

Fr. Emanuel then welcomed the council members. This was followed by the lighting of the Lamp as a symbolic and traditional gesture to declare the National Council open. The lighting of the lamp was done by Fr. Henry, the National Advisor, Nikhil Manuel, the National Convenor, Larissa Vas, the National Women’s Commission Convenor, Professor John, the National Animator, Ashwin the NT of Gujarat and Fr. Paul the State Advisor of Tamil Nadu.

The NT then conducted the Ice-Breaking session. As per AICUF tradition, we all played the game ‘As we walk to the right’. After the tea break we had the Keynote Address by Fr. Dr. Lazar. He spoke on the ‘emerging socio-economic realities: AICUF in the 21st Century’. He started by speaking about the AICUF heritage and then asked a few questions to make us think about AICUF in relation to the 21st Century. He spoke of the myth of the concept of ‘Superpower’ and how it was a mere propaganda by the industrialists, the political elite and the media. He gave the case study of how the BJP used the idea of ‘Development’ to campaign for their general elections due to the same myth of the ‘economic superpower.’ He also spoke of the concept of neo-liberalism. He ended with how AICUF should learn to critically question and look at things with a different perspective rather than just buying into a theory propagated by the elite class for their vested interests.  Fr. Henry Jerome then felicitated Fr. Lazar with a shawl.

After lunch, we had a panel discussion on Women and Tribals. Sr. Valarmathi was the speaker for the session on women. She started with a video on the problems that women face. She spoke to us in relation to the Fundamental Rights and how the women were not even allowed to enjoy these basic rights.  She then spoke of the women’s Right to Protection and the Right to Have Food. Sr. Valarmathi was then felicitated with a shawl by Rajan the NT of Bihar. Fr. Arokiasamy then conducted a session on Tribal Rights. He told us who the tribal people were as mentioned in Article 324 of the Indian Constitution. He emphasized on the fact that even though they have rich culture and heritage they are considered backward. He mentioned that the ways in which the tribal people were marginalized were through the political class, the accession of their land, poor quality of education and the ignorant attitude of the administration.

Next we had a session on AICUF History by Fr. Henry Jerome who conducted this session with the book, ‘Paradigm Growth’. He spoke of the entire journey of AICUF from 1924 as CYMG to the present day AICUF. He spoke of how the NSS was inspired from the Work Camps conducted by AICUF and the Documentation Centre which has more than 1000 files and is one of its kind in the whole of Asia. The session was dynamic and his passion for the movement also inspired the council members. Fr. Emmanuel felicitated Fr. Henry with a shawl.

We then had a session on the AICUF Constitution by Prof. John and Prof. Vimal. They started with a Quiz to see how we were placed with regard to the knowledge of the Constitution. They then started the session and told us about the importance of the National Council and its powers. They also told us how ‘the spirit of the word is more important than the letter of the word.’ They further explained about the intricacies and the technicalities of the Constitution.

This was followed by the ‘Transition of Memories’ where Fr. Henry officially handed over the AICUF constitution as a symbolic gesture of handing over the post of the National Advisor to Fr. Emmanuel. Fr. Henry the out-going National Advisor was then felicitated with a shawl by Fr. Brian. Fr. Emmanuel then addressed the gathering and spoke of creating leaders. After supper, a documentary on globalization was shown to all the participants and this was followed by discussion on this issue.

 

Day 2

Day 2 of the 26th National Council held at AICUF House started with a mass celebrated by Fr. Babu, the State Advisor of Kerala. After breakfast, Rose presented the previous day’s report. After this session, the suggestion put forward by Prof. John was that the report of each day could be a little more elaborate and could include more names of people involved during the sessions. He also gave a positive comment on the same.

 Prof. John and Prof. Vimal then continued the session on the AICUF Constitution- its vision and mission. Apart from the technicalities of the constitution they brought out important aspects like gender equality, the significance and the meaning of the logo, the flexibility and rigidity of the constitution. They gave us an overall understanding of how to use the constitution as the guiding principle.

Next we started with the Report Presentation of 8 states. The first report was presented by the Bihar team and the session was moderated by Fr. Brian. Each session was followed by interaction with the house so as to clarify points or question the team. After the first report reading, Fr. Brian suggested that the seating arrangement could be changed to facilitate better interaction and getting a limited time frame of 12 +5 minutes due to the time constraint. Fr. Paul suggested that we could stop the practice of printing and distributing the reports to the members in the council and instead give a CD to the councillors. Fr. Shailendra suggested mailing the material beforehand.

We then broke for tea and gave 15 minutes to the states to sit with their respective State Advisors and form a concise report to be presented in the next session. After the break, the Gujarat Team presented their report and this session was moderated by Fr. Sabu. During the interaction questions were asked by Fr. Emmanuel and Fr. Babu which was answered positively by the team.

The Kerala State made the next presentation and this session was moderated by Fr. Babu. The major clarification after the presentation was the exclusion of the higher secondary students as members of AICUF. Instead the team clarified that these students were being trained for the future to be AICUFers. Fr. Shailendra suggested on the style of presenting the report and emphasized on the need to come up with a report that focused on the outcome and the contributions made by the state through its activities.

Fr. Shailendra then put forward his point on the situation of AICUF in Andhra. He voiced his concern about the lack of interest in the Jesuit Colleges and how we need to change the modus operandi to get AICUF into the institutions. He raised his concerns about the effectiveness of the national secretariat. It was then suggested that though this was a serious concern, this topic could be more effectively discussed in another forum. John sir then asked the advisors, animators and the national team to give serious thought to the issue but then continue to go ahead with the report sharing.

Karnataka then presented their report and this session was moderated by Fr. Paul. They presented their report in a quick and effective manner with proper clarity. They then ended the session with a dance performance from the entire team on the Karnataka AICUF song.

The Jaipur team from the Delhi province presented their report next and this session was moderated by Prof. Vimal. This is a new unit which has been recently revived and the house complimented and encouraged them to start new units in Rajasthan and Delhi. Fr. Paul suggested that they could focus more on the parishes and the university students there to become a part of AICUF.

Next, the Tamil Nadu state report was presented and this session was moderated by Fr. Arock. Fr. Brian complimented and encouraged the team for effectively using cultural means and dances and for promoting social causes. Vimal Sir then asked the council for the ratification of including only the 2nd year students as part of the state EXCO which was accepted by the house.

The West Bengal report was presented next and this session was moderated by Fr. Brian. They also presented their annual magazine to the house.

Fr. Brian put forward an important point where he suggested that we could use celebration as a means to reach out to the youth.

We then had a fun action song taught to us by AICUF Karnataka. This rejuvenated the entire house after the report reading session.

The next session was the presentation of various other reports. Firstly, the national team was invited to sit before the house and Nikhil Manuel, the national Convenor of AICUF presented the NT report.  Vimal Sir suggested that effective communication and coordination should be taken into consideration and the number of meetings and the number of people attending the meetings should be recorded. Dr. John, the National Animator clarified that in the past year a proper structure did not exist and they could not hold those meetings because there was a lot of instability owing to finding the National Advisor. He also assured us that this would not occur again. He mentioned that he would take quick measures to rectify the situation by trying to arrange a meeting once every two months and electing the new commission members as soon as possible so that the national team is complete. Fr. Brian observed the love for AICUF that existed in the house and that even though the past year experienced some drawbacks, they were minor stepping stones to success.  Vimal Sir stressed on having a good relationship between the Advisors, the Animators and the team.

After the tea break, the House Report was presented by Sylvia ma’am. She spoke about the Office Unit, the Training Unit, the Documentation Unit, the Publication Unit, house meetings and Solidarity and Networking.

The National Documentation Centre report was presented by Mr. Eddison. Sir spoke about the history, the objectives, the need and the purpose of the DC, the services and the future plans. Fr. Louis also spoke about the digitalization of the DC.

The Publication Department report was presented by Julia ma’am who is the New Managing Editor of The Rally. She spoke of the history, their work, their expectations from the National Team and what they look forward to. Fr. Emmanuel suggested making it an e-journal. Anshula suggested that getting a few coloured pages would make it more attractive for the youth. Vimal Sir suggested to start a new project where a few students could be employed to scan the old documents and journals. He also suggested starting a digital library and putting it on the website. Fr. Paul promised a subscription to all the units in Tamil Nadu.

After the tea break, we then had a session by Prof. G John on the Dalit community and the problems faced by them. He spoke of the recent problem of activist Sheetal Sathe that occurred in St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. Fr. Emmanuel then conducted an analysis of Globalization so that he could provide a link to the council members. He spoke about Industrialization, displacement of the local community, english becoming the market language, commercialization of the media and the alienation of the people.

Fr. Emmanuel then made us play a short game before we could proceed into the next session. John Sir then gave a summary of the reports through the concept of ‘Spaces’. He spoke of spaces that AICUF provides us with, such as;

·         Space for spirituality

·         Space for multiculturalism

·         Space for Cultivating Values and Values Clarification

·         Space for innovation

·         Space for inclusiveness

·         Space for using and nurturing one’s talent

·         Space for listening and learning

·         Space for churning out leaders

·         Space for experiencing ‘Student-Centrality’

·         Space for dissent and questioning

·         Space for Pen, Print and Media

·         Space for Add Mad people

After dinner, the documentary on Kandhamal which was made by Fr. Shailendra was screened. After the screening, we had an interactive session with the house where the students were encouraged to put forward their opinions on the violence against the dalit christians they saw in the film.

The MC’s for the day were Ashwin the NT of Gujarat and Rajan the NT of Bihar.

 

Day 3

 

We started the day with the hoisting of the National Flag done by Nikhil the National Convenor which was followed by the National Anthem and then a Patriotic speech was given by Naresh. This was followed by a photo session of the Advisors, Animators, Old and New National Team members, Commission members and the respective states. We then assembled in the hall after which the report of the previous day was read. Then Fr. Henry Jerome SJ, read the letter of “RATIFICATION” for the Appointment of Fr.Emmanuel SJ as the New National Advisor after which a sheet was circulated around and all the members of the 26th National Council were asked to sign.

 John Sir then spoke about the Rally Magazine and asked three simple questions to the council members…. Do you Read? Do you Write? and Do you subscribe? We then spent some time to deliberate on this. Fr. Shailendra suggested that each member present in the council could take initiative and subscribe to The Rally. Fr. Emmanuel stressed on the need to inculcate the habit of reading and asked the members to suggest ways to increase the reach of The Rally among the AICUFers. The suggestions put forth were that there should be better publicity of The Rally amongst the AICUFers of all states; the cover page of The Rally should be publicized. Fr. Arock suggested that there should be a state unit wise correspondent who will work for The Rally and who will be selected by the State Advisor. Alexander suggested that the subscription forms should be made available online for quick and easy access. Nixon suggested that each state should  send a minimum of  at least 2 articles each. Sudhir mentioned that there should be a competition amongst the writers which would inculcate a competitive spirit and provide an  incentive to  the students to give their best. Fr. Paul suggested that articles relating to job opportunities, skill orientation and career guidance should be included. Crislin suggested that the NC’s could also identify other writers for the same. Fr. Ema suggested conducting a national level journalism competition and workshop where they would be trained. Ranjith also suggested that along with writing, emphasis should also be given to  photography.

Next, Vimal Sir conducted a session on the Dalit Community. He started off with a game called ‘Constitution Says’. He then explained in detail who the dalits were and what kind of oppression they faced. This was supported by many personal experiences or sharing of incidents by the council members. He brought out the fact  that the biggest challenge that they faced was Identity Crisis. Sir spoke of the political, economic and social problems faced by them. He emphasized on the need for every unit to have a dalit coordinator and to get a strong dalit commission. He also spoke about how we need to orient non-dalit students into the same and follow the principle of inclusiveness.

The next session was a session on Women conducted by Julia Ma’am. She started off with showing a small video on The Story of Circles. She then asked the male members what they felt when they thought of a woman. Through that she continued to speak of women’s oppression and why the women’s commission was important to the movement. She stressed on the fact that the spiritual acceptance that men and women are equal needs to be brought about. She ended the talk with another video that was an Inspiration story for the women. Ma’am stressed on the need of Awareness and Action i.e. making others aware through our action as AICUF ers.

We then had roll-wise meetings for the National Team, the National Council members and the State Advisors. After lunch we had a session on AICUF into Tomorrow by Fr. Emmanuel. This was basically a brainstorming session for the activities for the state and national level. After the suggestions , Fr. Brian spoke about the importance of finances to organize an event. Fr. Paul suggested that the number of state programs should be increased and more programs should be conducted at the zone and region level. We also spoke of the Sheetal Sathe controversy that occurred in Xavier’s Mumbai and Fr. Emmanuel asked each one what they would do if they were the Principal of the college. This provoked us to think not just as administrators but as AICUF leaders.

We then had the Business session and the house was asked to put forth ideas about the themes of the rally which would then be discussed and finalized by the NTs. A few resolutions were passed which was approved by the house. They were:

1.       Selection of the National Full Timer

2.       Appointing a new Dalit Commission Coordinator from Fr. Sabu to Fr. Paul

3.       The NDC and NWC leadership camps should be held before the National Council

4.       Resolution was passed thanking Fr. Sabu for the work he did as the Dalit Commission Coordinator

5.       Resolution was passed thanking Fr. Henry for the work he did as he National Advisor of AICUF.

Fr. Arok suggested including the 11th and 12h standard students under AICUF. John sir said that this could be seriously considered but technically we would have to amend the constitution for the inclusion of this provision and we would have to wait for the national convention. Fr. Paul then suggested that instead of waiting till the convention, we could just start an association with another name that could be similar to AICUF, so that they could get oriented into the movement. The NCs also declared their commitment to working for The Rally. We then had a discussion on democracy in the election process of the convener and the aspect of student centrality in the movement.

Mass for the Independence Day and the feast of Assumption of Mother Mary was celebrated by Fr. Samuel and Fr.Emmanuel. The handing over ceremony was conducted at the end where Nikhil Manuel handed over the post of the National Convenor to Crislin Rozario. Rahul Pais took over as the National Co-Convenor. The old NT then initiated the new NT by handing over a notepad and the AICUF Constitution as a symbolic gesture. With the mass we officially concluded the 26th National Council for 2014.

After dinner, we had the cultural night as is the tradition of the council. Different states and Individuals came ahead and sang folk songs, tribal songs and social awareness songs. Fr. Emmanual and Fr. Babu also joined in the celebration by dancing and playing musical instruments. We had performances by the states, individuals, groups, the old NTs and we finally ended with a dance on the Karnataka AICUF song and taking the oath of the AICUF Motto.

                                                                                                                                                Report by: Saurav Alexander (present NC)

 

 

 

AICUF celebrates ADIWASI DIWAS 2014

AICUF celebrated Adiwasi Diwas on Sunday, September 21, 2014.  The event began with Holy mass which was presided over by Fr. Dominic Gomes-Vicar General Archdiocese of Calcutta, along with Fr. MS Arockiasamy SJ, State Animator AICUF, West Bengal. The programmes for the day were organized in the Primary School buliding of St. Xaviers Collegiate School.

The Chief Guest at the event was Mr. Innocent Soren, Deputy General Manager RBI.  He along with Fr. Arockiasamy (West Bengal State Animator) and Charlotte Simpson-Veigas (West Bengal State Co-ordinator) received a traditional welcome into the gathering.  This was followed by the washing of the feet of the dignitaries as a symbol of love and respect. The traditional tikka was then applied on the forehead of each of the dignitaries. 

The students of the AYCM (Adivasi Yuva Chetana Manch) presented a beautiful song.  The Chief Guest and the other dignitaries were then presented with shawls.  Mr. Innocent Soren began his speech by requesting the audience to rise and sing the National Anthem along with him.  He delivered a powerful speech which inspired and motivated everyone in the gathering to be an agent of social change in the community.

The dignitaries and office bearers were then invited to light the lamp.  This was followed by the inter-parish debate, prize distribution for painting and essay competition and fashion show based on tribal culture. 

After the lunch break there were other events that included Nepalese and Khasi songs, a skit written, directed and performed by the AYCM students.  This was followed by a Santhali dance competition.

The programme concluded with a prize distribution ceremony.

By Sudhir Kisku


 

 

AICUF Organizes ‘THE SPOTLIGHT’

-Samantha .P. Raspin

The All India Catholic University Federation (AICUF) organized a talent hunt competition entitled “THE SPOTLIGHT –Envision Talent Beyond Exposure” at St. Xavier’s College Kolkata, on September 7, 2014.

The program was inaugurated with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp by Rev. Dr. Dominic Savio (The AICUF State Co-advisor and Vice Principal of the B.com and BBA departments).  He was accompanied by Fr. Joseph Kulandai (Vice Principal of St. Xavier’s Collegiate School), Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy (AICUF State Animator) and Dr. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas (AICUF State Coordinator).

The programme consisted of a series of on-stage as well as off stage events. On stage events included items such as solo/duet performances, minute to win it, battle of bands and group dances. Off stage events included photography, videography and Junk funk.

The second half of the program showcased exceptional band performances as well as a guest performance by Shayne David Hyrapiet who kept the audience actively engaged throughout.

The group dance was performed by three colleges – AIMK, Scottish Church College and St. Xavier’s College.  St. Xavier’s College bagged the much coveted first prize in the competition with their exceptional performance.

The program ended with the prize distribution ceremony.  A vote of thanks was pronounced.  The contribution of all those who made the event a grand success was duly acknowledged.

 

 

AICUF Celebrates Santal Hul

-         Sudhir Kisku

Santal Hul was celebrated by the Santali unit of AICUF.  It was held on 31st August, 2014 at St. Xavier’s College (Autonomous).  The Santal Hul was last celebrated by AICUF after a hiatus of four years.  The enthusiastic celebration therefore was all the more praiseworthy.  A meaningful theme was chosen for the event.  The theme was “Santal Hul: A Flame for Renaissance”. 

The programme was organized by the students under the effective leadership of the AICUF State Animator Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, the State Co-ordinator Dr. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas and the Santali Unit Advisor Prof. Aprajita Hembrom.

The Santali Unit President Kushal Murmu gave an introductory speech on the significance of the event.  This was then followed by a talk on Santali culture by Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy. The AICUFers performed a skit showcasing the significance of Santal Hul in the struggle for independence.  

A panel discussion was also conducted in order to pay homage to those who sacrificed their lives through dedicated service for the upliftment of the Santals.  Memories of the Santal Hul that had occurred several decades ago were brought to life through this discussion.  The panelists included Dr. Timothias Hembrom, Dr. Anand Besra, Ms. Ruby Hembrom and a student representative Atman Tete.  

The vote of thanks by Sudhir Kisku brought the curtains down on the event.

 

AICUF joyfully celebrated the birthday of Rev. Dr. Felix Raj, SJ. (AICUF State Advisor and Principal of St. Xavier's College, Kolkata) on August 26, 2014.

Wishing Fr. Felix Raj an abundance of blessings of happiness, peace and joy.

 

(Photos)

 

AICUF ORIENTATION 2014-15

Prof. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas and Rev. Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, SJ addressing the students

The new AICUF members of St. Xavier’s College (Autonomous), Kolkata

The AICUF (All India Catholic University Federation) of St. Xavier’s College (Autonomous), Kolkata, held an Orientation Programme on the 20th of July 2014 to welcome approximately four hundred new members to its family. The AICUF is a students movement and it has a social dimension.  It aims to subvert structures of injustice in the society through non-violent action.  Each member is taught how to develop leadership skills and to live by the AICUF motto- “we are born in an unjust society and we are determined not to leave it as we have found it.” West Bengal AICUF started its journey under the charismatic leadership of Rev.Fr. G. Beckers, SJ in 1959.  It continues to do commendable work under the able guidance and visionary leadership of Rev.Fr. Dr. J. Felix Raj, SJ, the State Advisor of West Bengal State AICUF and is assisted by Rev.Fr. Dr. Dominic Savio, SJ, the State Co-Advisor.

The Orientation Programme began with a Eucharistic celebration by Rev. Fr. Dr. Mathew Jayant, SJ, the main celebrant and Rev.Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, SJ, who is also the new State Animator for West Bengal AICUF. After the Eucharistic celebration Mariya Varghese, the State Convenor for West Bengal AICUF delivered a welcome speech following which Prof. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas, the State Coordinator for West Bengal AICUF, motivated the students by her inspirational words on leadership and how AICUF plays an integral and positive role in personality development and character formation. Thereafter, Rev. Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, SJ delivered a speech followed by a short introduction of the State Team, National Team and National Council members elected from amongst the students.

Rev. Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, SJ, Prof. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas and the new members were then escorted to the ‘green bench area’ inside the college campus by the office bearers. Refreshments were served.  The new members were then sent to their respective units. AICUF has five units and two commissions namely – the English, XIA (Xaverians in Action), Bengali, Hindi and Santhali units as well as the SWC (State Women’s Commission) and AYCM (Adiwasi Yuva Chetna Manch). Orientations were conducted in allotted classrooms by the office bearers of each unit. The orientations included powerpoint presentations and videos on AICUF as a movement.  The presentations described the aims and objectives of AICUF and the various events it organizes throughout the year.

This was followed by interactive sessions with Rev. Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, SJ, the State Animator and Prof. Charlotte Simpson- Veigas, the State Coordinator. They were accompanied by Maria Varghese, the State Convenor, Alex Thakur, the State Co-convenor and Nixon Peter and Anshula Medha Murmu, the State Part-Timers along with the SWC and AYCM office bearers as they moved on from unit to unit. During the interactive sessions, students were encouraged to participate enthusiastically in all the activities organized by AICUF.  This wholehearted participation would definitely enhance their academic and scholastic performance.  As St. Francis of Assisi had said, ‘For it is in giving that we receive’. 

The orientation ended with fun activities organized by the office bearers.  This was followed by short sessions and experience sharing of ex-AICUFers and ex-office bearers.  This further provided a motivational boost to the new AICUFers.

AICUF is proud to welcome a large number of new members to its family.  It is committed to its legacy to pass on the AICUF values and traditions to its students and to motivate them to work for societal change and progress. The marginalized and the downtrodden are at the centre of AICUF’s action plan. 

AICUF also wishes to congratulate the new State Team, National Team and National Council Members along with the new office bearers for the year 2014-15. They have been elected from the senior, second and third year students of the college.  Rev. Fr. M.S. Arockiasamy, SJ and Prof. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas shared many plans which will be put into action through collective efforts.  AICUF, as it proceeds along this enriching journey, is committed to the empowerment of the marginalized and deprived sections of the society.

                                           By Samantha Raspin (English Unit Secretary)


FEAST OF ST. IGNATIUS AT ST. XAVIER’S COLLEGE

On July 31st the All India Catholic University Federation (AICUF), celebrated the feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus at St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata.

The program commenced with a Eucharistic celebration in the college chapel. Fr. Dominic Savio, the Co-Advisor of AICUF was the main celebrant along with fifteen priests. An entrance hymn accompanied by a dance welcomed the celebrants to the altar. Hymns were sung in English, Hindi, Bengali and Malayalam by the choir members of AICUF.  Fr. Felix Raj, the AICUF Advisor and the guiding light of AICUF introduced and welcomed the “high-powered AICUF State Team”- Fr. Arockiasamy (the State Animator), Prof. Charlotte Simpson-Veigas (the State Co-ordinator) and the other members.

After the Holy Mass, light refreshments were served. This was followed by a cultural program on the college grounds.  It included an Adivasi tribal dance and a street play on the early life of St. Ignatius of Loyola, performed by the students. The day’s celebration ended on an inspirational and joyous note.

The attendants of the celebration took back with them the very inspiring and motivational words from Fr. Dominic Savio’s sermon enlightening them on the guiding principles of St. Ignatius.  All present were reminded of the meaningful words of St. Ignatius, “what profits a man if he gains the whole world but suffers the loss of his own soul”. This very principle is also a guiding light for the Jesuits and they urge everyone to be inspired by the unconditional love St. Ignatius had for Jesus and wish that each one of us imbibe it as well. AICUF wishes to spread this message and encourages everyone to take a leaf out of St. Ignatius’s spiritual life.

By: Samantha Priscilla Raspin.


 
 

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