ASIA/INDONESIA - Contemplative charism in Indonesia: a Trappist monastery under construction on the island of Borneo

Thursday, 4 August 2022 evangelization   prayer  

Ketapang (Agenzia Fides) - "I am very happy to see what is happening now in Pegadungan. The time has come for the 'children', that is, the local religious, to take care of the mother, the Netherlands, where there is a shortage of religious vocations ", says to Fides, Dutch Trappist Fr. Hector Majoor OCSO, referring to the presence of Trappist abbeys in Holland and those born and established in Indonesia. In the Asian archipelago, in fact, a new Trappist monastery will be built in Indonesian Borneo, precisely in Pegadungan, in the diocese of Ketapang, province of West Kalimantan.
As Fides learned, Father Mikael Santana OCSO, of the Order of Cistercian monks of strict observance, went to the place to found the new community. In recent days, Msgr. Pius Riana Prapdi, Bishop of Ketapang, anointed and blessed the place where the Trappist monastery of the diocese of Ketapang will be founded, the fourth in Indonesia. Many Trappist monks were present at the ceremony, as well as priests, brothers and sisters who work in the diocese of Ketapang. Speaking to Agenzia Fides, Bishop Pio Riana Prapdi says: "The presence of the Trappist monastery in our diocese is important because we need your prayers". It was Bishop Emeritus Msgr. Blasius Pujaraharja who first invited the Cistercian Order to found a new monastery in his diocese, in Pegadungan, an isolated place, an oasis of silence, peace and tranquility, suitable for contemplation.
The current Bishop of Ketapang, Msgr. Pius Riana Prapdi, who maintains close relations with the Trappist monastery of Rawaseneng, wanted to realize the idea, founding a Trappist house in Pegadungan.
The bishop joyfully welcomed the Trappist community in the diocese of Ketapang starting from mid-July 2022. Fr. Mikael Santana OSCO will prepare in the coming weeks everything necessary to legalize the official establishment of the new Trappist monastery in West Kalimantan, which joins three others already established in the Asian nation. In fact, the first Trappist monastery in Indonesia, named after Saint Mary, was officially founded in 1953 in Rawaseneng, in the Tetangung district of Central Java, as a "branch" of the Dutch Trappist abbey of Konigshoeven based in Tilburg.
More than thirty years later, in 1987, the Trappist monastery "The Unifying Mother", the first female Trappist monastery in Indonesia, was founded in Gedono on the slopes of Mount Merbabu - also in Central Java. In 1996, it was the diocese of Larantuka, on the Indonesian island of Flores, that took a step forward, establishing a new Trappist monastery in Lamanabi, with Father Mikael Santana, from Rawaseneng, charged with initiating this mission. (MH/PA) (Agenzia Fides, 4/8/2022)