Province: Belgium (International Community)
Country: India (Indian Union)
Date of Birth: January 27, 1989
First Vows: June 2, 2010
Ordination: December 18, 2018
Speaks: Tamil, Kannada, Hindi, English, Dutch
Understands: Tamil, Kannada, Hindi, English, Dutch
My official name is Sathish Anthony Swamy but I am called Clement Sathish. I was born in a village Vayaloor Avoor, in the state of Tamil Nadu in the southern part of India. Born into a catholic family, I am the eldest of three sons. My parents are still alive. I lost my first younger brother five years back. My second younger brother is married and has a wife and two daughters. My family is a happy one, and we are happy with what we have and how we live together.
I did my primary schooling from standard 1 to 5 in my mother’s village. For high school, standard 6 to 10, I went to a boarding school run by the Salesians (St. Dominic Savio Higher Secondary School) in Tamil Nadu. I studied standard 11 and 12 in St. Joseph’s High School in Bangalore, in the state of Karnataka, also in the south of India.
Joining the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart
During my last year in high school, one of my friends, a lay person who was already in contact with MSC congregation, asked me whether I want to become a priest to serve God and the people. But it was not all of sudden that I wanted to become a priest; rather I had this desire from my childhood to be God’s priest for Him and the people. He asked me to write an application to the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC), in order to take me in.
Apparently, it was God’s providence at work. At the end of High school, I was invited to a vocational camp organized by the MSC. So, I said yes and started to discern His call in my life. God’s presence and guidance was there all the time through my formation years and in my life. And by the end of the camp, I was asked whether I still wanted to enter into the MSC congregation and I decided strongly and joined the congregation of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart in 2007.
I went through 12 years of formation: 1 year Initiation, 1 year Pre-novitiate, 1 year Novitiate, 2 years of Philosophical Studies, 3 years for a Degree in Visual Communication (Viscom) in St. Joseph’s Collage in Bangalore, and 3 years of Theological Studies.
After completing my formation, I was appointed as a deacon for my practicum in the “Our Lady of the Sacred Heart” parish in Bangalore. After I was ordained a priest on 22 December 2018, I was appointed as one of the assistant parish priests in the same parish.
In 2019 I was appointed to an MSC-run school in Tamil Nadu. There I was teaching the basics of Computer and English grammar, and also coaching and training the students in different sports (football, cricket etc.…). My interests are, reading books, writing short articles and reflections. I can sing and like to listen to music and I am open minded. And I can relate and mingle with people, accepting them as they are with their differences and similarities. Besides English I also speak three local languages: Tamil, Kannada, and Hindi.
Missionary in Belgium
By the end of the schoolyear in March 2020, I was asked by our Indian Union Superior to join an international MSC-community in Belgium. I started with all the legal requirements necessary for moving to Belgium. And thanks to God, I arrived in Antwerp on 03 February 2021.
I am happy to come to Belgium and work as a missionary to serve God and His people here. I thank my Indian Union for trusting and sending me here and the Belgium Province for accepting me.
I strongly believe that God had called me here and sent through my Indian Union for a mission which is purely of His and to serve the people through my community here in Antwerpen – Belgium. I will do my best, may God complete.