Br. Pascoal was fondly called ‘Pacu’, and his very name recalls the feast of Easter. Indeed he was really alive and fresh during his days in the missions with the poor of God. His simplicity was remarkable – all he had was a small suitcase with a few essentials. His favourite apostolate was visiting people. People eagerly awaited Pacu’s visits for his joy was contagious.
He experienced two scary incidents on his visits to faraway villages. Once he was carried away by a very strong current while crossing the river and was saved in the nick of time. On another occasion, when returning home late evening, he was about to wash his face at a stream when he saw a tiger drinking water on the other side and had to run for his life. These fears never left him.
I was Parish Priest at Holy Cross in Nashik when he came there for a change of work. He was totally worn out but in a month’s time he was fit again. He was in-charge of the Tilak Library. So his poor included not only the parishioners of Holy Cross but all those coming to the library. It was his silent way of carrying out interreligious dialogue. Pacu enjoyed reading Drama and Literature in Marathi. He encouraged others to do the same and, so, many who came in contact with him developed a taste for Marathi language and culture.
In the early hours of December 31 he experienced severe pain, went to Br. Maxim’s room and collapsed in his arms. It was perhaps his way of saying, “We Brothers in the Society are still very important.” He always cherished being a Brother. Dearest Br. Pacu, we truly appreciate you being with us. Do intercede that more young men are attracted to become Brothers in the Society of Jesus.
- Anthony George, SJ