Fr. Andrew left us for his heavenly abode on 21st May 2022, at Jeevan Darshan, Vadodara.
He was born on 11th October 1949 at Vasai.
After completing his high school studies, he joined the Gujarat Jesuit novitiate in Ahmedabad, in 1968. He took his first vows on 31st May, 1970. He was ordained a priest on 11th April 1981, at Vasai. Fr Andrew was a successful vocation promoter who motivated several boys from Vasai to join the Gujarat Province.
After ordination, he learnt Catechetics and pastoral theology in Manila. As Director of the Pastoral Centre, Vadodara, he pioneered in conducting Marriage Preparation Courses, forming Basic Christian Communities, and introduced Bible Satsangs. He was also a visiting professor in the regional theologate and in the Gujarat Vidya Deep Seminary at Sevasi – training the students to form basic Christian communities.
To further diffuse his knowledge in faith formation, he helped to write the Jeevan Jal Series of Catechetical books. He wrote more than fifteen Gujarati books on the sacrament of reconciliation, and commentaries on the Gospels, and several articles in the Sacred Heart Messenger ‘Doot’.
Andrew served as the Parish Priest of Sagbara and Navsari; Superior and Parish Priest, Khambhat, assistant parish priest at Bharuch, and chaplain of a shrine at Vadodara. He promoted Bible study, and helped to build basic Christian communities. He trained people to take responsibility for the church. He loved the people and people loved him in return. He was a very good preacher, and people enjoyed listening to his sermons.
The presence of a large crowd for his funeral is a proof that he was able to touch the hearts of people. May the Lord reward his faithful servant and grant him the eternal vision of the Glory of God!
The author is Professor of Missiology and Administrator in Manresa Adhyatmik Sadhana Sadan (MASS), Sevasi, Baroda, Gujarat.