St. Augustine Province of Africa

Hospitaller Order of Saint John of God

Bro. Cyrille

cyrilleI was born into a Christian family, in which my father was a village catechist and worked for a long time with the Missionary Oblates of Mary. I was involved in a number of different parish groups, such as Mass Servers, “Jeunes de lumière” and the vocations group. This was when I felt the desire to consecrate myself to the Lord, seeing how the missionaries worked in the hospital, serving the people, and above all caring for the poorest people, orphans and the sick.

Speaking of my Hospitaller experience, I had the opportunity to meet one of the Sisters Hospitallers of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in 2002 at a Eucharistic celebration on the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. A few days later, I went to meet her to find out whether her Congregation had a masculine branch. She spoke to me about the Hospitaller Order of St John of God and gave me a booklet published by what was then the General Delegation of Togo-Benin.

Three months later she asked me to write a letter to the official responsible for vocations in Cameroon. She chose Cameroon because the sisters operated in this country and because that would facilitate the exchange of correspondence. And so another working experience opened for me when I spent a year in a hostel looking after children and adults with disabilities run by the sisters of Mother Teresa of Calcutta. That was certainly a very beautiful experience for me, to see how the sisters devoted themselves to the service of all those living in their centre.

And in 2004 the Brother responsible for vocations in Cameroon replied, agreeing to take me in. Supported by the sister, I decided to travel to  Cameroon on October 4, 2004 where I was received by the Nguti community. I found myself in an unknown environment where everything seemed difficult initially, because I did not know the local languages and had to become accustomed to living with strangers. All this was a new departure for me. After six months of community and apostolic experience I discovered, little by little, the origins, the life and the apostolate of the Hospitaller Brothers of Saint John of God.

In June 2005 I was accepted into the Novices’ Formation House to begin my experience of the Hospitaller Religious Life. Throughout the different stages of my formation I was able to discover the noble mission of our Founder. The commitment shown by our Co-workers working alongside the Brothers at the service of this sick was an enriching experience for me in all the communities to which I was attached. At the present time I rejoice at the choice I have made, and I confirm that I will remain unconditionally faithful to it for the rest of my days.