MY TRULY STORY
My name is PORMADI PATERNUS SIMBOLON, born on 09.08.1975 at PARSIROAN, a village in the parish of TIGALINGGA, arcdiocese of Medan, North Sumatra, Indonesia.
I’ve been born in a reallyy cahtolic family of farmers, of a sufficient economic condition. I received my first education at home from my birth untill 1988. At the age of 13 years I left my village and went to SIDIKALANG, where I lived at a boardinghouse of the parish of the town and studied at the junior high school there for three years (1988-1991).
Then I went ti the Minor Seminary at PEMATANG SIANTAR for the following four years (senior high school) from 1991-1995. There I asked to enter the novitiate of the Carnelites at Batu (East Java). I was accepted and entered there officially on 31 August 1995. There, too after two years of novitiate I made my first religious profession in the Order of Carmel at 10 August 1997. My solemn profession in the same Order I made at 15 August 2002 in the parish church of Sacred Heart in Malang, and on 27 February 2003 I was ordained deacon at the Cathedral of Malang.
I made my higher studies of Philosophy and Theology and got my degree of baccalaureate at the SCHOOL OF PHILOSOPHY AND THEOLOGY “WIDYA SASANA”, Jalan Terusan Rajabasa 2, MALANG. But after having finished my studies being a deacon solemly professed in the Indonesian Province of The Order of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, I left the Order. After being ordained deacon I’ve exercised for several months the office of deacon at the parish of KEPANJEN, diocese of Malang.
From the time I was at the Minor Seminary of Pematang Siantar, North Sumatra, after the time I left, I often asked permission to leave because I never felt really fully “the vocation for the religious life and the priesthood” and because of difficulty of celibacy.
First of all there there was a strong pressure of my parents to become a priest. At the Minor Seminary and at the monastery I was always given the counsel to try it again and my self I did not have enough courage to make a decision different from the strong desire of my parents and the counsel I received at th Seminary and the monastery. So my my motivation to enter the Order and to make my first and solemn profession was almost the same: I would try as good possible, but was always unsure and doubtful. There was no any real problem in leving the religious life, no difficulty about faith, but I was just afraid to stay and afraid to leave, especially because of the celibacy. I did my best, seriously. I understood well the meaning and the consequences, but I was always afraid of not being capable to live chastely. And I always have spoken about these questions with my formators, i.e. about my doubts with Fr. F.J.M. Kutschruiter and Fr. C. Verbeek, about the celibacy with Fr. Yulius Sudharnoto. Some months after having made my final vows on 15 August 2002 I’ve spoken with Fr. C. Verbeek about my doubts concerning my vocation and he gave me the counsel that I should not ask to be ordained deacon. But I felt rather sure for a moment and so I asked to be ordained deacon, what happened at 27 February 2003. Afterwards I asked to postpone priestly ordination for one year, but finally after some months I decided to leave (11 July 2003). I know that at time I signed the declaration that I was receiving the ordination of deacon with full knowledge and freedom, I was still doubting in my heart. After the ordination as deacon I spoke about my difficulties too with Fr. Thomas Gheta, the priest who was in charge of the parish where I assisted as deacon for several months. After leaving the monastery I did not exercise the ministry, but I have a job provide for my living. And after receiving dispensation I should like to marry.
The following persons can give testimony about my case:
Father Heribertus Heru Purwanto, O.Carm., provincial at the time;
Father F.J.M. Kutschruiter, O.Carm., my spiritual director;
Father Yulius Sudharnoto, the prior and magister studentium for the last two years;
Father Th. Gheta, parish priest of Kepanjen and
Father C. Verbeek, for several years spiritual director.
Jakarta, 6 Juni 2006
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