News & Events
2nd Annual Super Bowl Party
Good Shepherd Ministries, a sponsored ministry of the Hospitaller Order of St. John of God-Province of the Good Shepherd, hosted its second annual Super Bowl Party on Sunday, February 4. Good Shepherd Ministries began the tradition in 2017 by opening up its dining room, renting a large screen tv, and providing plenty of pizza for the ministry’s homeless clients and clients in the Drug and Alcohol Recovery Enrichment (DARE) Program. This year, nearly 80 men gathered to watch the Philadelphia Eagles take on the New England Patriots. Brother Tom, the Director of Shelter and Hospitality Services, noted that the party really seems to lift the spirits of the men they serve.
On September 30, 2017, the Wolverhampton Community of the Province of the Good Shepherd was incorporated into the West European Province of St. John of God. Although we will miss our Brothers in Wolverhampton, we know they will continue to carryout their ministry of Hospitality as they provide food, clothing, and other necessities of life to the homeless and families in crisis in Wolverhampton.
The Hospitaller Order in Vietnam
Michael Botermans, a retired school teacher and pre-candidate with intentions to join the Hospitaller Order, was in Vietnam for three months teaching English to the Brothers in the Province of Vietnam. The following is an excerpt from Michael’s report to the Provincial about his experiences in Vietnam:
Life in Vietnam begins early… very early. Local church bells begin ringing at 3:30am and on Sundays most parishes have already celebrated three of their five Masses by 8:00am. The Hospitaller Brothers of St. John of God in Vietnam are accustomed to early mornings. More than 100 professed Brothers and postulants in 7 different community houses have devoted their lives to both contemplative prayer and active ministry for the poor, the sick and the needy. The Brothers model their religious way of life from the exemplary love of their holy founder, St. John of God, who could never ignore the suffering of others without at least trying to alleviate their burden. This impulsive love continues today in Vietnam and wherever the Order of Hospitaller Brothers exists.
In 1952, Brother William Gagnon and two Canadian Brothers came to North Vietnam. Due to political circumstances the Order of Hospitaller Brothers shifted to South Vietnam in 1954, to Hố Nai in Biên Hòa City of Đồng Nai Province. It was there that the Hospitaller Brothers of St. John of God started their ministry that flourishes to this day.
The original Hố Nai Refugee Hospital of the Brothers was built in 1956, but later was confiscated by the Communist regime. In 1993, the Brothers opened their own medical clinic specializing in traditional herbal medicines, physiotherapy and acupuncture.
More than 200 clients come to the Brothers’ clinic every day for examination and various treatments. They offer modest, all-inclusive accommodations with home-cooked meals for all their clients in both short- and long-term care at the clinic. Some 250 clients are in residence in the Brothers’ care, some of which are permanent due to circumstances. About 600 meals are prepared and served to the clients every day of the year.
The Hospitaller Brothers are engaged in a unique Pro-Life ministry. They support groups of lay people who go to government hospitals where abortion takes place, to recover the fetuses and give them a dignified burial in the Brothers’ cemetery. The Brothers also grow some of their own herbs while operating a center that produces a wide range of herbal medicines and liquid extracts to help heal their clients. In addition, the Brothers then go to varied parishes and diocese to teach and spread the spirituality of St. John of God and train the laity about basic healthcare so they, in turn, can provide this same care to the sick and dying in their homes.