At 84, Br John Menezes on mission to empower needy

Daijiworld Media Network - Mangaluru (RJP)

Mangaluru, Feb 11: Brother John Menezes, aged 84, is a member of Society of the Divine Word ('Societas Verbi Divini' - SVD) congregation. He lives in a desert land in Rajasthan.

At his age, when most people choose to rest and relax, Br John walks miles and miles on the desert, in the absence of vehicles, in his mission to help the needy. "I am a person who chose the mission of helping the needy. Hence I cannot rest. I will work as long as I can," says Br John. The sand of the desert has made him strong.

Br John was born in 1931 in Venur of Beltangady taluk. He left his home in 1948 to become a religious. Since then he has worked in Madhya Pradesh, Pune, Trichi, Gujarat, Rajasthan and also in Papua New Guinea. He lived in Germany for some years for his specialized technical studies.

Since 1972, his main interest has been to help school dropout boys to train them in mechanical line. He also helps them learn driving and get driving licence.

Five years ago, he sent four Dalit Catholic girls for BSc nursing course and five Dalit girls for BA, B Ed training and for engineering. This is a record in that area when nobody was helping the poor people in their higher education.

Presently Br John is stationed at Nirmal Niketan at Jhadol in Udaipur district of Rajasthan. SVD brothers and priests look after four mission centers in Rajasthan. These are all interior places where the majority of the people are tribals. The tribals do not own any land here, they have houses without windows and doors. They are not educated and their only possessions are plates and cooking pots.

To make the people understand the value of education is not easy. Another problem is providing the aspirants with clothes and kits for education. The children are encouraged to study in the hostel run by Br John Menezes because they cannot go home every day as their houses are very far. Only 40 percent of them can afford to pay school fees though it is only Rs 3,000. None of them can obviously pay hostel fees. The entire burden is on the hostel management to look after the expenses. Only the contributions from donors can help maintain the hostel.

The present hostel is congested and cannot accommodate all the children who want to remain there and study. As many as 235 boys and 150 girls are in the hostel but many of them are sent back because they cannot be accommodated there. Hence Br John has decided to build a new hall to accommodate more students. The proposed plan is going to cost Rs 29 lacs.

Br John says, "I go to Mumbai twice every year seeking financial assistance. People are generous and extend help. But the money is not even enough to look after the expenses related to maintenance of the hostel."

Some donors from Mangaluru have also helped whenever Br John has come to the city. He is looking for help for the hostel project.

Those wishing to support Br John in his mission to help underprivileged children may send their contributions to:

John Menezes
Account number: 0359101004514
Canara Bank
Siyaganj branch, Indore
IFSC: CNRB0000359

Address: Br John Menezes
Nirmala Niketan
Village Leelawas
Jhadol Post
Udaipur District
Rajasthan - 313702


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Comment on this article

  • Br. John Menezes, Mangalur/ Jhadol, Rajasthan

    Sun, Feb 15 2015

    Dear Mission friends and supporters, i would like to express my heart felt thanks to all of you for your encouragement, appreciation, prayers and love. i assure my prayerful support along my community here in jhadol, rajas than, India. i would happily say that your encouragement enables me to work for the mission and for the under privileged poor children
    over here.

    thank you once again

    looking forward for yours constant support to carry on my mission work.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [3]

  • br. John Menezes SVD, Venur/Jhadol Rajastan

    Sun, Feb 15 2015

    thank you
    br john menezes svd

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [1]

  • Aubb, Kuwait

    Fri, Feb 13 2015

    A shining example of true Christian love for humanity.

    May God bless Br.John and his mission.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [6]

  • Aam Indian, M'lore/Bahrain

    Thu, Feb 12 2015

    I have been seing Br.John's devine work for the last many years and many times when I met him I asked the same question, "Are you not getting tired of this service?" and his reply was the same, "God takes care of us". I have no doubt that it is so true and an unseen force that takes care of these men & women who genuinely do this great service to humanity. sometime it puts those of us who are bodily strong but weaker in our intentions to shame. At 84 doing this service is definitely God's work.May God Almighty give him strength to continue. Perhaps the least we can do is HELP HIM IN CASH OR KIND.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [6]

  • fr. Juze Vaz svd, Uppinakote/Indore

    Sun, Feb 15 2015

    Br John is a wonderful person who lives his mission daily mixing with the poorest of the poor people he is an ideal community member who spend all his with all who are poor his needs are very little. we wish him all the best may he live long to sever the poorest of the poor children. now he is hoping to house the children in the hostel who need a plece to live.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [4]

  • Tony Crasta, Mangalore/Sydney

    Thu, Feb 12 2015

    So nice to hear Br. John that you are still doing such a marvelous job in educating, training and looking after the poor and needy children and adults in the Rajasthan State, and strive for betterment of their lives. Congratulations on your achievements and wish you well in your future endeavors.

    I remember you well Br. John, those years of your posting in Indore when you were driving around and looking after the Bishop there, way back in the 1970`s, and since then, you have moved around to so many places and done so much good work wherever you went. Keep going Br. John, and I pray and wish for your continued good health.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [4]

  • Helen Nazareth, Mangaluru/Mumbai

    Thu, Feb 12 2015

    Dear Br.John Menezes,May Almighty Lord Give you strength/ good health and protect you always.
    For your kind information you can visit Mumbai I.C.Church
    Immaculate Church at Borivali west,which helps in funding through Sat/Sunday Mass collection. so you can depute your representative to visit the Church priest. All parishioners are supportive and helping hand. I am sure you will get the needed fund from the community and your proposed plan will be completed by the grace of God ..

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [6]


    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    My dear Bro John, congratulations and hats up to you,for your unconditional love, selfless service to the poor, needy and marginalized. May GOD Bless you with good health and strength to carry on your mission.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [6]

  • Rupesh, Mumbai/ Mangalore

    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    Sent this article through special courier to Sangh Parivars, Including Modi.. Amit shah..

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [2]

  • Candle, Mangalore

    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    Dear Br John. Your unselfish work towards humanity is highly appreciated. These lovely kids around you with smile on their face are the greatest testimony for your remarkable work. May GOD fulfill your dream and give you strength and good health always.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [15]

  • jyothi, Mangalore/Bangalore

    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    Dear Bro.Menezes, Overjoyed to see your love for the needy. Certainly the love of Jesus is truly reflecting in all that good work that you are doing for the less fortunate fellow beings in Rajasthan. God bless you richly and all your endeavours !! All the very best and take care ...

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [21]

  • Sahil, M'lore

    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    Great work by a Christian Brother. I believe, our Terrorists group and ISIS and Hindu communal evils have to learn a lesson from this humble act of charity as to how to lead a dignified life in this world.

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [3]

  • Joy, Dubai

    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    God Bless your mission and Nirmal Niketan safe...

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [31]

  • Jossey Saldanha, Mumbai

    Wed, Feb 11 2015

    May the almighty bless and keep Nirmal Niketan safe ...

    Reply Report Abuse Agree [49]

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