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Milford parish welcomes Fr. Benjamin Madanu

By KATIE LEFEBVRE, Globe staff reporter
(Email Katie)

MILFORD – A long-time desire to come to the United States and serve became a reality for one priest from India.

Father Benjamin Madanu recently moved to the United States to minister at St. Joseph Parish in Milford.

“I am glad to be here with Father Thomas Flanagan and Father Francis Makwinja,” said the priest. “I am happy with their company and their hospitality that they are showing to me. I am glad that I am here to serve the people and render my priestly service.”

He arrived in Milford on Feb. 7 and is having a good experience at the parish.

“I keep on learning American culture,” said Father Benjamin. “It has been amazing for me. I am so happy to be here with Father Thomas and Father Francis, who are so helpful to me and teaching me everything. They are a great support to me right now.”

Father Flanagan, pastor at St. Joseph’s in Milford, has known Father Benjamin since he was in the minor seminary and during the time, Father Flanagan was working with the Opus Spiritus Sancti communities in India. 

“He is very dedicated to his vocation to the priesthood, and I am confident that he will provide good ministry to the people of the Diocese of Sioux City,” said Father Flanagan.

When Father Benjamin met Father Flanagan, he explained his desire to come to the United States.

“We waited for the right time,” said Father Benjamin. “We kept on working on my documents and all other things that would help me come to the diocese. It has taken a couple of years to work out all of these things.”

Father Benjamin said he was happy to be able to meet with Bishop Walker Nickless. Father Benjamin also met Father Brad Pelzel, vocations director, during his visit to the Chancery.

“It was a great experience for me to see the bishop, have a conversation with him and explain about India,” said Father Benjamin. “It was a great day for me to meet our bishop and see him.”

The priest noted he had been in touch with the bishop through mail but had not met him in person.

About Father Benjamin

Father Benjamin’s home town is Vijayanagaram, Andhra Pradesh (the state), India. He is the youngest of six children and has three sisters and two brothers. His father, who is 83, lives in a retirement home and his mother died when he was 1 year old.

“Unfortunately, after my mother’s death, I lost one of my brothers and two of my sisters,” said the priest. “I now have one brother and one sister and two nieces and seven nephews.”

One of his nephews joined the seminary and one niece is studying to be a nurse. The eldest of the nieces and nephews is 21 and working. The younger children are still in school.

Father Benjamin joined the seminary when he was 17 years old. After one year he completed his high school studies in the seminary. He then studied philosophy and theology and received his bachelor’s degree.

He was ordained on Oct. 25, 2011. He has been ministering at different parishes in provinces in India since he was ordained.

 

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