It was in the first week of June 1999 in Balasore that I received a call from Fr. Provincial in Jamshedpur informing me that I had been appointed rector of Loyola School, Jamshedpur. I was asked to take up the new assignment by the end of July 1999. On July 31st, the feast of St. Ignatius Loyola, I was read in as rector of Loyola. It was with great hesitation that I accepted this assignment. Three years passed, and on Aug 1st 2002 I was asked to take over as principal of Loyola when Fr. Pius was transferred to Dhanbad. Little did I realize then that I was taking over as the 13th principal of this great institution. 13 is generally considered as an unlucky number! And I am tempted to think that that has been proved true in my case. Loyola went through some very difficult experiences during the five years that I have been here in charge of the school. If we have been able to face it all confidently and successfully, it is because of the great support and cooperation of each one of you, parents and alumni. Let me express my sincere gratitude to all of you for standing by me especially in such difficult times with great understanding and patience. Together we have been able to tell the world that Loyola cannot be simply put down by vested interests.
My first assignment at Loyola was in 1983 when I joined Loyola as administrator and treasurer. I stayed here for only 8 months then. This time it has been a much longer stint. I am completing 8 years here – 3 years as rector and 5 years as principal. And it is time for me to move on. My new assignment is at Bhubaneswar as director of the Human Life Centre there. I will be dealing with much older students there. As I go from here, I shall definitely miss you all. I have enjoyed working with you here. Thank you very much for everything. If I have been a bit strict in matters of discipline, it is only because I have always believed that without discipline we will not be able to achieve success, and I wish success for each one of our students. Please encourage your wards to work hard and do well in their studies. They are really privileged to be in this great institution. Help them to make the best use of the opportunities given to them here for all round development so that when they graduate from here, they will be able to hold their heads high and walk as proud Loyoleans!
When the school reopens after the summer vacation, Fr. Victor Misquith, currently the Principal of our Loyola B. Ed. College in Telco, will take over as Principal of Loyola School. Our vice-principal, Fr. Sebastian Puthenpura, will also be leaving Loyola. He is going to the US for higher studies. Fr. Sunil Lakra will be the new vice-principal in his place in the Senior School. Our treasurer, Fr. Felix Tellis will be moving to Chaibasa. Fr. Donald D’Silva will come as the new treasurer in his place. Please extend your whole-hearted support and cooperation to the new team in the administration. I am sure with your help they will be able to keep the Loyola flag flying high always.
I plan to leave for Bhubaneswar on June 20th morning by road. You are all most welcome to Bhubaneswar. My address there will be:
Human Life Centre,
2, Unit 9,
0674 - 2394395
0674 - 2394469
Thank you all very much once again. God bless you. God bless Loyola.
Fr. Augustine Vattamattam, S.J.
Write to Fr. Augustine.