Thursday, December 11, 2014

Peter Lourdes, a Salesian priest of the Province of Kolkata, is one of the first priest psychologists in India.

Fr. Lourdes has nearly 50 years’ experience in counselling, spiritual direction, teaching and training, seminars for priests, religious and educators.

He was for several years Programme Director and Head of the Psychology Department at National Vocation Service Centre, Pune. He was the first President of the Salesian Psychological Association. Currently he has a psychotherapy practice in Kolkata.

Fr. Lourdes holds a D. Psych in Clinical Psychology from Salesian University, Rome, Masters in Somatic Psychology from California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco, and a PhD in Counselling Psychology from Loyola University, Chicago.

He is certified as a Massage therapist from the San Francisco School of Massage therapy.

Fr. Lourdes has been a member of the Visiting Faculty at Sumedha Centre from its very beginnings in 2003 until this year. Each year he has led two or more therapy grous as well as offering other programmes.

Peter made his religious profession on 6th December 1944 and was ordained a priest on 5th December 1954. The 6oth anniversary of his ordination and the 70th anniversary of his religious profession were celebrated on 5th December 2014 at Nitika Don Bosco, Kolkata where he currently resides and practices as a psychotherapist.

A number of his family members from Australia, Kolkata and Khargpur In Bengal  graced the occasion.
About 15 fellow Salesian priests joined him at the concelebrated Holy Eucharist and the felicitations and dinner that followed.

On the occasion Fr. Lourdes' latest book "Wow Jesus!" was released.

Jose Parappully, Director of Sumedha, represented the Centre at the jubilee celebrations.


Unknown said...

I am trying to confirm if Fr Peter Lourdes wrote the following:A Catholic Priest on Vipassana

Fr. Peter Lourdes

In February 1986, I attended a ten-day course in Vipassana offered by S. N. Goenka at

the Vipassana International Academy (VIA) at Igatpuri. Igatpuri is about three hours by

train from Bombay.
...I programme and direct a six-month course for

Formators (church personnel in charge of the training of future brothers, sisters and

priests). The Unit on spirituality calls for an experience of other forms of spirituality

I am a religious priest with a degree in psychology from Rome and Ph. D from Loyola

University of Chicago. My doctoral thesis was ``The Implications of the Transcendental

Meditation (TM) Programme for Counselling Psychology). In a course in Comparative

psychotherapy, comparative mysticism, TM and my personal life in a religious order was


I was looking for over the years. I returned to Pune and continued Vipassana together

with a religious group whom I am Spiritual Director.

meditation hall one thing that struck me was the stillness with which she sat in an

unchanged posture for hours. I could not do that much. She told me later that this was her

thirteenth course in Vipassana.

People who know I am a priest sometimes wonder what a Catholic priest is doing in a

Catholic mass-goer. I am no Merton, but I felt the same in Igatpuri and often feel so in

my ministry. Spirituality has been a life-long quest for me. I have dared to search for it in

waters outside the Bark of Peter.

How does that square with my Catholic affiliation ? I think Vipassana is one way of

My Catholic tradition also has a theological side to it. That is the side, which is usually

transmitted to us from conventional catechisms, church-going, family upbringing,

preaching and so on. The theory (or theology if you will) of the Vipassana technique does

The reason why I do not think it important is this: I consider my Christian theology just

mystics of our Christian tradition, to those of our Hindu, Muslim and Buddhist tradition,

the mystical one. I seem to find that in Goenka’s variety of spirituality, the mystical is all.

but it does not seem to have a simple and clear-cut method like Vipassana. Whatever

methods it had may have died with the monasteries.

Where I am at present in my spiritual journey, I feel hungry for the ineffable God of our

humanity rather than the talked-about God of our theology and Sunday School.

Although I do not wish to be Messianic, I often feel sad I cannot make all my fellow

Christians interested in the mystical dimensions of our common human thirst for the


I invite all of you to join all human beings and me in an attempt to hear and march to a

different drum right within the rank and file of our own religious groups or outside.

Irene Chateauvert said...

fr Peter this is Irene Chateauvert i am sure you will remember me from Pune I am trying to get in touch with you I tried everything I hope this works Pleas respond if you can Prayers Irene