Credent reporter: Father you are such a learned educationist today. However you were also once a child. So how do you recall those days; as a sincere student or a naughty prankster?
Fr. Edward- First of all I still feel I have a long way to go. When I look others I feel I could have done much better. I don’t think I have reached any stage which I think is the end. There is so much in the world, so much to read and so much to do. As a child I was studious and didn’t like to have fun. I never wasted any time. In those days there were no tuition classes, there was more of self study. In fact, those who didn’t do well went for tuitions. I was interested in history, poetry and arts. I started reading at the age of seven and used to read novels. I feel that one should be a learner throughout his life.
Credent reporter: You grew up in a traditional Kannada family. Please tell us something about your family and growing up?
Fr. Edward– No, I grew up in a Konkani family. We speak Konkani at home and in church and Kannada is taught in schools. So we studied all the three side by side. And I somehow managed to get a hold of all three. When I came to Rajasthan, I was 12 and we didn’t have a very strong base in English. But whatever I learned in Konkani and Kannada has stayed with me to the extent that I am using it till now. So I feel that if you know something, don’t leave it. Nothing goes waste. I still preach fluently in Konkani. It’s been more than 45 years since I left that place but I am still translating my Hindi song into Konkani and my CDs are in the same as well. So whatever you knowdoesn’t leave it. It will be of some use to you somewhere.
Credent reporter: When did you decide to become a priest and enter the field of education? Was everyone supportive of your decision? What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?
Fr. Edward – Well, it was not a decision that I took. In those days we joined very early and I didn’t know anything. Many others also joined like me but left later. So it was not a conscious decision. But once I decided to become a priest I thought I could do anything. Education came to me by chance. I believe that we must bloom where we are planted wherever I was put I did my best.
Credent reporter:Father your journey has truly been inspiring for all of us. You are a role model of many a students. We would like to know who your role model is.
Fr. Edward –Well, I have several role model and some of them were the teachers who taught me. Hindi wasn’t my mother tongue and my Hindi teachers took a lot of interest in me. I used to take a paper and write whatever he spoke. Then I would mix it up with my mother tongue and read it back and try to understand. And then I would request him to correct it. He went out of the way to help me. So that’s how I picked up Hindi and even got a first division. It was unthinkable for the people like us who came from south. Even when I was studying for my priesthood, there were some teachers who were my role models. I have also been inspired by Mahatma Gandhi. When I read his book ‘My experiments with truth’, I feel I am talking to him, so I draw my inspiration from him. So role models are those who inspire others. It’s the depth of their life which motivates others. Just like Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam who inspires millions.
Credent reporter:Father you are a multi talented personality. Amongst your many talents, music is an integral part of your life, so please tell us how did you develop your interest in singing?
Fr. Edward- In my childhood the first person I heard singing was my grandfather who was a very good singer. Moreover there was a lot of singing in the house every evening. Soon I noticed that it was something which made me happy. So that’s how I picked up. There was a certain amount of fearlessness in me from the beginning. Even at the age of 3 or 4 I used to sing without any hesitation. When I come to St. Anslem’sajmer in 70’s, I did not know any Hindi or much of English, so I used to sing in Konkani. But my classmates liked it though they didn’t understand the language. So, you see, this is how music joins people as it touches your hearts. It is the voice of the heart.
Credent reporter:Beside music you are also in dramatics and theatre so how did you get into these arts and which of the play that you have written and directed is the closest to your heart?
Fr. Edward – I began to like dramatics during my training and used to take part in plays. I feel drama is a form by which you can express values. I consider myself to be lucky in school where I can experiment. In our school we started dramatics with Mr. SandeepSethi. He used to prepare students of commerce stream and put up plays based on concepts of economics, B.St etc. Our students even performed at national school of drama, Delhi, which is a great achievement. We see to it that there are certain values in our plays. We have had plays based on messages like ‘say no to crackers’, ‘save girl child’, ‘pollution control’, I would like to give credit to Mrs. Monica from St. Anslem’s, Mansarover, who has actually helped me in putting up many plays. She too is a talented theatre artist. We found that several students not doing well in studies, when brought into dramatics, did very well and enjoyed a lot. So drama created interest. It gives self confidence and self appreciation which is important for motivation and it is through drama that we can recognize many students.
Credent reporter:Father everyone knows that you are an excellent orator. So, was it in school that you acquired these oratorical skills or was it your college time?
Fr. Edward –Actually it was in my school days. I would like to thank St. Anslem’s, Ajmer. I was discovered by chance. The particular boy selected to participate in the competition did not come. So I was given a chance. But I failed. A friend of mine encouraged me and I tried again and this time everyone appreciated me. Since then there has been no looking back. I discovered myself and felt that I have this talent in me.
Credent reporter:Amongst the numerous strings in the lute of your life, Father, which one special moment touched you deeply? Please share it with us.
Fr. Edward – I was very much touched by my mother. We were in a bad situation at one time. I saw her bringing up the children, all five of us without we ever knowing what was happening. Later I began to feel that she was working very hard and thought that I should be something like her when I grow up. I should be able to dedicate myself to her. There was sickness and no money. My father was sick for 20 years and she alone looked after him. I think it is great. No one can look after a person for 20 years. He was paralytic. This is true dedication which I have witnessed myself.
Credent reporter:Father you are a noted educationist. How would you inspire students of our generation to take up careers in different fields?
Fr. Edward – I would say that is what most suitable for you. Find out you ability. Today there are so many avenues open for the students. So find out what is best for you. Once you have done that, continue with it. Also don’t compare yourself with others. God has given you certain talents, so be positive about it. But don’t go only after profits, let some service also go with it service is equally important. If a doctor is not ready to help anyone without money he is no doctor at all. So, service orientation must be there. I would like the outgoing students to go out with the motivation that if they can, they should serve the people without taking any money. I think the life of Dr. Abdul Kalam is the best example. He was always ready to serve others.
Credent reporter:The HRD ministry is planning to make two major changes in the education system. Firstly, to abolish the no-fail policy up to class VIII and secondly, to reintroduce board examination for class X. what implications do you think they can have on the future of students what is your opinion?
Fr. Edward –Well I am both for it. Both the systems have been the biggest failures right from the day they were implemented. Because if there is no board exam students will be not at all serious. Everyone realizes this, including the parents and the students themselves. In the board exams marks will be given according to their performance and there will be a certain amount of credibility. I think we should go back to the old system. Secondly, some students need to be failed if they don’t do well. I am all for helping students but if they need to stay in a class for more than 1 year they should. It’s for their good so both the thing I approve. I wish they are implemented as soon as possible. The CCE system must remain, but with a change
Credent reporter:In your journey as a priest what has inspired you the most?
Fr. Edward –Well I have been highly inspired by the way priesthood works in the place I come from. When it was time to decide; I asked myself whether it was good to be something else. I had a very good rank in class IX. I was also called to join St. Stefens but I chose to be a priest, just like Lord Jesus, who came to serve and not to be served. I felt that was important to me. Like Mother Teresa, who came to serve? And that was only possible if I become a priest. I know I am not excellent but what matters to me the most is my motivation. So the two things important for me are love and service. Not because it is a task but it gives joy and satisfaction. I remain simple enough to meet all kind of people no matter what their culture or background. To me what is important is how you come across to the society. I feel inspiration is more important than coaxing. I have always been gentle and loving. And that is my plus point. I have been simple right through. I believe that I have failed in many places which is natural to people. But that doesn’t matter. What matters is the motive with which we are serving. So I want my students to have service mentality
It is my privilege to write something about our beloved principal, Rev. Fr. Edward Oliveira. He has been a teacher and later the principal of many renowned schools of Rajasthan for the past 25 years. He owns a pleasing personality and an appropriate word to describe him could be ‘ a genius, an ever shining star whom god has adorned with multiple talents and a single heart’. He is an excellent orator and a friend for all ages. He is full of knowledge and experience and therefore people fondly call him ‘ mobile encyclopedia’. He believes in working together with his staff and is very supportive to his subordinates. He pays keen attention to the overall development of children; therefore various co-curricular activities are conducted in the school. May god grant him necessary graces to continue the work he has begun?
-Rev. Fr. Siby Mathew (Manager)
Fr. Edward Oliveira is a man of wisdom and welcomes new ideas and insights. He has been an inspiration to many. He is a great musician and encourages students to take part in co-curricular activities. He also has a good sense of humor and interacts freely with students, parents and others. Fr. Edward is a faithful servant of god. May god shower his choicest blessings on him.
-Sr. Arsenia (Ex Office In-Charge)
Rev. Fr. Edward Oliveira, fondly called Father Eddy, is an epitome of simplicity and affection. His qualities of mind and heart make him an efficient principal and an excellent administrator, Father Eddy is a voracious reader, a musician and singer par excellence, a powerful orator and skilled director. His aim is not only to achieve academic excellence but also the all round personality development of the students through their participation in co-curricular activities. Our school is blessed to have a principal like Father Eddy.
-Mrs. UshaGurnami (PGT, English)
A democratic leader, Rev. Fr. Edward Oliveira is a visionary, humanitarian, philanthropist, understanding and open minded person. He is a gripping orator, writer with interest in dramatics and carol singing. He is also popular with the students and teachers alike for the emphasis on co-curricular activities.
-Mr. RajendraDugar (PGT, B.st)
Father Edward-A person with a golden heart and a million dollar smile. A multi talented person, a great writer, dramatist, lyricist, singer, composer. There is no dearth of talent in him. It’s indeed a privilege to work under him. He is a store house of energy and one can learn so much from him.
Rev. Father Edward Oliveira- a teacher, an administrator, a visionary who inspires hope, ignites imagination and instills the love for learning among all his students and staff and at the same time unlocks tremendous potential in every person who comes across him.
-Mrs. JyotsnaKanl( PRT)
Father Edward Oliveira, a unique personality, an awesome human being and is a pool of creativity and innovative ideas. With his ever smiling face he is known for his simplicity. He is a good writer, singer, and preacher and has many more talents. He conveys his views in such a simple and easy way that the person at the other end is bound to get convinced. He is very polite and understanding. We as teachers as well as students can learn a lot from him to make our lives more meaningful.
-Mrs. MamtaSoni (PGT, Accountancy)
Rev. Father Edward Oliveira is a highly experienced and competent administrator. He is a multifaceted personality and has an eclectic range of interest. He is a talented musician and composer, an excellent singer, a playwright and an eloquent and charismatic orator. Besides being an ‘ocean of knowledge’ Father Eddy is also a ‘powerhouse of energy’ working tirelessly to take the institution to the zenith of glory. He firmly believes that ‘discipline comes from within’ and his emphasis on innovations and creativity prepares the students to meet the challenges of the modern world. Being considerate, understanding and open minded, he shares a good rapport with the members of staff. I thank Rev. Fr. Edward for providing us an extremely congenial atmosphere conducive to effective teaching, proper learning and energetic activity.
-RenuSinha (PGT, Eng)