REMEMBERING THAT GENTLE SMILE
by Dr. Jose Rodrigues
" All good things come to an end. Somtimes, they are forgotten. Not always. Fr Chico is one such person. He made everyone smile, he smiled with everybody and that is why everybody still cares. A tribute to Fr Chico by his admirers. His students included Mr. Eduardo Faleiro, Ex Union Minister of State for External Affairs.
If words could explain all things, creativity would reach a standstill. So I feel when I think of Fr Chico Monteiro. Popularly known as Padre Chico, he was my friend and guide. He was a champion of the cause of the youth, his personality irradiated love and kindness.
I had the good fortune of being very close to him and I remember with emotion that he never nurtured hatred in his heart. Clean mind, pure heart and a good will to help everybody. Dutiful and aware of his mission on earth, these were some of the hallmarks of his personality.
Competent and methodical, joyful and disciplined in the strict sense of the word. But as a disciplinarian, he was never harsh and rude. He used to animate us at the Lar dos Estudantes. He lived for and with his boys.
Fr Chico dedicated his life unto death to the welfare of the Youth and then to the Goan Clergy. These were his twin ideals. And he went away after fulfilling both to the best of his abilities.
The first of February marks Fr Chico's birthday. And I feel at a loss. How do I reciprocate his love....... If only I could see that smile one last time. I keep thinking of that lovely smile motivating all my thoughts.