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Home WHO WE ARE Assumptionists Profiles Bro. DIDIER REMOIT, A.A.



Bro. Didier, would you share with us a bit about your family’s background and your early education?

– My mother’s family was from Belgium and my father’s were from France. They met and married in the Congo where my father worked as an engineer in the mines and where I lived until I was 5 years old. I am the oldest of 5 children. At 18 years of age I moved to France, as a result of the strong draw to my French roots, to study engineering. At this time, while also rooted in France’s call to military service, I concentrated on working with computers. Later, wanting to continue my studies in engineering, I did a Master of Science degree in aeronautical engineering at M.I.T.

– How did you come to know the Assumptionists?

– I came to know the Assumptionists as a result of a pilgrimage I made to Lourdes, France and meeting Fr. Arthur Hervet, A.A. He invited me to visit his Cachan community in Paris which introduced me to religious life. It was a very welcoming community where I consequently moved for a year and made the most significant decision of my life. I requested postulancy in ’84-’85 and stayed for 2 years. I then did my novitiate in the U.S. It was very clear to me that I did not want to be a priest.

– How did you reconcile your professional life and religious vocation?

– It was important for me to bridge both realties in my life. I continued working as an engineer in the world of technology as a professed brother in Toulouse for 8 years. I worked as a representative at the European level with a focus on the quality of planes being produced. At the same time I studied theology and philosophy for a degree at night and made my final vows in France in 1990.

– What have been some of your other experiences as you have lived out your Assumptionist charism over the years?

– I have always enjoyed working with youth both in the U.S. and France. Some of those experiences have included campus ministry and summer camp work.

In 1993 I worked for Bayard in Paris as General Secretary of International Subsidiaries, as comptroller of all our subsidies. Some time later I took a 5 month sabbatical in Vietnam, then began our web site in France and got more involved with youth and our vocation programs. I wrote a proposal, which was accepted, for 5 young men from Vietnam to come to France to study. Continuing my world travels, I worked at Bayard U.S. for one year and lived in Worcester. I was then called back to Paris to do finance work in the area of mergers and acquisitions. During the time I was Provincial Assistant Treasurer, I opened a Christian Youth Hostel in 2010, after much difficulty, following my dream to work with young people. In 2011 I was appointed General Treasurer.

– How have you been able to balance that challenge of blending your professional and pastoral gifts and skills?

– It has only been through prayer that I have been able to do what I have done. It is most important for me to pray the scriptures to renew my search for God on a daily basis.

– Do you have any hobbies?

– Yes, I enjoy the study and use of many languages, reading, movies, art exhibitions, cooking, photography and weightlifting.

– From your experience in the world of finance and now in your new position in the congregation, are there any final thoughts or challenges you would like to mention with your hopes for the future of the congregation?

– Yes, there are three critical financial factors that challenge us today. First of all, the wealthier countries of the past supported our congregation by larger numbers of members. This is no longer the case. Secondly, our benefactors are aging and the next generation is not supporting us as did the preceding generation. And thirdly, because of our poor economy, our investment funds in Europe and the U.S. are being reduced. On a more hopeful note, I believe that the congregation is alive and gifting the Church by our witness to unity in a polarized Church, working toward ecumenism and growing in Africa and Asia.

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