09 Bombay Archdiocesan Inter-Religious Celebration of Christmas - Stanley Fernandez

posted Jan 4, 2019, 8:55 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Jan 4, 2019, 8:55 AM ]

16th December 2018, Holy Name High School, Colaba 

The festive spirit that Christmas brings got off to a wonderful start with the Archbishop of Bombay, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, hosting the Annual Archdiocesan Inter-Religious Celebration of Christmas on Sunday, December 16, 2018, at the Holy Name High School Hall, Colaba. In attendance for the programme were members of the diplomatic corps and dignitaries belonging to different faiths, besides the Christian community.

The evening began with His Eminence, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, opening the Christmas programme by installing the Baby Jesus in the crib, followed up by an excellent rendition of Christmas Carols by the Holy Name Choir, ably conducted by Mr Mario Nazareth. This was then followed by an eye-popping dance-drama on the birth of Jesus entitled Krist Jayanti by the Sangeet Abhinay Academy, led by its well-known director Fr (Dr) Charles Vaz, SVD.

The kernel of the programme was the Panel Discussion with dignitaries of different faiths on the Theme: 'Religious Festivals - Building Bridges'. The interaction began with the presentation of a short film by Anam Prem, which spoke of their experiments with celebrating religious festivals by collaborating with groups other than one's own faith. The Panel Discussion then got off to a good start with a brilliant anchor, Fr K T Emmanuel (Judicial Vicar, Archdiocese of Bombay), asking many questions of the members of the panel. For instance: 

How can religious festivals help to build bridges?