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posted Oct 10, 2018, 10:42 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Oct 10, 2018, 10:42 AM ]

Seminar for new Bishops

The Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples had organised a Seminar for New Bishops in Rome from Sept. 2-15, 2018. Each day comprised a mix of talks and group discussions, with inputs on the various dicasteries of the Vatican.

The seminar included an audience with the Holy Father on Sept. 8; Pope Francis outlined three essential traits of a bishop: he is a man of prayer, man of proclamation and man of communion. He also exhorted the bishops to avoid clericalism and to keep at heart families, seminaries, young people and the poor.

On Sept. 9, the bishops visited Assisi, where the Franciscans shared about the spirit of St Francis of Assisi. 63 bishops from all over the world – Algeria, Belize, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, DR Congo, Ecuador, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Federated States of Micronesia, Gabon, Gambia, Grenada, Guinea, Indonesia, Japan, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Morocco, Myanmar, Namibia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, South Korea, Sudan, Tahiti, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Vietnam, Zambia, Zimbabwe, besides 12 from India (including Bp Allwyn D'Silva and Bp Barthol Barretto) attended the seminar.

Bp Allwyn at Dongri Home

On the feast of Saints Peter and Paul, it was truly a blessing for us volunteers at the Dongri Children's Observation Home, Mumbai as our dear Bishop Allwyn D'Silva paid a pastoral visit to our unit. His keen interest in our activities, together with a desire to be with us at the grass-root level, made it a special event for everyone.

The PMI volunteers had organised an Eye Camp for the children of the Home, in coordination with the Lions Club, Mumbai Branch. 235 children and a few staff had their eyes checked. 95 children who needed spectacles were given them without any charge.

Bishop Allwyn met with the volunteers, the officials and staff. He visited all the three sections of the Home—the CNCP (Children in Need of Care and Protection)—boys and girls, and the CCL (Children in Conflict with Law) section, and talked with them. This 200-year-old institute at Dongri has a rich history; it was used as an official prison during the British rule in India. A small room is still hallowed as the cell that housed Tilak, Savarkar and Agarkar during the Indian freedom struggle.

Platinum Jubilee celebrations of St Vincent De Paul Church

St Vincent De Paul parish, Khar celebrated the feast of our Patron Saint on Sept. 30, 2018. Being the Platinum Jubilee Year of our parish (1943-2018), guest priests were invited to celebrate the Eucharist during the Novena (Sept. 21-29) and preach on various themes from Gaudete et Exsultate. It was encouraging to see various zones whole-heartedly conducting these Masses and devoutly praying and singing.

On the Feast day, the Parish Team, PPC members, Heads of Associations and Cells and parishioners enthusiastically afforded a warm welcome to Cardinal Oswald Gracias, complete with a satri (festive umbrella). They accompanied him in procession to the church, amidst meaningful hymns rendered by a live band. The Parish Priest, Fr Austin Norris, welcomed His Eminence and the other dignitaries.

In his humble and amiable manner, His Eminence thanked the Parish Priest, and expressed joy at our beautiful church, wonderfully decorated with lovely fresh flowers, centrepiece and little angels. He spoke in glowing terms about the past Parish Priests and assistants who sincerely and diligently contributed towards building this wonderful edifice, and building a caring and sharing community. His Eminence invited us to emulate our Patron, St Vincent De Paul, whose mission was to help the poor and needy and the young and the old, as conveyed in our Parish Vision. He urged the Parish team, Sisters of Nirmala Niwas and the parishioners to work together in preparation for the Centenary celebrations of our parish.

One of the Parish Council members welcomed His Eminence and enumerated his various achievements over the years. The Cardinal was assured of our prayers that God may always hold him in the palm of his hand, so that he may continue to carry out Christ's mission.

As the Cardinal was leaving the church, he blessed the congregation as he passed. The live band continued playing lively music in the spirit of the festivity. The parishioners were handed a beautiful bookmark and a slice of cake as they left the church. Tuck shops offered home-made delicacies for the festive table.

His Eminence had a tête-à-tête with the Parish Pastoral Councillors and Parish Youth Council. This exchange gave him an idea of where we are as a parish, as well as plans and programmes. His Eminence encouraged the Councillors to continue giving their best. Kudos to the Platinum Jubilee Committee and the Liturgical Committee and all those who contributed to the success of the solemn occasion.

Vincentians' Festival Meeting

The Central Council of Bombay, Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP) celebrated the Annual Festival Meeting and the feast of St Vincent de Paul, at Mother Velankanni Shrine, Bhate Bunder, Uttan, on October 7, 2018 which was attended by 730 Vincentians from all over Mumbai.

Bishop Allwyn D'Silva, the main celebrant, together with Fr William Athaide, Spiritual Advisor SSVP Mumbai, Fr Peter D'Cunha, Fr Edward Jacinto and Fr Benjamin Jojo, celebrated the Holy Eucharist. His Lordship said that Vincentians need to reflect on how we look at the poor we serve. Vincentians should remember that we are not superior, neither are the poor inferior.

At the Annual Meeting that followed, Bro. Anthony Correa, President of Area Council, Dharavi Island, extended a warm and hearty welcome to all. Bro. Joseph Soares, Senior Vice President, SSVP Mumbai, in his address said that just as Jesus commissioned His disciples and sent them out in pairs, Vincentians too, as part of Jesus' mandate, visit their adopted families in pairs.

58 new members were inducted into the SSVP fold, and His Lordship administered the pledge to them.

Bro. Dominic Pinto, President of Central Council of Bombay, thanked the Mumbai Vincentians for their contribution of over Rs 6 lakh for the Kerala disaster. The SSVP is present in 153 countries, looking after 30 million poor and needy daily throughout the world. In India, we have 7,303 SSVP units looking after 53,797 adopted families; in Mumbai, the SSVP has adopted 2,143 needy families in 94 parishes. Bro. Dominic lauded the efforts being put in by the SSVP youth groups, and appealed for more youth to join the SSVP. Fr William Athaide led the closing prayers.

The Catholic Medical Guild

All Catholic Doctors of Bombay with their families (and also medical students) are invited to the Feast of St Luke on Sunday, October 28, 2018. The programme will begin with a Holy Mass at St Pius X College at 5:30 pm. This will be followed by the 78th AGM and a grand social (including a talent contest) and dinner.

Applications are invited for Scholarships and other awards from members of the Catholic Medical Guild of St Luke, Mumbai for academic excellence at both undergraduate and postgraduate examinations held by the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS), Nashik in November 2017 to January 2018 (Undergraduate Examination) and May 2018 to July 2018 (Undergraduate & Postgraduate) at the first attempt and in the disciplines that the Guild offers the scholarships/awards.

All are invited to write an essay on "Challenges faced by Medical Professionals in Today's Scenario." Oct. 20, 2018 is the last date to submit the essay in approx. 2000 words to Dr Egbert Saldanha, President, F-635, 6th floor, Om Sagar Park Co-op Society, Amrut Nagar, Ghatkopar (West), Mumbai 400 086. Tel: 2500 4868. Cell: 98202 73858. E-mail: egbertsaldanha@gmail.com. The best essay will receive the 'Miss Eugene Dias Ethics Prize'.

Guild members may e-mail any changes in their name, address, telephone/mobile number and e-mail address to the Guild Secretary, Dr Cheryl Fernandes, on drcherylmfernandes@gmail.com, by October 20, 2018.

FORTHCOMING EVENTS

Khandala Laity Retreat 2018
The 113th Annual Retreat of the Khandala Laity will be preached by Rev. Fr Terence Murray, PP of Christ the King Church, Borivli (E), Mumbai.
Theme : GROWING GRACEFULLY TO BE DISCIPLES OF JESUS
Commencing: Thursday afternoon November 15, 2018 and concluding on Sunday morning November 18, 2018.
Contact Terrence on 2655 2776 / 98207 04931; Rosita on 99308 93636; Norma 98217 3209 ; Mathew 98700 82830; Lew 99203 64150 at the earliest.

Certificate Course in Social Work for Senior Citizens
College of Social Work Extension Centre announces a three-month Certificate Course in Social Work for Senior Citizens from Oct 15-Jan. 15, 2019. For more details, contact 022-2927 0981 or e-mail on nnvirtuallearning@gmail.com

"Come away with me for a while (Mk 6:31)." The Jesuits at Vinayalaya are offering a Silent Retreat from Friday, Oct. 26 (8 am) to Sunday, Oct. 28 (afternoon) at Vinayalaya, Andheri (E). The retreat will include input sessions, personal prayer time and individual spiritual guidance. Contact 2687 1975 or vinayrethouse@gmail.com

Quest Programme 2018
The Diocesan Vocation Service Centre (DVSC) is organising a Quest programme for youth (Class XII passed & above) discerning a vocation to the priesthood and religious life.
Date: from Friday, Oct. 19 to Sunday, Oct. 21
Venue: Mary of Nazareth, Alibag & OL Mount Carmel, Korlai
Theme: The Mission Experience. Experience Mt 25:35-36 in action.
Registration: Rs 100/- Last Date: Oct. 12 (limited seats available)
Contact Fr Godwin Fernandes or Bro. Melvyn Colaco/Bro. Aaron Sequeira at St Pius X College (Diocesan Seminary), Goregaon East.
(Ph: 2927-1217/-1554/-1560/-6891) or SMS/WhatsApp:98201 29173 or email: dvscbombay@gmail.com.

Prafulta workshops:
Digital Detox - a unique parent-child workshop on the risks of social networking sites, effects of social media on students' psyche. Oct. 21, 2018 - 10 am - 1 pm
Enhance your Emotional Quotient - Oct. 27, 2018
Where: Dominic Savio School Auditorium, Opp. Tolani College, off Mahakali Caves Road, Andheri East.
Prior registration must on : 2830 2323, 75063 08932, 98204 84546.

Breast Cancer Screening on Oct. 17, 20, 24, 27, 31 at Holy Family Hospital, Hill Road, Bandra (W) from 1:30 pm to 3:30 pm.
Mammography at 20% discount. Registration charges of Rs 100 includes one consultation. You can collect your token number from OPD Registration from 12 noon on the given days. Call 6267 0555/6267 0318 for further info.