VATICAN CITY: FIVE TIPS FOR PARISHES FROM POPE FRANCIS
Everything Pope Francis says is always so heartfelt, so quotable, so real. Reading through all of the speeches, homilies and messages that he gives is a real treat.
One such treasure is the words that Pope Francis has given us on parish life. He has real, applicable advice and it is based on his inspiring vision of a Church that goes out of itself, a Church that is missionary, a Church that is merciful and a Church that evangelizes, even in its everyday activities.
Don’t Be like a Custom’s Office
Pope Francis is pretty clear in this, Jesus “instituted seven sacraments” it is not the place of the parish office to institute an eighth sacrament – “the sacrament of the pastoral customs office.” In other words, the parish office should not close doors for people.
And yet most of us can think of times when we have felt more like we are at the DMV(Motor Vehicle Dept) rather than our parish office because of the way we were treated or the business-like approach that was used. Attitudes like this attempt to “control faith rather than facilitating it.” Instead, Pope Francis prays that “all who approach the Church find doors open to encounter Jesus’ love”.
Don’t Be tarantulas
Pope Francis says that when people go to their parish, they should feel like they are entering their mother’s home. He says, “Being parish secretary means opening the front door of the mother’s home, not closing it! And one can close the door in many ways.
In Buenos Aires there was a famous parish secretary: they called her the “tarantula”… I’ll say no more! To know how to open the door in the moment: welcome and tenderness.”
Do put those who are “Distant” First
I have often heard grumbling about families who only come to their parish for baptisms, weddings and funerals. These people are often treated like a last priority, but Pope Francis urges us to put those distant from the Church first. Why? Because we want these people to become regulars.
Pope Francis says, “It is about assuming missionary dynamism in order to reach everyone, putting first those who feel distant and the most vulnerable and forgotten people. It means opening the doors and letting Jesus go forth. Many times we keep Jesus closed inside the parishes with us, and we do not go out and we do not let Him leave! Open the doors so He can go out, at least Him! It is about a Church which “goes forth”: a Church which always goes forth.”
Do get the laity involved
Pope Francis is pretty clear on this, the laity need to be involved in their parishes. Parishes do not belong to priests or to the parish office, they belong to everyone. This is why parishes need laity on councils, advising and helping in the running of everyday matters.
In fact, Pope Francis very sternly has said that “a parish that does not have a pastoral Council and a Finance Council, is not a good parish: it lacks life.”
Don’t Gossip or Cause Division
If only our parishes were exempt from ordinary, sinful human behavior. Alas, they are not. But we can examine our part in making a parish a place of unity and communion or creating division.
Pope Francis urges us, “Let each one ask him- or herself today ‘do I increase harmony in my family, in my parish, in my community or am I a gossip. Am I a cause of division or embarrassment? . . . Gossip does harm! Gossip wounds. Before Christians open their mouths to gossip, they should bite their tongue! To bite one’s tongue: this does us good because the tongue swells and can no longer speak, cannot gossip. Am I humble enough to patiently stitch up, through sacrifice, the open wounds in communion?’”
Be Ready for Action
Heavenly Father, You have chosen the parish as the vehicle by which You encounter us in our daily lives. The parish is the assembly in which your Word is proclaimed, your Eucharist is celebrated, your people are united in a local community and subdivided into smaller groups so that they may become the agent of change for the betterment of the whole Church. Make our parishioners aware of the many opportunities and responsibilities that are theirs as witnesses of You to our age. Keep us open to our need of your love and fellowship. Let both religious and laity work together to serve You in others. Amen.
PARIVARTAN- A TRAFFIC MOVEMENT TO TRANSFORM PEOPLE’S MINDSET
Human life is dear to all. To protect life, a traffic revolution was started by Jamshedpur Diocesan Education Society on 11th September, 2014 to create awareness on road safety for the change in the mindset of people of the town. The small beginning of the traffic Revolution became so powerful that it spread like a blazing fire lighting every organization of the town. Traffic police and administration extended every support for the realization of this noble cause.
The movement began with torch race on 11th September, 2014 from Sakchi police control office at 04:00pm in the evening. The first lighted torch was taken by the Bishop’s House, Golmuri represented by Fr. Linus Kindo who along with 30 boys and big number of policemen ran till the Sakchi gol chakra and handed over to the media group. The inaugural torch race of Parivartan ended at Beldih Club where all the heads of the organization and city administration officers together lighted the big torch and left the balloon with caption “Parivartan” becaming aware of the need to keep the traffic rules and regulations to make Jamshedpur a better place to live in.
The traffic revolution extended for 9 days. During this period all the schools, colleges, organizations helped Jamshedpurians to know the traffic rules through placards, Nukkad Nataks, slogans etc. It reached to its culmination on 19th September, 2014 when a big number of people from every corner of Jamshedpur gathered at JRD TATA complex and took the collective pledge to keep up the traffic rules to protect the life and make Jamshedpur a safe and disciplined place.
Focus of Parivartan:
Disciplined Driving and Road Safety
Helmet for Driver and Pinion Rider
Seat Belts a Must while driving cars
No driving for those below 18 years
No Using of mobile phones while Driving
No Three riders on tow wheelers
No over speeding and rash driving
No using of pressure horns
No drunken driving
Using of proper number plates as prescribed by law
Carry all relevant documents while driving
Applicable Spot fine for Traffic Rule Violators:
Without license – Rs.500
Without helmet – Rs.270
Parking at no parking zones – Rs.500
3 riders on two wheelers – Rs.250
Pressure horn – Rs.1000
Breaking traffic signal – Rs.1000
Driving under influence of alcohol – Rs.2000
Rash driving – Rs.1000
Don’t use your mobile phone while driving
Belt up in the back
Don’t drink and drive
Always adhere to speed limits
Take special care about children, senior citizens and pedestrians
Don’t drive if tired
Pedestrians should walk cautiously
Keep your distances
Always wear helments and seat belts
Documents on should always carry while driving on the road:
Certificate of registration
Certificate of Taxation
Certificate of insurance
Permit and fitness certificate (in case of commercial vehicles)
Pollution under control certificate
(A traffic movement to transform people’s mindset, Jharkhand police)
INAUGURATION OF ST. JOHN PAUL WELFARE CENTRE, CHILGU, CHANDIL
September 8, 2014 was a great day for the Santals of Chilgu village and around, who were once displaced and rehabilitated at Chilgu colony. They welcomed Bishop Felix Toppo, S.J. traditionally by joyful, rhythmic dance, songs and by washing of the feet. After the cultural program they made a “jaher than” by planting saplings. Finally the welfare centre was inaugurated with the blessing of two brand new sewing machines by Bishop Felix Toppo, Fr. Raphael Monteiro, the parish priest, the brain behind starting the welfare centre encouraged the people to make use of it for acquiring skills of stitching. This will surely help to improve their financial condition. He also encouraged them to start pig and goat rearing. Three cheers for Fr. Rapheal Monteiro for taking this initiation for the benefit of the people.
FEAST OF ST. VINCENT DI PAUL,
Daughters of Charity and Sisters of Charity of Nazareth celebrated the feast of their patron Saint, Vincent De Paul on 27th September, 2014. Indeed the day was filled with joy and happiness which was clearly seen on the cheerful faces of Sisters as well as all those who joined them in their feast. Thanksgiving Masses were offered at Gyan Deep School and Cheshire Home in honour of St. Vincent De Paul, the Founder and Patron saint of their congregation.
DEANARY MAHILA SANGH RALLY FOR 2014
The Chaibasa Deanary Mahila Sangh Rally for 2014 took place on 20-21st September at Dibya Bharati Chaibasa. A total number of 158 Mahila Sangh members of Kholhan-Porhat Deanary parishes took part in it along with their Religious Sister guides. The Rally was inaugurated by Fr. Halan Bodra, the Dean of Kolhan-Porhat Deanery. Fr. Niranjan S.J. and Sr. Ruby OSU, conducted the sessions on the theme of “Family”, the topic of the Synod of Bishop in Rome. After the input session, the participants were first divided into groups to indentify the external forces that are responsible for the break up of families. Then the pariticipants were divided in parish wise groups to draw up concrete action plan to strengthen family bonds in the parishes.
At the end of the day a broad smile on the faces of participats was the indication that the Rally was a great success. (Sr. Sunita, F.C.)
INAUGURATION DAY OF DIAMOND JUBILEE
A grand inaugural function of the Diamond Jubilee of St. Mary’s Hindi School Bistupur was held on 26th September, 2014. It began at 4:00 pm under the umbrella of a beautifully decorated tent in the premise of St. Mary’s Hindi School. All the former Parish Priests, Principals of the school and ex-students were the honourable guests of the inaugural function. Mr. Suresh Santhalia, President of the Chamber of Commerce of Jamshedpur, an ex-student of St. Mary’s Hindi School was the chief guest and Bishop Felix Toppo, S.J. was the guest of honour.
A well prepared cultural program staged by the students could really cheer up the heart of the invited guests. The chief guest and all other speakers of the occasion appreciated and thanked the Principal and her staff for taking care and giving the value-based education to the poor children. Sharing his student life in St. Mary’s Hindi School he encouraged the students and staff to strive together in taking St. Mary’s School to greater heights. Thanks to the Sisters of the Apostolic Carmel for their cooperation in managing the school from its inception.
LORD MAY YOUR MOTHER PRAY FOR US
We began the month of September by invoking the blessing of Our Blessed Mother. On the occasion of Teachers’ day the students made us feel really special by organizing an entertainment program me and felicitated the teachers with flowers and cards. They made the day memorable one for us. An inter house competition was held on 5th September. The house in charge along with the help of the students planned every details and organized different activities for the houses. Several competitions pertaining to analytical skills, writing skills and entertainment was organized. It was heartening to see the team spirit, unity, innovation, enthusiasm and high energy levels that prevailed on the campus. Thanks to Fr. David Vincent our Principal for encouraging the students and the teachers to work together, as expected all the hard work paid rich dividends and the Competitions were a Grand success. On the 6th of September in honour of Our Blessed Mother we had the Eucharistic celebration with parents, students and the staff. The hall was full and over flowing with parents. Recalling many Divine blessings on this institution Fr. Edwin suggested that we have every good reason to appreciate the goodness of God and give thanks for all the innumerable blessings on all of us. All the parents thanked Fr. David Vincent for organizing such a beautiful programme. After all the hectic activities and programme we started our first terminal examination. (St. Mary’s English school, Bistupur)
ST. XAVIER’S ENGLISH SCHOOL, CKP
The month of September is eagerly awaited by all as it marks the end of the rainy season and winter rolls in with a little chill at night. In our school inter class football competition was held on 30th August for boys and girls from Std. VI to X. the weather was favourable though we had a little rain in the night, the ground was just perfect for a football match. The children were exuberant with their shouts of joy, enjoying every minute of the game. The winners were Std. IX Boys and Std. VIII Girls who walked away with the trophies.
Soon after this came the preparations for Teachers’ Day. On 5th September all the students were gathered in the campus which was spacious and full of colourful decoration, excitement was clearly seen on everyone’s face. The function started with the welcoming of the Chief Guest who was none other than our school Secretary Fr. Richard Miranda followed by our Principal Fr. Vernon D’Souza and the teaching staff. The ceremony started with the lighting of the lamp and prayers. The students presented dances & skits and the whole campus was resounding with shouts of joy. Fr. Richard Miranda delivered a memorable speech for the teachers while Fr. Vernon D’Souza presented a token of love to the teachers.
On 6th September there was a parent teachers meeting which is a day of importance to discuss the children’s progress and their studies.
Classes resumed again with great confidence as the 2nd Terminal Examination was scheduled from 20th to 29th September. Revisions and class tests were under way.
The school will be closed from 1st to 6th October for Durga Puja a time for joy and celebration. (Sneh Lata)
Fr. Norbert Kindo was admitted in the Mercy Hospital Jamshedpur with a serious complain of multiple cyst in his liver. Prior to that he was admitted in the Town Hopital, Dhanbad then he was shifted to Mercy Hospital. After his thorough check up and treatment he is back to Dhanbad.
Fr. C.R. Prabhu had an operation of his external growth on his upper back on 27th September, 2014, at Mercy Hospital. After the operation he is at ease. After a good rest and healing he returned to his kingdom.
Fr. Halan Bodra is admitted at Ursuline Hospital, Chandmari with the complain of high pressure and fever. He is safe in the hands of doctors and nurses at CKP.
R I P NEWS
We express our heartfelt condolences to Fr. Pascal Toppo., who lost his father Mr. Edward Toppo on 9th September, 2014 at Tongo. May the good Lord grant strength to all who experience the pain of separation and loss. May his Soul Rest in Peace!
The Call to the priesthood… Can you hear it?
The Diocese of Jamshedpur and Society of Jesus, Jamshedpur province has programs such as vocation seminar and camps for prospective candidates for priesthood. Contact to the Vocation Offices for more information at:
The Vocation Promoter
Phone No.: (0657) 2318130/09572752429
HAPPY BIRTHDAY- OCTOBER
Fr. Edwin Coelho
Fr. Michael Deogam
Fr. George Manna