St Anthony’s Relic Feast Concludes with Global Prayer for Peace
Mangaluru, February 8: The annual celebration of the Relic Feast of St Anthony of Padua reached its pinnacle today with fervent prayers for global harmony at the Milagres Shrine, Mangaluru. Organized by the St Anthony Ashram, Jeppu, the event drew in thousands of devotees who converged at the Our Lady of Miracles Church premises on February 8, 2024.
The Most Rev. Dr Aloysius Paul DSouza, Bishop Emeritus of the Diocese of Mangalore, led the solemn festive eucharistic mass and was accompanied by numerous priests in concelebration. Rev. Fr Clifford Fernandes, the parish priest of Kulshekar (Cordel) Church, delivered an inspiring sermon on the theme “Let those who received, Proclaim.”
Fl Clifford stressed the significance of the tongue, the instrument through which St Anthony proclaimed the magnificence of the Lord. He called upon all to use the gifts bestowed by God for the exaltation of His glory.
Blessing of the St Anthony Bread: In a gesture of spiritual solidarity, Bishop Aloysius Paul Dsouza blessed the St. Anthony Bread, invoking healing for the sick and suffering. The blessed bread was distributed among the attendees, symbolizing St Anthony’s intercession for their well-being.
Candlelight Prayer for Peace:
As the eucharistic mass concluded, a candlelight prayer for peace was held, uniting the faithful in a collective plea for global tranquility.Fr J. B. Crasta, the Director of the Ashram, highlighted the pressing need for peace, citing ongoing conflicts in 32 countries, including Israel and Palestine, Russia and Ukraine, and various internal strife across nations like Afghanistan, Ethiopia, and Syria.
Celebrations at St Anthony Ashram, Jeppu:
Simultaneously, festivities unfolded at the St Anthony Ashram, Jeppu, commencing with a Konkani Eucharistic Mass at 6 a.m., presided over by Rev. Fr Trishan Dsouza, Bishop’s Secretary. Rev. Fr Cyprian Pinto, parish priest of Permannur Church, continued the celebrations with a second Eucharistic Mass at 9.30 am. A special Malayalam mass at 4.30 pm, held at Milagres Church and led by Fr. Ebin, added a diverse cultural dimension to the day’s events.
Msgr. Very Rev. Maxim Noronha, Vicar General, joined in the festivities alongside Fr Bonaventure Nazareth, Parish Priest of Milagres Church; Fr J. B. Crasta, Director; Fr Gilbert Dsouza, Chaplain; Fr Nelson Peris; Fr Avinash Pais, assistant directors of St Anthony Charitable Institutions in Jeppu; and clergy and religious sisters from across the city.
The day resonated with spiritual introspection, communal jubilation, and a shared commitment to seek St Anthony’s divine intervention.
With devotees actively participating in the celebration, the Relic Feast of St Anthony remained a testament to faith, unity, and the pursuit of peace.
Report & Photos: FrAnil Fdes, Canara Communication Centre, Mangalore