The year-long observances of 50th death anniversary of Servant of God Msgr. Raymond F. C. Mascarenhas began today 23rd December 2009, at 10.30 at Bendur Parish Church, Mangalore. The Eucharistic mass was celebrated by Most. Rev. Dr. Aloysius Paul D’Souza along with 12 co-celebrant’s at Bendur Chruch.
In his homely the Bishop said that Msgr. Raymond was a man with deep God experience, far sighted vision and deep intellectual insight and obsessed with the idea of sharing God’s love especially with the poor, he read the signs of the times and founded the Congregation of the Sisters of the Little Flower of Bethany in the year 1921 at Bendur to provide an opportunity to those who desirous of answering the call of God to religious life and to cater to the pastoral care of the people and educational needs of rural children, especially girls. While concluding the Bishop urged the faithful to understand the plans of God and live accordingly. This world is a stage and we all are actors, some play a leading role, and some will get side role to act, and some will not get a chance to act at all, he said.
The mass was followed by a a memorial program at Bendur parish hall. The program began with invoking God’s blessings by a prayer dance by the students of the T.T.I Rosa Mistika Gurupur Mangalore. Bethany Pre- Novices sang a song in tribute to SD Raymond Mascarenhas.
Sr. Wilberta (Asst. Superior General of Bethany) welcomed the guests and the gathering. A floral welcome was given to all the guests. The programme was inaugurated with lighting the traditional lamp by Most Rev. Dr. Aloysius D’Souza, and other dignitaries. Sr. Lillis (The Postulator) expressed her gratitude and the cause of SD Raymond F.C Mascarenhas.
On this occasion a book named “Reminiscences” written by Sr. Theresine, Sr. Esuria, Sr. Pacifica and Sr. Marie Therese was released by Dr. Olinda Pereira. Sr. M. Jyoti BS, (Superior General) felicitated the authors.
Addressing the gathering she said Msgr.Raymond was a man of God, known to be a compassionate pastor, an eloquent speaker and powerful preacher, an efficient administrator, an eminent educationist and a writer. Having served as the Vicar General of the Diocese of Mangalore from 1931 to 1941 he continued to direct the Congregation that he founded. He dared to tread the unbeaten paths, where others dared not, while taking up new initiatives. She also recalled the initiation of the Bishop of Mangalore taking the first step in the process of beatification and canonization
Most Rev. Dr. Aloysius D’Souza addressed the gathering and said that the Bethany sister’s were delighted to share their joy with all of us because he was the priest of Bendur Parish. Msgr Mascarenhas is the chosen instrument of God was tested and ready for the final sacrifice. He was judged and condemned.
He refused to turn away any one who came to seek the consolation of his presence or his last blessing. Deprived of all human consolations, he sought comfort in prayer before the Eucharistic Lord and his Blessed Mother, whom he frequently invoked as “Man of Sorrows” and the “Mother of the man of Sorrows”. It was the dark night before the full light. None of these events left him bitter.
Sr. Joy (General Councillor) delivered the vote of thanks. Fr. Peter Noronha blessed over fellowship meal. Mrs. Mariet Castelino compeered the entire program.