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We have started the month of July dedicated to the precious blood of our Saviour. We have been washed clean from our sins by His blood. He had loved us until He shed His last drop of blood from His Most Sacred Heart. This devotion asks from us our love in return for His love.

On 16 July we will celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. That being a Sunday, Sunday liturgy is held. However we should keep up the devotion to our Lady of Mount Carmel. This devotion had been very popular in earlier times. Though, it may not be seen today in such measures, still this devotion to be fostered among the faithful. We are the children of Mother Mary. She, like her Son, intercedes for us in heaven. This devotion is to be fostered among the faithful. We have beautiful custom of giving the scapular and rosary to the first communicants. Let us show our love for Mother Mary by wearing the scapular. Children are automatically enrolled in the Third Order of Carmelites. Wherever the Carmelites work they promote this devotion. We do appreciate their commitment to spread this devotion. No doubt these and such other devotions help us to deepen our love and our devotion to Mother Mary. She indeed is a channel of graces to all of us. May this feast increase our love and devotion to Mother Mary.

The Diocesan Council of Priests had its first meeting and V. Rev. Fr J.B. Saldanha and V. Rev. Fr Walter D’Mello were elected as Secretary and Joint Secretary of the Council. The Diocesan Pastoral Parishad had its first meeting and Mr M.P. Noronha was elected Secretary unanimously. The Vicar General is appointed as Coordinator of the commissions of the Parishad and later on Fr Francis D’Souza is appointed the Secretary to the Coordinator in the work of the commissions. Seven commissions have been formed and members have been chosen to the commissions and every commission has a convener. I congratulate and thank every one of them to have accepted various offices. I wish that these commisions will work for the spiritual and social welfare of our diocese. I pray for them for their generosity in accepting these offices.

I have nominated 15 members to the Diocesan Pastoral Parishad, who should be inducted in their respective Parish Pastoral Parishads. As a rule all the members of the Diocesan Pastoral Parishad are the members of the Parish Pastoral Parishads. This was discussed in the earlier Diocesan Pastoral Parishads and the purpose of having the membership in the Parish Pastoral Parishad is to communicate and implement the decisions of the Diocesan Pastoral Parishad by those members along with others in DPP, provided they had not put in continuously three terms in the respective Parish Pastoral Parishads. In that case the others shall be coopted in the committees of the Parish Pastoral Parishad, corresponding to the particular committee of the Diocesan Pastoral Parishad to which they belong. Those who belong to the regional or national services too, become the members of the Parish Pastoral Parishads as long as they continue in the service which they render at present, provided they were not the members of the PPP continuously for three terms.

Next month onwards, the ongoing formation sessions will be held. I request every priest of the Diocese should attend the ongoing formation at Pastoral Institute. If one misses a particular session assigned to him, he should attend another session which is convenient to him. Hence everyone should benefit from this opportunity. Similarly those who have not attended the retreat in the first batch have an obligation to attend the retreat in the months to come or in the second batch. Those who go elsewhere and make their retreat should inform me in writing, so that I am able to find out the attendance of priests for the retreat. This is more an obligation on the Bishop that he takes care that his clergy entrusted to his care makes their retreat annually.

I thank all of you for your greetings and good wishes on my birth and feast day on 21 June. Many Rev. Fathers concelebrated with me taking the troubles to come to Bejai in the early hours of the day. I appreciate their goodwill. I thank all the religious men and women and the lay faithful who were present for the mass. My heartfelt gratitude to the Parish Priest, PPP and the parishioners of Bejai for making all arrangements for the celebrations. I have prayed for you.

I wish you the blessings of God through Mother Mary of Mount Carmel. May God bless you and keep you. Please continue to pray for me.

+ Aloysius Paul D’Souza
Bishop of Mangalore

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