This month is dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary. The Rosary prayer is dear to all the children of Mother Mary. This prayer is considered a family prayer, wherein all the members of the family are gathered together for the recitation of the rosary. Those who recite the 5 decades of Rosary in the church, as a family at home, as a religious community, or as a pious fraternity, or in general whenever several persons have gathered together for a good purpose, a plenary indulgence is granted; in other circumstances a partial indulgence. The rosary should be recommended to the faithful and its nature and importance explained. St Teresa of Kolkata, such a busy person always at the service of the sick and abandoned would fix a rosary to her clothes so that she could recite several rosaries throughout her work and travel. This has been in the life of saints and our recent Popes. Let us then begin this in our life and in the rectory and community where we live. Our Cathedral is dedicated to our Lady of the Rosary. Hence we have every reason to foster and promote this family rosary in our parishes. On 1 October we celebrate the feast of St Teresa of Child Jesus, the patroness of the missions. On 16 October we celebrate the Mission Sunday. Parish Priests are requested to exhort the faithful to support the missions of the church by voluntary contributions. Our diocese always had a high rank in collection for the Mission Sunday so far. Let us keep up.

The 20 November is the day of the closing of the Special Jubilee Year of Mercy. We are holding a closing programme on 19 and 20 November. The programme will be held at the Rosario Cathedral grounds. Please announce this during masses on Sundays so that people keep those days free to attend the programme at the Cathedral. The time is from 4 to 7.30 p.m.

On 1 November, is the solemnity of All Saints. From noon onwards, the remembrance of the souls in purgatory begins. In many parishes, the tolling of the bells is done reminding the faithful to pray for the souls in purgatory. From 2 November the commemoration of all the souls of the faithful departed is held. A plenary indulgence, applicable only to the souls in purgatory is granted to any of the faithful who 1) on one of the days from 1 to 8 November visit devoutly a cemetery or who simply pray mentally for the dead 2) on all souls day, visit the church or chapel with devotion and then recite the Our Father and the Creed. All priests are permitted to celebrate 3 masses on 2 November provided these take place at different times. The stipend is accepted for one mass only. The second mass is for all the faithful departed and the 3 for the intention of the Supreme Pontiff. Please exhort the faithful to offer masses for the departed souls of their families. The intentions thus collected may be forwarded to the Procurator of the Diocese to send them to the needy priests and the dioceses.

I thank all of you for your prayers for me during my journey abroad. I met the Holy Father and offered greetings and prayers to him. He has blessed all of you. I have visited the Shrines of Lourdes and Fatima. Lot of preparations are made in Fatima and pilgrims do come in big numbers to pray at the Shrine of Fatima, since this is Centenary year of the apparitions. May the Queen & Mother of Rosary bless all of you and our Diocese.

+ Aloysius Paul D’Souza
Bishop of Mangalore

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