The annual feast of Our Lady of Health Parish-Shirva celebrated with great devotion and joy

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Report and Pictures by Dr. Eugene D’Souza, Moodubelle

Shirva, 03 February 2010: On Wednesday, 3rd February 2010 all roads led to Shirva for the celebration of the annual feast of Our Lady of Health (Saud Sabinnichem Festh) at 10.30 am. Twenty four priests from different parishes of the Udupi Varado and elsewhere came in procession into the church led by the Vice President of the Parish Pastoral Council, Mr. Norbert Machado holding the cross and followed by the altar servers, the sponsors (pirgent) and the priests to celebrate the solemn annual feast Mass. The church was full to capacity and arrangements were made for the faithful to attend the feast Mass in front of the church.

The chief celebrant of the solemn annual feast Mass was Rev. Dr. Victor Machado, Rector of St. Joseph’s Seminary, Mangalore. In his homily, Dr. Victor Machado elaborated on ‘unity’, the theme of this year’s annual feast. He said that where there is unity, God resides there. The Almighty God created the world for unity. However, there has been disunity in the world, not because of God but because of the human beings. Dr. Victor Machado further said that the pilgrim centres manifest the basic unity of human beings as people irrespective of their religions mingle with each other at these centres such as the Shrine of St. Lawrence at Attur-Karkala. He also pointed out the difference between staying together and living together. In families, we not only stay but live together. Similarly, the parish community should be like a family. Dr. Machado emphasised on the need to develop Basic Christian Communities in every parish to foster the sense of unity and togetherness.

At the end of the festive Mass, Fr. Richard Coelho, the parish priest of Shirva, thanked the chief celebrant, Rev. Dr. Victor Machado and other guest priests and all those who helped in the smooth conduct of the annual feast. He wished all the parishioners of Shirva, their family members who are abroad and all their guests from other parishes a happy annual feast of ‘Saud Mai’.

The church was elegantly decorated for the occasion of the annual feast. The fresh flowers on the altar and the nearby were aesthetically arranged giving an aura of elegance and solemnity to the annual feast. The choir excellently trained by the choir master, Peter Nazareth lifted the spirit of those who attended the annual festive Mass with their melodious singing. This year’s annual feast was sponsored by (pirgent) David Machado and family.

A large number of devotees of Saud Mai belonging to different religions were seen making a beeline in front of the statue of Our Lady of Health kept in the portico of the church. People were also seen burning candles in honour of Our Lady of Health for the favour received from her.

The entire church and school-college campus was abuzz with people in a carnival like atmosphere. There were hundreds of stalls selling verities of things and eatables. The annual festival fair had all the ingredients to cater to different tastes of the young and the old. The fair being within the church and school-college campus, people could move around freely without much difficulty as the place was quite vast with a lot of open space.


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Comments on this Article
vijith mathias, moodubelleangalore Sat, February-6-2010, 1:09
I hope that all the parishners of shirva and their relatives have enjoyed the feast.May our Lady of health bless you and give you good health
Thomas, Moodubelle/ Dubai Thu, February-4-2010, 11:09
Hope Shirva parisioners and thier relatives, friends had a great celebration of Parish fest. Good coverge.May our Lady of health bless you all and keep united .
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