Mangalore: Bishop Dr Aloysius chosen IIPP Outstanding Community Leader
Anita Cordeiro, executive coordinator, IIPP
Mangalore, Aug 14: Bishop Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza has been chosen as the Outstanding Community Leader of Mangalore for the year 2012-2013 by the International Institute for Public Policy, a family sponsored non-profit organization.
A Crystal Award in commemoration of the Outstanding Community Leadership will be hand carried from the United States of America, and will be presented ceremoniously to Dr Aloysius D’Souza during the course of this year. There will also be a cash prize of Rs 100,000 along with the Award towards educational scholarship to the poor and deserving that will be allocated by the bishop to suit with his own best discretion.
The bishop of a vibrant city such as Mangalore, like thousands of other bishops all over the world, represent the bishop of Rome, the Pope. In this fast shifting and fast changing global society of multi-cultures and multi-religions, the tasks and responsibilities of a bishop specially in a secular and democratic country such as India involves a deep and undivided commitment towards people of different generations, different languages and different backgrounds of a conglomerate society of South Canara. A bishop requires unique leadership talents with a more enlightened approach not only as a good shepherd but also as a good manager, administrator, negotiator, coordinator and collaborator.
Dealing with a vast and matured diocese such as Mangalore comprising several dozen parishes and lead the entire flock on the track of His Lord and Master requires a leader built with dynamism added with power and influence thru an environment of teamwork. In a constantly changing society such as India, a bishop needs to possess a mindset and willingness that endures beyond the normal training to cope with the societal changes and challenges. Bishop Aloysius has certainly succeeded in leading the Mangalore Diocese to a higher pedestal by acting as a servant leader through his tact and ability by being able to create relationship among leaders and followers as well as superiors and subordinates in each parish.
Bishop Aloysius is extending his helping hand to the worthy people of Tanzania, which noble gesture will undoubtedly bring name and fame not only for Mangalore, but also for India.
On January 11, 1996, the Holy See under Pope John Paul II appointed him as an Auxiliary bishop of Mangalore Diocese upon the sudden death of late bishop Basil D’Souza. bishop Aloysius was appointed as titular bishop on May 15, 1996, and on December 27, same year he was formally installed as bishop of Mangalore.
Bishop Aloysius has been a leader with exceptional talents and abilities. He was able to finalize the construction work of the Diocesan Pastoral Center wherein nine centers are headed by priests. He strengthened the Canara Organization for Development and Peace Institution. He was instrumental in the establishment of Father Muller Medical College that was inaugurated in 1999. He has also spearheaded the opening of many other primary schools, high schools, and colleges including the St Joseph’s Engineering College at Vamanjoor. He is currently the chairman of Family Living Commission of Central Council of bishops of India. He also successfully organized World Konkani Conference and All India bishops Conference in Mangalore. For the first time in the history of Mangalore, bishop Aloysius pioneered the translation of both Old and New Testament in Konkani language in a mini pocket Bible form and helped in reaching every household in Mangalore.
Bishop Aloysius has been a visionary and also a diplomat of his own caliber. He has not only worked towards the enlistment and spreading of Catholic religion but also worked hard in securing harmony among the religious groups. His vision of the future is one of cordiality and friendly community which transcends the bounds of religion. He addresses the multi-cultural society from the platform of “love” by inviting leaders of other communities and religions to join hands in the formation of a human community which will enable to create a corner stone for the development of the society. He calls tirelessly on the people to nurture good values in life and be a blessing to the society that is changing rapidly.
During the time of celebration of two millenniums of the spread of Christ’s word, bishop Aloysius released an ambitious program of building 2000 houses for the poor. In this noble program not only the Christians received housing quarters but also hundreds of non-Christians gained their living quarters. He also offered thousands of scholarships to under-privileged children in order to gain the basic education required for advancement as future leaders of the community. He has lived true to his Episcopal Motto. Bishop Aloysius’s message to his flock is quite clear: “I wish that every faithful of my Diocese will live with love of God and love for one another. By doing this, we represent compassion and faith of Christ to our fellow human beings. We are the custodians of good things that God has bestowed upon us."