Monthi Fest Celebrated in Rome

Anup Gonsalves, Rome

Rome, Sep 13: Jubilations mark the gathering of the Konkani Kuttam in Rome in coming together to celebrate the nativity of Mother Mary, which also witnessed the opportunity of having 13 Bishops that the Konkani families have given to the development of Indian community. The celebrations were held at Collegio San Pietro, which is a centre for the priests from the mission countries to pursue their higher studies in Rome.

The Bishops of India are on their “ad limina” visit to Rome who found this special occasion to join in the liturgical and Konkani traditions reviving their old nostalgia’s of hometown.

The fount of Christian faith is in the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, which was graced by the celebrant Rt Rev Dr Henry D’Souza, Bishop of Bellary wherein more than 100 participated including archbishops, bishops, priests and religious together with the laity. Rev Fr Rajesh Rosario gurkhar, introduced the bishops and welcoming to this Eucharistic celebrations. The Holy liturgy marked presenting of flowers to Mother Mary and the blessing of the corn by Rt Rev Dr Albert D’Souza, Bishop of Agra Archdioceses.

In his homily Bishop Henry D’Souza reiterated the virtue of Mother Mary in doing the will of God and her faithfulness in trials to follow Chirst and invited all to learn from her exemplary virtue. Evidencing his experience and with an anecdote of “Ratna” made more comprehensive the Word of God. He highlighted the historical events of persecutions in remembering the sacrifice and martyrdom of our ancestors, their strong faith rooted in God, the community and with their prayers this land has been blessed with various missionaries and thus the presence of bishops in this celebration and priests and religious seen here and in various part is an evidence of testimony of faith. He invited the community to be committed witness bearers of voice of faith.

Nothing to complete this divine worship was the choir led by Fr Felix Lobo and sisters with an accompaniment with violin the queen of instruments enriched the liturgy. Fr Clifford Roshan Pinto and Bethany sisters and committee members arranged the liturgical preparations.

This followed the fellowship “Agape” featured its rich traditional distribution of new grains that gave vent to emotional sentiments being away from home to some. Fr Eugene Lobo SJ, welcomed the gathering. In his message Rt Rev Dr Albert D’souza, Bishop of Agra Archdiocese, wished the community the goodness of the festivity and invited to inconsistently pray for the persecuted church and especially the church of North India. Mr. Hillary Crasta, profoundly thanked each one who made the day complete and memorable.

The traditional food flavoured with its own hometown taste gave strength to enjoy and facilitate. These dishes were also the display of art of cooking by few priests Fr Gregory Pinto, Fr Mark, Fr Rajesh under the leadership of Hillary Crasta and Nancy Pinto. Many varieties of dishes flowed also from the magnanimity of various families and community of sisters, which enriched the day. Fr Rolfy Pinto SJ, compered the programme and gave the moments of jokes to hearts delight. Fr Rajesh Rosario Gurkhar, Nancy Pinto, Susheela Rodrigues and family, Hillary Crasta, Br. Anthony Crasta and the committee shared a huge responsibility to arrange this gathering. Many Bishops blessed this gathering with their prayers and wishes but could not be in person due their scheduled appointments, travel and responsibilities. Rev Fr Thomas Peringalloor, Rector of the Collegio San Pietro and Rev Fr Sylvester the Spiritual director of the Collegio also were present at this celebration.

Some views recorded found some interesting insights on sharing:

To one side with the growing economic developments and on the other hand there is a growing tendencies in some of the family nucleus is breaking and degrading of the moral values, honour killings, female foeticide, drugs and thus is a pastoral challenges which organising and reliving the traditions helps these families and community even with the large migrated community to carry a life of just equitable life. Rt Rev Dr Ignatius Mascarenhas, Bishop of Simla Chandigar Dioceses.

Faith testimonies, experience’s of faith, healings are exemplary to the community thus today there is an immense search for God experience and inspite of inequality and injustice. India has been an attraction for religious tourism for spirituality. And we have this great responsibility of building this harmonious holistic spiritual dimension. Rt Rev Dr Anil Couto, Bishop of Jalandhar
Bellary region has its pastoral challenge of educations, unemployment, and dalits and we are seeking to address this to secure dignity and equality - Rt Rev Dr Henry D’Souza, Bishop of Bellary.

The Konkani Kuttam, has its wonderful opportunity of brining together the families and sharing this traditions which helps to build our community. But also being here in Rome has to widen up to relive the traditions of the Church, the saints, Christian art/films and culture and carry them back to our motherland to share with our fellow countrymen - Rt Rev Peter Machado, Bishop of Belgaum

Here in foreign land of diaspora this Konkani Kuttam gathering gives refreshing opening to update on things, meet new people and sharing as many lay working people are sometimes ignorant of happenings by being busy with their work in families - Nancy Pinto.

This celebration of Monthi Fest may bring in our motherland India blessings of prosperity to lands, farmers and to those suffering with crisis, floods, draught etc. May God bless our lands and labour - Fr Mark ofm.cap.

Coming together in celebration is a joy of sharing our cultural oneness - Sr Celine PDDM
The Bishops who shared their presence at the Konkani kuttam gathering:

Most Rev Dr Henry D’Souza, Bellary Dioceses

Most Rev Dr Peter Machado Belgaum Dioceses

Most Rev Dr Vincent Concessao, Delhi Archdioceses

Most Rev Dr Albert D’Souza, Agra Dioceses

Most Rev Dr Leo Cornelio, Bhopal Dioceses

Most Rev Dr Gerald D’Almeida, Jabalpur Dioceses

Most Rev Ignatius Mascarenhas, Simla Chandigar Dioceses

Most Rev Fedrick D’Souza, Jhansi Dioceses

Most Rev Anthony Fernandes, Bareily Dioceses

Most Rev Isidore Fernandes, Allahabad Dioceses

Most Rev Oswald Lewis, Jaipur Dioceses

Most Rev Gerald Mathias, Lucknow Dioceses

Most Rev Anil Coutu, Jalandhar Dioceses


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    Tue, Sep 13 2011


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  • Peter / Irene Pinto, Badhyar/Paris-On tour

    Tue, Sep 13 2011

    Indeed, it is the greatest of all the coverages of DAIJIWORLD ever seen on the net.It took me more than 10 hours to go through all the pages and prints of wonderful photographs. I had sufficient time to go through the entire coverage. I went on 120 days long tour with family to France,Netherlands,Belgium and next to Dubai, but never missed the DAIJIWORLD coverage on the net. Indian MONTHIFEST (nativity of Mother Mary)may one day would be the CHRISTMASS of the the world.
    We should expect a WORLD holiday like for any other festivals.
    I could not find much activity in France.Thank you DAIJIWORLD AND the participants for the wast coverage and uniting the world over Indian Christians.I Thank to all those made it to a grand success.

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  • Sr. Shanti Lewis, Kundapur, Italy Rome

    Tue, Sep 13 2011

    It was really enriching to be in the company of all our Dear Bishops, Priests, Sisters and people of India(mangalore) and celebrate the family feast in rome. I was really happy about this celebration and family get together.............

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