Process to beatify first Mangalurean Msgr Raymond Mascarenhas begins

Pics: Stanley Bantwal

Media Release

Mangaluru, Jul 17: The closing session of the diocesan inquiry of the cause of beatification and canonization of the first Mangalurean Servant of God Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas which was held on Wednesday, July 17 at St Sebastian Church, Bendore, marks a milestone in the history of the diocese of Mangaluru. It was presided over by Dr Peter Paul Saldanha, the bishop of Mangaluru. The solemn ceremony ignited in the hearts of many that greater hope of Mangaluru soon having their very own saint in the person of Msgr Raymond Mascarenhas.

On July 14, a thanksgiving Mass officiated by Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza, bishop emeritus of Mangaluru diocese was offered at St Sebastian Church, Bendore.

The ceremony began with a prayer service conducted by Fr J B Saldanha, parish priest of St Sebastian Church, Permannur. Thereafter, Bishop Peter Paul Saldanha, Sr Rose Celine, superior general of the Bethany Sisters and Fr Vincent Monteiro, the parish priest placed floral wreathes on the tomb of the Servant of God. Sr Rose Celine, presently the petitioner of the cause, welcomed the gathering and requested Bishop Saldanha to preside over the closing session.

In his presidential address, Bishop Saldanha portrayed the Servant of God Raymond Mascarenhas as a holy and committed priest of the diocese of Mangaluru. He highlighted four main aspects of his priestly life: his commitment to the priestly vocation with great pastoral zeal, love for the Word of God and Eucharist, a new vision for the Church and the society, and his sacrificial love for the poor and the neglected particularly girls. He emphasized that the Servant of God Raymond Mascarenhas is an inspiration for the people and exhorted the people to pray that the Servant of God Raymond Mascarenhas is declared as a model of sanctity for all of us and as an effective intercessor before God.

At the outset of the ceremony, Fr Naveen Pinto, the notary presented the documents to the episcopal delegate Fr Henry Sequeira. Fr John Mendonca, the promoter of justice, declared ‘no objection’ in transmitting the documents to the Holy See. Thereafter, the officials connected with the responsibilities of the board of inquiry took an oath declaring that they have faithfully fulfilled their tasks. Bishop Saldanha began the oath-taking and was followed by Fr Henry Sequeira, episcopal delegate, Fr John Mendonca, promoter of justice, Fr Naveen Pinto, notary, Fr Vincent Saldanha, vice notary, Sr Lillis Kattakayam BS, postulator of the cause, Sr Molly Sharon BS, copyist, and Sr Hilarita BS, language translator.

The episcopal delegate Fr Henry Sequeira, then authenticated the integrity of the documents and handed them over to the bishop. The notary read out the minutes of the entire procedure. The authenticated minutes were inserted into the three packages. Thereafter, the bishop officially sealed the suitcases containing the three sets of documents. The bishop then decreed the closing of the diocesan inquiry. Thereafter, the bishop entrusted Fr Victor George D’Souza, the chancellor, with the original set of the documents namely the archetype arranged in 15 packages to be placed in the archives of the diocese of Mangaluru. The other two sets known as the transcript and the public copy arranged in 30 packages were entrusted with Sr Lillis Kattakayam BS, the officially appointed carrier under oath. She was instructed to send the same to the congregation for the causes of saints in Vatican City through the Nunciature in New Delhi for further study of the life and virtues of the Servant of God Raymond Mascarenhas.
Bishop emeritus Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza, then expressed his appreciation for the work done and invoked God’s blessings for the completion of the Roman Phase of the Cause. The Bethany Sisters along with Bendore parishioners paid tribute to the Servant of God through a song.

The postulator Sr Lillis Kattakayam BS rendered the vote of thanks. She acknowledged the services of all those who had laboured for the cause in various capacities whereas Sr Rose Celine BS, the superior general honoured Bishop Peter Paul Saldanha and Bishop Aloysius Paul D’Souza for their unique services at the opening and closing of the diocesan inquiry. Bishop Peter Paul Saldanha honoured the members of the board of inquiry, the historical commission members, Theological censor, the three superiors general Sr Jyoti BS, Sr Wilberta BS, and Sr Rose Celine BS, who played key roles as the petitioners of the cause at different times. Fr Vincent Monteiro, parish priest of Bendur and his predecessors Fr Antony Shera and Fr Peter Noronha too were thanked for their contribution in the whole process. Sr Lillis BS was appreciated for her eleven years of generous service as the postulator. Sr Dona Sanctis BS compered the programme.

In 2007, Sr Jyoti BS the superior general of the congregation through the officially appointed postulator Sr Lillis Kattakayam BS presented the petition (Libellus) to the bishop of Mangaluru requesting to initiate the cause of beatification and canonization of the cause of Msgr Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas. The diocesan inquiry of the cause was opened on August 17, 2008 by Dr Aloysius P D’Souza, the then bishop of Mangaluru. During the past eleven years the board of inquiry interviewed a hundred and one eye witnesses and hearsay witnesses.

The historical Commission members Rev Fr J B Saldanha (convener), Sr Mariette BS, (secretary) and Fr Peter Mascarenhas MMS collected a large number of documents connected with the life of the Servant of God visiting 90 archives and libraries from all over India and Rome. All these materials are now sent to Rome for further studies.

The Servant of God Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas was born in a devout Christian family and was a zealous and committed diocesan priest of Mangaluru diocese. He is the Founder of the congregation of the Sisters of the Little Flower of Bethany, Mangaluru. He served the parishes as an assistant priest, parish priest, and vicar general of the diocese. His services as a dedicated priest and vicar general of the diocese of Mangaluru as well as the founder of Bethany congregation and the Bethany Educational Society are truly meritorious. He was the founding parish priest and the builder of St Sebastian Church, Bendore where his mortal remains lie today.

A large number of priests, Bethany Sisters, religious brothers and sisters, parishioners, the relatives of the Servant of God RFC Mascarenhas, and the faithful witnessed the closing session and prayed that the Servant of God may soon be raised to the honours of the Altar.


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Comment on this article

  • Maria (Corinne) Vaz, Mangalore

    Fri, Jul 19 2019

    My name is Corinne Vaz (nee D'Costa) and I am the great grand niece of Msgr. Raymond Mascarenhas. Though I was very small at that time, I have vivid memories of my visits to his residence at Bethany Convent Bendur in the 50's along with my grandmother who used to fondly call him Padri Maam. His love, affection and above all, his blessings are most responsible and reason for our good health, good upbringing and prosperity.
    I along with my brothers Errol & Lancelot, and cousins Brian & Dymphna Nazareth, sincerely pray for his Beatification and Canonization.

    DisAgree Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rita, Germany

    Thu, Jul 18 2019

    It is very good news about MsgrR.Mascarenhas beatification process is bieng on the way.At last one of our Mangalorean Priest/ person.we are very proud about him ,his work.Same time we should do more this work to go further ,by praying or to support it.Be his name in everybodys mouth and heart.

    DisAgree Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rajesh D., Mangalore, Dubai

    Wed, Jul 17 2019

    Servant of God Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas has done wonderful Job. He has done his duty as per Gods will. Hence, now he is in Kingdom of Heaven.

    Need of the Hour is, do we walk in the same path or we just praise him & celebrate his beatification. Does it help in improving our present condition and increase our faith or to have a same peaceful life people had during his tenure.

    DisAgree Agree [8] Reply Report Abuse

  • Max e Rasquinha, Mangalore, Houston/Dallas, Texas, U.S.A

    Wed, Jul 17 2019

    What a joy to learn that the Beatification process is well under way in favor of late Mnsgr. Raymond Mascarenhas, the Founder of the Bethany Nuns at Bendore. The Headquarters of Bethany at Bendore is very dear to me because I started my Education with the Bethany School at Kankanady in the year of 1944, and I received my First Holy Communion in the year of 1946. Mnsgr. Raymond Mascarenhas himself conducted the Eucharistic Services at the Bethany Church and gave me the First Holy Communion.
    Strange enough to admit, I distinctly remember the sumptuous breakfast (bread, butter and a small banana) that the nuns gave us for our First Holy Communion. Happy were those days with simple things in life so graciously offered to us by the Nuns and Priests with the love of humanity. We remember those peaceful days in every day of our present life. May God bless all those Nuns and Priests who took such good care of us. breakfast

    DisAgree [2] Agree [12] Reply Report Abuse

  • Joe Gonsalves, Mangalore

    Wed, Jul 17 2019

    Indeed Msgr. Raymond Mascarenhas was a peoples' man. He served The Bendore Parish for several years and was the founder of The Bethany order. My late wife Irene and I had the pleasure of having him to solemnize our wedding at Milagris Church.

    I join scores of people in offering prayers for the beatification of Msgr. Raymond.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse

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Title : Process to beatify first Mangalurean Msgr Raymond Mascarenhas begins


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