ASIA/INDIA – Prayers to Saint Devasahayam and the consecration of the family to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

ASIA/INDIA – Prayers to Saint Devasahayam and the consecration of the family to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Kottar (Agenzia Fides) – The Latin Rite Catholic Church in India will celebrate on June 24 the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a national day of prayer and thanksgiving, to pay homage to Saint Lazaro Devasahayam Pillai, India’s first lay saint, who was canonized at the Vatican on May 15th, and to consecrate all Indian families to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The prayer, which will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., will take place at the tomb of the saint, in St. Cathedral. Francis Xavier, Kottar, Tamilnadu, and will be presided over by Bishop George Antonysamy, Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore, Vice President of the Conference of Latin Rite Bishops in India (CCBI). Archbishop Anil Couto of Delhi, Secretary General of the CCBI, together with Mgr Nazarene Soosai, Bishop Kottar, and Sister Annie Kuttikadu, a member of the Sisters of Mary Immaculate, will sing the psalm.
Father John Kulandai, associate postulator for the purpose of canonizing St. Devasahayam, will preach the Gospel while Cardinal Oswald Gracias and the Archbishop of Bombay will deliver thought-provoking speeches for the faithful.
Father John Kulandai, associate postulator for the purpose of canonizing St. Devasahayam, will proclaim the Gospel while Cardinal Oswald Gracias and the Archbishop of Bombay will deliver wise speeches for the faithful.
A special prayer for Saint Devasahayam will then be recited by Thomas J. Netto, Archbishop of Trivandrum, while the choir will chant the litany to Saint Devasahayam, asking for holy intercession.
Father Yesu Karunanidhi, executive secretary of the Bible Commission, and seven Catholics from various parts of India will lead worshipers’ prayers in Hindi, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada, Telugu, Bengali and Badga. Now it is the turn of Cardinal-elect Filipe Neri Ferrão, President of CCBI and Archbishop of Goa and Daman, to announce the solemn act of consecrating all families to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Archbishop of Madurai Archbishop Antony Pappusamy will recite the closing prayer while Archbishop Leopoldo Girelli, Apostolic Nuncio to India, will give a solemn Eucharistic blessing.
The Bishops invite all the faithful, especially families and religious communities, to participate in prayer and ask that the event be shared with those whose families and community members are abroad, so that they too may be united in spiritual communion as one family. “Let all Catholics in India, they urged, spend this day as one family, thereby witnessing the unity and universality and diversity of the Church’s culture and language.” As reported in a note sent to Agenzia Fides by Father Stephen Alathara, Deputy Secretary General of CCBI, that day will be broadcast on various Catholic satellite television channels such as Madha TV, Shalom TV, Goodness TV, Divyavani TV, Atmadarshan TV, Ishvani TV, CCR TV and Prarthana Bhawan TV. It is also possible to stream the event on the main Catholic YouTube channel.
The Latin Rite Catholic Church in India has 132 dioceses and 18 million faithful.
Lazaro (aka Devasahayam) Pillai, alias Neelakanta (Nattalam, 23 April 1712 – Aralvaimozhi, 14 January 1752), was an Indian officer in the court of King Travancore. He was killed by a group of soldiers for his conversion to Christianity.
(SD-PA) (Fides Services, 21/6/2022)


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