Bangalore, September 8, 2022: The nine-day novena in preparation for the annual feast of St. Mary’s Basilica in Shivajinagar culminated on September 8, 2022, on the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. There were solemn Eucharistic celebrations throughout the day for devotees.
Archbishop Most Rev. Dr Peter Machado, Archbishop of Bangalore, presided over the solemn holy Eucharistic celebrations in Kannada and Tamil languages, along with Vicars General, Rector of the Shrine and a large number of priests.
Annual festivities of St. Mary’s Basilica this year were indeed a special one as there were no festal celebrations for the past two years due to the Corona pandemic. Thousands of devotees thronged the Basilica to pay their homage to Our Lady of Good Health throughout the day despite the rain and chilly weather.
Speaking in his homily, Archbishop Machado highlighted the importance of having a good relationship with God. He emphasized how Mother Mary always bowed to the will of God saying that let God's will be done in her life.
"God has called those who he already had chosen... like this, God chose Mother Mary to be the mother of Jesus Christ the Savior. Mary was in communion with God in His salvific plan," he added.
The grand annual feast of St Mary's Basilica culminated at the Car Procession program in the evening. Archbishop Most Rev. Dr Peter Machado, Most Rev. Dr Bernard Moras, Archbishop Emeritus of Bangalore, Mr Rizwan Arshad, MLA representing Shivajinagar constituency and Mr Shakeel Ahmed, erstwhile BBMP Corporator took part in the final program.
Archbishop Peter Machado reflected upon a gospel passage thus saying "The name Emmanuel means God is with us. We do experience and understand the presence of God, perhaps in the work we do, in peace, in prayer and in mother’s love. St. Mary’s Basilica at Shivajinagar is such a place which is not only meant for Christians, but people from other faith come to experience the presence of God and receive the blessing of Mother Mary.”
The prelate also remembered the sad demise of Mr Umesh Katti, Minister for Food and Civil Supplies, Government of Karnataka who died the day before, and offered his condolences.
Archbishop also thanked all the government officials who extended their help and cooperation in ensuring the success of the festal celebration.
He also expressed his sense of appreciation and gratitude to Rev. Fr. Martin Kumar, the rector of the Shrine and all the parish clergy, volunteers, benefactors and devotees of Our Lady of Good Health.
Report: Ajay Raj, PRO Office.