Bangalore: ‘Behind every successful man is a woman; behind every successful woman there is a tribe of successful women.’ With these opening lines, the SPARKLE program took off at the Sacred Heart Parish, Richmond Road on 9th February 2020 with 90 vivacious women.Vicar General Msgr. S. Jayanathan, led the participants with an opening prayer, followed by an inaugural ceremony of watering a plant by along with Joyce J (Special guest), Fr. Anthony Muthu (Assistant Parish Priest), Bro. Chinnappa, Priya Francis (Joint secretary, Women’s Commission), Rani Prakash & Brinda (Leader of the Women’s cell, Sacred Heart parish).Msgr. S. Jayanathan queried the participants to point out instances in the Bible where Jesus had interactions with women. He said that Jesus did not discriminate women, instead understood the tremendous strength of women. Mother Mary is the epitome of patience, strength, and leadership.The Monsignor emphasized the need for women to be leaders and decision-makers at home and in the community and gave some interesting tips to women on how to empower themselves through 1. Awareness of self, 2. Analysis (of the situation), 3. Reflection, and 4. Action. Another interesting concept he shared was doing things BIT by BIT to achieve large goals. BIT is a pneumonic for B - have a sense of belonging to the project taken up, I - be Interested, T- Team spirit.The Special guest of the day Mrs. Joyce Jayasheelan was interviewed by Priya Francis. Mrs. Joyce shared her journey of work with women in prison, especially less privileged women forced into prostitution.The participants were divided into 4 groups and each group was given a question on 1. Problems faced by women at home, 2. problems faced by women in society, 3. Suggestions to uplift women by the parish/women commission and 4. What should women do to be empowered in today’s world? The 4 groups presented the points discussed and the suggestions reinforced the need to pray, both as individuals and in groups, become aware of and be educated about laws, schemes, programs, which each of us must be responsible for.
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