“Today I felt like a Christian” – a Paediatrician’s response at the Inclusive Sunday mass
Bangalore, November 25, 2019: As more Bangalore parishes are welcoming “Inclusive Sunday” celebration more number of people are given awareness about the differently abled. The Archdiocesan Commission for the Differently Abled organised a special mass at 8:00 AM on Sunday November 24, 2019 in association with the parish of St. Vincent Palotti, Banaswadi.
Setting a precedent in the Catholic Church it was a first of its kind when the important parts of the mass were translated in sign language by Mrs. Roopa Samson, the choir was by children who are visually challenged from the Jyoti Seva School for the Blind, Bengaluru, and a visually challenged person Ms. Ruby did the first reading using Braille, and the prayer of the faithful was by several differently abled children. All of the above in the same mass has not happened before.
A clear message reverberated across the pews in the church when Fr. George Kannanthanam preached the sermon to convey the message that the Catholic Church stands in solidarity with the persons with disabilities and offers them the same dignity and rights enjoyed by all. “The differently abled should have the same opportunities and conveniences that the normal people have in the Church and society, and that it is our responsibility to provide the same opportunities and conveniences to the differently abled people in our society”, he said.
The celebrant also reminded the congregation that as members of the Church all of us must first be grateful to God for our abilities and we take most things for granted such as each morning we open our eyes and are able to see, and hear the sounds around us, we are able to get up and move around. Unless we appreciate our gifts of abilities, we will not be able to recognise and reach out to the differently abled.
At the end of the celebration, many faithful expressed heartfelt comments about the Inclusive Sunday Mass and thanked the organizers.
It must be mentioned that the Archdiocese of Bangalore is the only diocese in the entire country that has started a Commission for the differently abled to recognize the challenges faced by the people with disabilities and the Church has a special role to play. Archbishop Peter Machado has sent out a directive to all the parishes and institutions to make their premises to be more inclusive and disabled friendly.
The “Inclusive Sunday” is a perennial event that will be held across the parishes in the Archdiocese of Bangalore. We will keep you informed about the next Inclusive Sunday mass at a parish in the Archdiocese of Bangalore.
Please take note of the related information:
Mass for the hearing impaired in Sign Language
A sign language mass is held every second Sunday of the month at 3:00 PM at St. Antony's Chapel, St. Patrick Church, Bengaluru. For more information on this you can text only Ms. Neethu George or call Mr. Sunny Kuruvilla 9880274710
International Day of Differently Abled 2019
The Guanellians will be observing the International Day of Differently Abled on Saturday the 7th of December 2019 at 9:00 AM at Guanella Preethi Nivas, Geddala Halli, Kothannur, Bengaluru 560077. For more details on this event call Ph: 080-28445501/80989660964/8050772843/9966900973
We acknowledge the invaluable contribution of the following people during the “Inclusive Sunday” mass.
Ms. Roopa Samson, a Certified Sign Language Translator and she can be contacted on 9844760209
The pictures attached in this article are the courtesy of Mr. Cleetus Rebello. Click here to view the album of the Inclusive Sunday Mass November 24, 2019. Cleetus Rebello can be contacted on 9886266652.
Those interested to know more about the activities of the Commission for Differently Abled, Archdiocese of Bangalore may reach out to Estelle D’Souza, Commission Member.
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