FROM BISHOP’S DESK – OCTOBER - 2018

  1. Let us remember Our Lady of Holy Rosary in the month of October. Let us try to revitalize Family Rosary Devotion during this month. Preaching and insisting on Family Rosary are very important for the wellbeing of Christian Families.
  2. During this month a Plenary Indulgence may be gained by those reciting five decades of the Rosary in a Church, as a Family at home, as a religious community, or as a pious fraternity, or in general whenever several persons have gathered together for a good purpose.
  3. MISSION SUNDAY is celebrated this year on 21.10.2018. Let us make special efforts to celebrate this day meaningfully. Each parish can fix its own convenient day for the celebration of Mission Sunday.
  4. A SPECIAL COLLECTION is to be taken on Mission Sunday in all the Parishes and Institutions. Special fund raising activities are to be organized in the Parishes and Institutions to contribute our might for the Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith, Rome. All collections are to be immediately remitted to the Diocesan Procurator for onward transmission to Rome.
  5. I congratulate and thank all our parishes for making great efforts for the fundraising for the Mission Sunday which makes Salem Diocesan contribution for the Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith, come up to Rupees 1671666 in the year 2017. Let us make greater efforts to raise our contribution a little higher this year.
  6. COMMUNIO INDIA PROGRAMME. As there is MISSIO in several European countries (Germany, Austria, Belgium) to raise funds in their own countries to help Pastoral and Evangelical activities of the Churches in Mission countries, after long years of discussion, the Conference of the Catholic Bishops of India (Latin Rite) (CCBI), has decided to create an Institution called COMMUNIO INDIA, with similar objectives like MISSIO. Communio India aims at fund raising from the people of India, specially Christians, to help the very poor dioceses, Religious Congregations in India, who are not able to meet the expenditures of their pastoral and evangelical works. This fund will be administered by a special committee constituted by the CCBI with well framed statutes and guidelines. The first Sunday of Advent, a Sunday close to the feast of St. Francis Xavier, is established as Communio India Sunday. Like Mission Sunday we are invited to celebrate this Communio India Sunday and raise funds to help the poor churches in India. All funds collected will be sent to the Diocesan Procurator, who will send it together to the Communio India office in CCBI Center, Bangalore. This collection will be known as Communio India Sunday Collection.
  7. May I kindly remind you to remit the Bible Sunday (September 2018) Collections to Fr. Benjamin Sandanaraj, Secretary of the Bible Commission early and help him to settle accounts with the Tamilnadu Regional Bible Commission.
  8. There will be no Clergy Monthly Recollection in the month of October at the Bishop’s House, Salem.I encourage all the Vicar Foranes to call for Vicariate Meetings to plan for Vicariate level Advent and Christmas Programmes, which will be good season for Ecumenical programmes in the parishes and Vicariates.
  9. The next Clergy Monthly Meeting at the Bishop’s House, Salem, will be on 04.11.2018 Monday. On that day we shall have con-celebrated Holy Mass for our Deceased Conferrers, followed by the blessing of the priests’ cemetery at the Bishop’s House. Please come with cassocks for the celebration of the Holy Mass.
  10. Seminarians Fund for Salem Diocese is constituted to meet the expenditure of the Formation of Future Priests for the Diocese of Salem during their Minor seminary, College studies and Major Seminary Courses. I appeal to all the Clergy, Religious and Lay Faithful of Salem Diocese to contribute regularly and generously for this Salem Diocesan Seminarians Fund and participate in the formation of priests for our diocese. It is a good practice that diocesan priests themselves from out of their meager savings contribute regularly their might for this noble cause of preparing future priests for our diocese.
  11. Bination Mass Offerings to the Seminarians’ Fund. Priests have a way of contributing to the Diocesan Seminarians’ Fund. All priests who need to binate Masses for pastoral needs may receive an offering for the binated Mass from the people and the offering amount has to be
    remitted to the Diocesan Procurator to the Seminarians Fund of our Diocese. Those priests who do not receive any offering from the people for a binated mass, may apply the Mass to the intentions of Ad Intentionem Dantis of the Diocese and inform the Diocesan Procurator from time to time in writing the number of Masses thus offered, so that the stipend for these masses celebrated may be credited to the Diocesan Seminarians’ Fund. Kindly follow this.
  12. Surplus Mass Intentions. All parishes who receive more Mass Intentions than the priests residing there can individually offer, are requested to handover to the Diocesan Procurator the Surplus Mass Intentions together with the Stipends, together with the list of the donors, which we need for accounting purposes, so that all the Masses may be celebrated by our priests during the year. This will ensure the celebration of every Mass that is received from the people and it is a help to the Diocesan Procurator to provide regularly Mass Intentions to all the priests in our diocese.
  13. The Meeting of the Diocesan Council of Priests will be held on 05.11.2018 at 02.00 p.m. at the Bishop’s House, Salem, soon after the Clergy Monthly Recollection. All the members of the Salem Diocesan Council of Priests are invited to attend the meeting. The points for the agenda may be sent to Rev. Fr. M. Rajamanickam, the Secretary of the Council of Priests before 20.10.2017, to his address: Salem Social Service Society, Convent Road, Alagapuram, Salem – 636016.
  14. The Salem Diocesan Clergy Retreat went on well at Poondi Madha Shrine in September 2018. I thank all those who made this event successful.
  15. Education help for poor children has been distributed from the Diocesan Education Fund for Poor Children, collected during the whole year, to 190 students of XI Std. and 177 students of XII Std. amounting to Rs. 329000. Thanks to all the local donors.
  16. Registration of Christian Marriages. As we discussed during the Clergy Monthly Recollection in early September, the laws and procedures regarding the registration of Christian Marriages in India are changing. Till a definitive format and a procedure is issued, all the Parish Priests are requested to continue the same process as before till further instructions. Some District Registrars seem to implement the new procedure immediately. Kindly do not argue with them, but cooperate with them to have the marriages registered with the Government.
  17. To act as a Registrar of Marriages in the Parish, the Parish Priest, has to obtain a License Number from the Registration Department of Tamilnadu Government. For this one needs a letter from the Bishop designating him as the Registrar of Marriages under Indian Christian Marriage Act. Kindly obtain this letter from the Diocesan Chancellor and proceed to apply for your License Number. Mr. Mariasusai, our retired Catechist can help you in this process (His Cell No. 8838746030). All Parish Priests have to obtain this License. Please hurry up.
  18. The Meeting of the Salem Diocesan Pastoral Council will be held on 02.10.2018 at. 09.00 a.m. at Epiphany Center, Salem. All the invited members are reminded to attend the meeting.