Annual Feast of Attur St Lawrence Basilica concludes with Feast of Our Lady of Guide
Karkala: The annual feast of the St Lawrence Minor Basilica at Attur concluded on January 31, with a grand Eucharistic celebration by Dr Gerald Isaac Lobo, Bishop of Udupi Diocese.
Bishop Dr Gerald Isaac Lobo concelebrated the festive mass at 10:30 am along with Fr Joswey Fernandes-Dean of Karkala Varado; Fr George D’Souza Rector of St Lawrence Basilica; Fr Wilson D’Souza Parish priest of Bejai, Mangalore; Fr Jencil Alva Assistant Parish Priest of St Lawrence Basilica and a number of other priests.
The holy mass was celebrated as the annual feast for the parishioners of Attur which is also considered as the feast of Our Lady of Guide (Giad Mai).
In his homily, Bishop Gerald Isaac Lobo highlighted on the theme of this year’s annual feast “As I am Holy, you too become Holy”. Bishop Gerald Isaac Lobo said that devotees of St Lawrence have been coming to the Basilica of St Lawrence at Attur-Karkala since many years to seek favours from the saint and also to pay gratitude for the favours they had received through the intercession of the ‘Saint of Miracles’.
He further said that each and every Christian being baptized is invited by God to sainthood. God is holy and is the source of holiness. Jesus, through his life, teachings, sufferings, death and resurrection has made all of us partners in holiness. The Holy Spirit guides each and every one of us towards the path of holiness. In the words of St Peter, “As God had called us holy, so also we should become holy in words and deeds”.
Stressing on the importance and path to holiness, Bishop Gerald Lobo referred to the Gospel of the day, ‘The Sermon on the Mount’ and pointed out that the Eight Principles given by Jesus through His Sermon on the Mount show the path to holiness. There are many opportunities to follow the path shown by Jesus to attain holiness. The Bishop further said that every person’s life is a Way of the Cross. If one carries the Cross alone, he would feel the heaviness of the Cross, but if we carry our Cross with Jesus, we will find it light and easy.
Bishop Gerald Lobo continuing his homily said that to attain holiness or sainthood one need not do great things, but can do small things in a great way pleasing God. Being committed to one’s vocation, doing good to others in any capacity that one serves and following the principles preached by Jesus one can attain holiness.
Referring to the life and martyrdom of St Lawrence Bishop Gerald Lobo said that St Lawrence served the poor and marginalized and attained martyrdom and sainthood.
At the end of the festive mass, Fr George D’Souza-Rector of St. Lawrence Basilica conveyed greetings to the parishioners on the occasion of their annual feast and feast of Our Lady of Guide. He also expressed gratitude to the Bishops and priests who concelebrated the festive masses during the five days of annual festivities of the Basilica. He also expressed gratitude to all the priests and volunteers who were in charge of different departments, choirs from different parishes, security personnel and all those who have been serving in the Basilica throughout the year.
Bishop Gerald expressed his gratitude to Fr George D’Souza-Rector of the Basilica who has worked hard to provide various basic facilities to the pilgrims coming from different parts of Karnataka. He said that the facilities are incomplete and still a lot of work has to be done and sought prayers and support from the devotees.
Following the final prayer for the sick and solemn blessing, the Bishop along with other priests prayed for the devotees by placing their palms on the heads of each and every devotee.
A large number of devotees were seen lighting the candles, and queuing up to venerate the relic and miraculous statue of St Lawrence.
42 masses were offered in Kannada and Konkani for the benefit of the devotees during the last five days. Bishops of Gulbarga, Bengaluru, Belthangady, Mangaluru and Udupi offered the masses.