Fr Stan Swamy Never Bow Down :Played a Role of Good Shepherd & a Prophet of our Times

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Fr Stan Swamy Never Bow Down :Played a Role of Good Shepherd & a Prophet of our Times

Jamshedpur: The members of the Jamshedpur Jesuit Province came together to pray for the memorial mass for Father Stan Swamy at Xavier Labour Relations Institute Chapel, Jamshedpur on Sunday, 11th of July. Though the mass was virtual, the main celebrant was Jamshedpur Diocese Administrator Bishop Telesphore Bilung, SVD. At the outset, Father Jerry Cutinha, the Provincial of the Jamshedpur Jesuits said that we have gathered to thank God for the gift of the life and contributions of Father Stan Swamy. By the death of Father Stan, Jamshedpur Jesuit province, the Chotanagpur Church, and the entire nation has lost a daring, dedicated, committed, and gentle priest. He has embodied love, mercy, equality, justice, truth and peace. He walked on these great values and gave his life for these values.

He left behind a legacy of in-depth Christian faith for us all to imitate. He has become an example for us. He looked at the reality of life in a different way, thought in a different way and inspired to work. He lived a very simple and ordinary poor life, fought for their battles rights of Adivasis, Dalits that were denied for them. He fought till his last breath for those who have been deprived of human rights and for the release of those who have been languishing in jails. He is not present with us physically. We would continue to keep the legacy of father Stan and his daring missionary zeal alive in the days to come. We would continue to fight for justice and his sacrifice is not let go in vain. We hope and trust that he is alive with us in our journey of struggle to bring justice and humane life.

Yes, the life of Father Stan is a clear indication that the present regime and the law did not bail him out, he was denied bail but God released him from all sorts of captivity. God has certainly called him to him saying, well done my faithful and honest servant, come and participate in the joy of your Heavenly kingdom. He called on the gathering to reflect on the theme: “Father Stan Swamy, the prophet of our Time” . God grants him eternal rest and gives all of us the grace to follow his inspirational life fully.

Father Ranjit Kindo, spoke of Father Stan Swamy as a dedicated and committed servant of God in justice and reconciliation. He recalled the words of Father Stan Swamy before his arrest nine month back in October 08, 2020, saying “I have never been to Bhima Koregaon for which I am being accused,” he had said. He had added that he had asked for questioning through video conference and hoped that better “human sense” would prevail. What is happening to me is not something unique happening to me alone, it is a broader process taking place all over the country. We all are aware how prominent intellectuals, lawyers, writers, poets, activists, student leaders are all put in jail because they have expressed their dissent or raised questions about the ruling powers of India.” He had said he is part of “the process” and in a way happy to be so because he was not a silent spectator and is part of the game. “I am ready to pay the price, whatever be it,” Father Swamy had said.

Yes, truly Father Stan was a prophet of our times and a shepherd of his people of Jharkhand. He took up the leadership, leading people to get their fundamental rights, to fight against the unjust system of the country. He would sit with the suffering people in any type of agitations, raise voice against those in power and powerful suppressing the voices of Adivasis of Jharkhand. Everyone is called to live and practice the role of prophet. A daring prophet always communicates the relationship between God and his own prophetic role.

Father Stan Swamy deserves the title as a prophet as he was a spokesperson of God. He listened to the inner voice of God in his life. He condemned all that was happening against the human rights and fundamental rights of people. There is no doubt that Late Father Stan Swamy lived an exemplary prophetic life. He stressed in his message that the prophetic life lived by Father Stan Swamy and his death as a martyr should not go in vain and continue to fight for the struggles of the Adivasis and Dalits of Jharkhand and spread the message of love, mercy, equality, justice, truth and peace.

Report Submitted by : Fr. Gerald Ravi DSouza, SJ

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