Fr Nirmal Toppo S.D.B
Kolkata: Don Bosco Nitika hosted the New Priests’ Day and Provincial Community Day as Fr Nirmol Gomes, the Provincial presided over the Holy Eucharist on his birthday on February 8, 2018. Apart from the five newly ordained, 40 priests and three coadjutors joined the celebration.
The new priests: Frs Banti Mondol, Pritam Barla, John Selvan, Christopher Raja and Charles Arulappan shared the homily, specifically reflecting on the mottos of their ordination. Fr Charles drew curious attention from congregation as he had volunteered from the Province of Trichy for Nepal mission. The choir of students from Don Bosco Technical School Liluah aptly combined devotion with music which was appreciated by the congregation with the words from the birthday celebrant as “one of the best singing I have heard.”
Towards the end of the Eucharist Fr Provincial exhorting the new priests said, “We wish them to bless people with freshness of the anointing of Holy Spirit. This way they will bring Jesus to others. That is pastoral charity of da mihi animas.”
In line with Provincial Community Day celebration the Provincial lauded the Salesian mission at work in the province and looked for pioneering effort particularly in Bangladesh and West Nepal. “Lot of activities is done. Love and communion will bring meaning and better fruit,” said the Provincial.
Fr Gomes also shared reflection on the Strenna for current year. “ The words -Sir give me water – is the thirst and hunger for Christ which will make us effective missionaries,” said the Provincial. He reflected at length on following points:
- Create family environment
- Transformative Presence: Desire to be amidst young
- Quality of our listening
- Spiritual Accompaniment – “Not so much we do but who we are for them”
- Utilization of Salesian Movement to ‘learn to let go’ of some work in the mission towards networking
The post mass ceremony too had much in felicitation of the celebrants with songs from students from DBL, a “scrutiny” in term but a biographical appreciation for Fr Provincial from Fr Joseph Pauria, Fr Vice Provincial and the ultimate plunge of the knife into cake that bore the letters of triune celebration.
The refectory was turned into a restaurant by the BASE students of Hospitality Management of Nitika. The lunch fit for the grandeur of celebration, left the final light of contentment and meaning to the countenance of everyone present.