BCCRS Observes National Intercession Day
Bengaluru: Bangalore Catholic Charismatic Renewal services (BCCRS) observed Gandhi Jayanti as national Intercession Day at St. Francis Xavier’s Cathedral here on October 2. A large number of people of all walks of life gathered to pray for various intensions of the nation, state, leaders and the archdiocese in different languages. Leaders and representatives of various prayer groups prayed for at least 19 intentions in particular.
Fr Jacob Britto, Spiritual Director of BCCRS, who celebrated Eucharist on the occasion, spoke of the relevance of October 2. He said Gandhiji held Christ in high esteem. He was a Christian at heart. Quoting Mahatma Gandhi on positive thinking, Fr Britto who is also Parish Priest, St. Joseph’s parish, near here said “A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.” It was the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhiji’s birth anniversary is commemorated every year as Gandhi Jayanti to celebrate the ideals which he stood for, such as peace and non-violence along with his vast contribution to India’s freedom struggle. Lovingly addressed as the ‘Father of the Nation,’ Gandhiji was a man of action. The UN General Assembly announced on June 15, 2007 that it adopted a resolution which declared that October 2 would be celebrated as the International Day of Non-Violence.
Gandhiji was a man of prayer, said Fr Britto and added power of prayer needed to be manifested in everyone’s life. He urged all present to take note of the situation in which one is not being effective as a prayer warrior. This would be applicable to ministry heads, members of charismatic renewal, missionaries, prayer group leaders and many others. The Church was undergoing difficult times as all are aware of the crises in the Church. Should we leave the Church on account of this, he asked. This is the right time to leave. The answer would be to stay in the Mother Church. Fr Britto, himself a great preacher, exhorted all to fast and pray. Allow the power of the word of God and of Holy Eucharist to flow into our lives.
Fr Jacob Britto urged everyone to walk with Mary to the life of Jesus as ‘the Church needs you’. Many of you were shaken up with floods in Kerala. It was a warning for a cleansing to take place. The Father of the Nation was inspired by the Gospel. He led the freedom movement through prayer. We could bring the world to the right path as prayer never goes in vain. The protection continues throughout and ends only at the end of life (at death). The guardian angels are appointed to take care of us as they are the co-heirs in the heavenly realm. God spoke to his servant Moses when there was long way to reach the Promised Land. Lord assures us all today his protection and care as citizens of this nation. We should recognize the hidden agenda of any government as the national elections are round the corner.
Referring to the day’s gospel reading on little children, Fr Britto said children are innocent as they have no guile. It is sad, even the little ones are physically assaulted and targeted. It is a reminder that being the feast of the guardian angel, all need protection from the evils. We all can easily fall victims of vile situations whether novices, nuns or anybody else. We need guardian angel’s protection for this great nation as well. Fr Britto claimed to have had protection as a member of redemptorist Congregation.
The five commands related to prayer included – Watch and pray (escape all that is about to happen) (Lk. 21:36, Mk 13:35-37); Pray, lest you fall into temptation (Mt. 26: 41ff); Pray for workers of the vineyard (Lk. 10: 2); Pray for those in authority (1Tim 1:1ff) and pray for your enemies (Lk 6: 28ff). When we are obedient to the Lord, prayers will be answered. Impossibility happens like the collapse of Jericho wall.
Archbishop Peter Machado, during a Eucharistic adoration exhorted all to pray as one flock. Whatever happens in the archdiocese is either repercussion or achievement. He said we are one body, one community like the beads of rosary. Dr Machado called upon all to become like little children to have intimacy with the Lord. The Lord asks us all to be transparent like children, free from evils. Archbishop urged all to avoid evil habits and ask for mercy and compassion from the Lord. A child-like trust in God is to be cultivated.
Archbishop emeritus Bernard Moras speaking on the occasion urged all to feel the presence of the Lord in every ones’ life. Church faced challenges all over the country. The challenges are from external and internal as well. Church in India needs prayer warriors to tackle the evil forces. Quoting Pope Francis, Dr Moras said ‘the evil one is very powerful’. The attack of the Church now happens from inside. God’s promise cannot go unheeded. His promise is permanent. He will keep His word. ….I will proclaim your faithfulness… Dr Moras urged all to believe in the power of prayer. In the words of Pope he said prayer is key in the morning and evening. The key helps us to open our hearts to forgive and forget and to love and reconcile. It is better to pray without words, he said. Prayer changes situations and people. Miracles take place due to prayer. Ask God to grant us peace. Among other things, Dr Moras encouraged all to secure every one’s life with the keys.
Among others spoke on the occasion were Br Cherian Ramapuram (Chairman, BCCRS), Joseph Verghese (Vice Chairman), Br Anthony Sahayaraj (Member NST), Dr Jayananth, Br Katharaj (introduced the subject matter of intercession) and Ms Jerena Anthony who led the rosary prayers at the outset. Br Cherian informed the gathering over 170 nuns participated in the programme. Choir from Don Bosco Church sang on the occasion. The one-day national intercession day came to a close with the final blessing by Dr Machado.
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