COMMUNITY CELEBRATION OF WEDDINGS
AT ROSARIO CATHEDRAL MANGALORE ON 16TH MAY 1976, AT 10.00am

Twenty four couples hailing from 29 parishes of the Mangalore Diocese in South Kanara District, were administered the marriage oaths by Most Rev. Dr. Basil S. D’Souza, Bishop of Mangalore, at the Rosario Cathedral, on Sunday 16th May 1976, at 10.00am during the Nuptial Mass.

This “community Celebration of Weddings” is a joint venture of the Rosario Cathedral Conference of St. Vincent De Paul Society (a world wide service organization of Catholic laymen) & the Rosario Cathedral Parish, on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee of the inauguration of the St Vincent De Paul Society at Rosario Cathedral.

The two fold purpose of the Community Celebration of Weddings is spelt out as follows:

  1. Keeping in mind the teachings of Jesus Christ with regard to the fatherhood of God & the brotherhood of man, the Christian Community is called upon to be a living witness to this truth in the celebration of their weddings. As member of one family- the rich & the poor; the educated & the uneducated – join hands sharing the good things in life.
  2. Efforts are being made to update some of the marriage customs that lead to pomp &unnecessary expenses leaving in many a couple, a sense of insecurity & desperation due to borrowing.

The proposal to organize the “Community Celebration of Weddings” was made by Rev. Fr Denis Castelino Assistant Parish Priest of Rosario Cathedral, to the St. Vincent De Paul Society, central council on 07th December 1975 on the occasion of the General Body Meeting of the Particular Council of Mangalore. After lively discussions on this subject it was decided that a matter like this required deeper consideration and that it was necessary to awaken a consciousness among our people. The individual conferences of the S.V.P. were requested to consider the matter and to make concrete proposals at the next General Body Meeting.

The Cathedral Conference of S.V.P after due deliberations decided to take up this project of ‘Community Celebration of Weddings’ in the month of May 1976 as a suitable memorial benefiting our Community. This initiative taken by the Cathedral Conference Found great enthusiasm among Rosario Cathedral Parishioners, & the date for the Celebration was fix to May 16th 1976 at 10.00 am after consulting the Bishop of Mangalore.

On 23.03.1976 the Parish Priest of Rosario Cathedral, who is also the Dean of the Episcopal City, called a meeting of the City Parish Priests, Lay representatives from the City Parishes, Catholic M. L. A’s, M. L. C’s, Municipal Councilors, Secretaries of Senate and Pastoral Council & Catholic Press Reporters at the Cathedral Conference Hall, under the President ship of the Bishop of Mangalore, in order to consider the proposal of the ‘Community Celebration of Weddings’ at the Cathedral on Sunday, 16th May 1976, at 10.00am.

There was a frank discussion Moderated by Rev. Fr Stanley Pereira, Director of Canara Communication Centre, and Mangalore, who summed up the conclusions of the assembly thus:

  1. Community Celebration of Weddings are necessary in the Diocese of Mangalore, though the project should be begun experimentally, * only generalized after deeper study.
  2. The cultural background & customs connected with our celebrations should be carefully evaluated.
  3. It would be advisable to have ‘Community Celebration of Weddings’ on Varado & Parish levels once or twice a year.

The Bishop then stressed the Liturgical aspect & meaning of Community Celebration of Weddings which has been already seen in the communitarian celebration of other Sacraments like Eucharist, Confirmation, Ordination & Penance. He said that if we get together all categories of people – rich & poor, the educated & the uneducated - and celebrate our Liturgical & social functions in a communitarian way we will be able to give religious significance to them & derive lot of Spiritual fruit.

On Sunday, 02nd May 1976, there was an orientation session for the 25 couples participating in the ‘Community Celebration of Weddings’, at the Cathedral Conference Hall at 9.30am, in order to explain the aim & objectives of this celebration. All 25 couples who were present for this session, (in a spirit of sharing) volunteered to contribute their mite for the Community Celebration of Weddings on their wedding day during the Nuptial mass. The Roshani Nilaya ‘Family Service Agency’ interviewed the couples and assured their continuous support to them in their marital life. Each couple was then given the choice to specify the wedding gift they would require, for their wedded life amounting to Rs. 250/-. This gift will be handed over to the couple by the Parish Priest of the Bridegroom before their wedding day. On the wedding day there will be a reception to the Bridal couple immediately after the Church ceremony ending with a dinner. Each couple is allowed to invite 50 persons for the dinner.

An Ad hoe committee has been formed to organize the Community Celebration of Weddings on the 16th May 1976. The committee comprises of the following:

1. Mr. R. J. Rosario, President S.V.P Mangalore Central Council
2. Mr. Noel Albuquerque, S.V.P Cathedral Conference
3. Mr. C. J. Francis, Secretary Cathedral parish Council
4. Mrs. Bessie Pinto, S.V.P Cathedral Conference
5. Fr Fred V. Pereira, Parish Priest, Cathedral
6. Fr Denis Castelino, Asst. Parish Priest, Cathedral
7. Fr Joseph Mathias, Headmaster, Rosario High School.

There is an evaluation committee under the leadership of Miss Olinda Pereira, Principal, School of Social Work, Roshani Nilaya, to evaluate the experiment of Community Celebration of Weddings at the Cathedral. The evaluation report submitted by this committee will be presented to the Diocesan Authorities for further action on the Diocesan Level. The Mangalore Catholic Community has welcomed the idea of Community Celebration of Weddings enthusiastically. Numerous letters have been received by the Bishop’s of various Dioceses, Priests, Religious Brothers & Sisters, Lay leaders of the Community and from general public appreciating this venture. They have also sent their generous donations & assured their prayers for the success of this Project.

(Rev. Fred. V. Pereira)
Parish Priest
Rosario Cathedral Church
Mangalore 575 001

Dated: 16th May 1976


COMMUNITY CELEBRATION OF WEDDINGS

SYNOPSIS: The proposal to organize the Community Celebration of Weddings under the auspices of the Rosario Cathedral conference of St. Vincent De Paul Society (a world-wide service organization of Catholic laymen) was made by the then Asst. Parish Priest, Rev. Fr Denis Castelino, on 07th December 1975. On 23.03.1976, the then Parish Priest of Rosario Cathedral, Fr Pereira called a meeting of the city Parish Priests, Priests (Diocesan & religious), Lay representatives of City Parishes, Catholic MLA’s , MLCs, Municipal Councilors, Presidents of Various Catholic Associations and Organizations, Secretaries of Senate and Pas6toral Council and Catholic Press Reporters under the president ship of the Bishop of Mangalore, Rev. Dr. Basil S. D’Souza, in order to consider the proposal of the ‘Community Celebration of Weddings’ at the Cathedral, Mangalore. It was during this meeting that the proposal of conducting the ‘Community Celebration of Weddings’ on an experimental basis was considered.

PURPOSE: two-fold

  1. Keeping in mind the teachings of Christ with regard to the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of man, the Christian Community is called upon to be a living witness to this truth in the celebration of their marriages. As members of one family – the rich and poor the educated and the uneducated join hands sharing the good things in life.
  2. An effort is being made to update some of the marriage customs that lead to pomp and unnecessary expenses, lavish spending leaving in many a couple a senses of insecurity, and desperation due to borrowing.

JURISDICTION: All the eligible men and women hailing from the Mangalore Diocese – the undivided Dakshina Kannada Dist – the state of Karnataka included.

FIRST COMMUNITY CELEBRATION OF WEDDINGS: The first Community Celebration of Weddings was held on 16th May, 1976. Twenty-five couples hailing from the Mangalore Diocese in the South Kanara District were administered the oath of marriage by the Bishop of Mangalore. Rt. Rev. Dr Basil S. D’Souza, at the Holy Rosary Cathedral, Mangalore.

PRESENT MANAGEMENT: As has been stated above, the Community Celebration of Weddings is organized by the Cathedral Conference of St Vincent de Paul Society, viz. its President, office-bearers and members. The Parish Priest of Rosario Cathedral being its Spiritual Director.

FUNDS: From generous donations of various SVP Conferences in the Mangalore Diocese and from the Catholic Community.

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