The Feast Day of Our Lady of Lourdes was joyfully celebrated for nine days at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Halasuru, Bangalore, India. The festivities culminated with a trilingual celebration (Tamil, Kannada, English) on February 14, 2021 at the Grotto on the church grounds. The culminating celebration included a High Mass, a Procession, the Rosary and Adoration and Benediction.
Some were uncertain whether the annual Feast Day events would occur this year at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Halasuru; or if they did occur, they thought that they may be scaled-down. However, by the blessings of God and the intercession of Our Lady of Lourdes, the events were as sacred and wonderful as ever! With the support of the Archdiocese of Bangalore Archdiocesan Communication Center (ACC), the events were broadcast live on YouTube so that more people than ever could experience the special activities. On each of nine days leading up to February 14th Feast climax, Novena Masses were held and broadcast on YouTube; and the final celebration Masses and events were also broadcast live and recorded. The Feast Day Masses were held in Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, and English – as well as a concelebrated trilingual Mass.
The trilingual Holy Mass and events were hosted by the Pastor of Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Fr. Arokya Swamy D. and the concelebrated Mass was led by Monsignor S. Jayanathan, the Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Bangalore with the blessings of the Archbishop of Bangalore, the Most Rev. Dr. Peter Machado.
As last year, the special Feast Day events were held at the lovely Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes (replica of the Grotto in Lourdes, France) in the courtyard of the church. The Grotto was draped with flowers, garlands and lights and an altar for the Eucharistic Celebration was set up at the front of the hundreds of white chairs to seat the many faithful in attendance. The Monsignor conducted the Mass and Homily providing messages of inspiration and instruction to those in the courtyard and those on-line. The Monsignor said that Our Lady led a “life of preference” in that she prioritized God rather than the things of this world that will soon pass away. He also suggested to follow Jesus’ messages which were “action-oriented” and “decision-demanding” – Jesus came not to be served, but to serve. Jesus not only felt pity for the sick, He cured them. Jesus asked His Apostles to “leave everything and follow him” – this may have seemed “mad” (crazy) to those around the Apostles; and maybe Mary’s “yes” at the Annunciation sounded mad too, but the Monsignor suggested that’s what is required sometimes when one gives preference (priority) to God’s call.
After the Mass, which included beautiful music in three languages by the choir on the church steps, the Monsignor blessed the new teakwood chariot to carry the image of Our Lady of Lourdes through the nearby streets. The statue looked lovely atop the white-clad carriers of the palanquin who paraded her image while the congregation in the courtyard recited the Rosary in Tamil, Kannada and English.
When the procession returned, an Adoration and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament in a golden monstrance was held, followed by a special multi-language prayer for healing to Our Lady of Lourdes by Monsignor S. Jayanathan.
Fr. Arokya Swamy D. rightfully thanked the many involved in the very spiritual events that occurred at his parish over the past nine days, including the new and special decorations of: the Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes, the Feast Day flag, the Grotto and the inside of the church. He also thanked Monsignor S. Jayanathan with a shawl and garland, as well as all of the concelebrant priests. Before Fr. Arokya Swamy D lowered the flag to conclude the 2021 events, he was also thanked with a shawl, garland and turban for the successful celebration.
It was a beautiful nine days of events that I was able to participate in from the other side of the world, thanks to the YouTube broadcasts by the Archdiocese of Bangalore Archdiocesan Communication Center (ACC). Please join in supporting this noble cause by contributing, as you can, by following the instructions at https://bangalorearchdiocesenews.org/archdiocese_donation/donation.php
You can see a full recording the all of the events of the 2021 Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-fhvaqTVc9f-8cWhTAapEw
Read about the 2020 Feast Day Celebration at https://churchwonders.com/2021/02/09/feast-day-of-our-lady-of-lourdes-in-india/
All Websites/Links referenced were accessed on or about 2-14-2021 (see considerations and information about Links at https://churchwonders.com/about/)