BIS #6984 Cherishing Generations at the Wadala Parishes

By Fr Arul Nicholas and Mrs Lydia Rodrigues for BISMumbai

On 23 July 2023, the parish of Our Lady of Dolours celebrated Parents’ and Grandparents’ Day. The event was organised in a grand manner, very meaningfully and colourfully, by the children of the parish. This celebration was in view of the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne. 

All the parishioners and exclusively the parents and grandparents of the catechism children were invited to the day’s celebration. The event that marked the celebration was the Holy Eucharist and the cultural programme which followed it. The Holy Eucharist was animated meaningfully by the children. Fr James Nigrel, the Rector and Parish Priest, presided over the Holy Eucharist. He highlighted the importance of children being raised in fear of God and in Christian faith and appreciated the parents for doing so. There was a special prayer and blessing for the parents and grandparents after Holy Communion. 

Fr Nicholas Arul was the Chief Guest, while Mr Savio and Mrs Ave Lobo were the Guest of Honour at the cultural programme. Both the catechism teachers and the children spared no effort to make the day a memorable one for their parents and grandparents in expressing their sincere love. Mrs Lobo appreciated the children for their beautiful gesture of love and encouraged the children to be sensitive to the love of their parents and also to take care of their grandparents. The celebration was concluded with games organised for the parents.

At St Dominic Savio Church (Wadala East), Parents’ and Grandparents’ Day was celebrated on 22 and 23 July for the English and Tamil communities, respectively. The theme for the occasion was ‘Image of God's Love’. The celebration began with a touching Eucharist on Saturday evening and on Sunday evening for the two communities.

During the Eucharist, a particularly emotional moment occurred when Fr Kenneth Pereira, the Parish Priest, invited all the children and youngsters to come forward and bless their parents and grandparents while reciting a prayer of blessing. Following this, Fr Pereira encouraged the children to give their parents and grandparents a heartfelt hug. He himself embraced his mother, who was present, setting a beautiful precedent for the congregation's display of love and respect towards their elders.

After both Masses, a lively celebration was organised by the vibrant parish youth group of both communities in the parish hall. The children and youth of the parish gave captivating performances, showcasing their talents in singing, dancing, and presenting a skit. These delightful presentations filled the evening with joy and love, making the grandparents and parents feel young at heart. To add to the festive atmosphere, the parish youth group arranged various games for everyone to participate in.

Placed right at the beginning of the year, Parents’ and Grandparents’ Day celebrations magnify the intimate relationship between parents and children and honour parents for their sacrificing love.