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John 10:27-30 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.

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    Rev. Fr. Perera Sampath Prasanga          

Bishop's Letter

BISHOP’S MONTHLY LETTER – August 2016

My dear Rev. Fathers, Sisters and Brothers

  • Month of August brings to mind the Annual Feast of St. Anne at Talawila which will be held on Sunday 07th. Preparations have been made as usual to celebrate the feast meaningfully and to welcome the pilgrims. The theme of this year’s feast is “Joy of the family is the Joy of the Church“, which has been selected to go along with the Jubilee Year of Mercy.
  • I have informed you already about the Cause regarding Hon. Helena of Gonawila. A diocesan committee has been appointed to promote the cause in which Rev. Fr. Peter Charles is the Convener. I have appointed Fr. Desiderius Medagoda as the Diocesan Postulator. The committee had its first meeting last month.
  • Our prayerful best wishes are offered to Rev. Fathers Francis Pulle, Upali Churchil, Ashok Priyantha, Luke Nelson, Linton Nihal and Jude Shyaman who celebrated the 25th Anniversary of Priestly Ordination. The new Church at Maikkulama in Chilaw Parish was blessed and inaugurated to coincide with this occasion. We wish them long years of fruitful ministry in the Lord’s vineyard. Ad Multos Annos!
  • The new batch of Eucharistic Ministers was installed last month. They underwent a period of training under the guidance of Rev. Fr. Jude Nicholas, the diocesan director for Liturgy. The former batch of Eucharistic Ministers was duly thanked for their services.
  • The Golden Jubilee at Rambepitiya in Kanjukkuliya Parish was held last month. A meaningful spiritual preparation has preceded the festive celebration. Our thanks to F. Jude Dias for making it a memorable event for the community in Rambepitiya.
  • The Annual Feast of St. Anthony in Pallekandal was celebrated with a gathering of a large number of devotees. I appreciate the efforts taken by Fr. Prabhath Sanjaya to celebrate this event meaningfully. I also thank all the other Rev. Fathers and Rev. Sisters who co-operated and assisted in diverse ways.
  •  A seminar for pre-school teachers was held at the diocesan Sedec, Madampe. All the teachers belonging to the parish based pre-schools were present at the seminar which was organized by Fr. Wyman Croos, the Director of the diocesan Sedec, Janasaviya. The need was felt to have such a gathering at least once a year.
  • The Housing Scheme in Nattchikalliya was inaugurated on the 30 July. This project which was done by way of local contributions is one of the events of the diocesan programme of the Year of Mercy. The village is named “Sudupiyagama” to remember the visit of the Holy Father Pope Francis to Sri Lanka in January 2015. Incidentally the gift given by the Holy Father was also directed to this Housing Fund. Rev. Frs. Isanka Mihiran and Ranil Indika deserve a “big thanks” for effectively co-ordinating the project with the co-operation of Rev. Fr. Nelson Samantha the Parish Priest of Talawila. I also thank all the other Fathers, Sisters and Brothers who helped in diverse ways. I appreciate the presence of the Apostolic Nuncio Most Rev. Dr. Pierre Nguyen Van Tot at the Opening Ceremony. I am reminded of a statement made by Pope Francis recently, “The Church becomes truly Church when the poor feel that they are part of it.”.
  • The Annual Retreat I will be held from 22 to 26 of this month. The programme has been sent to the participants. Your prayers are requested for the success of the Retreat.
  • The new session of the Diocesan Pastoral Council will begin on the 20 of this month. A few parishes are yet to send the names of their- representatives. I request you to send the names with a sense of urgency.
  • The Presbyteral meeting will be held on the 29 . The programme will be sent to you duly. Kindly keep thedate free as it has been informed already.

Asking the Lord to Bless you.
Yours devotedly in Christ,
+D. Valence Mendis,
Bishop of Chilaw

 

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