July 26, 2018: The Bondel St. Lawrence Shrine Maha-fest, starting on July 31, 2018 and culminating on August 10 is set to record new highs in terms of rituals and participation of devotees. To start with two high church dignitaries, retiring Bishop Aloysius Paul D’Souza of Mangalore Diocese and newly-appointed bishop, Peter Paul Saldanha, will officiate at the forenoon and evening Masses, respectively. Thousands of devotees St. Lawrence are expected to congregate at the Bondel shrine which is becoming a new magnet to the saint whose weekly novenas are held on the forenoon every Tuesday, ending with lunch for the devotees.
On all the days of devotion this year, starting from August 1 and ending with the Mah-fest on August 10, devotees will be offered lunch and blessed bread in the evening, with festive lunch after the Mah-fest Mass.
The festive Mass on August 10 will start at 10.30 AM and will be led by Bishop Aloysius Paul D’Souza, followed by grand festive lunch for devotees and the evening festive Mass will be led by Bishop-designate Peter Paul Saldanha at 6.00 PM.
The concluding Maha-fest day will be preceded by various programs and devotions for ten days starting from July 31 with a horekanike procession with offerings starting at 5 PM Maryhill Carmel Central School and wending its way to the shrine complex at Bondel. On August 1 there would be flag-hoisting at 10.30 AM and from thereon from 1to 10, at 11 AM and at 6 PM there would be novenas (nine-day devotions).The devotees would be serves lunch and offered blessed bread after the evening service on each day of novena.
Details about the maha-fest and devotions preceding it were disclosed by Parish Priest, Fr. Andrew Leo D’Souza and Mr. Stany Alvares, Chief of Information Dissemination, at a media meet at the shrine premises on July 26, 2018. Others present were Fr. Cliford Pinto and Fr Leo Veigas, assistant parish priests, Mr Hembert Pinto, Vice President, Parish Pastoral Council, Mr Rudy Pinto, head, Maha-fest Committee, Mr. Francis Veigas, Secretary, Parish Pastoral Council.
The organisers have extended a warm welcome to devotees of St Lawrence to participate on the 11-day program and reach for the blessings and favours of the saint