News: Rev. Fr Richard D’Souza
Pics: Stanely Bantwal
On the occasion of 75 th birth day of Most Rev Dr Aloysius Paul D Souza bishop of Mangalore felicitation programe was organized both diocesan and Mangalore Municipality corporation level on 21 June at Mangalore.
In the morning Bishop celebrated thanksgiving holy Eucharist with archbishops, bishops and priests along with faithful including ministers and political leaders at Rosario Cathedral Church Mangalore. After the mass a short felicitation programme was organized during which bishop was honored by archbishops, bishops, Vicar general on behalf of diocese, political leaders, priests, sisters, family members, friends and faithful.
The Citizen Award was conferred on Bishop of Mangaluru Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza on the occasion of his platinum birthday celebration here at Townhall in the evening on the same day by MCC.
Former chancellor, NITTE University, Dr Shantaram Shetty in his congratulatory address said, “In felicitating our bishop, we are not felicitating an individual but recognizing the growth and vibrancy of our city of Mangaluru for the last 40 to 50 years.”
“If at all Mangaluru is an educational hub and banking citadel today, it is because of leaders like our bishop Dr Aloysius Paul D’souza. We are not just celebrating the 75th birthday of an individual, but we are celebrating the characters of humility, simplicity and leadership qualities all of which our bishop is embodiment of.”
“We are celebrating today great leadership qualities which can be a role model to younger generation. His pious life is an example to be emulated and followed. Our Bishop was born in remote village in Bantwal taluk and as a little boy he witnessed hunger, deprivation and poverty. Determined to do something for betterment of people and called by Jesus Christ, he decided to be a priest. His first priestly ministry was to serve Cordel church as assistant priest. Later, he was appointed as diocese secretary by the then bishop of Mangaluru Dr Basil D’souza. It was during this time that he grew as an able administrator. After this, he was sent to Rome.” Dr Shetty added.
“In a very short time, Fr Aloysius D’Souza finished his doctorate in canonical law and mastered in Christian Marriage Law. He was subsequently appointed as an advocate of Roman Rota the supreme tribunal of Catholic Church, thereby becoming the first Indian priest to achieve this distinction. His determination and will to achieve led him further in serving the faithful. He could have continued in Rome but his love for the district brought him back. He served as chancellor of the Mangaluru Diocese, the Vicar of the Cascia parish, director of the Diocesan Council of Catholic Women, Rector of St Joseph’s Seminary, Jeppu and he was elevated by the then Pope as the Bishop of Mangaluru in 1996. His life has been a continuous sacrifice for the service of people irrespective of caste and creed. Let’s fellow the path which our Bishop has laid for us,” Dr Shetty concluded.
Speaking on the occasion, Archbishop of Bengaluru Dr Bernard Moras said, “Today is a special day for Mangaluru diocese as Bishop Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza is celebrating his 75 birthday, 50 years of his ordination and 20 years as the Bishop. I congratulate Dr Aloysius Paul D’souza. Throughout his service, he has strived for the betterment of people irrespective of caste and creed. He is very approachable and warm hearted person. This attitude of his broke the myth and made evident that everyone can meet the bishop.”
“He has contributed lot to the dioceses and people of the district through medical college, hospitals, engineering colleges and many other educational institutions. His simplicity and down to earth nature is commendable, despite holding such high position in the dioceses. Let us all support him in his mission of serving people. Let the good work continue, may Lord give him good health.” Archbishop added.
Adhyaksha of Ramakrishna Math, Swami Jitakamanandaji said. “People who are bestowed with God’s grace will shine bright in society. Bishop has lived sacrificial life for 50 years and served mankind. Serving as bishop of this region for 20 years is commendable. Religion has two aspects that is internal spiritual growth and service oriented approach. Bishop has evolved in both aspects and shown the people this is how one should live. He has been helping the people of this region to grow in spirituality and that is why he is honourable.”
“He has served the society and developed spirituality in people for as long as 50 years. I am proud to say that children of Ramakrishna Math study in Casia School. Since the students are poor bishop had given concession in fee which is continued even today. In order that poor people can be treated at low cost he has provided all the facilities in Fr Muller Hospital. This shows his concern for society. I wish that God blesses you with good health and your social concern be a beacon to all the people in society.” Swami Jitakamanandaji added.
Kathibul of Jumma Masjid, Mangaluru, Sadaqatul Faizi said, “Bishop Dr Aloysius Paul has given justice to his name by his service and concern for society. The name Aloysius is of a saint of 16th century whereas Paul is an apostle of Christianity. Bishop has lived his life like these saints with simplicity and service oriented approach. Aloysius means famous in war, bishop is indeed famous in war for fighting against the eradication of illiteracy. This is evident by Fr Muller Hospital, St Joseph’s Engineering College and other educational institutions. His simplicity and humble nature is commendable even though he is sitting on such a high position. I pray good health to bishop and wish he continues to serve the society for many more years.”
Bishop of Mangaluru Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza acknowledged the award, thanked the organizers for conferring the award and said, “I have tried my best to serve the society through all these years. I thank everyone who has come here irrespective of religion. This shows the love and affection. I thank all the government officials, public representatives and people who stood by us when our community faced difficult times. I thank Lord for helping me when I was going through hardship. I thank all the people of Mangaluru for their love and affection.”
Mangaluru south MLA J R Lobo welcomed the gathering, chairman of Alva’s institutions Dr M Mohan Alva read the introduction while MCC mayor, Harinath presided over the function.
Bishop of Bellary, Henry D’souza, Entrepreneur Ronald Colaco, District in-charge minister B Ramanath Rai, MLAs Shakunthala Shetty, Abhayachandra Jain, MLCs Ganesh Karnik, Ivan D’souza, deputy commissioner A B Ibrahim, police commissioner, Chandra Shekar and others were present.