NORTHERN ARABIAN VICARIATE, APRIL 15, 2013: On Thursday, 11 Mar 2013, the Cherubs Team of the Family Ministry of St Therese Parish in <![if !vml]><![endif]>the North Arabian Vicariate organized its monthly program for couples married in 1992 and 1993. It was attended by thirty couples and about twenty children.
The Program began with Mass at 6.30 pm celebrated by Fr. Ben Barrameda. The liturgy was well prepared keeping the marriage theme in mind. The liturgical singing was animated by the melodious voices of the school children, ably led by Faust Nash and Annette Pereira. Through his homily, Fr. Ben encouraged illustrated the couples to view marriage as a vocation and a special calling from Christ. Through examples and his own life experiences, he stressed the importance of keeping the covenant and fulfilling our God-given roles as married couples. He ended the mass with a special blessing for the couples, sprinkling holy water on all of them. Mass was followed by a brief presentation by Cherub Leela Mathias on the various Parish activities to increase awareness and offer couples an opportunity to participate more actively in the parish community.
Next, over light snacks, an enrichment session was conducted by Cherub Amira Peter on "Defeating the parasites <![if !vml]><![endif]>in our Marriage". The session illustrated how certain aspects in our lives that bring pleasure, joy and comfort if not kept in check /eliminated could gradually invade our lives and marriages, ultimately destroying us. Spiritual and practical measures for fireproofing our marriages against these parasites were also discussed. Brief sharing gave the couples an opportunity to discuss the potential parasites in their own marriages.
This enriching session was followed by a lively fellowship of games, spot prizes and dancing. Ice-breaker games gave the couples an opportunity to get to know others married in the same year. A game of "tangled in love" had the couples effectively passing through elastic bands much to their amusement. The lively music provided by Cherub Shaun Rebello kept the couples on their feet while the MC Jessica did a stellar job of keeping them all engaged and excited.
All this while, in a separate area, a special program was underway for the children to enable the couples to spend <![if !vml]><![endif]>undisturbed, quality time together. As many of the children are in their pre-teens and early teens, a special enrichment program was also organized for them. Through an audio visual presentation, Cherub Edward D'souza highlighted the significance and measures for developing a positive "Self-esteem". This was followed by a self-assessment questionnaire and a group discussion. For the younger ones there was an animated movie and arts & crafts. Later they all came together for Bible Bingo and group jigsaw puzzling.
Towards the end of the program the children reluctantly joined their parents' party as they were having a blast themselves! After a lively game of musical arms, they performed an action song along with their parents. Vote of Thanks delivered by two participants expressed strong appreciation for the Cherubs and the Parish for organizing such an enjoyable and memorable evening. Fr. Blany Pinto, our Parish Priest also graced the occasion with his presence despite his hectic schedule of <![if !vml]><![endif]>house blessings. He specially thanked a few of the participants who are supporting the parish community through their dedicated service.
Nourished and enriched, the happy families returned back to their homes. Several couples also volunteered to be active members in the parish by registering for the various parish activities. Feedback forms completed by the couples will help the Cherubs continuously improve the program over time.
"For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future". Jeremiah 29: 11.