by Wilfred Vaz
KUWAIT, MAR 21, 2017: "Give me an army saying the Rosary and I will conquer the world," said Pope Pius IX. The parishioners of St. Therese of the child Jesus set to pray the rosary as a response to the invitation of the Bishop of the North Arabian Vicariate, Camillo Ballin.
In the Apostolic Vicariate of Northern Arabia (AVONA), the year 2017 has been dedicated the Mother Mary, being the centenary of her apparition at Fatima.
Bishop Ballin suggested that the Holy Rosary be recited together by all the families residing in a building, at each respective home, with the statue or picture of Our Lady of Fatima. Lionel Pereira, a parish council member said, "In the past, consecration of nations and parishes to Mary, brought special graces on them. I am certain that the consecration of our vicariate to Our Lady will bring us closer to her in devotion and bring peace and stability to the region of Gulf."
To inaugurate the event of Our Lady of Fatima visiting every home in the parish of the Church of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, a recitation of the Luminous mysteries of the Holy Rosary was organised by the Small Christian Communities (SCC) group on March 18.
The parish council members and also the coordinators of the groups who do not have representation in the parish council participated in the Rosary along with the entire parish. The parish priest gave a brief introduction to the congregation about the programme. Father Francisco Pereira conceptualised and animated the recitation of the Rosary.
The prayer and intentions for each respective mystery were said by Elizabeth D'Souza. The first part of the Our Father and the Hail Mary were recited in five different languages, while the latter part of the Our Father and the Holy Mary were recited in english by the congregation. The different languages represented were Filipino, Malayalam, Konkani, Singhala and Tamil. Annette Pereira, the secretary of the parish pastoral council said, "When we gathered and prayed the rosary, each leading in their own language and all responding in English, I felt privileged, blessed and anointed to be part of the prayerful gathering."
As the recitation of each mystery began, a designated parish council member placed a lighted candle at the statue of Our Lady of Fatima, symbolising the dedication of the parish and the respective groups to Mother Mary.
At the conclusion of the recitation of the five Luminous mysteries, framed pictures of Our Lady of Fatima were given by Father Blany Pinto and Father Ben Barrameda to Anand Sequeira, coordinator – SCC group, to the parish council members and to the other representatives. It was a gesture to commence the recitation of the Holy Rosary in the members' respective groups and buildings.
Christopher Rosario, a council member said, "My wife and I attended the rosary. Both of us felt serene, peaceful and reassured of the presence of Mother Mary amongst us." The event concluded with all the parish council members and representatives, along with the priests, going in procession from the church to the courtyard.