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REGION MADHYAPRADESH: DIOCESE OF INDORE – MISSION SUNDAY – Celebrations Report

From the Diocesan Director:

Holy Spirit Church Organized Mission Fete
Holy Spirit Church, Palda, organized a mission fete on October 16th 2016 at the church premises. All the eight SCC groups and all the associations of the Parish actively participated in the Fete. It was a day of celebration with an intention to gather maximum funds possible for the mission.

Holy Spirit Church, Palda, is a ten years old Parish of the Diocese of Indore, has 120 Catholic Families and a few religious houses situated on the outskirts of Indore municipality. 80% of the Catholics are tribal settled from various mission areas of Madhya Pradesh. Most of these families depend on the domestic household employment.

Even though financially our people are very poor, they have a lot of goodwill to support out of their meagre income. “The Parish always held on to the dictum, drops of water form an ocean”. The Parish Council along with the Parish Priest had made a target of contributing Rs One lac (one hundred thousand rupees) towards mission Sunday collection.

With a competitive spirit of earning the maximum amount, all the groups and associations put up various eatery stalls and organized different games with entry fee. The youth of the parish cleaned the shoes and the sandals outside the church, and collected Rs 5 from those who got their shoes/sandals cleaned. One SCC group collected parking charges for all the vehicles parked in the church campus.

Another attraction for Mission Sunday was the auctioning of things given by the parishioners such as pickles, gooseberry wine, electronic items, clothes etc. The things were auctioned out for a total earning of Rs 12500. The stalls selling religious articles also fetched a good amount.

During the Fete, the youth distributed tickets of Tombola for Rs 10. The Mission Fete concluded with the Tombola game. Small cash prices were given to all the winners.

Besides the Mission Fete, all the families and religious houses were given the Mission Sunday envelops for their contribution. Putting all the collections together, we achieved our target of Rs One lakh.

The people of the parish are ever grateful for all the support they have received from various agencies and people of goodwill for the construction of the Church and the grotto. This was one way of expressing our gratitude.

Following Letter is a report from a Parish:

Mission Utsav ‘16
(A brief Report from Holy Trinity, Dewas Parish)

Dewas is a small parish of Indore Diocese. Consisting predominantly of migrant population hailing from Chhattisgarh, Kerala and other parts of M.P, the parish has 138 registered families. With an exception of a few well-employed parishioners and a couple of very poor families, majority in the parish belong to the lower middle class. People are by and large strong in faith and active in the parish activities. The SCC groups, nine in all, are strong and vibrant. This is perhaps the ‘USP’ of our parish.

Mission Sunday has always been a very important event in our parish calendar. In fact, we like to call it Mission Utsav (festival) and extend the celebration for a week, Sunday to Sunday. At the very outset, people are made conscious of their role in contributing their mite towards the mission. They are reminded of the fact that the faith we possess and the pastoral comforts we enjoy today are the results of the missionary zeal and toil of somebody in the past. After having motivated the people, a series of activities are then taken up.

The following were the major activities we organized this year to collect funds:
1) Stalls put up by children & youth
2) Sale of Religious Articles
3) Auction of various articles - mostly donated
4) Mission Utsav Lottery
5) Mission Sunday Envelopes


A total of Rupees One Lac Thirty Five Thousand (Rs1,35,000/-) was collected, that is, an average of about Rs.1000/- per family. Considering the overall financial condition of the parishioners, this is an impressive contribution. We hope to keep this spirit alive in coming years too.

Fr. Thomas Mathew
Parish Priest
Holy trinity Church
Dewas


From the Regional Director (a summation):
In our celebrations of the Pontifical Mission Societies i.e. Mission Sunday and Holy Childhood Day celebrations, of late, we have been witnessing a remarkable enthusiasm among the laity. With the constant support of the clergy, we have been able to witness a growth of over 500% in the past seven years. In 2010, our Mission Sunday contributions were a little over Rs 2,00,000.00, but this year that has gone over Rs 11,00,000.00. Similar increase was also witnessed in the collections of Holy Childhood. In 2010, the collection was Rs 2,58,512.00 and last year the collection touched Rs 5,60,302.00. I must say that it was possible only through the constant awareness sermons of our parish priests and by the efforts of a charged laity. Some of the parishes have witnessed a growth over 700% over the last seven years. This growth is remarkable because our Catholic population in the diocese is a little less than 20000. To our surprise, Holy Trinity Church, Dewas, a small parish in our diocese has a per capita contribution of Rs 1000 for this year’s Mission Sunday Collections.

In our Mission Sunday celebrations and Holy Childhood Day celebrations we conduct various fund-raising campaigns which include auctions, lotteries, stalls, lunch coupons apart from the traditional envelope collections. Here too, the laity has been made aware of their responsibility to contribute towards the missions all over the world. Along with the leadership of the elderly members in the Mission Sunday Celebrations, it is the children who became active in the Holy Childhood Day collections.

In our diocese, the Holy Childhood Association is known as Balak Yeshu Sangh (BYS). It is animated under the Youth Commission of the Diocese with a full time sister in charge for the BYS activities. Over the year, they have a number of programmes designed for BYS children which include Badging Ceremonies, Monthly Meetings, BYS Day Celebration, Retreats, visits of the diocesan Animation Team to various parishes, sports and games activities, Talent Hunts, Activity workshops, Faith formation Programmes and village visits. The Association also has its quarterly magazine, Jesus Kidz which has completed its fifth year of publication. Perhaps our unit of MCA is one of its kinds in the whole of North India. This was possible due the conscious decision of the diocese over the past few years to give our children our best and now when we look back, we see rich dividends…

In this brief report I have tried to give a graphical presentation of the various collections of previous seven years. Our per-capita collection has increased over 300% over the past six years. If it was a mere Rs 27.63 per person in the year 2010, in 2015, it has gone up to Rs 84.46. We give the full credit to our laity and their pastors for this great increase.