Kumbakonam – It was indeed a great joy for our Parish to celebrate the Parish Feast of Our Lady of Divine Providence. The feast began on May 7th with a flag hoisting and solemn Mass celebrated by Fr. T. Deva Doss, VF. For each of the seven days of novena the Rosary was prayed followed by a Novena Mass celebrated by diocesan and other religious priests. During the homily, the priests shared their reflections on Mother Mary and the virtues that we must learn from her. Every day after Holy Mass, the parish people shared different sweets and snacks with one another. The culmination of the celebration was on the eve of May 12th. Msgr. A. Amirthasamay, Vicar General of Kumbakonam, presided over the solemn Mass and blessed the procession which followed. The car carrying the statue of Our Lady of Divine Providence was processed through the streets of our substations. On the following day, Fr. M. Phillip Santiagu, Procurator of Kumbakonam, celebrated the feast day Mass and lowered the flag ending the celebration. The guidance of the Parish Priests, Parish Council, and Pious groups made this celebration a successful and fruitful one, bringing us the intercession of Our Lady of Divine Providence and the grace of her Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
St. Paul, in 1 Thessalonians 2,11-12, exhorts “For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into His kingdom and glory.” The heart of a heavenly Father procures mercy; always brings comfort to the poor and is a great consolation to the needy. Jesus’ stance before the hungry crowds was to provide the miraculous bread because He was deeply moved by compassion. Father Guanella too knew how to put himself in the shoes of his neighbor and in fact he had a heart as big as the heart of the Father- “the poor are the favorites of Divine Providence and must be at the center of our attention.”
As we prepare to celebrate the Feast of the Mother of Divine Providence, the principal patroness of our Congregation, I would like to underline the trust and love which were profoundly rooted in the heart of our Founder. He was attracted by the image of Our Lady of Divine Providence in the church of San Carlo ai Catinari in Rome. He never missed a visit whenever he visited Rome and spread this devotion among the residents, benefactors and among the Servants and the Daughters, whom he named after her, the Daughters of St. Mary of Providence.
Her picture visibly expresses her great charity, faith and love since she is embracing Baby Jesus, the symbol of the immense love of her toward the poor and an infinite trust in God. The people at the table did not know what they needed to maintain the joy of the marriage feast. The Blessed Mother puts herself in the middle at the marriage feast of Cana and acts as a mediatrix – not as an outsider but in her position as mother. The child cannot tell the mother its need, sickness, or pain but a mother puts herself in the place of the child and with loving arms and motherly disposition cares for the child.
Let us recognize the tenderness and motherly mediation of the Mother of Divine Providence in our ministries and offer our industrious service to the poor.
Fr. Soosai Rathinam
Saigon – The purpose of this visit was to solidify plans for the land and future construction. Their visit was truly providential, they arrived on the Feast of Our Lady of Divine Providence, the day after our new land was registered, a nearly 7 month process. Fr. Rathinam and Fr. Joseph met the engineer and they were satisfied with the proposals. Mass was celebrated by Fr. Rathinam for the feast day. During his homily he shared the providential care of Mother Mary in our lives and in the life of our Founder.
It was a blessing to have Fr. Joseph, who was recently recognized for his lifetime achievements, present. Fr. Felicks presented as a role model of commitment and the missionary spirit to our students. He was given a small gift, wished well and asked for his continuous service. Fr. Rathinam and Fr. Joseph met Sr. Soi and Sr. Sang, the sellers of the recently registered land, and a fraternal dinner was shared. Upon their departure the confreres invited us to pray more and increase our trust in the providence of God for our project.