Journey with St. Lawrence to the Wards of Moodubelle Parish-VII [Mother Teresa Ward]

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Report by Dr. Eugene D’Souza
Pictures by Anil Alva
Bellevision Media Network

7. Mother Teresa Ward

Moodubelle, 21 April 2010:
Mother Teresa:
Mother Teresa’s original name was Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu. She was born on at Skopje in Macedonia on 26th August 1910. Her family was of Albanian descent. At the age of twelve, she felt strongly the call of God. She knew she had to be a missionary to spread the love of Christ. At the age of eighteen she left her parental home in Skopje and joined the Sisters of Loreto, an Irish community of nuns with missions in India. After a few months’ training in Dublin she was sent to India, where on 24th May 1931, she took her initial vows as a nun.

From 1931 to 1948 Mother Teresa taught at St. Mary’s High School in Calcutta. However, the suffering and poverty that she witnessed outside the convent walls made such a deep impression on her that in 1948 she received permission from her superiors to leave the convent school and devote herself to working among the poorest of the poor in the slums of Calcutta. Although she had no funds, she depended on Divine Providence, and started an open-air school for slum children. Soon she was joined by voluntary helpers, and financial support also began to pour in. This made it possible for her to extend the scope of her work.

On 7th October 1950, Mother Teresa received permission from the Pope to start her own order, ‘The Missionaries of Charity’, whose primary task was to love and care for those persons nobody was prepared to look after. In 1965 the Society became an International Religious Family by a decree of Pope Paul VI.

By the 1970s, Mother Teresa  became an internationally known person  as a humanitarian and advocate for the poor and helpless. This was partly due to a documentary and book “Something Beautiful for God” by Malcolm Muggeridge.

Mother Teresa won a number of awards  for her humanitarian work. She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979 and India’s highest civilian honour, the Bharat Ratna, in 1980. Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity continued to expand, and at the time of her death it was operating 610 missions in 123 countries, including hospices and homes for people with HIV/AIDS, leprosy and tuberculosis, soup kitchens, children’s and family counselling programs, orphanages and schools.

Following her death on 5th September 1997, Mother Teresa was beatified by Pope John Paul II and given the title blessed Teresa of Calcutta. Mother Teresa Ward: The boundaries of Mother Teresa ward are Amavasye Kolav Road to the East, St. Thomas II Ward to the West, Sacred heart Ward to the North and Belle River to the South. There are 24 houses in the Ward.

Mr. Gerald Fernandes is the Gurkar of Mother Teresa Ward. He is also the member of the Parish Pastoral Council as well as the Catholic Sabha. Besides these activities, Mr. Gerald Fernandes is a well-known political figure in Moodubelle in particular and Udupi District in general. He was a member of Belle Village Panchayat. In June 2009, Gerald was elected as the Chairman of the Social Justice Committee of the Udupi Zilla Panchayat. This post of Gerald enabled him to become the In-charge President of the Udupi Zilla Panchayat from June to August 2009. Presently he is the member of the Udupi Zilla Panchayat and also a member of the State Level Committee for Prime Minister’s New 15 Point Programme for the Welfare of the Minorities. Incidentally, he is the only Christian on this committee. Gerald has been doing a lot of good work in terms of developmental work in Moodubelle and other areas. The vented dam that is under construction at Ankudru that falls within  Mother Teresa Ward which will be completed soon is the example of  Gerald’s pioneering work.

Mr.Jerald Ferandes(gurkar)

Mrs.Savitha Alva, Mrs.Jacintha Mathias

Mr. Gerald Fernandes is being assisted by two representatives-Mrs. Jacintha Mathias and Mrs. Savitha Alva.

There are two vocations in Mother Teresa Ward. Vijit Mathias, son of Victor and Jacintha Mathias has joined the Holy Cross Congregation and presently studies in First Year B.A. at St. Joseph’s College, Bangalore. Herita Mathias, daughter of Henry and Irene Mathias has joined the Bethany Sisters’ Congregation and is doing her pre-novitiate course at Bajpe.

Br.Vijit Mathias, Sr.Herita Mathias

Mother Teresa Ward is proud to have an elderly teacher, Mr. John Martis, popularly known as ‘Abby Master’ who is 80 years old. He had served for two years in the Church Aided Higher Primary School, Moodubelle and thereafter 36 years in the Pamboor School.

Mr.John Martis(Abby-Master), Mr.Casmir Menezes

The family of Mr. Casmir Menezes and late Mrs. Mercin Menezes of Mother Teresa Ward  has been quite prominent. Mr. Casmir Menezes himself had been serving in the Merchant Navy  and worked for 37 years in P & O, London Shipping  Company. His five children, Wilfred, Dolfy, Richard, Precilla and Ivan have been doing very well in life. Wilfred along with his youngest brother, Ivan has been managing the ‘Omnitec Security Systems’ in the Gulf countries since ten years with its headquarters at Dubai. They have also opened a new office at Gurgaon in Haryana for Indian region. Wilfred, the Managing Director of the Company is also the Founder President of Bellevision (UAE). Dolfy is working for the Dubal Company in Dubai, Richard, who is a computer engineer works for a government company also in Dubai, Precilla is in Bangalore with her family.

Journey of St. Lawrence in the Ward: The statue of St. Lawrence was ceremoniously handed over by Mrs. Jacintha Lobo, Gurkarn of Christ the King (Jesu Rai) Ward to Mr. Gerald Fernandes, Gurkar of Mother Teresa Ward on Sunday 11th April 2010 at 5pm and was installed at his residence. Fr. Joswey Fernandes, the Parish Priest conducted the prayer service following which light refreshment was served to the members of Christ the King as well as Mother Teresa Wards who were present at this occasion. Thereafter, Fr. Joswey conducted the blessing of some of the neighbouring houses.

On Monday, 12th April 2010, the statue of St. Lawrence was taken to the house of Mr. Casmir Menezes where prayer meeting of the Ward was arranged. Thereafter, the statue was taken to the residence of Mrs. Mary Martis. On Tuesday, 13th April, the statue was taken to the neighbouring houses where prayers were held and in the evening was rested in the house of Mr. William Lobo. On Wednesday, 14th April, the houses near the river were blessed and after taking the statue to two houses was kept in the residence of  Mr. Boniface Martis. On Thursday, 15th April, St. Lawrence visited the surrounding houses and rested in the house of Mr. Leo Mathias. On Friday, 16th April, the statue was taken to the house of Mrs. Cecilia Mathias where Mass was arranged for the elderly and sick persons of the Ward. On Saturday, 17th April, the statue was welcomed in the house of Mrs. Pauline Mathias. On Sunday, 18th April, the statue of St. Lawrence, after visiting all the houses of Mother Teresa ward once again came back to the residence of the Gurkar, Mr. Gerald Fernandes where the Ward Day (Vadyacho Dhees) was celebrated.

Ward Day Celebration: The programme of the Ward Day began at around 12.15 pm. Mrs. Jacintrha Mathias, the Representative of the Ward compeered the entire programme  Brother Mahesh D’Souza conducted the prayer service following which Mr. Gerald Fernandes welcomed the  guests, Mr. Henry Fernandes, Vice President of the Parish Council, Sr. Vineetha, Superior of the Loreto Convent, Sr. Davidica and Sr. Lucy as well as Gurkarn of Christ the King Ward, Mrs. Jacintah Lobo, Gurkarn of St. Joseph’s Ward, Mrs. Leena D’Souza and Gurkar of St. Thomas II Ward, Mr. Robert D’Souza. He also welcomed the non-Christian brothers and guests from other wards and of his own ward. Mr. Henry Fernandes, Br. Mahesh and Sr. Vineetha also spoke on this occasion. Mrs. Sushma Menezes read out the report of the activities during the visit of St. Lawrence to the Ward.

As the next day, 19th April 2010 happened to be the birthday of Mr. Gerald Fernandes, he obliged his family by cutting the cake along with the small children of the ward and sharing his joy and happiness with all the people who had gathered for the Ward day.

Following the stage programme, the children and youth of the Ward presented variety entertainment programme.  The dance programme was presented by Joshwita, Ashwita and Jennicia.  Small children-Loy, Joyce and Shaina also gave dance performance. The members of the Ward sang a song in honour of their patron-Mother Teresa.  At the end of the programme, the youth team comprising of Amith Mathias, Vijit Mathias, Joy Fernandes and Alton Martis enacted a hilarious skit that kept every one laughing. The Ward Day celebration ended with vegetarian lunch served in traditional manner-on plantain leaves.

In the evening at around 4.45pm, after prayers and hymns at the residence of Mr. Gerald Fernandes, the statue of St. Lawrence was taken in procession to St. Joseph Ward and handed over to Mrs. Leena D’Souza, Gurkarn of that Ward at 5pm.


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Comments on this Article
prince, podikambla/dubai Fri, April-23-2010, 12:57
Good report and beautiful pictures, nice to see the ward people. Thanks to Dr Eugene and Anil for such a wonderful article.Keep going....
Ronald Sabi, Moodubelle Thu, April-22-2010, 1:21
Nice report on Mother Teresa Ward and its pillar people and the wards devotion towards Patron St. Lawrence.
Victor D Souza, Moodubelle / Doha Thu, April-22-2010, 12:53
Thanks to Dr. Eugene and Mr. Anil for the fantastic report and pictures. The life of Mother Theresa is really inspiring. Nice to see in the pictures all the members of the Ward and also the entire neighborhood. The dances and skits by children and youth seem excellent. Also, good to see the picture of vented dam at Ankudru which is under construction and the work seems to have progressed quite well.
Valerian Dsouza, Dubai / Belle Wed, April-21-2010, 10:26
I would like to thank bellevision for providing such kind of updates. May St. Lawrence Bless to all
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