Journey with St. Lawrence to the Wards of Moodubelle Parish-XIV (St. Roque II Ward)

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


Moodubelle, 09 June 2010:
About the Ward:
St. Roque II Ward is quite vast and is bound by Belle-Karkala Road on its northern side, Bananjale on its southern side, Kukki Katte towards the east and St. Roque I Ward is the western boundary of the ward. The important regions included in St. Roque II Ward are: Edmeru, Kodi, Mel-Bananjale, Kela-Bananjale, Dhadd and Kukkikatte. There are 29 families that make up this important ward.

The Gurkar of St. Roque II Ward is Mr. Noel Hilary Mathais. He is the ex-officio member of the Parish Pastoral Council and the Catholic Sabha and also the member of the Parish Finance Committee. Before settling down in Edmeru, Noel had served in the Merchant Shipping as a seaman.

Noel Mathais (Gurkar)

Nancy D’souza & Anitha D’souza (Representatives)

In conducting various activities of St. Roque II Ward, the responsibilities of the Gurkar are being shared by two representatives: Mrs. Nancy D’Souza and Mrs. Anita D’Souza. Mrs. Nancy D’Souza was the President of the Third Order of St. Francis of Assisi in the past for three years. Presently, she continues as the member of the Third Order.

So far there is only one vocation in St. Roque II Ward-Sr. Sylvia Aranha, who had joined the Dominican Congregation. She is the daughter of Albert and Rosy Aranha and is presently Mother Superior of Dominican Convent at Ahmadabad.

Sr. Silvia Aranha

St. Roque II Ward has a number of talented and successful members in various fields. Many of th e members work in Gulf and other countries as well as in different cities of India. A large number of young boys and girls have been taking higher education in different fields such as nursing, engineering and other subjects.

Mrs. Meera Lobo has been a well-known person, not only in St. Roque II Ward but in the entire Moodubelle Parish. She has wonderfully developed leadership qualities from a very young age. As the student of SSLC in St. Joseph’s High School in Pejar, Meera was the School Pupil Leader. After her marriage to Francis Lobo of Moodubelle, she continued her interest in social activities and was the President of Women’ Organisation (Stree Sanghatan) for three years, President of the Lion’s Club of Moodubelle for two years and Vice President of Parents-Teachers Association of St. Lawrence PU College for two years and is presently it’s President since two years. Mrs. Meera Lob is also the Secretary of the Parish Pastoral Council. Since six years she is working as an agent for the LIC. Mrs. Meera Lobo’s husband, Mr. Francis Lobo is a good singer and was the Gurkar of St.Roque II ward for three years. They have three sons-Avith, Arwin and Alwyn. Avith Lobo is working in Doha and is the Cultural Secretary of Bellevision-Doha, Arwin is doing Second Year Engineering in St. Joseph’s Engineering College, Mangalore and Alwyn is presently in Second Year PUC in St. Lawrence PU College.

Meera Lobo

Another prominent family of St. Roque II Ward is that of Mrs. Helen and Felix D’Souza. While Felix is working in Dubai in Travel and Tours Company, Mrs. Helen D’Souza has been quite active in women’s movement in Moodubelle. Presently, she is the President of the Jyothi Mahila Mandal, the Aishwarya Swasahaya Sangh (Self-help Group) and also that of the Mahila Congress Okkoota. Under the leadership of Mrs. Helen D’Souza, the Aishwarya Swasahaya Sangh was adjudged as the best self-help group in the Udupi Taluka last year. She is also the Vice President of the Third Order of St. Francis of Assisi. For some years Mrs. Helen D’Souza was the Director of the C.A. bank in Moodubelle for four and half years.

Helen D’Souza and Daughters

Among the three daughters of Felix and Helen, Fiona has completed her BBM course and will pursue further higher education. She is quite talented and has been good in singing, dancing and sports, especially volleyball. Fiona was NCC (Naval Wing) cadet and had secured awards as the Best Cadet and Best Shooter. She was the Secretary of the Central Council of Young Student Movement (YSM). Second daughter, Flona is presently in the Second Year B.Com and also good in singing, dancing and volleyball. Third daughter, Felina is studying in the 10th standard. She secured first rank in the St. Lawrence English Medium School in an examination conducted by the Konkani Sahitya Academy.

Seema D’Souza & Avith Lobo

Miss Seema D’Souza is another youngster who has made a mark among the members of St. Roque II Ward. Seema is extremely talented in many ways. She has been a choir member in the church. In 2007, she secured the first position in the inter-collegiate folk-singing competition, first position in Pratibha Karanji Music Competition in 2008 and second position in 2009 and first position in the Golden Jubilee inter-college competition. Seema was also adjudged as the Best NSS worker in the NSS Camp that was held in Ajekar in 2009.

Visit of St. Lawrence to the Ward: St. Lawrence had a wonderful reception in St. Roque II Ward on Sunday, 30th May 2010 at 5pm after being transferred by  Mr. Ambrose Mathais, the Gurkar of St. Roque I Ward into the hands of  Mr. Noel Hilary Mathais who had arrived at the Bangle School, Mattar with a large number of his ward members. Four youths of the ward, dressed in a similar way carried the statue of St. Lawrence fixed in a cradle to the accompaniment of hymns and later music. The route of nearly three kilometres from the starting point till the house of the Gurkar, Noel Mathais took an hour, halting briefly at Nalkubeedi where the procesionists were served with sweets and cold drink sponsored by Mr. Shivarama Salian, a businessman from Nalkubeedi and was newly elected as the member of the Belle Grama Panchayat. Fireworks were also on display at Nalkubeedi.  From Nalkubeedi, four middle aged members of the ward, dressed in white lungi and white shirts carried the statue of St. Lawrence till the residence of the Gurkar.

On reaching the residence of Mr. Noel Mathais, the statue was kept on a pedestal and Fr. Joswey Fernandes who had joined the procession, recited the Centenary Prayer and blessed the house. Members of both the wards dispersed following snacks and cold drink.

On Monday, 31st May 2010, in the afternoon, most of the members of the ward met in the house of the Gurkar and the statue of St. Lawrence was taken to the residences of Stany D’Souza, Edward D’Souza, William D’Souza, Stephen Mendonca, Mary Machado and Cyril D’Souza. Finally, the statue was rested for the night at the house of Salvador D’Souza.

On Tuesday, 1st June, Mass for the elderly and sick persons of the ward was offered by Fr. Joswey Fernandes at 5pm. After the Mass, the statue of St. Lawrence was taken to the residence of Magdalene D’Souza. On Wednesday, 2nd June, from 2.30pm, St. Lawrence paid visit to the homes of Catherine Lobo, Edward D’Souza, Balthazar D’Souza, Dolphy Castelino, Robert Nazareth and at the end of the day to Meera Lobo’s home where St. Lawrence took rest for the night.

On Thursday, 3rd June 2010, from 4.30 pm the statue was taken from Meera Lobo’s house to Vincent D’Souza and Jerome Castelino. On Friday, 4th June, from 2.30 pm, St. Lawrence visited the residences of John Lobo, Ivan Castelino, Eliza Rego, Marceline Fernandes, Lilly D’Souza, Jacintha Mendonca and Albert Aranha. On Saturday, 5th June, from 5.30 pm, St. Lawrence was welcomed in the homes of Henry D’Almeida, Violet D’Mello and Felix D’Souza.

During the period of one week, St. Lawrence paid a visit practically to each and every home in St. Roque II Ward. At every house novena and centenary prayers, Rosary and Divine Mercy Rosary were recited, Bible readings were taken up  and hymns were sung.

Ward Feast: On Sunday, 6th June, the statue of St. Lawrence was brought from the house of Felix D’Souza to the house of Albert Christine Mathais and thereafter to the residence of Antony Martis at 11.15 am, where the Ward Feast was celebrated at 12 noon.

The Ward Feast and get-together was attended by a large number of members of St. Roque II Ward. Fr. Joswey Fernandes, Fr. Paul Sequeira, Sr. Hilda, Sr. Irene, Mr. Henry Fernandes, Vice President of the Parish Council, Mr. Ambrose Mathais, Gurkar of St. Roque I Ward and Mrs. Jacintha Aranha, Gurkarn of St. Anne II Ward were the guests of honour. The programme was efficiently conducted by Mrs. Meera Lobo.

Magdaline Britto

In the beginning, Gurkar Noel Mathais welcomed the guests and the ward members. Fr. Joswey conducted a brief prayer service. Thereafter, the elder members of the ward were felicitated. The eldest member of the ward, Magdalene Britto will be completing 100 years on 24th February 2011. Magdalene Britto was married in 1930 and has eight children, five daughters and three sons. She has 24 grandchildren, 27 great grandchildren and one great great grandchild. The age of her eldest daughter is 78 years. Due to her advanced age she was unable to attend the programme. Catherine Lobo (84) was the second eldest person felicitated by Fr. Joswey. As her birthday is few days away on 13th June, Catherine Lobo had the honour of cutting her birthday cake along with her family in front of the entire gathering of the ward.

There were few games for the children and elders. For men there was a completion of tying jasmine flowers in three minutes. Women above the age of 50 were asked to tie knots on long thick threads and women below the age of 50 were given papers out of which they were required to prepare some kind of art. Winners were given prizes by Fr. Joswey.

One of the most appreciated and unique part of the programme was the introduction of each and every family that is residing in the ward. Mrs. Meera Lobo, who along with Mrs. Helen D’Souza had collected the information of different families of the ward within a short period, placed before the guests and the gathering the brief family history of the members.

Mr. Henry Fernandes, Fr. Paul Sequeira and Fr. Joswey Fernandes addressed the gathering and greatly appreciated the achievements of St. Roque II Ward and congratulated the Gurkar, the representatives and other ward members for their cooperation and unity.

To entertain the gathering, Fiona D’Souza and Francis Lobo sang a duet Konkani song and solo songs. At the end of the programme, Mrs. Helen D’Souza proposed the vote of thanks. The ward feast ended with vegetarian lunch.

In the evening at around 4 pm, the ward members gathered in large numbers at the residence of Mr. Antony Martis and after the prayers and hymns, the statue of St. Lawrence was taken in procession to the boundary of St. Anne II Ward, where the members of the latter ward were eagerly waiting for the arrival  of St. Lawrence. At 5pm, in the presence of Fr. Joswey Fernandes, the statue of St. Lawrence was transferred by Mr. Noel Mathias, the Gurkar of St. Roque II Ward to Mrs. Jacintha Aranha, Gurkarn of St. Anne II Ward.


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Comments on this Article
Philip Mudartha, Qatar Sat, June-19-2010, 5:31
Victor has summed up my emotions to which I would like to add: the smiling faces, the fruit laden coconut trees, the freshly painted houses, the bright colored clothes tell the story of a community that has awakened, led rightly. Fr. Jos, you give true meaning to your title govli baap
Juliet Asha Saldanha, Moodubelle/USA Wed, June-9-2010, 10:50
The coverqge was excellent.Thanks to Dr. Eugene and Anil, you guys did a awesome job, keep up your good work. Hi. Baa, I wish you a happy b day, and many more to come.
Avith Lobo, Moodubelle-Doha Wed, June-9-2010, 9:21
Dr.Eugene and Mr.Anil,Thanks for the coverage.
Victor DSouza, Moodubelle / Doha Wed, June-9-2010, 6:41
Moving of the statue of St. Lawrence to all the wards is really building a sense of community among the parishioners. This will be the best gift to the Parish by the Parish Priest and the Parish leaders on the occasion of the Centenary year. These events create the interaction between the parishioners and encourage them to become involved. When the statue moves to all the wards and comes back to the Church, it will be a renovated Parish community. Dr. Eugene and Mr. Anil along with Team Bellevision has been following this entire event without missing a single ward, giving all the details of the Patron Saint and the ward, as well as providing recognition for those who are active in the ward. This report also gives the opportunity to all the parishioners who are away, to be a part of this interaction.
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