Journey with St. Lawrence to the Wards of Moodubelle Parish – XV (St. Anne II Ward)

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


Moodubelle, 16 June 2010:
St. Anne:
According to Christian and Islamic traditions, Saint Anne, also known as Ann or Anna derived from the Hebrew name ‘Hannah’‎, meaning ‘favour’ or ‘grace’ was the mother of the Virgin Mary and grandmother of Jesus C hrist. ‘Anne’ is the Greek rendering of her Hebrew name Hannah. Mary’s mother is not named in the Canonical Gospels or the Quran. Although we do not find reference to St. Anne in the Bible, she is being mentioned in the non-biblical gospel also known as the ‘apocryphal Gospel of James’.

According to the ‘apocryphal Gospel of James’, St. Anne was born in Bethlehem and married Joachim from Nazareth in Galilee. Joachim was a shepherd who had the task of supplying the temple of Jerusalem with sheep for sacrifices. After twenty years of marriage Anne and Joachim had no children.

Once, when Joachim overheard ridicule of other people because they had no children, he is said to have gone into the desert to plead with God to give them a child. After a time of fasting an angel appeared to assure Joachim that he and Anne would be given a child whom they should name Mary and dedicate to God.

In the meantime, Anne wondered where her husband had gone and in her despair at having been barren she prayed while she watched newborn birds in their nests in her garden. She cried out, "Why was I born, Lord?" That is when an angel appeared to tell her she would soon give birth to a daughter whom she should name Mary. The story continues with Ann and Joachim’s joyous reunion at the golden gate of Jerusalem.

After the birth of their daughter Mary, Anne and Joachim dedicated her to God at the temple of Jerusalem and she spent much of her childhood there. When Mary was fourteen they betrothed her to Joseph of Nazareth and so Mary’s story continues with the birth of her son, Jesus, and his life on earth.

The devotion of St. Anne was known in the East in the fifth century. In the Eastern Orthodox tradition, St. Anne is ascribed the title of ‘Forbear of God’, and both the Birth of Mary and the Dedication of Mary to the Temple are celebrated as two of the Twelve Great Feasts.

Devotion of St. Anne in the Western Church was spread during the thirteen century. A shrine at Douai, in northern France, was one of the early centres of the devotion to St. Anne. In 1382 her feast was extended to the whole Western Church, and she became very popular, especially in France.

For those who wonder what we can learn from people we know nothing about and how we can honour them, we must focus on why they are honoured by the church. Whatever their names or the facts of their lives, the truth is that it was the parents of Mary, St. Anne and St. Joachim who nurtured Mary, taught her, brought her up to be a worthy Mother of God. It was their teaching that led her to respond to God’s request with faith, "Let it be done to me as you will." It was their example of parenting that Mary must have followed as she brought up her own son, Jesus. It was their faith that laid the foundation of courage and strength that allowed her to stand by the cross as her son was crucified and still believe. Such parents can be examples and models for all parents.

St. Anne is the patron saint of mothers and women in labour, cabinet-makers, and miners. The feast of St. Anne and St. Joachim is celebrated on 26 July every year.

About the Ward: St. Anne II Ward is bound by Moodubelle-Karkala Road in the south, Fatima Ward in the north, St. Anne I Ward in the west and the boundary of Kanajar Parish in the east. The regions included in the ward are: Edmeru, Melmane Edmeru and Edmeru Hitthalu. The St Anne II ward comprises of 29 Christian houses.

Jecintha Aranha (Gurkarn)

Mrs. Jacintha Aranha has been the Gurkarn of St. Anne II Ward since the last seven years. Besides being an ex-officio member of the Parish Council and the Catholic Sabha, Mrs. Jacintha Aranha has been elected as a member of the Belle Grama Panchayat successively for five terms since 1988. There is a possibility of her being chosen as the President of the Belle Grama Panchayat following her fifth victory in the recently held Panchayat elections. She was also a member of the Udupi Taluk Panchayat from 1993 to 1998. Mrs. Jacintha Aranha has the distinction of being the founder president of the Jyothi Mahila Mandal, Edmeru. She was the Vice President of the Kaup Mahila Okkoota and the member of the Indian Red Cross.

Latha D’Mello & Philomena Aranha

The Representatives of St. Anne II Ward are Mrs. Latha D’Mello and Mrs. Philomena Aranha. Mrs. Latha D’Mello has been a member of the Women’s Organisation (Stree Sanghattan) and the Ward Representative on the Small Christian Community (SCC). Mrs. Philomena Aranha is the Secretary of the Ward SCC and also a LIC agent.

Six women from St. Anne II Ward have dedicated themselves to the service of God and the Church. These six Sisters are: Sr. Sharon, daughter of Bridget Aranha belonging to the Bethany Sisters’ (BS) Congregation. She has worked in Nagaland, Bangalore, Putthur, Bendore, Gurpur and Bajpe. Presently, Sr. Sharon is the Councillor to the Provincial at Vamanjoor. She has been a religious for the last 39 years.

Sr M.Shirley & Sr Jossy,B.S W.B

Sr. Shirley (BS), daughter of late Gregory and Celestine Aranha has been in the congregation for the last 28 years and has served in different places such as Belagaum, Sultanpur in UP, Orissa, Mysore and Punjab. Sr. Jossy (BS), daughter of late Gregory and Celestine Aranha, during 44 years of her service in the Bethany congregation has worked in Nagaland, Mizoram, Silchar and Agartala. Presently she is working in Tripura in the North-eastern region of India.

Sr Wilma & Sr M.Sharon

Sr. Philomena, daughter of Pascal and Mary Aranha, is in the Ursuline congregation. She has been working in many places in the Mysore Diocese as a teacher. Sr. Pauline, daughter of Jerome and late Lilly Aranha is also an Ursuline sister. Sr. Wilma (BS), daughter of Lawrence and late Pauline Aranha has completed Ayurvedic medical education and is working in Bangalore.

Leonard Aranha, son of Xavier and late Christine Aranha is a seminarian belonging the Lucknow Diocese. Presently he is in the second year of Philosophy in St. Francis Xavier Seminary at Agra and also studies for the BA degree.

Br Leonard Aranha & Valerian Noronha

Among the lay persons, Valerian Noronha has been a prominent entrepreneur of St. Anne II Ward. Since 17 years, Valerian has been a successful electrical and PWD contractor. He is also a LIC agent. He is a great philanthropist and also of helping nature. He is married to Lavina Anita and has a son Prinson Lester.

Visit of St. Lawrence to the Ward: The statue of St. Lawrence, which was making rounds in St. Roque II Ward in the previous week was received by the Gurkarn of the ward, Mrs. Jacintha Aranha on Sunday, 6th June 2010 at 5pm and was taken in procession to her residence. On Monday, 7th June, St. Lawrence visited the houses of Immanuel Aranha, Charles Aranha, Bridget Aranha, Raymond Aranha, Victor Aranha, Regina Barboza, Pascal Aranha and Theresa Aranha where the saint rested.

On Tuesday, 8th June from 3 pm, the statue of St. Lawrence was taken to the residences of Thomas Mendonca, Francis Aranha, Jerome Aranha, Cecilia Danti, Lawrence Noronha and finally to the residence of Melvyn Noronha. On Wednesday, 9th June at 5 pm, Fr. Joswey Fernandes offered Mass for the benefit of the elders and sick persons of the ward at the residence of Melvyn Noronha. Thereafter, the statue was taken to the homes of Dulcin Noronha and Antony D’Sa where it was rested for the night.

On Thursday, 10th June, from 5 pm, St. Lawrence visited the houses of William Aranha, Eliza Gomes, Jessie Saldanha and Latha D’Mello where he stayed for the night. On Friday, 11th June, from 4 pm, the statue of St. Lawrence was taken to the residences of Sebastian Fernandes, Albert Fernandes, Lucy Fernandes, Jerome Fernandes, Magdalene Fernandes and Charles Fernandes where the statue was rested till the next day. On Saturday, 12th June at 5.30 pm, the statue was moved from the home of Charles Fernandes to that of Augustine Aranha.

In each and every house that St. Lawrence visited, he was received with great respect and honour by the residents of each house and the usual novena and centenary prayers were recited and hymns in honour of St. Lawrence were sung.

Ward Feast: The Ward Feast of St. Anne II Ward was celebrated on Sunday, 13th June 2010 at the residence of Augustine Aranha from 12 noon. In spite of heavy rains, the ward members gathered in the house of Augustine Aranha in large numbers. Fr. Joswey Fernandes, Fr. Lancy Saldanha and Mr. Henry Fernandes, the Vice President of the Parish Council were present as guests of honour.

Mrs. Latha D’Mello conducted the programme. Mrs. Jacintha Aranha, the Gurkarn of the ward welcomed the guests with jasmine flowers. She also extended a warm welcome to the ward members who could attend the programme in spite of heavy rains. Fr. Joswey conducted the prayer service before the function. Mrs. Latha conducted few games for the children, youth, men as well as women. Fr. Lancy gave away the prizes for the winners. In his brief address, Fr. Lancy greeted the members of St. Anne II Ward on the occasion of their feast and appreciated the unity and cooperation among the ward members in conducting such programmes.

Fr. Joswey felicitated three couples who had completed more than fifty years of their married life by garlanding them with jasmine flowers and offering gifts. These couples are: Immanuel and Emilia Aranha, Antony and Angeline D’Sa, and Jerome and Bendicta Fernandes. Later, Fr. Joswey honoured the religious of the ward- Sr. Sharon and Sr. Shirly and Br. Leonard who had made it a point to attend the Ward Feast. Fr. Joswey also felicitated Valerian Noronha, the successful businessman of the ward and finally, the Gurkarn of the ward, Mrs. Jacintha Aranha for her contribution and achievements as a member of the Belle Grama Panchayat.

In his message, Fr. Joswey said that in spite of the pouring rain, the ward members have shown their interest and devotion in St. Lawrence by attending the Feast Day programme of the ward in large numbers and complimented the Gurkarn, Representatives and all the members of the ward for their unity and hard work. Mr. Henry Fernandes also complimented the Gurkarn and the ward members of St. Anne II ward and wished them well.

Mrs. Philomena Aranha proposed the vote of thanks and the Ward Feast ended with lunch. As the youth could not present their variety entertainment programme during the function due to paucity of time, after the lunch they put the show and entertained the gathering.

In the evening at around 5 pm, St. Lawrence was given a warm send off in spite of incessant rains when the statue was transferred by Mrs. Jacintha Aranha to the hands of Mr. Charles Martis, the Gurkar of St. Anne I ward.


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Comments on this Article
Alex, Edmer/Dubai Sat, June-19-2010, 2:15
A home away from home. Though we miss to attend, very good to see all those people back home, since I have known most of them. Thanks for brining those beautiful movements. I thank all the wardyagars coming together for the celebration and showing a great unity in the ward. May our patron Saint Lawrence help all of us to strengthen the bonds of friendship and love and fellowship. Special thanks to Jessy Mouci the gurkarn for long 7 years leading us united and for all her services to her neighborhood, a woman of simplicity and always at the service of the needy. Last but not least thanks to all members of Belle vision media network for bringing this article with complete coverage.keep up the good work and God Bless.
Victor DSouza, Moodubelle / Doha Wed, June-16-2010, 6:39
Explaining the details of the saint of wards in every report of moving the statue of St. Lawrence to wards, by Dr. Eugene, has been really meaningful. Observing saints more closely reveals that they were ordinary people just like us, who have chosen to live their lives in what they believed is Gods direction. They are our friends and our personal companions on our faith journey. They comfort us, give us guidance, hope and they help us find Gods plan for our lives.
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