125th anniversary celebrations of Thrissur Archdiocese begin
Apostolic Nuncio to India Salvatore Pennacchio has said that life in Thrissur is a model of communal harmony.
Inaugurating the 125th anniversary celebrations of the Thrissur Archdiocese here on Friday, he said that it was a joy to behold different communities and religions co-existing peacefully in Thrissur. “When Pope John Paul II visited Thrissur, the temples staged a mini Pooram in his honour. The temples presented it later during a meet of the Catholic Bishop's Conference of India too,” he recalled.
He said that each community in Thrissur supported the celebrations of the other.
He expressed an interest in visiting the shrine at Palayur. The shrine is believed to have been founded by St. Thomas, one of the apostles, in 52 A.D. One of the first in the country, the shrine was rebuilt by Italian Jesuit priest Fenichio in 1607. In 1952, it was renovated by Vicar Fr. George Choondal.
The Apostolic Nuncio presented a bronze figure of Pope John Paul II to the Archdiocese. The bronze figure will be placed at the Pope John Paul Peace Home.
Presiding over the function, Mar Bosco Puthur, Administrator of the Syro-Malabar Major Archiepiscopal Church, said the 125th anniversary of the Archdiocese was an occasion for its members to rededicate themselves to the sacred values of the Church.
Among those present on the occasion were Mayor I. P. Paul; Therambil Ramakrishnan and M.P. Vincent, MLA-elects; district panchayat president K.V. Dasan; District Collector P.G. Thomas; Thrissur Archbishop and president of the Kerala Catholic Bishop's Conference Mar Andrews Thazhathu; Auxiliary Bishop Mar Raphael Thattil; former Archbishop Mar Jacob Thoomkuzhy; and Metropolitan of the Assyrian Church of the East Mar Aprem.
The celebrations will include religious and charity programmes. They will conclude next May.
The Thrissur Archdiocese was formed through a special proclamation of the then Pope Leo XIII in May 1887.
Pope John Paul II had inaugurated the centenary celebrations of the Archdiocese in 1986.