To be kept for veneration by believers up to Monday
: It was, indeed, a fitting accolade to the priest and educator who had dedicated his life to the betterment of street children, juvenile delinquents, and other disadvantaged youth. The sacred relic of St. John Bosco, popularly known as Don Bosco, founder of Salesian Society, was received with great passion.
Hundreds of people took out a procession along with the relic which was carried in a specially designed and built truck. The procession started at Surveyor Colony and culminated at Lourdes Shrine for a holy mass here on Sunday. The glass box, containing the relic, is 253-cm long, 108.3-cm wide and 132-cm tall. The Latin inscription – Da Mihi Animas Caetera Tolle (Give me souls, take away the rest) – is also visible.
A holy mass was conducted at Lourdes Shrine by Rev.Fr.Peter Fernando, Archbishop of Madurai Diocese, in which hundreds of people mostly youth participated. This pilgrimage began on January 31, 2009 from Turin in Italy where he spent his life working with the marginalised young people.
The pilgrimage is to mark the 150th anniversary of the Salesian order founded by the saint to cater to the young and underprivileged. It will reach Turin after covering as many as 130 nations on August 16, 2015 for the celebration of Don Bosco's 200th birth anniversary.
Being taken to Salesian institutions across 130 countries as part of a worldwide pilgrimage, the relic – bones and tissues of the right hand and arm of the saint – has been placed within the chest of his wax replica. The relic reached Madurai from Tiruchi and will be kept in the city for veneration of believers up to Monday. The relic is slated to be displayed at the Don Bosco ITI, Jawaharpuram, Don Bosco Higher Secondary School, Surya Nagar, Auxiliam Higher Secondary School on Monday.