They pray for peace and communal harmony

Call to the devotees to celebrate the Christmas in a measured manner and remember the flood victims

Updated - March 24, 2016 12:09 pm IST

Published - December 26, 2015 12:00 am IST - THANJAVUR:

Rev. Devadass Ambross, Bishop of Thanjavur, left, and Diocese Rev. Anthonisamy, Bishop of Kumbakonam, right, leading the Christmas prayers on Friday.— Photo: R.M. Rajarathinam

Rev. Devadass Ambross, Bishop of Thanjavur, left, and Diocese Rev. Anthonisamy, Bishop of Kumbakonam, right, leading the Christmas prayers on Friday.— Photo: R.M. Rajarathinam

The bells tolled, the priests led special mass, the faithful recited prayers and there was a measured celebration all round as Christians heralded the birth of Christ in a revered manner in the dioceses of Thanjavur and Kumbakonam.

Special Christmas Midnight Mass were held in Our Lady of Health Shrine Basilica at Vailankanni and the Poondi Madha Basilica where hundreds of devotees gathered to celebrate on the occasion. At the Sacred Heart Cathedral in Thanjavur, Bishop Most Rev. M. Devadoss Ambrose led the mass in the company of Parish Priest Rev. I Francis Xavier, Vicar General Rev. Gnanaprakasam and other priests and those from the laity.

Rev. Devadoss Ambrose blessed the decorated crib that had a beautiful icon of Infant Jesus. The Bishop had already given a call to the devotees to celebrate the Christmas in a measured manner and remember the victims of the recent floods in the State.

The Bishop of Kumbakonam Diocese Most Rev. S. Anthonisamy led the Special Midnight Christmas Mass at the St. Mary's Cathedral in Kumbakonam to herald the birth of Christ. He blessed the crib that depicted the Nativity and prayed for universal brotherhood. A lot of devotees participated in the prayer meet, shared pleasantries and sweets to express their happiness. At Our Lady of Good Health Shrine Basilica Vailankanni, Rector A.M.A. Prabhakar led the prayers in which Parish Priest Rev. Susaimanikkam celebrated the special Midnight Christmas Mass. Assistant Parish Priest Rev. S. Arockia Sundaram and others participated in the mass when the Rector blessed the crib.

Children dressed as angels brought the icon of Infant Jesus and handed over to the Rector who placed it in the crib. Thousands of devotees offered prayers during the midnight mass when world peace was sought and the victims of the recent floods were remembered. Significantly, separate mass were held in Tamil, English, Telugu, Malayalam and Hindi. Hundreds of faithful from the region congregated at the Poondi Madha Basilica where Rector A. Amirthasamy celebrated the special midnight Christmas Mass in the presence of Vice-Rector Rev. Alphonse. Those who gathered for the prayers shared sweets even as they prayed for world peace and communal harmony.

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