The Celebration of the 150th Anniversary of Entering into Heaven of Blessed Basil Moreau

The Celebration of the 150th Anniversary of Blessed Moreau’s Entering into Heaven took place on 11 February 2023 at 4 PM at Holy Rosary Church, Tejgaon, Dhaka. A good number of Holy Cross Priests, Brothers, Sisters, seminarians, aspirants, other religious Sisters and Brothers, Priests and people of God assemble for the celebration. His Eminence Cardinal Patrick D’ Rozario, CSC, His Grace Archbishop Lawrence S. Howlader, CSC, Archbishop of Chattogram Catholic Archdiocese, and Most Rev. Theotonious Gomes, CSC, Emeritus Auxiliary Bishop of Dhaka Catholic Archdiocese, were present on this magnificently glorious occasion. The children of blessed Moreau hold on their hearts to discover the beauty and grace of this occasion as the event eventually started to blossom. The 150th Anniversary of Blessed Basil Anthony Moreau’s Entering into Heaven, founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross, is a moment of great joy for his children in Bangladesh to express heartfelt gratitude to God for having given to the Church such a noble soul, a man of God, of deep faith and holiness.

The program started with a documentary film prepared by Fr. Diganto Chambugong, CSC based on the life of blessed Moreau and the missionary works of Holy Cross in Bangladesh (former East Bengal). A short prayer service took place to thank the Almighty God for His blessing upon the Church of Bangladesh through the children of blessed Moreau, an enlightened and courageous man with great vision. After the completion of the prayer, Sister Violet Rodrigues, CSC, the Area Coordinator of Holy Cross Sisters in Asia, welcomed everyone to begin the occasion with numerous events that are going to take place. Sister Rodrigues mentioned that the Church in Bangladesh was enriched by the labors of the Holy Cross religious since the members arrived first in 1853. The three representatives from the three societies of Holy Cross; Fr. Charles Bruce Gordon, CSC, Br. Ripon James Gomes, CSC Sr. Shikha Laetitia Gomes, CSC, shared their reflections and insights on blessed Moreau. Their sharing highlighted the pioneering and fruitful evangelical thoughts and activities of blessed Basil Moreau.

Before proceeding to the Holy Eucharist, a formal inauguration program took place to mark the day in front of the Church. A symbolic Cross was prepared for the 150th anniversary of blessed Moreau’s Entering into Heaven. Three doves were released as a symbol of peace that represented the three societies. Afterward, the Eucharistic procession was begun.

His Grace Archbishop Howlader, CSC officiated as the main celebrant on this luminous occasion. After a short introductory word given by Fr. Apu S. Rozario, CSC, the master of the ceremony, the Archbishop venerated the altar and incensed the statue of Blessed Basil Moreau. The Archbishop, in his homily, upheld blessed Moreau’s vision, mission, and his trust in God’s Providence based on signs of the time and living realities in the present. Archbishop spoke about Synodality corresponding to the viewpoints of blessed Moreau’s words, “Nobody builds alone but build together.” Before prayer after the communion in the Holy Eucharist, Archbishop handed over three candles to the Provincials and an area coordinator as a symbol of ‘light of the world’ as stated in the Bible. It signified that wherever they go, they might give light and sight to others and they might be lighted by the burning desire of blessed Moreau for evangelical works.

On behalf of the Congregation of Holy Cross, Fr. George K. Rozario, CSC, Provincial of Sacred Heart of Jesus Province, Bangladesh, offered sincere and heartfelt thanks and gratitude towards all the bishops, priests, and religious, the people of God for participating in this occasion of 150th Anniversary of blessed Moreau’s Entering into Heaven. He said, “We rejoice greatly that the Congregation of Holy Cross in Bangladesh has now a good number of Priests, Brothers, and Sisters. This is a sign of growth. We earnestly pray that the Lord will continue to bless the congregation with worthy vocations. And we seize this happy occasion to re-dedicate ourselves to the high ideals of consecrated life as taught by blessed Moreau.” Finally, the program concludes with light refreshments.


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