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The members of Society of St Vincent de Paul (SSVP) Mumbai celebrated their Annual Festival Meeting of Central Council of Bombay on Sunday, October 8, 2017, at St John Bosco Parish, Borivli West.

650 members from all over Mumbai came together for Holy Eucharist concelebrated by His Lordship, Bishop Barthol Barretto,  Fr William Athaide and Fr. Rosario Vaz.  In his homily, Bishop Barthol spoke of God’s unconditional love for us. He reminded the congregation that God was a loving Father and a patient God who waits for us to return to Him.

The Annual General Meeting followed in the School Hall. The youth of St John Bosco Parish, welcomed the Vincentians with a sing-song and dance session. A one act play by the youth, was put up depicting how Jesus strives to protect, care, comfort and encourage youth, when evil and worldly values try to destroy them.

46 new Members took the Vincentian pledge and were welcomed into the Vincentian fold by Bishop Barthol.

Bishop Barthol, in his address said he was especially happy to see Vincentians from Bhayander, Dharavi Islands and Uttan assemble together as one family. He commended the work being done by Vincentians in their acts of mercy. He said Vincentians should strive towards ensuring that no one goes to bed hungry or in need of medical help, in and around their parishes.

Spiritual Director, Fr William Athaide in his address and testimony depicted the healing and the miraculous ways God works in, proving once again that faith and prayer can work wonders.

Bro. Dominic Pinto, President of the Central Council, urged Vincentians to pray for the canonization of Blessed Frederic Ozanam, the Founder of SSVP, in this year dedicated to him. He also said SSVP Youth still remains a priority. He urged members to start SSVP youth conferences in their Parishes.

Bro Joseph Soares, the Senior Vice President, asked members to attend the various training programs, workshops, retreats, etc being organized at the all-Mumbai level, which will help members in their Vincentian vocation

The meeting ended on a happy note thanking and praising God for the eventful day  

Consolidated Report of all SSVP Conferences all over Mumbai

1)  Our Lady of Remedy Conf, Kandivli West. On Wednesday, 27th September is celebrated as the feast of Saint Vincent De Paul a patron saint of the poor and marginalized.

The SSVP Conference of Our Lady of Remedy celebrated the feast day by offering Holy Mass at 7 pm. Fr. Vijay Drago our parish priest in his homely highlighted the work of St. Vincent De Paul and also the Vincentians work in our society to uplift the poor and marginalized.

Post the Mass at the school KG section there was celebration for the SSVP adopted families. The place was decorated and everyone was welcomed with a wrist band. Snack, music and games were organised for children,  adults and everyone participated in it. All the 3 priest of our church distributed Certificates and cash prize to 27 students who had successfully passed the previous academic year. A rational hamper containing food grains was given to 16 families. With a housy game played we proceeded towards the dinner with a prayer. All the families enjoyed the event.

SSVP Conference would like to thanks the Priest's, Parishioners and Benefactor's for their continues support with out which this work of charity would have not been possible. May God bless you all and looking forward to your support always.

2)   Our Lady of Lourdes Parish Orlem: On 1st Oct SVP invited the benefactors, Auxiliary members and Parish fathers who attended the festival. The feast Mass was celebrated by the Parish Priest Rev. Fr. Gilbert Delima. The youth organized Bible quiz games and gave prizes to the winner. Snacks were served 

3)   Holy Name Cathedral: On 27th Sept 2017. Holy Mass was offered, all 27 adopted members attended, it was followed by get-together. Snacks and tea was served to families and each of them were given a hamper & dinner packets.

4)   St. Anne Conference, Mazgaon: on 27th Sept 2017, during Mass there was a power point presentation followed by get-together which includes games. 14 Adopted families attended. Prizes were distributed followed by dinner. 

5)   St. Peter’s Bandra: SVP feast day celebrated. All adopted families attended the feast celebration including Holy Mass. Conference undertook and outreach programme to Andheri and to Snehasadan Boys Home. On 16th Sept. One small Christian community joined the Vincentians on this outreach. Biscuits, Apple and fruity were given to the children. 

6)   Holy Spirit Church, Andheri East: The celebration began with the Eucharist at 6.15 pm. Fr. Valerian Fernandes our Spiritual Director was the celebrant. Homily was meaningful and inspiring.

After the mass, refreshments were served. Our President Sis. Rose welcomes the gathering Scholarships were distributed to 10 students from Std. I to X and XII from our adopted families. Consolation prizes were given to adopted/aided students and Study class students. There were games, spot prizes, song and a skit was performed by the study class students.

Bros. Ben Lewis – completes 31 years and Bros’ Evarist Serrao and Alex Pinto completed 25 years were felicitated for their services rendered to SSVP. Sis. Cynthia Pinto gave the vote of thanks, thanking each and every person who were involved in the function. Thereafter, Fr. Praveen Arahna of Sacred Heart Church led the Grace before meals and the dinner was served. 50 families attended the function. In all there were 155 people including the guests. Every family was given a take -away gift.

Overall the function went off well and all the members did a wonderful job !

7)   St. Vincent Pallotti Marol: The SVP Conference of St. Vincent Pallotti, Vijay Nagar, Marol, celebrated the Feast of our Patron, St. Vincent De Paul, with a Thanksgiving Mass at 9.15 a.m. on Sunday, 24th September 2017, in our Church Hall. It was attended by about 120 people. 25 adopted and aided families and their children, benefactors, nurses and a few teachers who give free tuitions to the adopted children, well supported by our Parish Fathers, had a great time.

The program started with breakfast and tea. After tea, the program got going with games for all, where almost everyone participated with full enthusiasm. The highlight of the morning was the ramp walk by our adopted gents and ladies separately. The ladies had to wear gent’s shoes and walk the ramp whereas the gents had to wear a dupatta and take a walk. It was indeed very heartening to see the ladies walk the ramp without any fear. There were lots on the spot prizes for one and all.

Our Youth did a wonderful job with the games. They also put up a dance on the spot which added to the tempo of the Festival. Brothers Sansom and Kenneth Lobo of the Youth entertained us well with lively music. Sister Henrietta James Nayak (English) and Bro. Anand (in Tamil) compered the show superbly.

Our Spiritual Director, Fr. Charles Fernandes, in a few words, thanked and encouraged our families and also the Doctors/Nurses/members who helped in the Clinic every week, the teachers who come every evening to give free tuitions to our children and all the SVP Youth and members who work to bring up our not so fortunate families by giving them monthly ration, education and free medical aid.

How could the program end without a good meal? Our Tamilian Fr. Balraj S. said a few encouraging words in Tamil to our families, followed by grace before meals. The lunch was delicious and all went home filled with love and joy.

Bro. Joe Fernandes, on behalf of our President and Vice-President, thanked all the members who worked sincerely and in a great team spirit, to make this day a memorable one, for our adopted families. 

8)   Our Lady of Valankanni Irla: Welfare centre gave scholarship awards to the aided families. 30 children from Jamnabai School Std II with their teacher visited the Church to know more about Christianity. SVP members talked about Jesus, sang hymns and explained the 14 stations of the Cross. This was followed by the question and answer session. 

9)   Christ the King, Jogeshwari (West): We celebrated the feast of St Vincent De Paul by offering a thanks giving mass on 27th Sept, 2017. On 30th Sept, 2017, we had a get together of all the adopted family. The function begin with a opening prayer, Snack was served, there was games and prize distribution. In the end there was dinner. Each family was given a gift hamper. Fr Gerard our parish priest graced the occasion

10)   Mother Valankanni, Conf Cheetah Camp: On 24th Sept SVP members carried out the church cleaning work. SVP members actively participated in the Holy Eucharist, which was in Tamil. The members also took part in the Choir and the readings. 

11)   St. Anthony of Padua Kalwa: The feast was celebrated on 1st Oct. Members put up an eatable stall and collected Rs. 3470/-

12)   St. Jude Kalyan (E): The Conference is running a dispensary with the help of Honorary Doctors. On 24th Sept 78 patients were examined and medicines were given amounting to Rs. 9050/-.

3)   Divine Mercy Bhayander East: The members conducted Blood Donation Camp on 24th Sept. 100 bottles blood was collected. 

14)   Good Shepherd Andheri (West): Good Shepherd Conference celebrated the St Vincent de Paul's Feast on 27th September,2017 @ 19:30 hours in the Good Shepherd Hall along with  the Adopted Families and St Vincent de Paul Members. Fr Prakash Assistant Parish Priest was invited to deliver a message to the adopted families. 

The function commenced with a Prayer Service in Hindi to enable everyone to comprehend, followed by fellowship, games and spot prizes. The gathering comprised of 40 participants.

All went home on a happy note as Gift Hampers were given to them. Also a small token was presented to them by Fr. Prakash. The function wounded up at 21:00 hours.

15)   St. Joseph Conf, Sacred Heart Church Worli: St. Joseph’s Conference, of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Sacred Heart Church, Worli, began their celebrations of the feast of their patron, St. Vincent de Paul, with a mass, on Sunday, October 1, 2017. The celebrant was the spiritual director, Fr. Albert Gonsalves. The liturgy was specially written to fit the theme of charity and conducted by the Vincentians. After Communion a thank you speech was read out for the parishioners, who support us, with a mention that the annual accounts were put up on the notice board for all to see. Parish priest, Fr. Peter D’Mello, too, was thanked for the help from the Community Fund. Vincentians dressed themselves in blue outfits to lend a festive look to the event. A frame of St. Vincent de Paul was kept in church, on a simple yet beautifully decorated pedestal, for parishioners to venerate.

After mass, an entertaining get-together was held for our 34 adopted families, to which were also invited our donors, the clergy, nuns and guests. The function comprised an address by the parish priest, interactive games, sing-song sessions, impromptu dance, spot prizes and a game of housie, for a crowd nearing 90. Scholarships were distributed to students from Classes I to XV (senior college) at the hands of Bro. Sachin Muntode, seminarian from Goregaon. The gathering was addressed by Deacon Navin D’Silva and newly ordained Fr. Oscar Gonsalves who joined in the merrymaking, mike in hand. Notable was the presence of a few parish youth who helped conduct games, as well as the sing-song, with guitar et al. The families enjoyed themselves and went home happy, after a slap-up lunch, and a return gift of household items, in hand, for every family, rest assured that when there are Vincentians around, making ends meet was the least of their worries.


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