SHILLONG, (Abp Dominic Jala SDB) – The birthday of Don Bosco, 16 August, Larisuk Khongsit was baptised as Larisa Mary Khongsit. The baptism ceremony took place at the shrine of St. John Bosco, Cherrapunjee, where during the visit of the Relic of Don Bosco, this bed-ridden girl had a miraculous healing after praying to Don Bosco.
Twenty three young people and children from families that have been drawn to the faith through the healing of this 11 year old child also received baptism, at a ceremony presided over by Archbishop Dominic Jala SDB, of the archdiocese of Shillong.
Larisuk Khongsit has been baptised as Larisa Mary Khongsit. She herself decided to have a new name at baptism. The old name meant, nurtured in peace. Her new name means I/we/they have Rejoiced. A fitting name for one who has been touched through the intercession of Don Bosco.
Larisuk is the sixth of nine children from a family that follows the Khasi traditional religion, and lives in a small house in Thiep Twa locality, Cherrapunjee. She had been unable to stand or walk for the past four years.
It all happened in 2007 while playing with her friends she fell and injured her right leg. The wound festered and she spent three months in the Civil Hospital Shillong, 50 km away from her home. This brought little relief and at a certain point the doctors advised amputation to save the then 7 year old child.
It was on 19th June 2011, when the Relic of Don Bosco was in Sohra that she persuaded her mother to take her to the prayer session for healing being held on the grounds of the Parish. She said a simple prayer: Don Bosco please give me healing; I want to go to school again.
Two days later alone in her hut, she suddenly felt the urge to get up and walk and went to fetch her mother who was washing clothes at a nearby stream. Since then the foul smelling puss stopped coming out of the wounds and the rotting flesh slowly came off leaving place for new flesh. On 17th July, a piece of bone just dropped out of the little opening that was a large wound on her leg. Larisakeeps in mind all these important dates and has reason to rejoice and the whole community has reason to rejoice too.
The baptism of Larisa and 22 others was celebrated in the Don Bosco Shrine, Sohra/Cherrapunee on 16th August, 2011, the birth day of Don Bosco, the day the Salesian Congregation is launching a four year journey to the bicentenary of his birth. The older members of the families will probably be baptised around Christmas 2011.