ATHIRAMPUZHA, Kerala, (C.M. Paul) – In a gesture that was both historic and dramatic, a priest handed over his will and testament giving two educational institutions which he founded while a Salesian of Kolkata province to the Salesian provincial of Kerala.
Fr Tomy Kuruvilla gifted the Marian Career Guidance Centre (MCGC) at Maduravelli near Kaduthuruthy in Kottayam district, and Rhythm Education Centre (REC) in Sharjah which he founded and runs, to the Salesians of Don Bosco Bangalore province at brief ceremony in front of Don Bosco Relic visiting St Mary’s Church Athirampuzha, 10th October.
The parish priest of Athirampuzha church, Rev. Fr. Mani, spoke on the significance of this offer by the donor, who happens to be from Athirampuzha parish, to the Salesians of Bangalore/ Kerala, in the context of the visit of the Relic of Don Bosco.
Pls chk the link for YouTube video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=1h3jqPw5mPo
In a brief talk Fr Kuruvialla said “it was a historical divine intervention of Don Bosco in his life, so as to fulfill the long cherished dream of his parents who longed to see the Salesian presence in this region.”
After the first batch of eight MCGC students sang the hymn “Don Bosco who was consumed by the zeal for the young” Fr Mani handed over the official file containing the Will of Fr.Tomy and a few other documents to the Provincial of Bangalore / Kerala.
Solemn Eucharist and the veneration of Don Bosco’s relic followed before the casket left for Don Bosco Puthupally.
“I consider Don Bosco relic visit to my parish as a miracle,” says Fr Tomy Kuruvilla who belongs to Athirampuzha, St. Mary’s Church in central Kearla.
Fr Kuruvilla worked and ministered in Sharjah for 18 years raising funds to purchase the property and start MCGC dream project for underprivileged but intelligent boys.
The property at Maduravelli is over 5 acres and has over 18,000 sq ft of built up area with a foundation for two floors. It has dormitory facility for 75 students and quarters for administrative staff while the common facilities like dining room and chapel can accommodate 150 students.
“I did not leave the Salesian congregation but the Salesians left me,” says Fr Kuruvilla who was laicised on 6th December 2010.
The overjoyed priest confesses, “I see the visit of Don Bosco Relic not just as a sheer co-incidence but the will of Don Bosco himself giving me a wonderful opportunity to hand over to him personally what I have been doing for the Saelsians of Don Bosco Bangalore, over these years.”
“The gift is totally unconditional,” Fr Kuruvilla told the provincial “and all my request to you is, to treat MCGC and REC as well as me (Fr.Tomy) in a way Don Bosco would treat anyone who loves him and has dedicated his life for his cause.”
Commenting on the event, Provincial of Bangalore province who received the will in person says, “I made it a point to be present to accept the gift as a gesture of “expression of intent” as well as be a sign of appreciation to honour the parishioners who were generous to sent several of their sons to Don Bosco Mission.”
The MCGC property and building in Kerala is priced at INR 16 crores (USD 3,2o0,000) while the licence for running Music Academy in Sharjah alone is priced about 50 Lakhs (USD 100,000). For MCGC location and building pls watch YouTube video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVlgNAcTxZc
Laicised Fr Kuruvilla (55 year old) is currently living a retired life in priestly status, with the permission of the Bishop of Changnacherry.