Dhajea, 8 December 2020: Out of 11 novices at Kolkata province novitiate at Dhajea in Darjeeling hills 10 novices had their decisive movement to be Salesians when 8 novices received their cassocks and 2 lay brother novices received their crosses.
Eleventh novice belonging to Kolkata province has requested for more time for prayer and discernment.
North Bengal Provincial Council member and principal of Salesian College Fr George Thadathil was the chief celebrant while former Provincial Fr Nirmol Gomes was the choir master at the celebrations marking the feast of the Immaculate Conception, vestition and the launch of 180th foundation day of the worldwide Salesian Mission.
The novices who received the crosses are: Sanjit Topno and Shailesh Toppo.
Among 8 novices who received cassocks are Alphar Beg, Essak Hereh, Johnystar Khardewsaw, Paankaj Kujur, Joy Murmu, Jacob Rai, Prajnnadeepta Singh and Manish Tigga. They belong to Kolkata and Guwahati provinces, each with four clerics and one lay brother.
Explaining the significance of the vestition, Master of Ceremonies Fr. Raymond Tudu reminded the novices of the words of Mamma Margaret to John Bosco on the eve of his departure to the Seminary after a few days of his vestition.
She said, “John, my dear, now you are wearing the clerical habit. Mine is the happiness of a mother whose son has been fortunate. But remember that it is not the habit that brings honour to your state in life, but only the practice of virtue. Should you ever come to doubt your vocation, for heaven’s sake, never dishonour this cassock! Rather, lay it aside. I would sooner have a poor peasant for a son than an unworthy priest.”
Nine concelebrants including Novice Master along with some 8 Brothers from Salesian College Siliguri and Sonada as well as 10 Sisters participated.
Salesians from neighbouring communities of Mirik, Sonada (both communities), and Siliguri were joined by Sisters from Mirik, Molot, Dhajea and Kurseong. END