Bellary Diocese Provides Relief Affected By COVID-19 Lockdown

BALLARI, May 15: Diocese of Bellary, in collaboration with donors and Catholic organizations provided relief material to over 5,200 families seriously affected by Covid-19 nationwide lockdown.

The Catholic Diocese of Bellary, Jesuit Educational Society–Manvi, B.D.D.S. and Vimukti-Pothnal, in collaboration with the district administration of Bellary, helped poor families with physically and mentally challenged, infected with HIV/AIDS/Hansen’s Disease/cancer etc, the aged and orphans of Bellary, Koppal and Raichur districts. ICYM provided lunch for 200 destitute, sick and the aged during the two phases of lockdown. In addition, Good Shepherd Sisters, Fatima Sisters, Apostolic Carmel Sisters, FHIC Sisters and others along with some Catholic persons of goodwill distributed relief to poor families, rickshaw drivers and labourers. Some even provided lunch daily for about a thousand needy persons.

Bishop Henry D’Souza, Bishop of Bellary directed much of the relief works. Most of the relief packets contained rice, cooking oil, pulses, masks, soap, biscuits and nutrients for expecting women. Vicar General Fr Anthonyraj, BDDS director Fr Yagappa, DFO Fr. O. Vincent, PRO Fr Ivan Pinto, DEM Fr Cyril Lasrado, Fr. Arun Lewis sj, Fr Anil D’Souza sj, Fr Satish ofm cap, Mr AJ Antony, seminarians and ICYM youth helped in packing and distributing the relief material. Parish priests and heads of institutions helped in identifying the needy families and ensuring compliance with the regulations prescribed by the Govt. regarding wearing mask, maintaining social distance etc.

The Diocese has been live-streaming of Morning Prayer at 6.40 AM and Holy Mass at 7.00 AM daily on weekdays and at 7.00 AM and 730 AM respectively on Sundays. Also, daily Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament along with catechesis on the Ten Commandments, Sacraments, and Social Teachings of the Church etc has been done by live-streaming daily. Bishop Henry D’Souza has appealed to all parishes, institutions and houses of the religious to continue to assist the poor, the aged and the migrants. Also, Bishop has urged all priests to reside in their respective places throughout the lockdown period and be available for people. He has asked all pastors and chaplains to FULLY abide by the restrictions imposed by the civil authorities in their movements, gatherings and celebrations. The regulation on maintaining social distance should be complied strictly in all places.

Also, he has requested all parish priests and community leaders to arrange and disseminate relevant information to their faithful through the means of social media, so that “they can prayerfully unite themselves in their homes” via live broadcast or streaming, wherever possible. Bishop D’Souza says, “It’s an excellent opportunity to make our catholic homes mini-churches. Therefore, family heads and adults in the families should be encouraged to explain to the other members, especially the little ones the religious meaning of the rites that under normal conditions would be celebrated in the church with the assembly present.”

Bishop Henry D’Souza has asked all Catholic families to read the suitable passages from the Holy Scriptures, to follow the liturgical worship on the social media disseminated at real time, to conduct the devotions to the family members, and to conduct family and personal prayer, when they cannot attend the community liturgical celebrations.”

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