ARCHBISHOP FERRAO RELEASES HIS PASTORAL LETTER 2018-2019
Following a tradition he began on the first year of his ministry as the Archbishop of Goa and Daman, Most Rev. Filipe Neri Ferrao released this Sunday, the 3rd June, 2018, his 15th Pastoral Letter addressed “To the Priests, Religious, Lay Faithful and People of Good Will in the Archdiocese of Goa and Daman,” at a meaningful ceremony organized at the Church of Our Lady Mother of the Poor, Tilamola.
The Letter, which is issued at the beginning of each Pastoral Year (1st June to 31st May) in this Archdiocese, addresses mainly the problem of poverty, in its various forms, faced by the world, the country and this Archdiocese and tries to suggest ways and means of meeting it at various levels: personal, societal and spiritual.
Basing itself on the preferential love of Jesus and of His Church for the poor, the Letter is titled after the solemn Proclamation of Jesus Christ at the beginning of his public ministry, “(God) has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor.” In his Introduction, the Archbishop reminds that the last Pastoral Letter (2017-2018) called the Catholic Faithful and the People of Good Will alike to some important social responsibilities and expressed satisfaction that the Church in Goa had fulfilled many of them. This Pastoral Year is being focussed on alleviating poverty in its various forms, economic as well as emotional poverty, arising from rejection, humiliation and abuse, not forgetting those who are ostracised by society for various reasons like lack of education, old age, sickness, unemployment, imprisonment and other types of social discrimination.
The Pastoral Letter was released at the end of a Mass presided over by the Archbishop, where 156 young Catholics received the Sacrament of Confirmation. A copy of the Letter was symbolically handed over by the Archbishop to some representative members of the Church in Goa, like the Director of the Diocesan Pastoral Secretariat, Fr. Leonardo Sousa, the Local Parish Priest, Fr. Amandio Valadares, who also represented Parish Priests and Deans, the Director of Caritas-Goa, Fr. Maverick Fernandes, the Moderator of the Diocesan Pastoral Council, Mr. Celso Fernandes, the President of the Central Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Mr. Amancio Fernandes, a representative of the Religious, Sr. Heather Aranha, FC, the local Headmistress, Ms. Elsa Dias, representing educational institutions, the local Parish Council Moderator, Mr. Agnelo Sousa, representing all PC Moderators, a local youth representing the Diocesan Youth, Ms. Meena Vaz and a Self-Help group leader, Ms. Cirila Fernandes.