Parishioners and well wishers made a bee line to the Fine Arts Theater, Chembur on February 10, 2001. This fund raising function was a great success. The Hall was packed to capacity. The Orchestra gave a very lively perfomance. By way of financial returns the souvenir which was released on the occasion, has brought in a substantial amount.
Sermons in Konkani were preached at the Mass on the Saturdays of Lent by the SVD Fathers. The sermons in English were preached by Fr. German Lemos at both Sunday masses on all the Sundays of Lent. The Theme was Reconciliation.
All the Zonal Communities organized their masses very well. The attendance by the members of the various communities was fairly good.
The services were devotional, prayerful and festive. A Guest priest was invited to celebrate the Konkani services on Holy Thursday and Good Friday. The blessing of the family on Easter Sunday was done within the families by the Head or an elder in the family. Holy Water, in small conatainers, donated by a parishioner, was distributed for this purpose.
Twenty Four candidates recieved the sacrament of Confirmation at the hands of Simon Cardinal Pimenta, on April 26, 2001.
To date our fund raising effort have netted in funds to the tune of almost Rupees Twenty Two Lakhs. This has been possible because of the untiring efforts of many of our parishioners. Also, the response from the parishioners of the five churches where an apeal was made for funds, which lead to good results. On behalf of all the parishioners and my own, I wish to place on record our appreciation, and gratitude to all who have donated and all who have worked hard to help us reach our target - Fr. German Lemos.
The parishioners felicitated Sr. Joaquina on the occasion of her completing 50 years as religious of the Congregration of Missionary Dominican Sisters of the Rosary, at the 9.30 a.m mass on Sunday, June 3. Members of the various associations paid glowing tributes to Sr. Joaquina for her work among the marginalized during the many years of her stay at Parksite. We wish Sr. Joaquina many more years of fruitful ministry, good health and every other blessing.
In response to the desire expressed by many parishioners, during the month of May, Rosary was recited before mass in the Church. A large number of parishioners attended daily and it was a full house for the concluding service on May 31 with a candle light procession after the Rosary followed by Holy Mass. The traditional boiled grams, donated by a parishioner, was distributed after mass.
We should consider ourselves fortunate to have Fr. German Lemos as our Parish Priest for two years now. Being young at heart, we would have liked him to carry on his ministry in our parish, but we cannot go against his wishes. So Fr. German, we wish you all the best in your future adventures. Adventure, 'cause every new place is like a challenge.
Fr. German a humble and approachable person. His sermons inspired many lay people. Fr. German always expressed that he was ageing but we found him always active in Parksite and an inspirational figure for all our activities and occasions. He was always encouraging to everybody especially the students, guiding them towards the spiritual path, look at the way the young readers have increased, also the youth is back in action once again. He somehow seemed to bring out the talents of every age be it a little child, youth , or an aged person. Everyone seemed to be so active and full of life in the parish with Fr. German's cooperation. Father would listen keenly to new ideas put forth by a parishioner and would encourage him or her to come forward and do it. Parishioners could approach him with any problem and Father would have a solution for it.
Fr. German was concerned about the welfare of our church in every way: from the altar decor to lights, sound, music, readers, children, our spirituality. There have many changes for good in our parish during the last two years. Such as, forming of Altar Servers group, consistiong of 32 children as of date. Participation of entire community in liturgical services, especially by children for the 7.00 a.m mass, and by the various associations for the 9.30 a.m mass.
A big achievement of Fr. Lemos was the fund raising drive for renovation of our church. With his initiative and with help of supporting parishioners, we were able to collect a reasonable sum through church to church collections, donation books and the musical show which was put up at Fine Arts Auditorium, Chembur. We had hoped that Fr. German would be with us to undertake the actual construction work of the church. We will miss him.
We thank Fr. Lemos for being with us, and enlightening us spiritually, and pray that Almighty God may always keep him in good health so that he continues to serve mankind for years to come.