ചാവറ കുറിയാക്കോസ് അച്ചന്‍റെ യഥാര്‍ത്ഥ കബറിടത്തില്‍ ലത്തീന്‍ മെത്രാന്മാര്‍

An Old News:

Koonammavu turns into a sea of people

K. A. Martin

KOCHI:,NOVEMBER 24, 2014 12:58 IST

Faithful gather to celebrate canonisation of Chavara Kuriakose

The sprawling premises of St. Philomena’s Church at Koonammavu on the outskirts of Kochi turned into a sea of people as they gathered in their thousands to celebrate the canonisation of Chavara Kuriakose Elias in the Vatican on Sunday.

A protracted spell of rain did not impact a massive procession of the faithful during which they sang hymns, recited prayers and carried images of both Chavara Kuriakose Elias and Mother Euphrasia, who were among those declared saints by Pope Francis in Sunday’s ceremonies at the Vatican.

The processions arrived from three historic places in the parish led by priests, religious and lay leaders, symbolising the arrival of St. Chavara Kuriakose Elias in Koonammavu in 1864 as the prior of the parish. He spent the remaining seven years of his life at Koonammavu sharing his love, ministering to the people.

He was buried inside the St. Philonmena’s Church in January 1871 and his tomb is today a major pilgrim centre for thousands of people.

The concelebrated Mass on Sunday led by Bishop of Cochin Joseph Kariyil was preceded by the celebrants paying floral tributes at the tomb of the newly-declared saint.

There was relentless flow of believers, praying at the tomb and visiting the room in which the saint died. The room is preserved in its original condition, complete with wooden floors.

People began to arrive early for the celebrations, which was scheduled to begin at 3 p.m.

The parish grounds were nearly full after 2 p.m. with most of the people gathered under the huge pandal to escape from a blazing sun. Soon the weather changed and the skies darkened threatening
heavy showers.

As the procession reached the church grounds, Bishop of Kottappuram Joseph Karikkassery blessed and unveiled a 14-foot statue of Saint Chavara Kuriakose Elias. Bishop of Kannur Alex Vadakkumthala delivered the homily during the Mass.

The programmes were timed in such a way that the faithful were able to watch live the ceremonies at the Vatican. Two massive LED screens flanking the main area outside the church made the proceedings easily visible to the big throng of people.

The Mass was followed by a procession of the faithful carrying the statue of the new saint.

Source