The Christian community is all geared up to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ while the city Churches are preparing for the biggest festival of the community — Christmas — by conducting special programmes tonight and tomorrow.
City’s major Churches are decked up and illuminated for Christmas. Specials prayers and songs and sermons have been planned today and on Christmas day tomorrow. Community members, Churches, and the priests are ready for the celebrations as the festival marks the season of joy, sharing, caring and spreading love.
St. Philomena’s Church
Built in 1936 in the Neo Gothic style, whose architecture was designed by Frenchman Daly, inspired by the Cologne Cathedral in German, St. Philomena’s Church is the tallest and the biggest Church in city which is decorated for the season with thousands of devotees thronging the Church to offer Christmas prayers today midnight and tomorrow morning.
Today, celebrations at St. Philomena’s Church at Lashkar Mohalla will start with Christmas Carols from 11 pm to 12 am. At 12 am (Dec.25), Bishop of Mysuru Diocese, Rev. Dr. K.A. William, will place the idol of Infant Jesus in the crib and will conduct the midnight Mass which will be held in Kannada.
Tomorrow (Dec.25), there will be a Tamil Mass at 5 am, Kannada Mass at 6 am, English Mass at 7 am, Tamil Mass at 8 am and Kannada Mass at 6 pm. The 7 am Mass in English and 8 am Mass in Tamil will be conducted by the Bishop.
St. Bartholomew’s Church
Situated next to Suburban Bus Stand, Saint Bartholomew’s Church is an Anglican Church and the oldest Church in Mysuru established in 1830 for the East India Company troops stationed in the kingdom of Mysore. The Church was completed in 1832 and is named after one of the 12 apostles of Jesus Christ, Saint Bartholomew.
The Church will be holding a Candle Light Carol Service and a special programme by the Church Choir at 6.30 pm today. Tomorrow, the first Christmas Day Service will be held at 5.30 am and the second Service at 8 am led by the Church Presbyter Rev. Daniel J. Kaundinya. Both the Services will be Holy Communion Services.
Situated near the Double Tank on Vani Vilas Road in Lakshmipuram, the Church is beautifully illuminated for the festival.
The Church will be conducting Christmas Service at 8.30 am tomorrow, which will be conducted by Rev. Gurushantha.
Located near Suburban Bus Stand, Wesley Cathedral will be conducting Christmas eve Service from 6 am to 8 pm today.
Tomorrow, Christmas Service will begin at 8.30 am which will be followed by Christmas Sports to the members and their children at the Church premises. The Christmas eve and Christmas Services will be led by Church Pastor Rev. Elish Kumar.
Apart from the above Churches several Churches in city — Sawday Memorial Church at Tikalnagar, Pushpashrama at R.S. Naidu Nagar, Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Church at Srirampura, Infant Jesus Church on Hunsur Road etc. — will be conducting Christmas Service tomorrow.
Bishop of Mysuru Rev. Dr. K.A. William
Christmas is a feast of joy, peace and happiness, not only to Christians around the world, but to every human being. Jesus’ birth was proclaimed as coming of ‘the Prince of Peace.’ If there is one thing most needed in the world today, it is peace. For this, Jesus was born as a human being, to make us human. There is a lot of difference between a human being and BEING HUMAN.
All people, rich or poor, whatever religion or race they belong to, whichever language they speak, are longing for PEACE, which very often eludes us.
Peace is possible only through JUSTICE. Justice will become a reality when every human being is respected, human rights are recognised and true fraternity becomes the order of the day. What prevents this often is our pride, ego, selfishness, self-centred attitude and above all when we try to live for ourselves, blissfully blind to disturbing happenings around us. Christmas is an invitation to all of us to be fully human, to be sensitive to whatever makes us inhuman.
Many people still die of hunger and sickness, when the world has enough resources to meet the needs of all but lacks the will to share what we have with everyone. We see every day many women becoming victims of atrocities and little children, especially girls’ innocence is violated by man’s greed and lust. Christmas is an invitation to be HUMAN.
“Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of man,” said Rabidranath Tagore. Though everything appears bleak and dark, Christmas gives us the hope that there is still a ray of light in the dark tunnel. “To those who walked in darkness, a light has shone,” says the Bible referring to Jesus’ birth. Let us all strive to dispel darkness, self-centredness, look at the face of every human being and see the Image of God in him or her. Let this Christmas usher for everyone a new hope of peace and brotherhood and help us be HUMAN in our relationships.
St. Bartholomew’s Presbyter Rev. Daniel J. Kaundinya
Christmas time is a time of celebration of the gift of Peace and Joy through Jesus Christ, to the human kind. At the birth of Jesus, all strata of humankind were brought under a single roof in a manger assuring them that a messiah was born to bring peace and harmony. The birth of Jesus still heralds globally, the message of PEACE, LOVE and HOPE for those who are deprived of it. Thus, Christmas is a season to recollect, re-live and celebrate the humble birth of Jesus and God’s self-emptying love which assures peace, acceptance, love, care, unity and blessings to the whole creation.
As we threaded through different seasons of nature, life, tradition, culture, piety, emotions, health and needs, may the caring and loving presence of God bless us in a special way. Let us all be a channel of God’s peace on earth and fore runner of the essence of unity and harmony reaching out beyond barriers touching the lives of people with God’s love.