People come out in large numbers, pray and take selfies
Mysore/Mysuru: This year’s Christmas holiday season was a do-over for last year’s subdued celebrations and instead of a redux of restrictions, cancellations and rising precautions over the never-ending pandemic, people came out in open today fully celebrating the festival and enjoying it to the hilt.
Though the Government suggested restraint with cases of the Omicron variant of the Coronavirus starting to rise, a large number of people thronged churches that were decked up and participated in mass prayers for a disease-free society. Not to lower guard, enough precautions were taken by the managements of different churches in the city. Increased double dose vaccination status has boosted the confidence of the people and they gathered and greeted each other.
The centre of attraction was the St. Philomena’s Church at Lashkar Mohalla, the tallest Church in the city, where people have been coming in droves to witness the celebrations.
Church members and the choir sang Christmas carols and hymns. The entire campus of the church has been tastefully decorated with cribs, selfie points and various other attractions.
People came in many groups and the Church campus witnessed crowds and vehicles. It looked like people were trying to make up for the celebrations that were subdued last year.
Bishop Most Rev. Fr. K.A. William placed the idol of Infant Jesus in the crib at 12.30 am.
Sermons and prayers were conducted by the Bishop. The idol of Infant Jesus is usually placed in the crib at midnight to mark the birth of Christ. People attended the midnight mass at this Church and various other Churches that were decorated and illuminated.
Speaking on the occasion, Rev. Dr. K.A. William said, “Christmas is celebration of love and peace” and conveyed his Christmas wishes and prayed for worldly peace and prosperity. He said that if last year the festival was subdued, this year, the celebrations are held amidst precautions. He prayed for the peace and welfare of the people.
After the midnight mass, people continued to arrive at the Churches for the Holy Communion Service at 5 am where sermons were delivered by the Bishop and priests in English, Kannada and Tamil. Christmas Eve Candlelight Service and special programmes by the choirs were also held.
Celebrations were held at St. Bartholomew’s Church, Wesley Cathedral, Hardwicke Church at Lakshmipuram, Yesu Karunalaya at Karunapura, Sawday Memorial Church at Tilaknagar, Infant Jesus Church on Hunsur Road, Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Church at Srirampura and Pushpashrama Church in R.S. Naidu Nagar.
People also gathered at Virgin of the Poor Church in Bannimantap, St. Anthony’s Church in Gayathripuram, Pushpagiri Church in Belavatta village, Sacred Heart Church in Yadavagiri, Holy Family Church in Hinkal, St. Theresa Church in Mysore South, Mother Theresa Church in Rajivnagar and St. Joseph’s Church in Jayalakshmipuram.