LET’S WALK ALONG WITH THE PEOPLE
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
As we have entered into the season of Lent, which is a “Sacred Time” as the Liturgy calls it, let us ask the Lord for the grace of the conversion of heart. We need to ask for such grace not only for us, but for the entire Church. The recently concluded C.B.C.I. Meeting in Bangalore from 13th – 19th February, highlighted about the necessity of such conversion by reflecting upon the theme; “Dialogue”. Dialogue with the poor, with cultures and with other religions. In the given circumstances of our country and the world, it is the most needed commodity. The Statement of the CBCI is translated into Telugu which we will send you in the coming week.
In this season, our local Church is usually busy with Lenten programmes of renewal. I keep all of you in my prayer. Let us help our people to walk in the ways of the Lord and let us also walk along with them ever attentive to the promptings of the Spirit. Already at the beginning of his Papacy, Pope Francis spoke about the pastors should have the smell of the sheep. So please remain with our people as long as you can and attend to their spiritual needs.
The world is in the grip of Corona Virus and people need our prayers and our solidarity. It is also necessary to collaborate with the public authorities in the prevention and prognosis programme of this particular decease. Let’s work to save our locality from the spread of such calamities. Recently we have launched a Cancer awareness programme, called “Sneha Hastham” under the patronage of Caritas India. We need volunteers to bring awareness among the people. The statistics and prospectus show that in ten years time, 15 people in every 1000 persons will have contracted this deadly decease. So, there is much to do in this regard. Let us present all these problems to Christ our healer, for “By His Wounds we have been saved” (Is 53, 5; 1 Pet 2, 24)
With good wishes and prayers,
+ Thelagathoti J. Raja Rao, S.M.M.
Bishop of Vijayawada