To be people of Caritas is to be people of the Good News

Caritas’ new ED and Asst ED publicly felicitated

Caritas India’s new management publicly took charge in a star-studded event on April 25, in New Delhi.

Presiding over the occasion were Most Rev. Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas, Secretary General of the Catholic Bishops Conference of India (CBCI),  Rev. Msgr. Joseph Chinnayyan, Deputy Secretary General of CBCI, Archbishop Anil Couto of Delhi, Bishop Jacob Mar Barnabas of Gurgaon and Bishop Lumen Monteiro, Chairman of Caritas India. Also present was Tony Castleman, South Asia Representative of Catholic Relief Services (CRS) in India.

The day started off with Holy Mass at the Sacred Heart Cathedral, with Fr Paul Moonjely, Caritas India’s new Executive Director (ED) & his assistant Fr Jolly Puthenpura, taking a sacred oath during the liturgy. The occasion was particularly poignant as April 25th is both the feast of St Mark the Evangelist and the 26th anniversary of Fr Paul Moonjely’s priestly ordination.

Later in the day, in his first public appearance after being appointed as the new ED, Fr Paul Moonjely said, “Do not compare your life with others. There is no comparison between the Sun and the Moon. They shine bright when the time is right. I assure you that I too will shine bright, with the grace of the Almighty and with your support. I will endeavour to be a Diakonos, a faithful, humble servant and a steward of the Diakonia ministry. I once again affirm and declare my simple faith in the Lord. As St Paul says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Fr Jolly Puthenpura, Caritas India’s new Asst. ED said, “For all that has been, Thanks. To all that will be, Yes.” He pledged complete support to Fr Paul and said “As the social organ of the church and a civil society organization, Caritas India is called to grow nearer to the poor of our country and their life situations. To encounter them with solidarity, to embrace them with affection and to let them feel the warmth of Christian love expressed in service.”

Addressing the new leaders of Caritas, Most Rev. Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas expressed full confidence and conviction in the abilities of Caritas’ new management and gave them a traditional Irish Blessing saying, “May the Lord go before you, to lead you. May he be behind you, to hold you if you are about to fall. May he be above you, to protect you, to guard over you and to watch over you. And may he walk by your side, to hold you by your hand and to lead you where he wants you to go.”

Chairman of Caritas, Bishop Lumen Monteiro said, “Caritas is the joy of service. Caritas is service with joy. We’d like to wish Fr Paul Moonjely and Fr Jolly Puthenpura all the very best”.

While asking for God’s blessings on Fr Paul & Fr Jolly, Archbishop Anil Couto said, “Caritas India is the organ of the entire Catholic church to concretely express our charity.” He reminded the gathering that the first encyclical of late Pope Benedict was Deus Caritas Est meaning God is Love. He said, “To be people of Caritas is to be people of the Good News.”

Bishop Jacob Mar Barnabas, of the Syro Malankara diocese of Gurgaon said, “Caritas is the social face of the CBCI in India. It has performed well. And people have experienced the presence of the church through its activities.”  He expressed happiness at Fr Paul & Fr Jolly being elevated and wished them saying “May you may be the face of the Church, the Caritas of the Lord in India”.