Mangaluru, May 2, 2017:Nineteen couples were wedded at the 43rd mass wedding ceremony organized by St Vincent De Paul Society at Rosario Cathedral here on Monday, May 1. Bishop of Mangaluru, Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza, who was the main celebrant at the ceremony, blessed the weddings. nuptials.
Well-known banker from Mumbai John D’Silva, who was the chief guest, said that the newly married couples must do all that is possible to values and uphold the the bond of marriage and uphold family values. Mutual understanding, sharing, caring and tolerance are the key to a successful and marriagied life with the grace of GOD. He wishes the new couples all good and happiness.
Mangalore Bishop in his homily asked the newly wedded couples to live a life of prayer and respect. "only God’s grace at all times in your life, can bring you success and happiness. You marry here at the altar in the presence of God. For that you need to lead a life according to the commandments given by God. Be always prayerful and simple and happiness will follow."
This celebration of mass community weddings saw 19 couples from various parts of the diocese of Mangaluru and other parts of Karnataka l tie the knot. Around 2,000 guests participated in the celebration. Apart from the wedding ceremony and the dinner, organizers gave each couple a pair of wedding rings along with dress materials and household articles.
Mangaluru South MLA J R Lobo graced the ceremony , heavy expenses to enter marital life must be avoided through the simple mass mass community weddings, "St Vincent De Paul Society’s work is commendable. It is indecent wasting and spending lavishly for weddings. Simple life is the correct way of life. Also, the new couples should avail the facilities offered by the government for the betterment of minorities," Lobo said.
Brides and bridegrooms from Dakshina Kannada, Kasargod, Udupi and Bijapur participated in the ceremony. Rev. J B Crasta presented gifts to couples and also tokens of appreciation to the donors. Maurice Monteiro and Rita Monteiro led the handing over of the bride to the grooms family (‘Opsun Dhivnchem’) ceremony. Couple, Melvyn and Priyanka lighted the lamp on behalf of all newly wedded couples.Precilla Noronha raised the toast. Suresh and Carmel Priya responded to the toast on behalf of all couples. Elizabeth Roche compered the programme.
Recap - Mass Wedding practice here :
Rev. Fred Pereira, parish priest in 1975 at Rosario Cathedral parish, started this laudable actively encouraged and guided it for years. Now in its forty-third year, estimates are that at least 1000 couples have been wedded in this fashion.
In 1975, St Vincent De Paul Society’s Cathedral Parish Chapter in its silver jubilee, was inspired with thought of free community weddings as anaddition to the charitable works it did. The aim was to avoid vulgar display of wealth with loans galore. A starting married life on a joyous note is vital and hence this strategy was used.
Wedding celebrations among Konkani Kanara Catholics is not a one-day affair. Lavish consumerism lasts for long in honour of the bridal couple and their parents. The starting of community weddings in Mangaluru represented the beginning of revolt against the waste indulged in by Catholics in pointless celebrations. Catholic lay people and clergy banded together into a committee to organise the community weddings. The then Bishop Basil D’ Souza had been the chief celebrant for this annual event which has been followed to this day.