Mangaluru, Aug 01, 2019: The nine-day novena prior to the annual feast of St Lawrence Church, Bondel began on Thursday, August 1 with the unfurling of St Lawrence’s flag here at the church premises.
Walter Nandalike, founder, Daijiworld Media Group, hoisted the flag and said, "Bondel Shrine is one of the main centres, which reflects communal harmony in the region. It opens the doors for all religions without any discrimination. The annual feast contains a message of peace and brotherhood. Thousands of devotees visit here and pray to St Lawrence. This should continue and the light of humanity should spread from this holy place."
Fr Leo Veigas inaugurated the novena by lighting the lamp along with guests and priests, followed by the invocation of God’s blessings with a prayer. Earlier, parish priest Andrew Leo D’Souza welcomed the guests with flower bouquets.
Mr Harinath, Ex Mayor of Mangalore City Corporation, renowned Konkani writer Austin D’Souza Prabhu, Rev. Fr Clifford Pinto, Principal, St Lawrence English Medium School, Rev. Fr Cyril Lobo, Asst Parish Priest, Mr Henbert Pinto, Vice-President, parish pastoral council, Mr Francis Veigas, Secretory, Mr Rudy Pinto, Shrine committee convener and Mr Stany Alvares publicity committee convenor were present.
Mr Wilfred Alvares, secretory of Shrine committee compered the programme.The novena of first day began with the Eucharistic celebration. Fr Leo Veigas was the main celebrant.