Mangaluru, Nov 28, 2014: A shrine built at Bajpe, about 25 kms from the city honouring Pope John Paul II, with support of devotees of Mangalore Diocese at a cost Rs 1.5 crore. It was built at the place where Pope addressed a humongous gathering of four lakh plus on February 6, 1986.
Holy mass was concelebrated five Bishops - Aloysius Paul D’Souza - Mangalore Diocese, Francis Serrao - Shivamogga Diocese, Gerald Isaac Lobo - Udupi Diocese, Mar Lawrence Mukkuzhy - Belthangady Diocese and Geevarghese Mar Divannasios - Puttur Diocese.
The church enshrines an attractive statue of the St Pope John Paul II, of six feet height. Archbishop Pennachio had given this statue to the diocese. Pope John Paul II had visited cities of India proclaiming peace in 1986 from February 1 to 10. The present Bishop was then the chancellor of Diocese. As he had met with an accident three days before the event, Aloysius D’Souza had a glimpse of Pope when he met the sick people on that day in a special area, where he was seated.
A reliquary with a vial of St Pope John Paul’s blood was given to Mangalore Bishop Rt Rev Aloysius Paul D’Souza by Most Rev Salvatore Pennachio, the Papal Nuncio to India, during the blessing of the church on November 27.