Saint Thomas Feast Celebration 2019
The Feast of Saint Thomas the Apostle was celebrated at St Francis Xavier's Cathedral on the 5th July, 2019 at 7pm. This is a very important celebration for the Archdiocese, and especially for the Indian Catholic Community with Saint Thomas being the Patron Saint of India.
The Mass began with the entrance hymn “As We Gather”, led by the Tamil Choir, as priests and deacons processed in with the main celebrant, Fr. Philip Marshall. A beautiful ceremony called “Maha Aarathi” followed, as seven girls, dressed in Indian traditional costume, performed a cultural liturgical dance in front of the altar. With approximately 350 people in attendance, Father Phillip addressed the congregation with warmth as he expressed his appreciation for the gift of Faith the Indian Catholic Community brings to the Catholic Church in Adelaide and reminded us of our shared mission to spread the Good News of the Gospel as St Thomas did.
There are many languages spoken in India, so St Thomas Mass is an occasion for various Indian community groups in Adelaide to participate in the liturgy of the Mass in different languages including Bengali, English, Hindi, Malayalam, Marathi, Konkani and Tamil. One of the highlights of the Mass was the customary blessing of the children at the conclusion of the Mass. At Father Philip Marshall’s invitation, more than one hundred children filled the main aisle of the Cathedral, eager to receive God’s grace through this blessing.
After the Mass, everyone was invited to St Francis Xavier's Cathedral Hall for light refreshments with Indian food. Many community leaders and volunteers were deeply involved in planning and organising the celebration. At the end of the celebration, many people expressed their gratitude and joy for having the opportunity to gather as a community, to celebrate this special event together, in a wonderful spirit of solidarity with one another.
Please enjoy some of the pictures taken at the celebration.