Feast of Our Lady of Health on Monday
Feast of Our Lady of Health on Monday, Arogya Matha Church in Khairatabad awaits a carnival on Monday which would mark the annual feast of Our Lady of Health.
Arogya Matha Church in Khairatabad awaits a carnival on Monday which would mark the annual feast of Our Lady of Health. The feast commemorates the birthday of Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, and is celebrated by people of all faiths along with the Christian community. The organisers are expecting a turnout of 2.5 lakh people this time.
The celebration would begin with a midnight mass on Sunday, which would be followed by cutting of the birthday cake by the parish priest, Fr Paul Raj. “Devotees from various communities throng the church in large numbers to venerate at the feet of the 111-year-old statue of Mother Mary,” said Fr Paul Raj.
The feast day celebration would commence with a holy mass at 4 am in English, followed by Telugu mass at 5 am, English mass at 6 am, Tamil mass at 7 am and English at 8.45 am. The special mass by Thumma Bala, Archbishop of Hyderabad, would be at 10.30 am.
“There would be a midnight vigil on Sunday as well as Monday to mark the event,” he added. Later at 6 pm, the idol of Mother Mary clutching infant Jesus in her hand would be taken out in procession through the streets of AC Guards.
The festive celebrations which began with hoisting of the traditional flag will draw to a close with the lowering of the standard on Tuesday, marking the finale to the grand, eleven-day celebrations.
While some thank the Lady for the favours received, others would petition with offer of candles, silver articles, coconuts and flowers as a mark of gratitude. The organisers of the holy event say that devotees throng this church not only from various parts of the state but also from neighbouring Maharashtra and Karnataka. The birthday of Mother Mary is also celebrated on a grand scale at Mumbai’s Mount Mary Basilica at Bandra.
“Elaborate arrangements have been made for the pilgrims in the venue. There is CCTV monitoring in place, and many fathers and sisters have been attending to these pilgrims offering various services for them,” the parish priest said.
The Road Transport Corporation would run special buses on the feast day to commute the pilgrims.
At present, the shrine is hosting a three-day divine convention hosted by Fr Augustine from Potta Ashram, a charismatic retreat centre in Kerala.