Gazirvita, Bangladesh. On 9th December 2019, on the feast day of the Immaculate Conception a new mission in the diocese of Mymensingh in Bangladesh was opened by the Kolkata Claretians in the place called “Gazirvita”. Bangladesh is the 169th country on the Claretian map.
This newly erected parish is bifurcated from the mother parish of Biroi Dakuni. The inaugural Mass began at 10:30 am after a traditional ceremonial welcome given by the people to all the dignitaries. There were about 1500 participants including diocesan and religious priests, sisters, representatives of the Church of Bangladesh, the Local Member of the Parliament, and the Chairman of the local administration. The Holy Eucharist was colorful with different Gharo dances and melodious singing. Fr. J. Christu Raja, CMF was installed in the same celebration as the new Parish Priest, and Fr. Gabriel Mankin Sangma, CMF from the North East Delegation as assistant Parish Priest.
The Bishop, His Excellency Rt. Rev. Ponen Poul Kubi D.D in his homily thanked the Claretians for their missionary zeal to collaborate in the ministry of Evangelization with his diocese. He requested the Claretians to concentrate on two areas namely, deepening the simple faith of the people and leading them in all-around development.
Fr. V. Lawrence, CMF, the Major Superior of Kolkata Delegation read out the message of Very Rev. Fr. Mathew Vattamattam, CMF, the Superior General, and in his speech thanked the Bishop for welcoming the Claretians in his diocese and highlighted the importance of Charisms coming together to make the ministry of evangelization more fruitful.
This year we are celebrating the Golden Jubilee of the arrival of the Claretian Congregation in India and Gazirvita indeed is Jubilee gift of God to the ASCLA West Claretians. The new Church is named after Mother Mary, i.e. St. Mary’s Church.
Gazirvita is situated in the extreme North-East of the Mymensingh Diocese, one of its most rural parishes without electricity and other amenities. It is on the Indian border of Meghalaya. 95% of the Catholics in this region are Gharo Tribals and the rest are Bengalis. The Parish consists of 13 villages with a total number of about 3500 Parishioners.