Mumbai (AsiaNews) - With fireworks, gatherings and masses, the Archdiocese of Mumbai is celebrating 50 years of its’ St. Pius X Seminary and 25 years of Parel Seminary, the first Church institute founded in the city. The festivities, which began Oct. 24, saw the participation of hundreds of priests from all over India and will continue until October 28. The Jubilee Mass was concelebrated by Msgr. Robert Sarah, secretary of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, Mgr. Archbishop Oswald Gracias of Mumbai and the new Apostolic Nuncio in India Salvatore Pennacchio, on his first visit to the archdiocese.
"In these 50 years - said Mgr. Sarah in his homily - Divine Providence has never failed to accompany this Seminary with abundant Graces throughout these fifty years, even during very difficult moments of trials". The prelate urged seminarians and priests to "bring the Eucharist" to the heart of this anniversary. "It is a moment of grace from God - he added - to deepen faith, hope and the opportunity for the work of evangelization, especially in the formation of future priests”.
Present at the inauguration of the seminary in 1960 as a young student, Mgr. Gracias thanked all the donors in these 50 years who have supported the institute with prayers and donations, enabling the formation of new priests. Since its founding the College of St. Pius X has trained more than 700 priests and every year for five to seven new seminarians enter the institute.
The seminary holds special importance since 2006, which is when the programs were approved by Congregation for Catholic Education, Rome. It is also affiliated with the St. Peters Pontifical Institute of Bangalore and students passing out as priests are provided with a degree that is internationally recognized.