Bandra: “Say yes to God’s will like Mary,” says Bishop Rodrigues
by Nirmala Carvalho

The feast of the Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth was celebrated in the Basilica of Our Lady of the Mount, marking the end of the Marian month. The Rosary was recited every day by Mary’s Clan. Hindus and ordinary people were "touched" by the Mother of Jesus.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) – Bishop John Rodrigues, rector of the Basilica of Our Lady of Mount of Bandra (Mumbai), spoke yesterday to 600 worshippers at the feast of the Visitation, in which the Church remembers the visit Mary paid to her cousin Elizabeth.

“Say yes to God’s will like Mary,” he said. “May the Virgin Mary help you live like living witnesses to the love of Jesus, and bear witness to him through a life of love, unity and peace,” he added in his final blessing.

The ceremony ended the celebrations of the month dedicated to Our Lady, which local Catholics, but also many Hindus, observed with the daily recitation of the Rosary.

The event was held in front of the basilica, where the cross of Christ is located, adorned for the occasion with white and red roses, floral garlands and many messages left by the faithful. Diana, a young Catholic woman, was in charge of decorations for the whole month, buying fresh flowers to make the most beautiful compositions.

A Hindu merchant fascinated by the service offered by the members of Mary’s Clan during the recitation of the Rosary provided the sound system. The association, which helps people with an alcohol dependency reintegrate society, organised the prayers.

The example of the Hindu man shows that "Mary leaves no one indifferent,” said Mary’s Clan director Bosco Pereira. “Mary brings out everyone’s hidden talents and virtues, especially those who are on the margins of society. The same goes for our alcoholics, who took part in Marian devotion with total joy."

Large-scale participation "was an opportunity to worship, glorify, pray and thank God in public as a community,” Pereira added.

“I noticed that people came here with enthusiasm, reverence and faith. Many of them came with requests for the Mother, and some came bearing thanksgiving gifts for favours received. This way, they thank the Virgin for her intercession with her Son Jesus. "

Msgr Nereus Rodrigues, ex-rector of the Basilica, was happy with the crowds. "I've seen people full of fervour and devotion throughout the month of May in gratitude for favours received from Mary."

"Mary is the Mother of all,” he added. “I urge you", he said, before giving the final blessing in Latin, "to have a close relationship with Our Lady, who helps us in every circumstance.”

“Mary is the channel for graces. Like Mary, be sensitive to the needs of everyone, be available to serve all, joyfully, and continue to pray the Rosary in your homes. May God bless each one of you."

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