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Fr. Joachim Inter-Faith Welcome Center Opened At Kottur

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KOTTUR, SEPT. 28: A large number of people rejoiced over the opening of  Fr. Joachim Memorial Inter-Faith Welcome Center at Kottur on Sep. 28.

Bishop Henry D Souza, Bishop of Bellary blessed the newly built Inter-faith Welcome Center under the leadership of Fr. Jai Prakash.

Newly elected Provincial of Order of Friars Minor Fr. Praveen D’Souza ofm unveiled the picture of Fr. Joachim of happy memory.

After the thanksgiving Holy Mass, an inter-faith meeting was held on the occasion.

Various religious communities were represented by their local leaders. Sri Channakoti Swamy of Nandipur Mutt, Sri Amarjith Singh of Sikh community, Sri Rajendra Kumar Jain of Jains, Sri Bagali Basha Saheb of Islam and Pastor Kotresh addressed the gathering. They stressed o the need of greater respect for all religious traditions and uphold social harmny.

Speaking at the occasion Bishop Henry D’Souza stated that the life and mission of Christains is to be inspired by the life and teachings of Jesus and to love and serve one and all.

He recalled the recent canonization of St. Teresa of Calcutta who “loved God and therefore served the poor”.

Bishop also emphasized that world religions are gifts of God and they are not enemies of one another.

“Religions should never fight each other. Rather they should lead their followers to God and fight the common enemies such as poverty, diseases, violence and deprivation”, Bishop insisted.

He urged and appealed to the leaders present to be promoters of agents love and peace.

Fr. Joachim who came to Bellary from United Kingdom in 1956, served in Bellary, Gulburga and Raichur districts for 53 years.

He used to walk for miles or pedal an old bicycle, which he used for 40 years visiting people in need irrespective of caste or creed.

He was an exemplary, dedicated missionary who toiled in this soil  promoting message of peace, unity and  love.

The Inter-Faith Welcome is a brain child of Fr. Jai Prakash, the first parish priest of Kottur.

This dream was realized through the generous contribution of the Trustees of Franciscan Friars of English Province.

Fr. Jai Prakash, the pioneer of Kottur Mission, landed in Kottur in 2012, striving to establish the mission.

Ms. Riya Kodali, a celebrity designer, was a special invitee at the occasion. Hundreds of people, priests, religious, and leaders  of Kottur, Bellary, Raichur and various other parts of Karnataka witnessed the event. 

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Loss of life : 72
Villages affected : 1,296
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No. Catholic houses lost: 560
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