His Eminence Oswald Cardinal Gracias, Archbishop of Bombay, formally inaugurated the diamond jubilee year of St. Pius X seminary on 05 October 2019 with a solemn Eucharistic Celebration. A few bishops and archbishops, alumni of our seminary, and the priests of our Archdiocese concelebrated at the holy mass.
St. Pius X seminary is a magnificent edifice in the heart of Mumbai. It was inaugurated on 05 October 1960. It was the vision of the late Valerian Cardinal Gracias, the then Archbishop of Bombay to have a diocesan seminary. Today, the seminary fondly remembers him for being the founder of St. Pius X College. We also acknowledge and remain grateful to the Jesuits for their enormous contribution to the seminary before the administration was handed on to the archdiocese.
Oswald Cardinal Gracias in his homily said, ‘Every Eucharist is a thanksgiving. We need to thank God for blessing our archdiocese with this magnificent seminary for the last 60 years. It is in this place we encountered Christ and we are called upon by our Christian virtue to share Jesus Christ with others. It is also a day of reflection on our own priestly life and our apostolate. The church exists for evangelization and the challenging question for all of us today is, what is evangelization for us in India and in Bombay? Is the church in Bombay sufficiently looking outward in evangelization? Are we creative? Are we changing with the challenging times? The world is changing rapidly, and therefore it is a challenge to know how to evangelize in the changing context. Evangelization is promoting human rights, rights of women, protecting children, making churches safe and making Jesus present for everyone. Perhaps we need the same fire of the apostles to give Jesus to every person in the world we meet – poor, needy, marginalized, downtrodden etc.’
The rector of St. Pius X seminary, Rev. Fr. Aniceto Pereira, thanked his Eminence for having celebrated the inaugural Eucharist and also the archbishops, bishops and priests for concelebrating. At the end of the Eucharist the cardinal blessed the congregation with the relic of St. Pius X.
After the Holy Eucharist there was a theological symposium to discuss on ‘The Priesthood Today: Challenges and Opportunities.’ Mr. Royston Braganza, CEO, Grameen Bank, Fr. Frazer Mascarenhas SJ, Fr. Victor Ferrao, Professor at the Patriarchal Seminary of Rachol Goa and Mrs. Teesta Setalvad, Social Activist were on the panel. Rev. Fr. Gilbert De Lima moderated the discussion. It was definitely an interesting discussion for most of the priests, religious and for the laity present. The speakers highlighted various challenges in the church now and in the near future. Dn. Cliffton Mendonca proposed the vote of thanks and invited the guests to the festal agape.