Holy Cross RC Church, Princes Town was completely filled January 19 for Mass as our beloved parish priest, Fr Puliyammakkal Santhosh MSFS celebrated the 10th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood.
Fr Santhosh who came from India was appointed to the Archdiocese of Port of Spain in 2014 and assigned to the parish in 2015. He is known for his dedication to priestly service, and his pertinent stories and amusing jokes during his homilies.
Three of his brother priests travelled to Trinidad to celebrate their ordination anniversaries together: Fr Dileep MSFS is based in Jacksonville, Florida; and Frs Jomon MSFS and Aneesh MSFS are priests of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas. Regrettably, Fr Aneesh had to leave before the celebration.
Fr Dileep, the chief celebrant offered the Mass in thanksgiving for the gift of priesthood and all God’s blessings bestowed on them.
He said that God is his strength and sustenance. His message to us was to turn toward the Lord for, ultimately, He is our strength like the words of the sunflower song: “Like a sunflower that follows every moment of the sun, so I turn toward you, to follow you my Lord.”
Fr Jomon in his homily said that the Liturgy of the day invites each of us to allow the light of the Lord to pass through us so we can become witnesses to God’s love to the world.
St Paul, allowed the light to pass through him as he understood the depth of God’s vocation and lived a holy life as God’s authentic witness, while John the Baptist, he added, followed the will of God and took up his mission and duty of being a burning and shining light. He stressed that as Christians we should seek and do God’s will.
In conclusion he said that as we pray, may it be the words of the Marian hymn: “Mother Mary help me to be open to let the light shine through me, Mother Mary make me transparent like you.”
Fr Santhosh thanked the congregation for their presence and participation. He said it was indeed a sign of our love for him as our parish priest. Fr Dileep concluded saying he enjoyed the singing of the choir and extended his thanks to the congregation for accepting and loving Fr Santhosh as well as for our prayers, gifts and smiles.
The parishioners of the Princes Town parish congratulate Fr Santhosh on his anniversary. It is with grateful hearts we extend our deepest appreciation for his pastoral care, love and committed service. We pray for his perseverance in his vocation and that he may continue to be the good shepherd to God’s faithful.
—Story and photos courtesy Annette Lall Singh