St. John Paul II Parish in Morodava – Today

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« Behold, I send you the bearer of good news for the people of the entire world. »

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Parafia Morond Dzis09A very great joy filled the hearts of the Christians of the new parish of Blessed John Paul II in Morondava, Madagascar on Sunday October 20th, 2013. On this Sunday, the blessing of the new chapel and the greeting of the relics of Blessed John Paul II was celebrated. For the solemn entrance, a song was chosen which corresponds with the charism of John Paul II, being the missionary pope for the entire world.

In the month of September, Father Riri and I preached in the five parishes in the city of Morondava. In each parish, we preached sermons on the spiritual heritage of John Paul II and in the evening there was the presentation of a film on his life. In our parish the feast was preceded by a Triduum. On the last day of the Triduum confessions were heard.

Four Oblates came for the feast. They were Father Marek Ochlak OMI, superior of the Oblate delegation on Madagascar, Father Adam Szul OMI, bursar of the delegation, Father Henryk Marciniak OMI and Father Stanislaw Kazek OMI.

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The chapel was too small for the celebrations, so we prepared to celebrate Mass in the open air. The veranda of the chapel served as a podium for the altar and the celebrants. The bishop of the diocese of Morondava, Monsignor Fabien Raharilamboniaina presided at the Mass. When Mass was to begin, I asked the celebrant to bless our new chapel. I took the opportunity to explain the reasons why we chose the name of Blessed John Paul II for the new chapel. Jean Paul II did a lot of good for the Christians on Madagascar during his visit to this country in 1989. He firmly encouraged the Christian and he beatified blessed Victoria Rasoamanarivo.

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Later, before the bishop and the Christians I presented the relics of Blessed John Paul II, which I had previously received from Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, archbishop of Krakow. This is the blood of Blessed John Paul. In accepting these relics and receiving the certificate from Cardinal Dziwisz, our bishop welcomed the relics into the diocese.

Mindful of this feast, every Tuesday evening there is a prayer pageant before the Relics, which is carried out by the youth of the parish. During this prayer, we want to send to the Christians the powerful words of John Paul II: “Fear not. Open to Christ the doors to your hearts. »

 

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The liturgy of the Mass was animated by the young of the parish. Father Riri, parish vicar and composer, composed two songs for this feast. It was according to the customs of Madagascar that during the singing of four songs, the young people did their liturgical dancing.

Parafia Morond Dzis20On May 11, 2014, the fourth Sunday of Easter, in the new parish of St. John Paul II in Morondava was held a great celebration that reminded us of the name and figure of Jesus Good Shepherd. This feast reminded the image of God who never forgets us: he sends his emissaries who take care of his people.

Parafia Morond Dzis26The feast of the canonization of John Paul II and John XXIII in our parish was scheduled for May 11, because of the stay of our diocesan Bishop in Rome on April 27 during the canonization. At first, we thought we were preparing a party only for our parish. Then, the bishop of the diocese asked to add to our program the closing of the training for 200 catechists of the Morondava bush who animate the prayer in their chapels when the priest is not there.

The Mass was presided by the Bishop of the Diocese of Miarinarivo, Monsignor Jean Claude Randrianarisoa, who is responsible for the formation of catechists. The new deacon of the Congregation of the Saletins was ordained by the Bishop of the Diocese of Morondava, Marie Fabien Raharilamboniaiana.  

At the beginning of the Mass we made the procession during which we brought two large photos: Saint John Paul II, worn by young people and Saint John XXIII carried by the parish committee. Walking behind the picture of Saint John Paul II, I was wearing his Relics. After having read the short biography of John Paul II and John XXIII and having sung a song that corresponds to their life, the Bishop announced that, in the eyes of the Church, they are already holy and worthy of veneration and, can invoke them during prayer.

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John Paul II has not forgotten Madagascar. He visited our island in 1989. I think that our feast gave the Christians of Morondava a lot of joy to our new parish and helped him to fit well in the history of the diocese of Morondava.

The holy and good pastors: John Paul II and John XXII - pray for Madagascar

Father Mariusz Kasperski OMI