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A Marian Pilgrimage for Vocations in Sri Lanka

21/03/2005: Sri Lanka

y Cross College Kaluthara, Joseph Vaz College Wennappuwa, St Mary’s College Negombo, and Nirmala Matha Maha Vidyalya Kalpitiya Electro Institute Negombo >“Marcellin’s dream, Live it today!” was the main theme of our Marian pilgrimage. About 400 students from our present and former schools participated, accompanied by our novices, postulants, aspirants, some scouts and Red Cross members. The schools represented included Maris Stella College Negombo, St Josephs College Nugegoda, Holy Cross College Kaluthara, Joseph Vaz College Wennappuwa, St Mary’s College Negombo, and Nirmala Matha Maha Vidyalya Kalpitiya Electro Institute Negombo.

The Pilgrimage started at the Old Shrine at Tewatte, Ragmama, a little town about 11 km from Colombo. A prayer service was held followed by a procession lead by a Cross as a reminder of Lent. Two students held a banner with Mary’s words “Do whatever he tells you!”, followed by the National Flag, the New Catholic Flag and a banner of Marcellin with the words of the main theme. After arriving at the Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes at 11.30 am, Brother Provincial addressed the students about the importance of the Marist Vocation Year. A special candle was lit by the Provincial who announced that this candle would be taken to all Marist schools and institutes. The Pilgrimage then moved on to the Basilica dedicated to Our Lady of Sri Lanka where a special Eucharist was celebrated. Fr Joseph Cooray, an old boy of the Marist Brothers, presided at the Mass and spoke to the students in their own language about the importance of each vocation. After Mass, schools provided entertainment through different items and the singing of the National Anthem marked the official end of the Pilgrimage.

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