Together with all the Jesus and Mary Institutions throughout the world, we the Sisters of CJM at Clare Road, celebrated the JM Day, with the entire community, which comprises St. Margaret’s College, St. Agnes’ High School and Junior College and the Special School, on 13 th November 2017.
The entire campus was filled with an air of celebration as staff and students, sisters and helpers, parents and AFJM all busied themselves preparing the place for the occasion. The main entrance and the auditorium where the Eucharist was celebrated, was exquisitely and tastefully done up.
The ceremony began with a flashback of Claudine witnessing the execution of her two brothers. This incident goaded to reach out with compassion and love to those who never experienced the goodness of God, especially the young. The Congregation of Jesus and Mary started in 1818, from this initiative of Claudine and her companions, and it was on 13 November 1842, that six of the J & M sisters first opened their apostolic mission in Agra, India. So we too are journeying with Claudine today.
The entrance procession then came in with lighted lamps-representatives of Sisters, AFJM, Teachers, Students and Helpers, to symbolize our need to bring light into a world darkened by hatred and injustice. These lamps were placed before the statue of St. Claudine, forming the figure 200.
His Lordship Bishop Savio Fernandes was the main celebrant at the Eucharist, with Fr. Jude SJ and Fr. Tony SJ concelebrating with him. They were led to the altar by students doing a prayer dance. The Bishop on stressed the love Claudine had for God, which was like that of Jesus. We can all imitate her in love for God, no matter what religious tradition we follow. This common ground will bring us into harmony with one another, and there will be peace.
The choir, accompanied by the violin, guitar and keyboard, enhanced the solemnity of the celebration with their melody.
The offerings made by different groups, were later to be distributed among the poor.
The Mass ended with all singing the JM anthem with great pride!
This was followed by refreshments and a cultural program.
The little ones of St. Agnes’ High school sang «Garden of Love» to welcome the guests and the seniors acted Claudine’s virtue of faith, touching everyone’s heart.
The children of the Special School expressed their joy by enchanting all with an Indian Dance.
The students of St. Margaret’s College did a graphic presentation, depicting the long, arduous journey undertaken by the first Mothers who came to India, lasting eleven months due to hazards, from Marseilles to Agra.
The celebrations came to a conclusion with a Vote of Thanks.
The entire experience was enriching and touching, making all feel proud to belong to the JM Family thus keeping alive the last words of St. Claudine, «How Good God Is.»