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Bangladesh: Khasia Catholic community celebrates (Jingiaseng) Christ the King Feast

The Khasis people of Bangladesh celebrated "Khasi Jingiaseng Proseshion" at Aliacherra Punjee under St. Joseph, the worker Parish in Sreemangal from November 19 to 20. (Photo: Father Pius Pohdueng OMI).

Diocese of Sylhet in Bangladesh, Kashia Catholic community celebrates (Jingiaseng) Christ the King Feast in a grand manner at Aliacherra Punjee under St. Joseph, the worker Parish in Sreemangal from November 19 to 20.

The Khasia Community in Bangladesh pay due respect to Christ the King of the universe every year, and with much preparation and reverence, they celebrate the feast of Christ the King called Jingiaseng.

Bishop Shorot Francis Gomes of Sylhet diocese,  who was the main celebrant for the festival mass with 20 priests, said in his homily:  

"Christ is our King. He is our leader and protector. We as his follower must give respect and gratitude to Him."

He encouraged the faithful and the religious to "embrace those traits of love, service, forgiveness and humility of Jesus, the Lord of lords and the King of kings and practice them in their day-to-day Christian living."

Catholics regard Christ as their King and feel obligated by the rules and examples set up by Christ the King in their day-to-day life.

Khasis of Bangladesh have been celebrating the Solemnity of Christ the King for the last sixty-one years. Traditionally, the Khasi Catholics scattered in different Upazilas (small local government units) under the administrative division of the Sylhet diocese gather together as a community of believers in one Punjee (Khasi village) to celebrate this solemnity.

On the occasion of the 61st religious festival, several priests spoke on different themes. Father Pius Pohdueng OMI shared thoughts on “Christ, the Bread of Life”, Father Michael Makri SDB, a guest priest from India, spoke on “Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life” and Catechist Stanley Bareh, a guest speaker from India talked on “Christ the King of kings."

Every year, the event starts the previous night spent in prayers, confession and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.

The Khasi Catholic Rangbah Balang Association organized the auspicious celebration of the Solemnity of Christ the King.

The Khasis people of Bangladesh celebrated "Khasi Jingiaseng Proseshion"

Expressing his satisfaction, the secretary of the Association Mr. Boniface Khonglah said, “I am so happy and emotionally touched seeing so many people coming from different Punjees and taking active participation in the celebration despite the political turmoil and strikes called by the transportation authorities in the division of Sylhet. Christ is really our King and nothing can stop us from coming to pay due respect to our King and our Lord.”

Theresa Lakachiang, one of the active lay leaders from Aliacherra Punjee who was involved with the choir expressed her joy by saying: “I am overjoyed with the fruitful and successful celebration of the solemnity of Christ the King. I was so happy to be actively involved with the program. The people of the entire village worked hand in hand irrespective of age, creed and faith.  The inter-church solidarity was very strongly manifested in the entire celebration.”

The first-ever "Khasi Jingiaseng Proseshion" (Eucharistic Procession of Christ the King) took place at Meghatila Punjee under Kulaura Upazila of Moulvibazar district in 1977.

Khasi Rangbah-Balang Association, an association of prayer leaders among the Khasis, was established with the inspiration of Father Herman Doronila OMI and Sr. Mida RNDM in 1976. Since then, this solemnity of Christ the King became a major traditional feast for the Khasis in Bangladesh.

This Khasi Jingiaseng (religious gathering) was unique in the sense that for the first time in its history, the program was live telecasted by Weekly Pratibeshi under the leadership of Father Bulbul Rebeiro, director of Weekly Pratibeshi.

Over 2000 Khasia Catholic faithful from different Punjees (villages) joined in the Eucharistic celebration and Procession of Christ the King. - Nikhil Gomes


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