Ranchi archdiocese marked Christmas Day with Christmas presents to ensure the livelihood of sixty-two poor and needy people. The Archdiocese reached out to the extremely poor families who were most affected during the second wave of the Covid pandemic.
On 28 December, twenty-one men were given cycle-rickshaws and thirty-two widows and struggling mothers were gifted sewing machines. The Missionaries of Charity, who work among the poorest of the poor, selected the beneficiaries, according to the official website of the Archdiocese.
The celebration took place at the Archbishop's House on Camille Bulke Road, where Archbishop Felix Toppo and Auxiliary Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas sfx shared sweets, Christmas and New Year greetings.
"Christmas is not for Christians alone but for people of the entire world. As you know, last year we gave meals to about 3000 people. This year we thought of giving you a gift that would help you earn your own meals," Bishop Theodore told the gathering.
The rickshaw pullers had to shell out as many as seventy rupees a day to the owners and having their rickshaw would help them to save as much as 2000 rupees a month, thus enabling them to take better care of their families.
The gift of the rickshaws was made possible by a Swiss donor, Mario Tumelaro. In November, on the occasion of Archbishop Felix's birthday, the Archdiocese had gifted rickshaws to twenty-one people with funds contributed by local parishioners and the lay faithful. Inspired by this, Bishop Theodore said that Mario donated funds for another twenty-one rickshaws.
Addressing the women, Bishop Theodore said that he hoped that the sewing machine would help them earn some money. Twelve machines were donated by the SCJM congregation, made possible through small contributions from ordinary families and women working in village projects. The other 20 sewing machines were purchased through the generosity of the laity, who make small donations and contributions to the Archdiocese.
Bishop Theodore thanked the SCJM (Sisters of Charity of Jesus and Mary) sisters for their generosity.
Archbishop Felix Toppo said a prayer for all those present, calling for peace among all people of the world and seeking God's blessings so that mutual help, love and understanding spread over in the coming year.
SCJM Provincial Sr. Mary Joseph, Fathers Tobias Toppo, Yustas, and Sushil Toppo, Missionaries of Charity religious brothers and sisters; Kuldeep Tirkey and parish youth were also present.
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