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Dear Fathers / Brothers / Sisters and my dear people,
We continue the season of Easter and I greet you all once again with the peace of the Risen Lord!
The month of May is usually the hottest part of the year and we all deserve a prolonged summer holiday and if possible some sort of outing and deviation from the routine. I wish that this happens to all of us in some form or other, so that we are well prepared for our next move in our lives.
But however, due to the pandemic interruptions, most of the schools and colleges continue working during these days of burning heat. It is unavoidable. I wish all our student children, especially those who are having their government examinations, all success in their endeavours.
The month of May is also known as Marian Month. We have the tradition of having Marian devotions in our homes and parishes. Mother Mary continues to be our need because she will intercede with her Son for us her children at all times, for all our needs. I wish that we continue our Catholic tradition of
holding special events to honour Our Blessed Mother.
This year during this month of May we will be having two of our deacons ordained as Priests for our diocese. It is a moment of joy and pride for us. We also have the duty to pray for the priests in general and for the new priests in our diocese and all over the world that they may not lose the focus of their Master
who called them for this life of service and that they may be determined from the beginning to follow him in every aspect of their lives amidst the alluring temptations of this world for power, position, pleasure and comfort.
I wish to draw your attention to the concluding stage of the diocesan phase of the Synod of Bishops 2023, due during this month.
We might recall the inauguration of the XVI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops 2023 floated by the Holy Father, that had a grand take off in all the dioceses of the world in the month of October 2021. We held a colourful event in our Cathedral launching the diocesan phase of the Synod in our diocese on the 19th October 2021. The pageantry of the Synodal Logo was a grand display. All done, now is the stipulated time for winding up the diocesan
phase of the synodal journey. As part of our diocesan synodal efforts, we circulated the questionnaire with some moot points to trigger reflection among the clergy, religious and the laity. It has been satisfactorily responded by most of the parishes. I do appreciate your interest and involvement.
On Saturday, the 7th May 2022 we shall be having the concluding celebration of the diocesan phase of the Synod of Bishops in our Cathedral. We shall share the collated data inputs and also the final draft report to be forwarded to the Regional Synod Desk. The Holy Eucharist of the day will be the culmination of our diocesan phase of the Synod of Bishops.
I expect the following representative members to be present for the occasion:
􀂙    All the diocesan and religious Parish Priests and the Assistants
􀂙    One man and one woman CRI representative from each Vicariate
􀂙    All Major Superiors and
􀂙    One male and one female representative from each parish.
The dynamics of the day will be as follows:
􀂙    09.30 am       Registration and tea
􀂙    10.00 am       The Closing Events of the Diocesan Phase of the Synod
􀂙    11.15 am       Solemn Concluding Holy Eucharist
􀂙    12.30 pm       Lunch & Departure
Let me conclude this message with the emphasis that Synod is not an event to be begun only to be concluded. It is the spirit of Synodality that should take us forward as a Synodal Church to make our ecclesial existence relevant to our times, witnessing to the Kingdom that Jesus has inaugurated, where there will be peace, justice, equality and fraternity, shunning all forms of bondage, discrimination and deprivation.
God bless you!

+ Most Rev Dr A Neethinathan
Bishop of Chingleput