Psalm: 34.6 “ This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles”. The will of the merciful Lord about the St. Antony’s Relic Pilgrim Centre has been revealed in this inspired verse. For many years now, this pilgrim centre is chosen as the dwelling place of the mercy of the Lord, “Taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm: 34.8) Those who are hungry, the Lord says, “ Come and eat” and “you will never be hungry again”, here the Lord feeds multitudes, because he is moved with pity for the people around him. “ The Lord is here to those who have a broken heart and saves those who have a …spirit.” (Psalm 34:18) The streams of tears that flow into this ‘Tent of Mercy’ are from the broken hearted people and from the hearts filled with repentance and …..The Lord fulfills his promises: “ I sought the Lord and he heard me and delivered me from all my tears” (Psalm 34:4). Many witness that “ just be in this saved place consoles them and strengthens them” and hence this is truly the dwelling of the Lord.
People from far and wide visits this sanctuary and receives God’s favours. This pilgrim centre is very much privileged with the first class Relic of St. Antony of Padua, through the intercession of whom a lot of miracles are received here. The sanctuary even though adjacent to the private bus station and railway station of Kottayam, once you enter there, you will see that your life is radiant and your heart is light. The tears of many has made the sanctuary a “Holy ground” where the Lord sits and walks with the people.
The faith of the people is unbelievable and they spend day hours in the sanctuary. On ‘Tuesdays’ the trains and buses are packed, hundreds and hundreds of other vehicles are parked around the sanctuary and thousands and thousands of people are flowed to the sanctuary from 3 am to midnight. All the six sessions of celebrations of Holy Eucharist, preaching, Novena and Adoration of the Holy Sacrament touch and transform people in a unique way. The sacramental life is ingifted more: the confessions begin around 4 am to 10.00 pm, around 30 priests hear the confessions and few priests are available for counseling and nearly 12 priests from morning till 10.30 pm pray over the people, all through the day and Perpetual Adoration Chapel will be full. It is good to be here in the House of the Lord.
His Excellence Bishop Sebastian Thekkethecheril visits the sanctuary every Monday evening and on every first Tuesday. His Excellence celebrates the 10.00 am mass. We stand close to the apostolic blessing. Many Cardinals and Bishops from in and outside of India visit the sanctuary. It is indeed the House of Mercy of the Lord and how fortunate we are to live near this wonderful dwelling of the Lord! I could see, the goodness of all the people and authorities of Kottayam upholds this sacred place. It is the “sanctuary for all people”. I also bow down the late Arch Bishop Cornelius and Bishop Peter Thuruthikkonam who dreamt of this sanctuary. Our beloved Bishop Sebastian Thekkethecheril holds it in his heart. More than two hundred lay ministers and fifty religious sisters help the functioning of the sanctuary. When the goodness of the people flow from heart, the goodness of the Lord will flow from heaven and MIRACLES HAPPENS!
I pray that you and your beloved ones be blessed in reading this message and visiting this divinely chosen place. May the Lord bless you, protect you and may his light shine upon you!
Copyright © 2016 St Antonys. All rights reserved | Design by Chetana Online Media, Kottayam, 9447001122