Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Shrine of Mary the Guiding Light (Poth Prodorshika Maria) at Noluakuri, Bangladesh


The statue of Mary the Guiding Light (Poth Prodorshika Maria)
at the shrine at Noluakuri, Dt. Mymensingh

Sister Lourdes Mary Costa, SSMI,
with some local devotees at the shrine

Photos by Father Silvano Garello, SX

On the way from Dhaka to Mymensingh, Noluakuri is a Catholic village in Bhaluka Thana of Mymensingh District. It is an outstation or sub-centre under St. Patrick's Cathedral Parish of Mymensingh town.

In 1992, when Xaverian Fathers were given charge of this sub-centre, Father Tonino Decembrino, SX, and Father Benjamin Gomes were assigned there. They took care of Catholics of Noluakuri and two other nearby villages -- Chanpur and Panchgaon. Most of these Catholics belong to the ethnic Garo (Mandi) group.

In December, 1997, after the death of Father Decembrino of cerebral malaria, Father Silvano Garello, SX, and Father Anton Wayundianto took over the charge of this sub-centre.

Presently, there is a Catholic primary school, a hostel for primary school girls, and a hostel for high school boys who attend the high school near Seed Store. The Salesian Sisters of Mary Immaculate have been managing a centre for women and the primary girls' hostel.

A small shrine has been built here in honour of Mary the Guiding Light (Poth Prodorshika Maria) with donated bricks from local Catholics. The shrine, dedicated in July, 2001, has a beautiful statue of Mary, designed by an Italian artist, offering her son Jesus Christ to the people as the way for their lives.

The shrine serves as a centre of prayer and devotion for local Catholics, who regularly pray the holy rosary there, in addition to arranging Masses in the front yard on special occasions. Some Catholics from Dhaka Archdiocese go on prayer pilgrimages there and share their prayer life with local Garos. Bookmark and Share