Sunday, December 30, 2018

The Quotation of the Week (December 30, 2018 - January 5, 2019)

A quotation of Albert Einstein on 'learning, living, hoping,
and questioning,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (An abacus: March 31, 2013) © Jerome D'Costa

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Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Merry Christmas To You All!

Photo (Christmas lights in Toronto: Dec. 27, 2017) © Jerome D'Costa

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Monday, December 24, 2018

A Christmas Poem: Christ Chose This Planet for Love's Transcendence

Merry Christmas!
Artwork by Andrea Mary D'Costa

Christ Chose This Planet for Love’s Transcendence

By Adrian D’Costa

Ave Maria and Salve Regina.
Our Lady conceived the Word.
I am Who am.
To the much feared, it means
to give them courage.
To the losers, it gives them
their strength back.
And to those who are afraid to
venerate, it gives them the humility.

I am alone by the window
on Christmas Eve
for a different kind of meaning.
I am pondering and contemplating
about a love that transcends all.
An unconditional love, bestowed
By God the Father
through God the Son
and God the Holy Spirit.
Can you fathom the depth and breadth
of that kind of love?
I wonder, and I wonder.
My thought strikes the Polaris star,
reminds me of the star that
guided the three Wise Men to Christ.
Yes. That must be the answer.
His innocent face is the answer
To all the hate of this world.
I demean myself on this day,
so that he gets elevated.
I put down the light of my life
so he can brighten up the sky without measure.

The firmament joyously dances
and makes a mark of the panoramic picture
of the Holy Family on this universe.
That’s the image you have to believe in.
That, two thousand years ago,
Christ chose this planet
to make His own.
He did not come as a King or Emperor
but was born in a manger as a humble person.
He showed us that only with humility
can we make this world
fill up with human love. 

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Sunday, December 23, 2018

The Quotation of the Week (December 23 - 29, 2018)

A quotation of Benjamin Franklin on 'Christmas,'
compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (A statue of Mary with child Jesus 
near St. Lawrence the Martyr Church 
in Scarborough, Toronto: Dec. 14, 2014) © Jerome D'Costa

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Saturday, December 22, 2018

Books By Jerome D'Costa

Jerome D'Costa's Original, Edited, 
Compiled, and Translated Books

Jerome D'Costa, the blogger of this blog, Bangladesh Canada and Beyond, has the following books to his credit.

Original Books:

Bangladeshey Catholic Mondoli
[The Catholic Church in Bangladesh] 

This 517-page book, in the Bengali language, is the first volume of Jerome D'Costa's history of the Catholic Church in Bangladesh. It was published by the Pratibeshi Prakashani of Dhaka in 1986. It provides the emergence of Christianity in Bangladesh and its expansion in the greater Archdiocese of Dhaka. 

As a background, it tells about the missionary effort of St. Thomas the Apostle in western India, the adventurous journey and conquests of the Portuguese in India and exploits and missionary methods of various groups of Portuguese missionaries, and the contributions of the Portuguese in India.

In the next chapter, it speaks of the coming and work, first of the French and later U.S. missionaries belonging to the Congregation of Holy Cross. It is followed by the coming of the European (Belgian Province) Benedictine missionaries, replacing the work of the Holy Cross missionaries and the establishment of the Apostolic Vicariate of Bengal and then East Bengal.

The following chapter deals in detail the establishment of the Dhaka Diocese, later an archdiocese, and the return of the Holy Cross missionaries. It also gives a pen-picture of the work of all the bishops there. 

The last chapter provides information on various Catholic parishes belonging to this Archdiocese.

This attempt to write the history of the Catholic Church is the first of its kind in the Bengali language.

Christan Dharmashikkhya Shahayika
[An aid to teaching Christian religion]

This is the third edition of the Bengali-language book of Jerome D'Costa, published by the Pratibeshi Prakashani of Dhaka in June 1993 (the earlier two editions were in February 1983 and June 1985) on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ according to Matthew 1:18-25, Luke 2: 39-52, Matthew Chapters 5, 6, and 7, the complete Gospel of Mark, and the Acts of the Apostles Chapters 1 and 2. 

Jesus Christ's complete life and teachings are covered through questions-and-answers, in-depth explanations, and short expository notes on persons, places, and certain words. 

Although written for students of Classes 9 and 10, this 212-page book is helpful to anyone willing to learn and understand Jesus' life and teachings comprehensively.  

You may read it online at Christan Dharmashikkhya Shahayika

Edited Book:

Oisho Ahban
[God's Calling or Vocation]

It's a Bengali-language 64-page book, edited by Jerome D'Costa, and published by the Serra Club of Dhaka, Bangladesh, in December 1995. It deals with the vocation to the priesthood and Religious life in Bangladesh. It also provides information on six congregations of priests, seven congregations of Brothers, and 17 congregations of Sisters labouring in Bangladesh. 

The intended audience of this book is Catholic young men and women, who aspire to join Catholic diocesan priesthood or Religious order in Bangladesh. 

You may read it online at Oisho Ahban

Compiled Book:

Ajker Jonnya Chinta
[Thought for Today]

This is a 63-page Bengali-language booklet, compiled by Jerome D'Costa and edited by Father Silvano Garello, SX. Published in 1991 by the National Catechetical Social Training Centre of Jessore, Bangladesh, it offers 156 quotations of different Christian personalities of the world dealing with topics relevant to our daily affairs. 

In Bengali, it is the first of its kind of publication. 

You may read it online at Ajker Jonnya Chinta

Translated Books (English to Bengali):

Bibeler Notun Niom Porichiti
[Introduction to the New Testament]

It's a Jerome D'Costa's 103-page Bengali-language translation, published in 1974 by the Christio Shahitya Sangsad, based at the Mathis House of Notre Dame College, introduces the New Testament (NT) of the Bible to its readers. 

This book covers the following: the arrangement of the books of the NT, political background of the period, different religious communities in Palestine, Apostolic Church, Apostolic teachings, writing methodology of the Gospels, Letters of the NT, Johannine writings, writers of the NT books, teachings of the NT, structure of the Canons (approved books) of the NT, manuscripts and portions of the original books, and chronology (timeline) of the NT. 

You may read it online at Bibeler Notun Niom Porichiti

Jajokio Shikkhya Shomporke Nirdeshnama
[Vatican II document on Priestly Formation]

This 28-page booklet, published by Father Francis J. Gomes of the Pratibeshi Office, Dhaka, in 1974, provides the new outlook and approach taken by the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) regarding the Catholic priestly formation. 

It speaks of the programme of priestly formation to be undertaken by each country, the urgent fostering of priestly vocations, setting up of major seminaries, the careful development of the spiritual training, the revision of the ecclesiastical studies, the promotion of strictly pastoral training, and training to be achieved after the course of studies.

You may read it online at 

Jajokio Shikkhya Shomporke Nirdeshnama (Part 1)

and  Jajokio Shikkhya Shomporke Nirdeshnama (Part 2)

Lourder Rani O Shaddhi Bernadette
[Our Lady of Lourdes and Saint Bernadette]

This 32-page Bengali-language book, translated by Jerome D'Costa, was published in May of 1978 by Brother Flavian Laplante, CSC, of the Moriom Ashram of Diang near Chittagong. 

It portrays the simple and humble life of Bernadette Soubirous (1844-1879) -- a village belle to whom Jesus' mother Mary appeared 18 times in visions (apparitions) between February 11 and July 16 of 1858 in Lourdes of France.  

This book also provides a brief description of each of the apparitions and the messages Our Lady left with Bernadette, who later was declared a saint of the Catholic Church on December 8, 1933. 

You may read it online at Lourder Rani O Shaddhi Bernadette 

Morubhumir Mohanayok Charles de Foucauld
[Charles de Foucauld: A Hero Of the Desert]

It is Jerome D'Costa's Bengali translation of the English-language book The Life and Message of Brother Charles of Jesus. This Bengali version was published by Father Klaus Beurle of the Little Flower Seminary, Bandura, Bangladesh in April 1980.

It's a short biography of Father Charles de Foucauld, who was born into an illustrious and affluent French family. He was a cavalry officer in the French army, he explored Morocco in North Africa, and later became a missionary there where he was also killed by an assassin on December 1, 1916. The book also speaks of his deep spirituality in the desert and provides a short glimpse of the societies and congregations of priests, Brothers, and Sisters who follow his examples and spirituality in their lives.

You may read it online at 

Charles de Foucauld: A Hero Of the Desert - 1
Charles de Foucauld: A Hero Of the Desert - 2

Charles de Foucauld: A Hero of the Desert - 3

Manob Jibon

[Humane Vitae -- Of Human Life]
It is Jerome D’Costa’s 16-page Bengali-language translation of the Humane Vitae (Of Human Life) – the 1968 encyclical letter of Pope Paul VI on the regulation of birth, published by the Catholic Church's Natural Family Planning Centre of Dhaka on July 20, 1980. 

Addressed to patriarchs, archbishops, bishops, priests, the faithful of the Catholic Church and all men of goodwill, this letter speaks of the (i) Problem and Competency of the Magisterium [teaching authority of the Church]: new questions, interpreting the moral law, special studies, and the Magisterium’s reply; (ii) Doctrinal Principles: God’s loving design, unlawful birth control methods, lawful therapeutic means, recourse to infertile periods, consequences of artificial methods, limits to man’s power, and concern of the Church; and (iii) Pastoral Directives: value of self-discipline, promotion of chastity, appeal to public authorities, to scientists, to Christian couples, recourse to God, family apostolate, to priests, and bishops. 

You may read it online at Manob Jibon

Jishur Kacchey Ashun
[Come to Jesus]

This is Jerome D’Costa’s Bengali-language translation of Fr. Marcelino Iragui’s book, Meet Jesus, a book on Catholic charismatic renewal, published by the Pratibeshi Prakashani of Dhaka in June 1981.

This book speaks of God’s love, but we lose that love by our sins. Through the Holy Spirit, we can renew ourselves and be near God and enjoy his love for us.

The chapters that cover this book are: I loved you with eternal love, Gospel message: the birth of the Holy Spirit among us, repent!, cure of the memories, be filled with the Holy Spirit, preparation for being filled with the Holy Spirit, born for love: fruit of the Holy Spirit, born for service: gift of the Holy Spirit, with God in a new language, to speak for God in prophesying, you are all elected for singing the praise of God.

Polli Unnoyone Khomotar Shomporko:
Bangldesher Obostha
[Power Relations in Rural Development: The Case of Bangladesh]

This is the Bengali-language translation of Father Richard W. Timm, CSC's English-language book by Jerome D’Costa and published by Caritas Bangladesh in September 1983.

It provides an analysis of the increasing discrimination between the rich and poor countries as well as that of Bangladesh. Next, it speaks of how Bangladeshis evolved and became the target of attacks and domination by various other groups of people. Even after independence in 1971, that influence is still affecting its people adversely. The urbanites now dominating the ruralites in politics, economy, and culture.

The author also demonstrates the social structure of the villages where one group dominates over others. In rural development, too, there is discrimination among groups. There is also a lack of equity in international aid and trade whereby rural farmers don’t gain much.

Father Timm, then, asks whether Bangladesh was really an international basket case? In spite of all these problems and discrepancies, he suggests that general people-oriented development, people’s active participation and empowerment with emphasis on women’s development, will lead Bangladesh toward a truly developing country. 

(Updated on March 7, 2019)

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Pope Francis' Annual Message to the Roman Curia -- 2018

Pope Francis gives his annual message to members of
the Roman Curia -- Dec. 21, 2018
Photo courtesy: CNA

Pope Francis, in his pre-Christmas greetings and speech on Friday, Dec. 21, strongly condemned clergy sex abuse and promised that the Church leadership will never again cover-up abuse or treat such cases lightly, reports the Catholic News Agency (CNA).

"Let it be clear that before these abominations the Church will spare no effort to do all that is necessary to bring to justice whosoever has committed such crimes. The Church will never seek to hush up or not take seriously any case," he said. 

For more, please read the following:

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Friday, December 21, 2018

Make #Happy Now!

Click on the above image to read it on an enlarged format
Courtesy: Metro (Toronto: Feb. 28, 2012)

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Thursday, December 20, 2018

Fruits And Vegetables: Artwork By Joachim Romeo D'Costa

Fruits and Vegetables
Artwork © Joachim Romeo D'Costa (Toronto: 2009)

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Sunday, December 16, 2018

The Quotation of the Week (December 16 - 22, 2018)

A quotation of St. Jerome on 'a fat stomach and fine thoughts,'
compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (A seagull on a beach in Ontario, Canada: Sept. 8, 2013) © Jerome D'Costa

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Saturday, December 15, 2018

Acharya Sachidananda Bharathi Proposes A Christo-Marxian Communism For Peace And Development

Acharya Sachidananda Bharathi
Photo courtesy:

Acharya Sachidananda Bharathi, a former Indian Air Force Squadron Leader, became an ardent disciple of Jesus after a fatal accident in 1982. He then became an acharya (a teacher who teaches by conduct) and a sanyasi (a sacrificing disciple) and have been promoting a culture of peace and sustainable development.

He says that "the Marxian Communism is based on violent 'class struggle' whereas the  Christian Communism is based on selfless 'spiritual communion' inspired by love of God and love of fellow beings." In this article, mentioned below, he explains elaborately on these points and proposes towards a society with a 'Christo-Marxian Communism.'

For more, please read: Towards a Christo-Marxism Communism -- for Peace and Sustainable Development in the world (Dec. 14, 2018)

More on him and his work

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Thursday, December 13, 2018

Pope Francis Asks All To Smile Even When Life is Hard

Pope Francis laughing in St. Peter's Square
at the general audience of April 1, 2015
Photo courtesy: CNA

Smiling is an important attribute of Pope Francis. Where most other predecessor popes of his were serious, important-looking, and glum, he has been smiling and laughing his way throughout his papacy. In his words and deeds, he has been showing the importance of hope and smile in one's life in spite of difficulties and hardships. 

To learn more, please click on the following:

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Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Work Of A Budding Artist

A five-year-old artist
with his work in Toronto 
Photo (Dec. 2018) © Joachim Romeo D'Costa 

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Sunday, December 9, 2018

The Quotation of the Week (December 9 - 15, 2018)

A quotation of Ohiyesa or Charles Alexander
Eastman on 'silence,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Artwork  by Andrea Mary D'Costa (at the age of 1½ years: Sept. 18, 2012)

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Friday, December 7, 2018

Relation Between Fewer Sex Partners and Happier Marriage

Image courtesy: Institute for Family Studies via

Nicholas Wolfinger, a sociologist at the University of Utah, finds that Americans who were involved in sex with their spouses are happier in their marriage. Those who had more sex partners reported being less happy. 

To know more, please read Fewer Sex Partners Means a Happier Marriage (Oct. 22, 2018)

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Sunday, December 2, 2018

The Quotation of the Week (December 2 - 8, 2018)

A quotation of St. Francis of Assissi on 'healing the wounded,
uniting the fallen, and bringing home the lost ones,'
compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (A play of lights: March 30, 2013) © Jerome D'Costa

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Saturday, December 1, 2018

Squirrel Nests in Toronto

Squirrel nests in Scarborough of Toronto

(To see the photo on an enlarged form, click on the above image)
Photo (April 2, 2018) © Jerome D'Costa

To read our earlier blog post on the same subject, click on Squirrel Nests Add Beauty To A Denuded Tree

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