Marian Seminar held for deeper relationship with Jesus Christ

KARACHI: To coincide with the centennial anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal apparitions on  May 12 and 13, a Marian Seminar, with the theme “Mary Kept All Things in Her Heart”, was held on May 13, 2017 at the Grounds of St. Philip’s School in Gulshan-e-Iqbal.

Spearheaded by the Catechetical Centre Karachi (CCK), the activity was part of its mission to help in promoting authentic Marian spirituality that leads the faithful towards a closer and deeper relationship with Jesus Christ.

The event was sponsored by St. Philip’s Parish of the Archdiocese of Karachi headed by Father Bernard Bhatti OFM the Parish Priest.

Despite a very hot weather it did not deterred the desire of the faithful to flock to the venue of the seminar to learn more about their faith. It was a most enriching experience for several hundred faithful coming from the surrounding areas of the Parish and other parts of Karachi. 

The programme featured a number of speakers giving insights into Church teachings on Mary, presentations on Marian apparitions, and musical meditations with Marian prayers. Attendees were encouraged to look to Mary as a Model of all, to imitate her virtues, especially those of charity and humility, and to adopt various Marian devotions.

Various topics were taken up by the speakers composed of Friar Azim John and Friar Dildar Michael. A group of Brothers presented a short play highlighting the intercessory role of Mother Mary. A PowerPoint presentence proved to be a good aid in explaining the role of Mary in the daily life of the faithful.

Speaking to the audience, Fr. Shahbaz Nazir, the Guest of Honour said that it was a very rich topic. “It includes the Annunciation and birth story, the relationship with John the Baptist’s family, the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis, Jesus talking with the elders in the Temple – some of the most cherished passages in the New Testament.”

“Mary must have often thought of the heavenly messenger that brought her such momentous news, the miracle of his birth, the sign in the heavens, the wise men, the shepherds and angels that bore witness. As Christ grew, she surely marvelled at His wisdom and obedience, knowing that he was the Son of God,” he said.

At the close of the event Fr. Arthur Charles, the director of the Catechetical Centre said, it was only by the Grace of God that the seminar was a great success. “CCK would like to thank Fr. Mugul Peter OFM, Fr. Bernard Bhatti OFM, Franciscan Friars and the Pastoral Team for their valuable support to the Director and the Staff of CCK. As a result of the seminar, there is now a clamour in parishes for more teaching seminars. We hope to be able to conduct a follow up seminar in the months to come.

“Our hearts are the storehouses of all that has shaped us to be the persons we have become and our hearts are the Lord’s dwelling place where he wants to forgive our sins, heal our wounds, calm our fears and give us the peace that comes only from his heart, from his hand. We pray that those who participated in the conference will share their blessings with their families and local parishes,” said Fr. Arthur Charles.

“I really appreciated being able to meet and mix with fellow Catholics from all over the parish and even from outside it,” said Anthony Sohil a programme attendee. “The speakers were informative, clear, and all passionate in spreading their great love for and devotion to Our Lady, telling us how Mary’s maternal love and influence has enriched their relationship with Christ and their faith as a whole.”

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