Vaddukoddai takes a festival grandeur - Sri Lanka Guardian

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Vaddukoddai takes a festival grandeur



JDCSI celebrates its 61st anniversary with the community as spontaneous participants

It was generally observed Vaddukoddai has not seen such a gathering for an event of this nature and some of the older participants recollected the October Festival of 1947, the first one held after the founding of the Church of South India and at which the saintly bishop, the Rt Rev Dr Sabapathy Kulandran was enthroned as the Bishop of the Jaffna Diocese of the Church of South India.

by Arani Aravinthan reporting from Jaffna

(October 14, Jaffna, Sri Lanka Guardian) Over two thousand members of the various parishes of the Jaffna Diocese of the Church of South India (JDCSI) converged in Vaddukoddai Saturday October 11, 2008 for the Annual October Festival which began with a worship service at the Cathedral Church followed by a public meeting at which several members of the community, Christians and Hindus; principals, teachers, lawyers, judges and several dignitaries of the province participated.

The ceremonial procession of the clergy leading the Bishop of the Diocese, the Rt Rev Dr Daniel Thiagarajah, to the Cathedral Church, a solemn expression of the sacredness of the office and the responsibilities that go with it, was begun in the Bishop's House. Over 40 priests were in attendance on this procession, by far the largest ever to take part in an October Festival.

The public meeting which was presided over by the Rev A Mathanarajah, a missionary and a former member of the JDCSI clergy, was followed by a rich cultural programme. Earlier, soon after the 4-hour service at which two deacons were ordained as pastors and three evangelists as deacons, there was an impressive procession led by the Jaffna College Junior Junior Band, Harriet Winslow Girls Home Band of Pandatheruppu and also traditional nathasvaram music through the surrounding lanes to the Otley Hall where the public meeting was held.

As a gesture of goodwill to the community, the Sri Lanka Police was in attendance and this was appreciated by the festival participants and the local community.

It was generally observed Vaddukoddai has not seen such a gathering for an event of this nature and some of the older participants recollected the October Festival of 1947, the first one held after the founding of the Church of South India and at which the saintly bishop, the Rt Rev Dr Sabapathy Kulandran was enthroned as the Bishop of the Jaffna Diocese of the Church of South India. This year's marked a resurgence of the church in the spirit of our belief and trust that God guides us and his ways, though we cannot comprehend are nevertheless are the ways of a father to his children. This is our faith.

Participants also included representatives from the various parishes of the JDCSI from all but one province in the country. The morning's sermon was delivered by the Rev Angela Tampiyappah from St George's Church, St Kilda, Victoria, Australia who has served the JDCSI before migrating to Australia.

The Cathedral Church at Vaddukoddai is one of the rich heritages of the community. It was first built by the Portuguese in the 1660s and later renovated by the Dutch and finally came into the hands of the American Ceylon Mission which is now an integral part of the JDCSI.
- Sri Lanka Guardian

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