Tag: Vasai

Blessings Continue for India Mission

 

We had an amazing visit to the “tribal areas” today to speak to all the priests and nuns working with the “tribals.” Wonderful work in education and healthcare and evangelization.
We had an amazing visit to the “tribal areas” to speak with all of the priests and nuns who work there. They do wonderful work in education, healthcare, and evangelization.

As Ralph Martin has been busy giving twenty-three talks during their first nine days in India, his wife, Anne Martin, is stepping in to keep supporters up-to-date on how their mission in India is progressing. Please continue to keep Ralph, the entire mission team, and those hearing their message, in your prayers!

By Anne Martin

As I write this, I’m on a train with Ralph; Deacon Dan and Dolly Foley; Fr. Chas; and our friend and host, Fr. Matthew (a former student of Ralph’s who now teaches at the Syro-Malankara Seminary in Trivandrum). Our last days in Vasai were even more blessed than the first ones! I knew Ralph was going to speak at an outdoor rally, but I was shocked when we arrived at the venue! I had imagined a grassy field, standing, and casual. Instead, we were greeted by over five-thousand people, red outdoor-type carpeting, a stage, lights, and music. Ralph gave two half-hour talks, followed by Adoration.

The next day, we drove two hours to visit a tribal area with Archbishop Machado. These tribes are a different race from the Indians and live in rural areas/reservations. We were greeted by a throng of beautiful young students playing instruments, singing, and throwing flower petals on us. I was moved to tears! Ralph gave the priests and sisters three talks. An elderly Italian nun, who has been on mission for over fifty years, is a part of the team there. They have a hospital, a primary-to-college school, social workers, and catechists.

With Archbishop Felix Machado
Deacon Dan and Dolly Foley, Archbishop Felix Machado, and Anne and Ralph Martin

In the short week we were with the archbishop and his little community, we felt like family. It was sad to say goodbye, but it was time to go to the southern part of India. We traveled via domestic airline; I love the name—”IndiGo.” There’s another one called “Spice.”

We arrived in Trivandrum in time to settle in at Cardinal Cleemis’s house, and had night prayers and dinner with his household. They are Malankara rite, which traces its roots to Antioch. Every Psalm and prayer was sung and the thurible, which holds the incense, was refilled a dozen times. I have no idea what they prayed, but I DO know it was holy, awesome, and reverenced the Trinity.

Each day, I’m humbled by the gracious hospitality extended to us. Dinner was no exception. The entire menu was prepared with our western palates in mind. I was told they normally eat extremely hot, spicy food. We had a feast of pasta, roast chicken, vegetables, fruit, and even ice cream.

Anne and Fr. Chas Canoy praying in the chapel of the seminary CROPPED
Anne Martin and Fr. Chas Canoy praying in the seminary chapel.

The next morning, Fr. Matthew took us to the seminary, where Ralph presented a paper at a theological colloquium. He was one of several presenters. After lunch, we visited a Hindu temple in the heart of the city. They discovered a treasure trove of gold, piles of diamonds, rubies, and more underneath it. Of course, we couldn’t go down to see it. We then drove to a beach. Trivandrum is on the Indian Ocean. The sand is gold in color and actually has gold in it.

Well, the train is slowing down, and it’s time to arrive in Cochin. Our adventure continues!

school children
The school children, who welcomed the mission team with a great strewing of flower petals, song, and dance.

Ralph Martin Leaves for India Today

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Banners like this one, in the Marathai language, are displayed in all forty parishes in one Indian diocese.
banner-ralph-martin-eng
This is the English translation of the banner that is on display in forty Indian parishes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dear Partners in the Gospel,

Your support is making possible a really significant mission to India, beginning today. We have our visas, we have our inoculations against typhoid and Hepatitis A, and we are taking our malaria pills. As you read this, a small team and I are on our way to the airport, getting ready to fly to India, where Renewal Ministries has been invited by four Indian dioceses to provide training and encouragement for their priests, nuns, and lay leaders, as well as to conduct large rallies. I will even deliver a theological paper at an academic colloquium.

One of the archbishops who invited us has confided to us that he is very concerned about the condition of his priests and is grateful for our service. The Church in India has been, in many places, badly affected by pressure from the dominant Hinduism into a sometimes watered-down approach to proclaiming the true identity of Jesus and His call to all people everywhere to believe, repent, and be baptized.

From January 6 (yes, it will take us two days to get there!) to January 12, we will be in the diocese of Vasai, just North of Mumbai (the former Bombay). From January 12-15, we will be in the far South of India, in the State of Kerala, in the dioceses of Trivandrum and Tiruvalla. We have been invited to Trivandrum by Cardinal Cleemis, who is the current president of the Indian Bishops’ Conference. We have been invited to Tiruvalla by Archbishop Koriloos, who has visited us here in Michigan and also in Rome, and who arranged for The Fulfillment of All Desire to be translated into Malayalam, the dominant local language. Then we move by plane, train, and automobile, back to the central region of India, to the Diocese of Poona, in the city of Pune, where we will be until January 23.

My wife Anne is going with me, as is Renewal Ministries’ Board Chairman Deacon Dan Foley and his wife Dolly, whose daughter married a young man from Pune. This whole mission began with their wedding in Pune, which sparked the invitation to the Diocese of Pune. Then, former Indian students from the seminary and friends from previous visits to India heard we were going to be there, and a mission to one diocese evolved into a mission to four dioceses!

John and Michelle Kazanjian also will join us in Pune, for the week-long priests’ retreat and sisters’ retreat; they will lead prayer for deliverance from various bondages using the “five keys” of the Unbound method developed by our good friend Neal Lozano. Anne and Dolly (who are coming at our personal expense) will help them pray for people. Fr. Chas Canoy will join us in the south and in Pune, to help minister to the priests. He is the pastor of a parish in Jackson, Michigan, and a Sacred Heart Major Seminary graduate.

As time permits—every day is scheduled!—I will be sending “reports from the field” to let you know how things are going, hopefully along with some photos.

Thank you for your support, and please include us in your prayers during this time!

Gratefully,

rcm-sig

Ralph Martin

President

Renewal Ministries