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Bethany Bendur 26 November 2018: Workshop on Anti Human Trafficking, Safe Migration and New trends in Medical Science for Bethany Sisters was organised by Sr Shanthi Priya the General Councillor and General Coordinator for Social and Medical Apostolates, at Animation and Renewal Centre, Panvel, Maharashtra from 19th to 23rd November 2018. 56 sisters of 7 Provinces involved in Socio-Medical Apostolate from all over India were present.

On 19th November the workshop started with an inaugural prayer conducted by Mangalore Province. Rt. Rev. Dr Bishop Alwyn D’silva, the Auxiliary Bishop of Mumbai officiated at the Inaugural Eucharistic celebration. The dignitaries and the participants were welcomed by the students of Bethany Convent School, Panvel with a colourful Marati traditional welcome dance and were led in procession to the main hall. The theme of the workshop was well depicted by the students through skits and dances. The dignitaries lit the lamp inviting Jesus the greatest light.

Sr. Rose Ann, the Province Coordinator, Western Province accorded a loving welcome to Bishop Alwyn D’ silva the President of the inaugural Function, Sr. Shanthi Priya, the General Coordinator, Sr Assumpta, Provincial Superior, Western Province, Rev Fr Shaibu the Director of ARC, Sr Mary Magdalene, Superior of Bethany Convent, Panvel and all the Participants of the Workshop.

Sr. Shanthi Priya, in her thematic exposition highlighted the history and the significance of missionary endeavours of Panvel inspired by the Spirit of the Founder, 3 decades ago. She also highlighted the thrust of the 16th General Chapter which inspired us to take up the frontier miistries with migrants, victims of human trafficking and bonded labourers.

Bishop Alwyn in his message stressed various aspects involved in Human Trafficking quoting the initiatives of Pope Francis to respond to the modern day slavery. Thereafter Sr. Assumpta, the Provincial Superior, Western Province in her words of blessings encouraged the assembly by quoting Is 52:7. The inaugural function was concluded by singing solemnly the Bethany Anthem. Sr Nirmala proposed the vote of thanks. Sr Michelle compeered the program.

The workshop continued with the input sessions by the resource persons such as -Anti Human Trafficking and its impact on society - Ms Hazel, Bonded Labour and Migration - Mr. Sumit, Advocate Rose Ann, Mrs Praisy Gloria from IJM, Medical Ethics and Laws – Dr Sr Beena UMI and Sr Lincy UMI, Naturopathic Holistic Health Promotion by Rev Fr. Rocky Banz and team from Health Promotion Trust, Mumbai.

The 7 Province Coordinators presented their Province reports, Delegation abroad, Tanzania mission and Central Administration. On 22nd the group went on a field exposure visit to Kamatipura and Grant Road brothels at Central Mumbai and Bhiwandi where the children of the women in brothels are catered to by Good Shepherd Sisters. On 23rd the Action plans were prepared at Province and Personal level. The Province Action Plans were presented to the entire group.

The members of North East Province conducted creatively the concluding session. The services of Sr Shanthi Priya, the organiser of the workshop assisted by Sr Violet DSouza and Sr Michelle, and the active participation of all the participants were acknowledged with gratitude.

Written by:
Sr Anna Maria BS
Bethany Provincialate,
Vamanjoor

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