The Bethany Educational Society ® Mangalore managed by the Congregation of the Sisters of the Little Flower of Bethany celebrated the inauguration of Platinum Jubilee on 12 October 2022 with a Eucharistic Celebration, at St Sebastian Church Bendur, Mangalore.

The Bethany Educational Society (BES) was registered on 4 September 1948 with Mother Petra as the first President under the patronage of its Founder Servant of God Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas. Today, it runs 140 institutions, 33 hostels and many non-formal education centres in rural areas, spreading its branches in 26 states and in 53 dioceses of India.

The Holy Eucharist was officiated by Most Rev Aloysius Paul D Souza, Bishop Emeritus of Mangalore Diocese and he felicitated the congregation for its large network of educational service country wide. Very Rev Mgr Maxim Noronha, Vicar General of Mangalore Diocese who preached the homily acknowledged the committed service rendered by the BES in imparting fullness of life to all. He observed the spirit of the beatitudes lived in and through the vision, goal and core values of BES for the betterment of the society.

At the conclusion of the Holy Eucharist, the bishop, Sr Rose Celine, the President of Bethany Educational Society, Rev. Fr Vincent Monteiro the Parish Priest, staff and the students prayed and placed wreathes on the tomb of the Servant of God RFC Mascarenhas as a mark of their respect.

After the holy mass St Theresa’s School band led the dignitaries to Bethany Educational Society’s headquarters at Bendur. The jubilee flag was hoisted by the President and 75 balloons were released to mark the joy of the celebration.

There after a cultural programme was staged at Raymond’s hall, Bethany Convent, Bendur. Rev Sr Rose Celine the President of BES, Chief Guest Mr Sudhakar K., Guests of honour Mr J R Lobo, former MLA of Mangalore South Constituency, Sr Jyoti BS and Sr Wilberta BS the former Presidents, Fr Vincent Monteiro the Parish Priest, Mr Naveen D’Souza the Corporator and Sr Sandhya the Secretary were on the dais.

The platinum jubilee logo ‘Transformative Education for Fullness of Life towards Human Fraternity’ was launched on this momentous occasion by the Chief Guest Mr Sudhakar K and the jubilee anthem was sung melodiously by the choir. The Chief Guest in his speech appreciated the commitment of BES in imparting education to all especially the poor and empowering the girl children according to the vision of RFC Mascarenhas. Mr J R Lobo underscored the spirituality of Bethany of the Gospels lived by the members of BES and narrated his personal experience of empowerment through the Bethany sisters.

Another significant event was the inauguration of the Bethany Platinum Jubilee fund for the education of the poor by Professor Edmund Frank a well-wisher, Dr EVS Maben and Advocate Nikesh Shetty the alumni of BES, Mrs Sylvia Gretta, the teacher and Mrs Meena Shariff, the parent.

The President Sr Rose Celine, in her address recalled the growth and contribution of BES under the guidance of its visionaries; collaboration of ecclesial authorities, educational departments and contribution of all its stakeholders. She accentuated that although the Bethany Educational Society is celebrating its Platinum Jubilee, the educational ministry is as old as the Congregation itself, 101 years being founded in 1921 with the four lady teachers nee Mother Martha, Sr Clare, Sr Lourdes and Sr Gertrude who were the pioneers. She emphasized that the Platinum Jubilee of BES is an occasion for all to make fresh efforts to set ablaze the flame lit by the Founder, being focused on the four priorities of the Platinum Jubilee year viz
1. Upholding justice, liberty, equality and fraternity.
2. Promotion of Peace and Harmony
3. Caring for Mother Earth
4. Education for Excellence & Self Reliance

The students of Sacred Hearts Higher Primary School, Kulshekar invoked the blessings of God through a prayer dance and the Rosa Mystica High School Kinnikambla, Mangalore presented a traditional welcome. The journey of 75 years of BES was depicted through a dance drama showcasing the milestones, by the students of St Theresa’s school. Sr Sandhya, the Secretary of BES welcomed and Sr Mariette BS thanked the august gathering. Mrs Jasmine and Mrs Gwen compeered the program. It was spectacular performance!

News by: Sr Sandhya, BS

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