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Don Bosco Relic attracts thousands in Puducherry
By Fr. Michael Raj sdb
Chennai, Nov. 9. On reaching Puducherry, the relic was taken to Don Bosco Transit Home for a short visit at 1.30 p.m. The children welcomed their ''Father'' by waving flags and shouting slogans. As the casket was exposed for veneration, the children sang hymns to Don Bosco and prayed to him with great love and devotion.
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Moving to the campus of Don Bosco Boys' Home, Thattanchavady, at 2.05 p.m., the relic attracted unexpected crowd. As Fr. Gerard Majella, the Rector, received the casket, the students welcomed with their prayer dance. Due to the large number of people longing to have a glimpse of the relic, the public veneration began immediately. Around five thousand people made their way towards the relic to pay their homage.

Leaving the Boys' Home campus at 2.45pm, the casket reached the Holy Spirit Church, Tagore Nagar. Fr. Tharsius Arockiasamy, the Rector & Parish Priest and the parishioners welcomed the relic with great jubilation.  There was a solemn Holy Eucharist followed by veneration by the relic which lasted till 5.20pm. Students, religious and parishioners gathered in large numbers to pay their respect to the saint.

The Immaculate Conception Cathedral campus was overflowing with thousands of devotees as the relic made its way towards the sanctuary at 5.45 p.m. Archbishop Most. Rev. Dr. Anthony Anandarayar DD, welcomed and received the relic and invited the faithful to pay homage to the saint. At 7.00 p.m. The archbishop presided over the Holy Eucharist at which more than 40 priests concelebrated.

At 8.15 p.m. the relic was taken to the Sacred Heart Basilica, where it was welcomed prayerfully with great devotion. As the relic was placed in the basilica, people from various parts of the town flocked in great numbers to pay homage to the ''Saint of the Young''. Around 10.00 p.m. the relic was shifted to the Holy Spirit Church, Tagore Nagar, for night vigil which will conclude with a Holy Mass at 3.00am presided over by Rev. Fr. Jayapalan Raphael SDB, Provincial of Chennai.

On 10th November, the Salesians and members of the Salesian Family will gather around the relic casket at 4.45 a.m. for half an hour of private veneration followed by renewal of vows. Then the casket will move to Madurantakam at 5.30 a.m.

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