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World Day of the Sick Kicks off at Nitika Don Bosco
By Johny Nedungatt SDB
Mumbai, Jan. 12. Kolkata: As part of the preparation for the 27th World Day of the Sick, a first-timer in the City of Joy,  a four-day seminar was organized at Nitika Don Bosco, January 8-11, by Father Gilbert Choondal and his team. Over 42 doctors and nurses from across the country attended the seminar.  
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With the seminar Nitika began a training programme on pastoral ministry to the sick and elderly with a focus on catechesis, counselling, care, cure, comfort and communion for the catholic doctors and nurses of India.

Collaborating with the Archdiocese of Calcutta, the Catechetical Centre at Nitika Don Bosco has already launched catechetical programmes and tools in preparing the faithful for the World Day of the Sick. A booklet named, HealthCAT is already out to all the parishes in Calcutta and to the CCBI bishops. This booklet is a catechism on the pastoral care of the sick and elderly.

The seminar days focussed on training and motivating catholic nurses and doctors how to approach the patients the Christian way along with the medical care. ''This approach included catechesis, counselling, liturgical ministry and Christian care methods, '' said Father Gilbert Choondal SDB, the organiser of the programme. He is also the author of the booklet, HealthCAT. The seminar days were animated by Father Mathew MI, CBCI Health Desk secretary, Father Gilbert SDB, Sister (Dr.) Regina FC, Dr. Ms, Mary D'Cruz, Sister (Dr.) Benedicta MC, Father Thannical Joe SDB and Father Franklin D'Souza, the archdiocesan secretary of World Day of the Sick. ''In fact, today's nurses have a lot to learn from the Catholic Church and Catholic nurses are to be motivated well. I hope this course is offered to all the catholic nurses of India in different places,'' said Sister Eugene SAC, one of the participants from Mumbai.

The seminar ended  with Holy Mass at the Tomb of Mother Teresa, Kolkata and a visit to the Khali Ghat, the favourite place of the Mother during her life. The participants were blessed by the presence Mother General of Missionaries of Charity, Sister Prema who wished them personally and gifted each one with a medallion of St. Mother Teresa.

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