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placeholder INTRODUCTION

Day 1: Visit to a Hindu temple; Concord parish reaches out

Day 2: Learning the rules of the road

Day 3: Family visits in ‘Catholic’ India

Day 4: Chennai (Madras) – Time with an apostle

Day 5: Close look at an Eastern Rite Church

Day 6: Ubiquitous respect for each others’ religious beliefs

Day 7: Southern India home to vast tea fields

Day 8: Worship on a houseboat

Day 9: St. Alphonsa, India's first canonized saint

Day 10: Home shrines a standard feature

Day 11: Portuguese influence very clear in Goa

Day 12: The Portuguese influence

Day 13: Time for a little tourism

Day 14: Seeing ‘the king’s land’

Day 15: Taj Mahal builder sought to unify religion

Day 16: India’s oldest mosque

Day 17: Discussing world issues

Concluding reflections

placeholder January 23, 2012   •   VOL. 50, NO. 2   •   Oakland, CA

Bishop Cordileone’s pilgrimage to India

Portuguese influence very clear in Goa

Day 11: Monday, Jan. 9

Today we left Kerala for Goa. I was anxious to see the other parts of India, and especially Goa, with its unique political and cultural history marked by heavy Portuguese influence. Still, it was hard to leave Kerala, a truly charming land and charming people that captured my affection.

In Goa Father George Alengadan and I are guests of the archbishop. His chancellor, Father Loiola, met us at the airport, and accompanied us to the residence. Taking note of the architecture of the buildings, the way the streets are laid out and open park-like spaces with well-manicured lawns and trees during the approximately half-hour drive in from the airport, the European influence here was already very evident. Even the cuisine at the dinner was quite different – more in line with the European palette, although not lacking in hot spices.

It is much more common today for bishops to be more congenial, personable and informal than in times past, but Archbishop Ferrão has a truly extraordinary manner about him. He has a way of putting one at ease immediately, and establishing a rapport as if he’s been your from friend childhood. From the first moment I felt quite relaxed in his presence, and the conversation at dinner was free flowing.

And he did his homework – he already knew a lot about me, my background and interests and all. We were joined at dinner by Father Loiola, two other priests who live in the residence and serve in the archdiocesan curia, and the archbishop emeritus.

After dinner, we joined them in their usual practice of withdrawing to the chapel to pray the rosary together, followed by Night Prayer. There is a wonderful healthy balance in this house of camaraderie, humor, intellectual and cultural interest and spirituality.


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