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placeholder May 9, 2016   •   VOL. 54, NO. 9   •   Oakland, CA

Revs. Santhosh and Paulson Mundanmani, brothers celebrating their 25th jubilee in India.
Courtesy photo

Priests celebrate 25th, 60th anniversary jubilees in India

Revs. Paulson Mundanmani and Brian Timoney, both serving at Christ the King Parish in Pleasant Hill, recently returned from celebrating the respective 25th and 60th anniversaries of their ordinations together and separately in India, the home country of their ordinations.

For his 60th anniversary, Father Timoney traveled first to Ireland, the country of his birth, then joined Father Mundanmani, family and friends in Chalakudy, India, for the Jan. 10 events. There they were honored by a joint celebration of the 25th anniversaries of the priesthoods of Fathers Paulson Mundanmani and his brother, Father Santhosh Mundanmani. The two siblings were ordained just months apart in 1991. After the Chalakudy festivities, Father Timoney traveled on to celebrate the 60th commemoration of his own priesthood in Bangalore, India, where he served from 1955 to 1971.

After 16 years of ministry in India, Father Timoney came to the United States, serving at St. Perpetua in Lafayette, St. John in San Lorenzo and St. Stephen in Walnut Creek, then began his ministry at Christ the King in 2000, as parochial vicar. Father Timoney retired in 2001, and is now "in residence" at Christ the King. He remains active and enthusiastic in regular preaching, and as a frequent presence at parish activities and events.

Fathers Mundanmani and Timoney were joined for part of India sojourn by Rev. Vince Cotter, also serving the Christ the King community. Twenty-seven parishioners and friends also traveled with the priests for the Chalakudy festivities, and for a tour of some parts of India, including the Mugal Emperor Akbar's Court, Goa, an excursion to see the famous drummers of Kerala, the basilica where the body of St. Francis Xavier is kept and the Taj Mahal.

Father Mundanmani has served at Holy Spirit Parish in Fremont, St. Edward in Newark, as parochial administrator at St. Isidore in Danville, and as pastor at St. Mary in Walnut Creek before moving to Christ the King in 2014.

"My family and home parish instilled the critical seeds of faith and calling, as both nourished and cared for me as a child and teenager, until I left home at 12 years old to attend a Salesian apostolic school. At just 15, I carried that critical foundation with me, as I journeyed nearly 2,000 miles away to Northeastern India, where I studied and worked for 20 years with the Salesians, to whom I owe everything," he said.

Father Mundanmani moved to the United States in 1999, and became a citizen. His move "has helped me understand the challenges of immigrants. I believe in my heart that immigration and refugee problems are at the heart of the church. After all, Christ was a refugee himself." He ministered in Bellflower in Los Angeles, then Watsonville, before transferring to the Bay Area.

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