THE STATE OF GOA

**************DEVACHEA NAVAN ANI GOEMCARANCHEA MANNANK******************* This blog is an attempt to delve into the traditions, heritage, culture, lore and ambience that spawned an enigma. A state of mind. And to perchance perform a perfunctory probe into the psyche of the Goemcar. ************************************************************************************************* GOEMCAR: Any person anywhere in the world - Goemcar rogtacho!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Marekar vadoll

India is burning. Evil is afoot. Forces of darkness, in the guise of godly fervour, are sowing the wind. They have to realise that they will reap a whirlwind. And if they do not, they have to be made to.

I wrote that paragraph in my last blog entry. Don't go looking for it. I have deleted that entry. It had nothing to do with anything of importance.

A 'vadoll' is blowing across Bharat mata. A hurricane of hatred. The thin veneer of civilised co-existence, prevalent, by and large, over the centuries, is showing very pronounced signs of wear and tear.

In this storm, it would not be wise to start a journey or a crusade with fanfare or bombast. And so, in my first attempt at assisting to come up with some; any, solution, I shall launch my extremely modest venture, with all the caution of a fisherman setting out in his tiny dugout canoe, while the wind thunders and the waves crash all around.

I am angry. And I am scared. My ire is obviously fanned by the cowards who pillage, rape and murder the innocent, in the name of gods. My fear is for all that is and all that are precious to me. I am stricken with a malaise. A strange feeling of weakness is threatening to overwhelm.

A change is imminent. And instead of being for the good, this altering of the status quo, appears to be rendering the future of my traditions into tatters and putting at risk the lives and happiness of my people.

The history of Christianity has always been a chequered one. Temporal authority has perennially blown hot and cold in its treatment of the followers of the man from Nazareth. And the only consolation those that
claim to be Christians have, has been the stark fact that in the most adverse of circumstances, the Church built on Pedro, the Rock, has always prevailed.

This latest typhoon that is assailing the flock in India is no different from the ones that battered the faithful in ancient Rome or down the ages. This too shall pass. But before it does, the blood of martyrs and the tears of the innocent will flow.

Like many of my ilk and beliefs, I have been giving much thought to this state of affairs. And, like many, I have thought of reacting in the ways of the world. An eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth. But then the 'novo korar', has expressly forbidden its believers from taking recourse to the sword. And so we have to think of alternative ways of influencing our persecutors.

I believe that a vast majority of our Hindu countrymen and women are good and gentle folk, tolerant and magnanimous. Unfortunately a minority of morons amongst them is bent on fomenting hatred and their clamour and callousness is magnifying the horror that is being perpetrated on the innocent.

At times like this there is need of a person. A being who is looked upon by all with if not reverence, than at least respect. Unfortunately for Goem, amongst the Catholic clergy and laity there are not very many who can claim this accolade.

However, there is one man who I think fits the bill to a T.

The Patriarch of the East Indies, the Archbishop of Goa, Philip Neri Ferrao.

This man of God, the first amongst the servants of Christ in Goem, is a person justly known for his humility and integrity. He is also a very educated man. In fact, if I am not mistaken, he is one of the most qualified to have ever occupied the hallowed seat of the Patriarch. He knows that we are all children of God. Unlike the church of old, present day Christianity does not condemn all other faiths and their adherents to eternal damnation.

And so this man of God should open up a dialogue with the hierarchy of Hindu priesthood in Goa. He should visit their places of worship and address their faithful. The fact that Christianity is not a threat to Hinduism should be stressed and assured.

The latest desecration of Hindu places of worship must be condemned with vehemence. Our Patriarch is and must continue to be at the forefront of those denouncing the guilty. Even if there is suspicion that this has been a deliberate attempt to fan the flames and perpetrate religious hatred and the culprits belong to fundamentalist Hindu organisations.

The fact that we are all children of the very same God should be reinforced. And in Goem we have an additional and closer to home link. All Goemcar catholics are descendants from our Hindu forbears. Every one of us Catholic Goemcars has Hindu lineage. We are not foreign in our genetic origin to Goem, it is only our beliefs that are the latest in the long line of influences that have marked our Goem and Bharat mata.

Philip Neri Ferrao is no ordinary Patriarch. He is the first, that I have heard of, who has publicly, when on visits to foreign lands, expressly indicated that he does not want to be wined and dined at the residences of the well to do. He is known to be an excellent communicator. He is a humble man. He is a honest priest. He is a highly educated holder of the most prestigious of Roman Catholic posts in the East.

All Goemcars, irrespective of caste and community, know that this man of God is a good human being. They will listen to him. Of course the Patriarch is obviously already hard at work doing his utmost to ensure the safety of his flock. And lines of communication will already have been opened with the various parties.

Goemcars must pray that our shepherd, the man entrusted with the flock in Goem, can and will work a miracle.

Only a miracle can save Christendom in Bharat Mata. So let us take refuge in our belief, praying as our fathers did, "Santa khursache curu, Cristaon ponachem khunu......"

Sincerely

Xanno Moidecar

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