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Golden Jubilee Celebrations of Conference of Religious India Begins


By A. Jayaprakash
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Guwahati, Nov. 7. The Golden Jubilee Celebrations of  CRI (Conference of Religious India) and its National Assembly 2013 started off colourfully and prayerfully  this morning at Guwahati, the city of Eastern Lights, with the concelebrated  Holy Mass  presided over by Most Rev. John Moolachira, the Archbishop of Guwahati, at St. Joseph's  Pro Cathedral.
500 committed women and men spending themselves in the service of God and humanity,  were welcomed in the traditional manner with the colourful Arnai, a richly embroidered muffler of the the Bodos, while a brass band played in the background. They moved to the venue of the conference flanked by young boys and girls  dressed up in traditional dresses.

The 95 year old veteran Salesian  missionary, Don Mario Porcu, declared the Jubilee celebrations open and hoisted the CRI flag accompanied by 50 Assamese drummers playing the dhol and the khol, and 50 young girls dressed in Assamese golden Mekhela Chadhar. 200 little boys and girls from Kokrajhar District  performed a group drill and 50 colourful balloons went up into the clear morning sky from the tender hands of 50 children, symbolizing the high aspirations of the selfless men and women who  form the CRI.

At the beginning of the first session of the Conference, once again the participants were treated to the rich musical and rhythmic cultural heritage of the Northeast through songs and dances. The hearing impaired children of Ferrando Institute, Meghalaya, stole the hearts of all by their beautifully choreographed prayer dance.

During the first session, the Archbishop of Guwahati, Most Rev.John Moolachira released two books viz., CRI Fifty Golden Years,  a compendium of the services of the members of the CRI to the people of India  edited by Rev. Fr. Johnson Parackal SDB,  and A Radical Love, A Path of Light by Fr. Joe  Mannath SDB, the National Secretary of CRI.

Rev. Brother Philip Pinto CFC gave a powerfully spiritual key-note address on the \''Image and Concept of God\'',  setting the tone for the deep reflections that will take place during the three day Conference intended to renew the spiritual men and women in their commitment.
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