HALBARGA MISSION (2000)

The word “Anugraha” meaning divine blessing was adopted by the Capuchins of Karnataka Province when the Halbarga Mission area was handed over to them by the bishop of Mangalore Diocese Rt. Rev. Dr. Aloysius Paul D’Souza in the year 2000. 

Capuchin Presence in Bidar:- The Capuchins were the first men religious to step into Bidar Mission which was then a part of Mangalore Diocese served the diocesan clergy and women religious hailing from Mangalore.  The main purpose of inviting the Capuchins to Bidar mission was to take care of the spiritual needs of the clergy and the women religious.  Fr. Balize Rodrigues ofm Cap the newly ordained Capuchin priest ventured into this mission staying  at Bhalki Centre, the three sub-stations Siddeshwara, Huppala and Hunji were handed over to the Capuchins on 15.01.2001. Hupla chapel established in 1989  dedicated to Holy Family, Siddeshwar chapel established in 1993 dedicated to St. Peter and Paul. Hunji established in 1994 and on February 6th 2006 new chapel was built by the capuchins  friars in Hunji and dedicated to St. Francis of Assisi.   A piece of land measuring 4 acres was purchased by the Capuchins at Halbarga on Bidar-Bhalki road in order to establish their presence permanently.  A small shelter was put up for the Capuchins in the new site. A modest house “Anugraha Ashram” with only ground floor and a small chapel was blessed and inaugurated by Rt. Rev. Dr. Robert Michael Miranda, the bishop of Gulbarga Diocese on 30th May, 2007.  

Formation House :-

  Later the Capuchin provincial decided to construct the first floor and establish the formation house for orientation programme  in the Friary.  In 2008, the first batch of orientation students arrived here and completed the academic year with much difficulty and hardship.  The second batch of orientation students had to migrate to Hosanagar within 2 months of their stay here due to lack of water, hard climate and many other unbearable problems.  

Education:-

In 2010, the bishop of Gulbarga, seeing the house vacant, due to the migration of Orientation Students to Hosanagar, asked them to use the vacant place for Education. As the house with several classrooms and hall remained vacant, the idea of starting a school was taken up by the capuchins. Fr. George Monis took the challenge of starting a school in the existing building with just handful of students.  Due to the dedicated efforts of the staff and management in collaboration with the DSS, sisters the school received a wider publicity.  Today the school has reached to Std. IX and has strength of over 400 students. The arrival of the new principal in the person of Bro. Victor Crasta with his vast 15 years experience in the school ministry has given rise to new and creative ideas and the school.   From 1st to 5th all the 290 students are in Scouts and Guides. They have also education of the poor catholic children from their villages.

Pastoral Ministry:-

In 2003 Aunugrha Ashram at Halbarga was declared as an independent mission center. The three catholic substations, viz., Siddeshwara, Huppala and Hunaji were given top priority in their apostolate. In each of these villages they have a modest chapel and the Catholics are regularly taken care of for their faith and  educational needs.  The DSS sisters who assist the Capuchins give a generous helping hand in the growth and development of this mission.  The new villages ministered are: Kon-Melkunda, Halipparaga, Kosam, Jyanthi, Dhanura, Tegampura, Tharnhalli, Nelgi. 

In all these villages there is a strong presence of Methodist and other Christian denominations and their children are admitted their school. Many of them have expressed their desire to become Catholics as they do not receive sufficient care from their pastors.  A modest chapel has to be erected in all these villages s in order to cater to their spiritual needs, if they have to be brought into catholic faith. They actively take part in all the spiritual activities at the main centre in Halbarga during the feast of the Patron Saint on October 4th during the Christmas and Easter Celebrations.  The long 7 years dedicated services of Fr. Francis Fernandes, the present director cum parish priest of this area has borne fruit. They have welcomed several pepole to their fold. Fr. Joslie Francis D’Silva arrived on 25th May 2014 as parish priest to Halbarga centre. 25th of August 2014. During the pastoral visit of Most Rev. Bishop Robert M. Miranda, 7 new families and 28 members from Kon-Melkunda were received to Catholic faith. Bishop declared the new substation at Kon-Melkunda dedicated to St. Padre Pio, a Capuchin saint at the request of the Capuchin friars working at Halbarga. Later on 8th September 2015 another 12 children were baptized from Kon-Melkunda. In 2016 in the year of mercy they have Sukanya Samriddhi accounts as a 15 years project for 50 girl children A Scheme in which you can invest for Girl child as part of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao yojana”. 

 

Vocations:

Two girls have joined the convent, one to Bethany Sisters (Sr. Sujatha) and the other is to Sisters of Charity (Sr. Shilpa) and both have done their first profession. These two sisters form the same family are the first sisters for Catholic Church from St. Francis of Assisi Church, Halbarga, Bidar. Sujatha 

Sisters of DeenaSevanasabha:- 

The sisters belonging  to the Nirmala Province of Deena Sevanasabha were invited by the bishop of Gulbarga Diocese to render spiritual assistance together with the parish priest to the people of God in Halbarga Mission . A piece of land measuring 2 acres was purchased by the bishop of Gulbarga just adjacent to our Ashram.  A simple convent building was financed by the diocese  and was inaugurated by Sr. Jamuna, the Assistant Superior General and blessed by his Excellency Rt. Rev. Dr. Robert Michael Miranda on 15th December 2009.  Presently three sisters reside in this convent under the leadership of Sr. lovelie rendering their yeomen service to the mission, such as:- 1) Education 2) faith formation, 3) social work. 

THE COMMUNITY OF SNEHASADAN 

Deena sevana sabha – Nimala Province always expanded  the activities to the rural areas where there is a great need to care and support the poor women and children , to provide health care and educational backups.

Responding to the pressing invitation from His Excellency Rt.Rev.Dr. Robert Michael Miranda ,the Bishop of Gulbarga. Deena sevana sabha  – Nimala Province opened  Sneha Sadan convent for the service of the poor on 15th December  2009 at Halbarga. He had been inviting them for two years to start a convent in   Diocese mainly for the faith formation for the scattered catholic families at Halbarga mission. Since it was a rural area and apt  for our charism , we accepted his invitation to start a convent. Bishop bought the land and build a convent for us and dug a bore well for our use.  

The convent building  was blessed by Rt. Rev. Dr. Robert Michael Miranda and inaugurated by Sr. Jamuna the Assistant Superior General. Sr. Emestina the provincial Superior, Sr. Cecilia and Sr. Bernaditte  the councilors were present on the occation.

There was a solemn Holy Mass Concelebrated by Msgr. Fr.Leo Lobo, Episcopal Vicar Fr.Santhosh  and Most.Rev. Dr.Robert Michael Miranda as the main celebrant.Many priests, religious and parishioners also participated in the Holy Mass.  There was a grand  function  after the Holy Eucharist arranged  by Rev.Fr.Francis Ferandez OFM Cap.The parish priest welcomed honored the sisters and the Bishop and all others who had come for the celebration with garland and shawl.

Halbarga panchayat accommodates around  8000 people, as a whole around 650 families. They belong  to 25 caste and scheduled caste. 

People speak Kannada, Hindi, Marathi and Telugu. Halbarga mission has three villages as a sub-stations. Convent is in a isolated palce with out any people 

The parish priest Rev.Fr.Francis OFM Cap and the Ex-Panchayat member are the support for sisters in that area.

Parish activities are family visits prayer meeting, catechism class and other pious associations. By living in this non-Christian area, the sisters witness Jesus Christ who lived among the suffering, poor and needy in the spirit and charism of Deena Sevana Sabha. According to the teaching of Mother Petra they witness as living gospels among the large non- Christian flock with their exemplary  consecrated life. Community members Sr. Claret,the Superior and Sr.Jeevaletha and Sr.Thushara ere the first sisters to serve halbarga Mission. (2011-12)

A lot of things are to be a done for the poor people which certainly demand and hard work. Deena Sevana Sabhha  sisters are always ready in Halbarga with great enthusiasm and zeal serve others, especially the poor. Accepting the invitation from Bishop to engage in social work Sr. Thushara started social work  in the year 2011 in 8 villages.

Initially, therewere  three Catholic villages.  At present   there are four catholic villages and six non-catholic villages visitied by them. They are: Hupla, Siddeswar, Hunuji, Konmelkunda, Haliparga, Tegampur, Dharnahalli, Kosam, and Neelagi. Fr. Prashanth is the Parish priest and Sr.Lovelie is Superior and incharge of faith formation ofm Cap and Sr. Salda  is teaching in the Anugragha School and Sr.Maria is working under ORBIT social work. All the pastoral activities are conducted by a good team work. Fathers and sisters are going to the Christian villages once in a week for the Holy Mass. This year new parish council members are elected and had taken the oath to serve the parish and to do their responsibilities.

Anugraha- Halbarga Mission :

The word “Anugraha” meaning divine blessing was adopted by the Capuchins of Karnataka Province when the Halbarga Mission area was handed over to them by the bishop of Mangalore Diocese Rt. Rev. Dr. Aloysius Paul D’Souza in the year 2000.   

Capuchin Presence in Bidar:- The Capuchins were the first men religious to step into Bidar Mission which was then a part of Mangalore Diocese and wholly administered by the diocesan clergy and some women religious hailing from Mangalore.  The main purpose of inviting the Capuchins to Bidar mission was to take care of the spiritual needs of the Diocesan clergy and also the women religious.  Fr. Balize Rodrigues, the newly ordained Capuchin priest ventured into this mission and made his abode at Bhalki Centre in the year 2000. The three sub-stations (Siddeshwara, Huppala and Hunji) were bifurcated from Bhalki Mission and handed over to the Capuchins on 15.01.2001. Hupla chapel was established in 1989 and dedicated to Holy Family. Siddeshwar chapel was established in 1993 dedicated to St. Peter and Paul. Hunji was established in 1994 and on February 6th 2006 new chapel was built by the capuchin friars in Hunji and dedicated to St. Francis of Assisi.   A piece of land measuring 4 acres was purchased by the Capuchins on the mid-way of Bidar-Bhalki road in order to establish their presence permanently.  A small shed gave shelter to the Capuchins for more than 5 years. A modest house known as “Anugraha Ashram” with only ground floor and a small chapel was blessed and inaugurated by Rt. Rev. Dr. Robert Michael Miranda, the bishop of Gulbarga Diocese on 30th May, 2007.  

Formation House :-

Later the Capuchin provincial definitory decided to construct the first floor and establish the formation house for orientation in the Friary.  In 2008, the first batch of orientation students arrived here and completed the academic year with much difficulty and hardship.  The second batch of orientation students had to migrate to Hosanagar within 2 months of their stay here due to lack of water, hot climate and many other unbearable problems.  Hence the ever first formation house in the diocese of Gulbarga had found a great set back.  

School Ministry :-

In 2010, the bishop of Gulbarga, seeing Anugraha vacant, due to the migration of Orientation Students to Hosanagar, asked the capuchins to work on education apostolate.   It was this compulsion which made them think of using it for a school. As the big house with several classrooms and halls went vacant the idea of starting a school was taken up.  Fr. George Monis took up the challenge of starting a school in the existing building with just handful of students.  Due to the dedicated efforts of the staff and management in collaboration with the DSS sisters the school received a wide publicity.  To date, in the year 2016, the school has reached to Std. VIII and has strength of 397 students in eight classes (Nursery, LKG, UKG, I, II, III, IV , V, VI, VII, VII& VIII).  The arrival of the new principal in the person of Bro. Victor Crasta with vast 15 years experience in the school ministry has given rise to new and creative ideas and the school is in the proper foothold.  From 1st to 5th all the 290 students are in Scouts and Guides. In the year of 2015 the new admissions to our school were 154 out of which 55 students were from our poor catholic families. Anugraha ashram has pledged to educate these poor children with help of the benefactors and well-wishers.  

Pastoral Ministry :-

In 2003 Aunugrha Ashram at Halbarga was declared as an independent mission center. The three catholic substations, viz., Siddeshwara, Huppala and Hunaji were given top priority intheir apostolate. In each they have a modest chapel and the Catholics are regularly taken care of spiritually and many are helped for their educational needs.  The DSS sisters who assist the Capuchins give a strong hand in the growth and development of this mission.  The new stations that are ministered are Kon-Melkunda, Halipparaga, Kosam, Jyanthi, Dhanura, Tegampura, Tharnhalli, Nelgi, Thanda and Khanapura are likely to the catholic fold.  In all these areas there is a strong presence of other Christian denominations and their children frequent their school for their educational needs.  By and large many of these have expressed their desire to become Catholics as they do not receive sufficient spiritual and other care from their pastors.  A modest chapel has to be erected in all these stations in order to cater to their spiritual needs if they have to be converted to catholic faith.  The people too actively take part in all the spiritual activities at Halbarga during the feast of their patron saint on October 4th and during the Christmas and Easter Celebrations.  The long 7 years dedicated services of Fr. Francis Fernandes, the present director cum parish priest of this area has borne fruits and has welcomed several faithful to their fold. Fr. Joslie Francis D’Silva arrived on 25th May 2014 as parish priest to Halbarga centre. 25th of August 2014 during the pastoral visit of Bishop 7 new families and 28 members from Kon-Melkunda were received to Catholic faith. Bishop declared the new substation at Kon-Melkunda dedicated to St. Padre Pio, a Capuchin saint at the request of the Capuchin friars working at Halbarga. Later on 8th September 2015 another 12 children were baptized from Kon-Melkunda. In 2016 in the year of mercy they have Sukanya Samriddhi accounts as a 15 years project for 50 girl children A Scheme in which you can invest for Girl child as part of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Yojana”. 

⦁ Vocations Mr. Siddappa and Suvarnamma Alage, from Siddeshwar village have 8 children, 7 daughters and 1 son. Four of them are given in marriage. Two of his daughters have joined the convent, one to Bethany Sisters (Sr. Sujatha) and the other is to Sisters of Charity (Sr. Shilpa) and both have done their temporary profession. These two sisters form the same family are the first sisters for Catholic Church from St. Francis of Assisi Church, Halbarga, Bidar. 

⦁ At present 

  Families adults youth children Total
Halbarga 3 4   6 10
Hunji 7 35 11 8 54
Melkunda 15 11 2 27 40
Hupala 33 101 39 54 194
Siddeshwar 31 120 30 51 201
Kosam   2   2 2
Tegampura 2     5 5
Total 93 271 82 153 506

Deena Sevanasabha :-

The sisters belonging to the Nirmala Province of Deena Sevanasabha were invited by the bishop of Gulbarga Diocese to render spiritual assistance together with the parish priest to the people of God in Halbarga centre. A piece of land measuring 2 acres was purchased by the bishop of Gulbarga just adjacent to our Ashram. A simple convent building was financed and furnished by the bishop himself and was inaugurated by Sr. Jamuna, the Assistant Superior General and blessed by his Excellency Rt. Rev. Dr. Robert Michael Miranda on 15th December 2009. Presently three sisters reside in this convent under the leadership of Sr. Presthita and render their yeomen service to our centre, such as:- 1) ministry in our school, 2) faith formation, 2) social work.
The Friars who rendered service at Anugraha Ashram

No Name From To Designation
01 Fr. Blaize Rodrigues 15.01.2001 21.06.2005 Superior/Parish Priest *
02 Bro. Antony Monteiro 10.08.2003 16.08.2004 Member
03 Bro. Cletus Anand Santmajor 16.08.2004 15.12.2005 Member
04 Fr. Dominic Savio Viegas 21.06.2005 03.08.2008 Superior/Parish Priest *
05 Fr. Gerald Viegas 15.06.2005 18.04.2006 Member
06 Fr. Maxim Nazareth 21.06.2007 01.06.2008 Member
07 Fr. Francis Xavier Fernandes 21.06.2006 25.05.2014 Parish Priest *
08 Fr. Manohar D’Souza 03.08.2008 01.08.2009 Superior/Director
09 Fr. Arun Kumar 01.05.2008 01.05.2009 Asst. Director
10 Fr. Archie Lewis 03.07.2008 01.08.2009 Spiritual Director
11 Bro. Vijesh Lyod Menezes 24.06.2009 08.08.2009 Regent
12 Bro. Prashanth Noronha 20.06.2009 06.08.2009 Regent
13 Fr. George Monis 21.05.2010 26.05.2013 Superior/ Principal
14 Fr. Lourdswamy 18.04.2011 till date Member
15 Bro. Victor Crasta 26.05.2013 till date Superior/Principal
16 Fr. Joslie Francis D’Silva 25.05.2014 till date Parish Priest *
17 Fr, Richard Kadiwal 01.01.2016 till date Treasurer

THE COMMUNITY OF SNEHASADAN 2015-2016 :

History of the Snehasadan Convent : 2009 – 2016
Deena sevana sabha – Nimala Province expanded the activities to the rural areas where there is a great need to care and support the poor women and children , to provide health care and educational back ups.
By the constant invitation from His Excellency Rt.Rev.Dr. Robert Michael Miranda ,the Bishop of Gulbarga. Deena sevana sabha – Nimala Province opend SnehaSadan convent for the service of the poor on 15th December 2009 at Halbarga. He had been inviting them since two years to start a convent in His Diocese mainly for the faith formation for the scattered catholic families. Since it was a rural area and apt for our charism , we accepted his invitation to start a convent. Bishop bought the land and build a convent and dug a bore well.
The convent building was blessed by His Excellency Rt.Rev. Dr.Robert Michael Miranda and inaugurated by Sr.Jamuna the Assistant Superior General. Sr.Emestina the provincial Superior, Sr. Cecilia and Sr.Bernaditte the councilors were present on the occation.

There was a solemn Holy Mass Concelebrated by Msgr. Fr.Leo Lobo, Episcopal Vicar Fr.Santhosh and Most.Rev. Dr.Robert Michael Miranda the main celebrant.Many priests, religious and parishioners also participated in the Holy Mass and the function there after. There was a grand function after the Holy Eucharist, which was arranged by Rev.Fr.Francis Ferandez OFM Cap.The parish priest honored the Bishop and all others who had come for the celebration with garland and shawl.
Bidar District in Karnataka belongs to the Diocese of Gulbarga. Halbarga panchayat accommodates around 8000 people as a whole in 650 families. They belong to 25 caste and scheduled caste. It is a region of linguistic multiplicity. The mostly used languages are Kannada, Hindi, Marathi and Telugu. The place is known as Halbarga and having three villages as a sub-station. There is no human habitation close to the convent.
The convent is situated in 2 acres of land which was purchased by the Bishop. The sisters have nothing of their own. The parish priest Rev.Fr.Francis OFM Cap and the Ex-Panchayat member are the support for sisters in that area.

Parish activities are home visiting, prayer meeting, catechism class and other pious associations. By living in this non-Christian area, the sisters witness Jesus Christ who lived among the suffering, poor and needy in the spirit and charism of Deena sevana sabha.According to the teaching of Mother Petra they witness as living gospels among the large non- Christian flock with their exemplary consecrated life. Community members in 2011 – 12 were Sr.Claret,the Superior and Sr.Jeevaletha and Sr.Thushara.
A lot of things are to be a done for the poor people which certainly demand suffering and hard work. Deena Sevana Sabhha sisters are always ready in Halbarga with great enthusiasm and zeal to do good to others especially for the poor. Accepting the invitation from Bishop to engage in social work Sr. Thushara was sent and started social work in the year 2011 in 8 villages.
Initially, therewere three Catholic villages and at present there are four catholic villages and six non-catholic villages. They are Hupla, Siddeswar, Hunuji, Konmelkunda, Haliparga, Tegampur, Dharnahalli, Kosam, and Neelagi. Fr. Joslie is the Parish priest and Sr.Preshitha is Superior and incharge of faith formation and Sr.Jerabi is teaching in the Anugragha School and Sr.Lijimaria is working under ORBIT social work. All the spiritual activities are jointly conducted by the fathers and sisters. Fathers and sisters are going to the Christian villages once in a week for the holy mass. This year we had the evaluation of the Diocese developmental programme, since the diocese completed it’s 10 years of service. This year new parish council members are elected and had taken the oath to serve the parish and to do their responsibilities.

Celebrations:

In the month of June, at the starting of the acadamical year nearly 56 children were selected for the scholarship and admitted to Anugragha school with the support of the sponsors. On Sep 8th the birth day of Mother Mary nearly 45 children were baptized and become catholics. St.Francis Assisi’s feast was celebrated in a grand manner. It started with a procession that started from the Halbarga town welcoming the Bishop, and reached to the Ashram. This was followed by the Eucharistic celebration and then a small felicitation programme. All went back after the Agape. The Christmas celebration saw carol singing to all the villages along with the children from the same villages. There was also the Christmas Vigil Mass in Halbarga center and seven children had the first communion. Most of the villagers and mainly the youth joined for the celebration. In all the catholic villages, Christmas as well as the Church feast was celebrated in a grand manner.

Children’s faith Formation Camp :

In the month of May it was arranged and some children were sent to the boarding in Bhalki, Gulbarga and Jalsangi. In the month of October a one day programme for the children was conducted to grow in their faith -mainly the life of the saints were explained to them. They had two days Holy Childhood programme in Bhalki church and the competitions’ were conducted based on the Bible. The faith formation camp for the children was decided to be conducted in the month of April 2nd to 7th 2016 at Halbarga center. The children from there would be selected for the summer camp “SANKALPA” for one month in Gulbarga.

Youth Day Celebrations :

We have different zones consisting of the regions of Bhalki, Hulsoor, Muchlamba and Halbarga. We had youth day celebration and from our village 20 youths were participated in that and they had competitions and our youths wined in volley ball and in other items also they have performed well. For Christmas, they had “SHANTHI DOOTHA” programme in Bidar many of our youth had participated.

Bhalki Jatra :

The Bhalki Jatra was celebrated in the month November 6th, 7th , 8th 2015. Pada yatra was on 1st November 2015 was organized by fathers and sisters along with the parishioner’s. from Bidar many had come and in Halbarga center they had some refreshment , juice and biscuits were distributed to all. Then from Halbarga we had joined with them for pada yatra and from our substations people were participated in good number. Three days full programme was arranged for the spiritual growth of the people in this mission area. Sr. Preshitha was selected as core committee member for the Jatra and for the Halbarga center had given the incharge of the Liturgy for the three days of Jatra. All three of us had joined together and did our responsibility in our best.

Year of Consecrated Life :

At the beginning of the year of Consecrated life, there was the opening ceremony and at the closing, we had closing ceremony on Feb- 14th 2016, with Adoration and prayer service and then felicitation programme in which the sisters and fathers participated .

St. Francis of Assisi Church C 525 F 87 Cat. 50
Anugraha Ashram, Halbarga, Bhalki, Bidar-585413
Superior: Fr. Richard Kadiwal OFM Cap. 7259697352
Mission Director (P.P): Fr. Prashanth Kumar OFM Cap. 9901209936


Sub-Centers:
1. Sts. Peter & Paul, Siddeshwara 1993 C.210 F 31 Cat 10
2. Holy Family, Hupla 1987 C 205 F 33 Cat 15
3. St. Francis of Assisi, Hunaji 1990 C 44 F 8 Cat 0
4. Kon- Melkunda C 48 F 10 Cat 20


Institutions:
Anugraha School (Nursery& Primary) 2010
H.M : Fr. Richard Kadiwal OFM Cap 7259697352
Administrator: Fr. Karunesh OFM Cap 8971709281


Convent: Deena Sevana Sabha
Snehasadan Convent
Near Anugraha School, Halbarga. Bhalki,
Bidar 585 413
Superior: Sr. Lovely DSS e-mail: slovelydss72@gmail.com 9845566924 / 9448120319

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