20 May 2024 was the day that was decided as the day for the inauguration of the Centenary Jubilee Celebration of the Santal Mission and the Blessing of the Church at Majlispur. The heavy rain and thunder on that night didn’t do any damage to our preparations and our spirits. On the contrary, the summer weather cooled down considerably and became very pleasant. By morning the rain had stopped completely. God’s blessing hand was upon us.

The celebrations started by garlanding the statue of Fr Antony DeBono SJ. Rt.Rev. Fulgence Tigga, Bishop of Raiganj,Rt.Rev. Julius Marandi, Bishop of Dumka, Rt.Rev. Francis Tirkey, Bishop of Purnea, Rt.Rev. Angelus Kujur SJ, Bishop Emeritus of Purnea, Rev.Fr K.C. Stephen SJ, Provincial of Dumka-Raiganj Province, Rev.Fr Shajumon SJ, Provincial of Darjeeling Province, Mr Reuben Gauci, High Commissioner of Malta, Fr Paul Aquilina SJ, the last surviving Maltese missionary in India, Ms Marcette, and others garlanded the statue. Then all went to the Church campus in procession led by the Parish choir and dance groups.Bishop Julius Marandi cut the ribbon and Bishop Fulgence Tigga opened the door of the church and led all the assembled inside the Church.


Bishop Fulgence Tigga was the main celebrant during the Eucharistic celebration. Fr K.C.Stephen, in his introductory speech, invited the assembled to thank God for the legacy of a hundred years of Santal Mission carried out by the unwavering commitment and dedication of the selfless missionaries and others through education, socio-pastoral care and spiritual ministries. Bishop Julius Marandi, in his homily, narrated that when he went to Malta, the people of Malta proudly told him that they were the children of St Paul. The Bishop then told the assembled that, we, the faithful of Dumka, Raiganj and Purnea Dioceses, could say proudly that we are therefore the grandchildren of St Paul since we got our faith from the Maltese Jesuits. He advised the assembled to walk in the path shown to us by the Maltese missionaries.

During the Mass, the newly built altar and the church walls were blessed according to the rituals. Fr Emmanuel Murmu, the Master of the Ceremony, saw to it that the whole ceremony went on smoothly. The choir group led by Fr Ravindra Darshima SJ and the team sang melodious hymns. The assembled faithful took part in the celebration full of devotion. Fr Stanislaus Murmu SJ,the Parish Priest, proposed a vote of thanks.

After the Eucharistic celebration, the jubilee flag was raised. The various committees led by Fr Peri Moses SJ, Fr Basil Manojin SJ, Fr Stanislaus Murmu SJ, and Fr Nisthamani Toppo did a marvellous job. Fr Joby Kachappilly SJ worked hard to get the renovated Majlispur Church to its present shape. All the Jesuits and the Sisters of Majlispur Mission worked tirelessly to make the day a great success. Praise be to God!