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  • Aug 13 2017

    Syro Malabar Feast of St. Thomas & St. Alphonsa

    August 13th, 2017, 3:00 PM

    Syro Malabar Feast of St. Thomas & St. Alphonsa

    The Indian Syro Malabar Catholic Community in the parish celebrate the feast of Saint Thomas, their patron Saint and the life and intercessory works of Saint Alphonsa in the Church of Saint Helena on Sunday, August 13th with a solemn concelebrated Mass at 3:00 PM followed by a street procession, veneration of relics, cultural activities and a festive dinner in the Church hall.

    Sister Alphonsa was born in Kerala, India on August 19, 1910. Nicknamed " little Anna" by her parents St. Alphonsa endured a difficult childhood especially when her mother died and throughout her life she was stricken by illness and suffering including burnt feet caused by a severe accident. She joined the Franciscan Clarist convent in May 1927 and in 1928 she received the postulant's veil and accepted the name Alphonsa in honor of St. Alphonsus Ligouri. Upon completion of the novitiate she took her perpetual vows on August 12, 1936. Sadly enough, at the age of 35, St. Alphonsa died on July 28, 1946. Immediately following her death numerous miracles were attributed to her intercession many of them involving the straightening of clubbed feet. Pope John Paul beatified her on February 8, 1986 in the Kottayam district of Kerala and on October 12, 2008 Pope Benedict XIV declared this humble religious a saint! St. Alphonsa is the first person of Indian origin to be canonized and the first canonized saint of the Syro Malabar Church.

    On Sunday, August 13th we welcome Rev. Johnykutty George, chancellor of the Syro Malabar diocese of Chicago, who will be the main celebrant and the homilist.

    Everyone is invited to join in praying through Saint Alphonsa and Saint Thomas' intercession as Syro Malabar Catholic faithful celebrate their special feast.