Vasai (Agenzia Fides) - The tribal population in the Archdiocese of Vasai has a new Catholic church: Archbishop Felix Machado blessed and officially opened it for worship on April 30, inaugurating it in Talasari, in the district of Palghar, in the state of Maharashtra. Speaking to Fides, the Archbishop of Vasai, Mgr. Felix Machado explained: "The new church is dedicated to the Holy Mother of God and will be very useful to the mission area towards the adivasi populations".
Three thousand people came together with great enthusiasm to the inaugural celebration. During the Mass, the Archbishop imparted the sacrament of Confirmation to 260 boys and girls and some adults. "It was a joyous celebration: our adivasi brothers are Christians with solid roots, and will be able to carry forward the mission of the Church. Young people who were confirmed are Christians who, I am sure, will be the Catholic leaders of the future".
Maharashtra is the second most populous state in India. The indigenous people (adivasis) in the territory live in poverty, with poor educational and health opportunities and exploitation. Some districts of the state, populated by tribes, are called "hunger zones". The Catholic Church works to improve their socio-economic conditions. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 10/05/2016)