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Servant of God Mgr Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas, the former Vicar General of the Diocese of Mangalore and the Founder of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Little Flower of Bethany was a holy priest of the Diocese of Mangalore. His memory is fresh in us, though he went to his eternal abode in the year 1960. He is remembered for his pastoral zeal and commitment.


Mgr Mascarenhas was a renowned educationist of his time and visualized education as a means to give life and transform the ignorant, especially the poor and the girls.

REMINISCENCES


It is indeed fortunate that in this issue we are able to reproduce an article from the pen of Servant of God Msgr RFC Mascarenhas, which appeared in Unitas, 1954 pp 70-72, the Annual of St Joseph’s Seminary, Jeppu, Mangalore, on the occasion of the completion of its 75 years jubilee. The writer attributes the vibrant living of his entire sacerdotal life to the formation he received at St Joseph’s Seminary, Mangalore. We record our sincere thanks for the permission granted by the Rector of the Seminary for this. In his unique inimitable style Msgr Raymond gives rare insights into the personalities of the key people of the Seminary at the time he was a scholar there (1891-1900). It indeed makes for
pleasurable plus memorable reading.

St. Joseph’s Seminary, Mangalore, my Ecclesiastical Alma Mater, is commemorating this year its 75 years under the care of the Jesuit Fathers. The occasion brings to mind and heart the words of Ecclesiasticus: Laudemus viros gloriosos et parentes nostros in generatione sua (Let us praise the glorious
man and our parents in their generation).

It was my privilege to have my entire ecclesiastical training in St. Joseph’s Seminary, Mangalore, in which I passed nine happy years from 1891 to 1900. The memory of these years is with me in benediction. The spiritual and intellectual formation which I received in this home of sanctity and learning, has inspired and directed and strengthened my entire sacerdotal life of well nigh 55 years.

I need say little about the spiritual formation given in the Seminary. Suffice it to say it was the Jesuit training with its high ideals of generosity in the service of Our Lord, backed by the high example of persons who very much impressed us as men of God, with a supernatural outlook.

         Now as regards our intellectual formation in the Seminary.

        It was my good fortune to join the Seminary when, so to say, its transition period had passed and the full course of Ecclesiastical studies was systematically established. To speak about my professors and the different subjects they taught me.

         Fr. A. Lucchini was my professor of Dogma. He was grave and dignified and measured his words. He looked a deep thinker and was a clear speaker and lecturer. It was charming to hear him quote Franzelin and Billot and Mazzella, above all St. Thomas of whom he spoke with bated breath. It was about then that the great ‘Lumen in coelo’ Pope Leo XIII had issued his famous Encyclical “Aeterni Patris” restoring the Philosophy of St. Thomas in Catholic schools. Fr. Lucchini used to say very solemnly-Mallem errare cum S. Thoma quam sequi opiniones caeterorum ( I prefer to err with St Thomas than follow the opinions of others).

         Fr. Joseph Gioanini was my Professor of Philosophy. He was facile princeps. Besides other philosophic subjects he taught me Theologia Naturalis. He so taught it that we learnt during it all the intricate points of Theology – de Sanctissima Trinitate, de Incarnatione etc. (about the Most Holy Trinity, about the Incarnation etc.,).He was very clear and lucid in his exposition. He spoke in simple flowing Latin; so that his lectures were an exercise to us in the speech of Latin. Fr. Gioanini was an adorer of St. Thomas. He seemed to melt with affection when he spoke of St. Thomas. I remember how once he expatiated on ‘noster’ when in the textbook the author quoted a passage from St. Thomas adding to it ‘Dicit Aquinas noster’ (says our Aquinas).

         Fr. Joseph Gioanini was somewhat of an encyclopedia. He had ready information to give on any subject that was asked of him. But in the matter of singing he was nil. The gift of music was entirely absent in him. He could not modulate on a single note. Yet when asked a question about music he would
explain in detail the science and art of music, the difference between scales etc. with perfect ease. This aside I well remember his explaining to me the mathematical calculations in the firing of the canons from men-of-war. When I was priest I had occasion to consult him on some matters of architecture and he gave his advice most intelligently and happily.

            Fr. A. Grossi was my professor of Moral Theology. He was a man full of humour; and he could not speak, or teach either without raising bubbles of laughter. His class of Moral Theology was an interesting and amusing conversation, sandwiched between the serious reading of the text, without, however, going out of its matter. His teaching was clear and forcible. There was not rigorism in it. It leaned towards the benign side, but there was no laxity about it.

           Fr. S.F. Zanetti was my professor of Holy Scripture. In character he was the very opposite of Fr. Grossi, serious, strict, ascetic. He was Rector and at one time also Master of Novices. But as professor he was lucid, clear and concise. The Encyclical “Aeterni Patris” of Pope Leo XIII which was issued about that time was the forte of his teaching.

            Fr. A.J. Diamanti was my professor of Liturgy, and Gregorian Chant. He was the Prefect of the church. He was a kind of ‘ad omnia’ (for all) in the Seminary and specially with us Seminarists. He was the designer and architect of the Seminary church. He also has designed many other churches in the Diocese. None was planned without consulting him. He died suddenly of heart failure when actually he was working with a plan relating to the Milagres church, Mangalore, of which he had given the main original plan. We could well apply to him the words of the Psalmist: Domine dilexi decorem domus tuae et locum habitationis tuae (Lord, I loved the beauty of your house and the place of your habitation).

              Fr. Diamanti was an ardent lover of Liturgy and Gregorian Chant and whatever else belonged to the performance of religious services. Come from Rome he was an ardent Roman and by word and example he instilled into us a great love for the Roman Church and her singing and ceremonial. His method of teaching was peculiarly his: it was half work and half play. He taught us to do the right thing by showing before all the wrong and awkward ways of doing it, for instance in the performance of ceremonies, in singing, preaching etc. We enjoyed the method and learnt under it. And we were glad also for his method which relieved us of a great deal of tedium, the more so as his classes were on Sundays and Thursdays which normally should have been days of rest for us.

           About Professors of Classics I shall only say what we heard from Bishop Cavadini that in his interview with the great Latinist Pope Leo XIII the Holy Father was happily surprised to hear that in the Mangalore Seminary everything was taught in Latin and that the Seminarists talked Latin not only in the
classes but in general conversation. He was surprised and tried to assure himself about the fact by a variety of questions with regard to the fact.

             Let me conclude: Laudemus viros gloriosos et parentes nostros in generatione sua: homines magni virtute et prudentia sua praediti. nuntiantes in prophetis dignitatem prophetarum et virtute prudentiae populis sanctissima verba: in peritia sua requirentes modos musicos et narrantes carmina scripturarum ( Let us praise glorious men and our parents in their generation: men endowed with great virtue and their prudence, announcing in prophets the dignity of prophets and by virtue of hottest of words of people’s prudence: in their skill requiring the modes of music and narrating songs of scripture Cf.
Sirach 44: 1-5).

          My humble salutation to the grand Institution which has given me so many good things:
             Alma Mater Mea si obliviscar tui oblivioni detur dextera mea. (Glorious Mother mine if I forget you, let my right hand wither).

                                                                                                                                19-X-1954
                                                                                                  Courtesy : Unitas, 1954 pp 70-72
                                                                                          St Joseph’s Seminary, Jeppu, Mangalore

Favours Received

“Glory to the Ever-loving God”

 “Glory to the Ever-loving God”

Compassionate Lord,

            We thank you Lord for granting us the gift of Fr. Raymond Francis Camillus Mascarenhas (loved humanity and devoted to God) from the bottom of our hearts. I am grateful to you for choosing me to work as a teacher in the School which was started by him. I am ever grateful for the intercession of the Servant of God Mgr RFC Mascarenhas for helping my son to complete his education and to get a good job.

By Liny Davis, St. Michael’s School,Westhill

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Messages

Message

I have fond memories of the Bethany Convent Chapel at Bendore because

By Max Rasquinha,, Mangalore - Houston/Dallas, Texas, U.S.A

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Poems/Plays/Songs

Prayer

By Bethany

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Drawings & Paintings

Publications

Asian Trading Corporation

Reminiscing in Tranquility
Sr Violette`s Memories of Mgr Raymond FC Mascarenhas
   Compiled and Edited by:
Sr Mary Naulak BS

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