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Church dedicates 2017 for St. Joseph Vaz

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The Catholic Bishops’ Conference decided this year of 2017 would be observed as “the Year of St Joesph Vaz” for the Church in Sri Lanka, remembering Apostle St. Joseph Vaz, country’s first Canonized Saint.

Announcing the decision officially, Archbishop of Colombo Malcolm Ranjith said that in making the Year of St. Joseph Vaz, a grace filled and fruitful year while making the Church truly participatory and an Evangelizing Church.

His Holiness Pope Francis when he visited the country in January last year canonized Apostle St. Joesph Vaz after he was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1995. With the introduction of his Cause of Canonization by then Bishop of Cochin, Fr Joseph Vaz spent many years in the country rebuilding Catholic church.

As this year dedicated to St Joesph Vaz, Church noted that this year should be time of prayer, reflection, and commitment.

“The secret of the success of this great missionary in rebuilding a Church that was practically dying, without a single priest to minister to the persecuted and scattered flock for 29 years, was his deep spirituality, we hail this great missionary and we thank God for his immense love in sending him to us to save the faith of our forefathers,”a handout by Church released in view of this occasion noted.