Shimoga Multipurpose Social Service Socieity ® (SMSSS)
In the service of the human family, the Church reaches to all men and women without distinction,striving to build with them a civilization of love, striving to build with them a civilization of love, founded upon the universal values of peace, justice, solidarity and freedom which find their fulfilment in Christ. "The joys and the hopes, the griefs and the anxieties of the people of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these too are the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ. Indeed, nothing genuinely human fails to raise an echo in their hearts" (GS 1).
The Shimoga Multipurpose Social Service Society (SMSSS) is the ‘Development’ arm of the Diocese of Shivamoga, Karnataka, India. It is committed to influence positive change in the lives of the people of the Diocese. It has been engaged in various developmental programs in the Diocese ever since it came into existence in 1989. The Diocese of Shivamoga comprises three civil districts namely, Shivamoga, Davangere and Chitradurga. SMSSS caters to the needs of the poor and marginalized of the Diocese irrespective of caste, creed and race, through various developmental interventions in more than 605 villages of the above three districts.
A Society based on Justice, Peace and Love
Justice means: Where everyone gets their due with dignity without any discrimination on the basis of caste, creed and gender, enjoy their rights and exercise their duties
Peace means: Where everyone lives in harmony, fraternity and freedom without conflict, dispute and fears
Love means: Where everyone accepts each other as they are with mutual respect.
Empowering the poor and the marginalized through the process of capacity building and rights based actions
Marginalized means: women, children and youth, farmers and people living with HIV/AIDS
Empowerment means: People are accessing their rights, having control over their resources and actively participating in decision making process/governance
The objectives of social ministry consist of awareness building among the people about their living realities and conscientising them about the problems they face, organising the people into social action groups to bring a new society void of social evils. Self help being the best help, the organisation will strive to bring about economic development by way of savings and credit, encouraging income generation activities and self-employment schemes among the youth, creating awareness about the environment responsibilities, making the government projects to come through to the people, women's welfare through women organisations, literacy drive, primary health care, relief activities and charity.
A Social Service Society has been set up to engage in the social apostolate which is directed to the establishment of a just and humane society that is inspired by the Gospel values of love, equality, justice, peace and fraternity. It also seeks to restore the human dignity of the marginalized in the society by means of an empowerment process. The basic dignity of the human being must be recognized and protected with appropriate civil liberties to be guaranteed by secular governments.
Commission Action Plan
The Church should encourage savings among people. Positive intervention can be done to promote Self-Help Groups in all parishes and human organisations. This brings about belongingness, care and concern for one another.
Bright and economically poor students should be sponsored so that they can receive the benefits of quality education at higher and professional levels. School dropouts should be especially cared for by providing them necessary means to complete their education. Children should enjoy a happy and healthy childhood and should be made aware of their basic rights. Definite and concrete steps should be taken in the Diocese to eradicate child labour.
Involvement of the man power available in the Diocese, especially teachers of various institutions can play an important and effective role in creating awareness about social evils such as alcoholism, child labour, the disadvantaged groups and gender discrimination. Empowerment of the poor and the marginalized with special focus on landless
labourers, slum dwellers, widows, daily wage earners, small and marginal farmers etc. should be our priority.
Social concerns like free legal aid, community health and environment are to be aptly addressed to by the Church. Much needs to be done in fields like the rehabilitation of the victims of AIDS, the retarded and the disabled, the lonely, the abandoned and the old.
Parish level awareness programmes about government schemes should be conducted and a handbook or at least a brochure on various government schemes must be prepared for use in parishes. Catholics should be encouraged to participate in Gram Sabha and Panchayat meetings to voice their opinions and also avail benefits of various government schemes. Catholic entrepreneurs must be directed in getting financial and other aid from the state government sponsored Minorities Development Corporation.
Economically backward families could be identified and schemes be evolved to uplift these families by introducing income generation schemes by providing counselling and resources. These families could be included in Save a Family Programme towards self-sustenance.
Provision for modest houses and other basic amenities need to be taken care of by going in for low cost housing schemes with different community linked amenities such as water, toilets and recreational facilities.
It is the duty of Christians and of all who look to God as the Creator to protect the environment by developing a sense of reverence for the whole of God's creation. It could be implemented by way of afforestation and conscientising people to use environment friendly things. Each child is to be encouraged to plant, nurture and sustain at least one tree.
Promotion of environment awareness programmes like water shed management and rainwater harvesting are to be planned. Families should have safe drinking water through community drinking water facilities. Promotion of natural farming, bio-diversity and avoiding of chemical applications for farming is also our task. People have to be educated about sustainable and responsible natural resource management and alternative forms of energy.
Every parish should set up a Social Action Cell which will act as a catalyst in the promotion of social collaboration of all communities. It should act as an agency that analyses and disseminates information on important social issues at the local, state and national level.
There should be coordination and collaboration of all the existing Catholic organisations in the Diocese like Chitra,Nisarga and Nirmala Seva Kendra, etc., towards attainment of the vision of the Diocese. All the above-mentioned activities are the primary concerns of the Diocesan Commission for Social Works namely, Shimoga Multipurpose Social Service Society
The Photo Gallery of Commission's Activities
Sacred Heart Cathedral, Shimoga Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large1.jpg
Bishop's House, Diocese of Shimoga Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large2.jpg
Mahila Sangha, SMSSS, Shimoga Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large3.jpg
Our Lady of Health, Hariha - The Diocesan Shrine Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large4.jpg
St. Thomas Church, Davanagere Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large5.jpg
SMSSS, Shimoga Multipurpose Social Servie Society Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large6.jpg
Don Bosco Church, Chitradurga Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large7.jpg
St. Anthony's Church, Shanthinagar, Shimoga Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large8.jpg
World Famous Falls, Jog Falls, Shimoga District Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large9.jpg
Christ the King Church, Jog Falls Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large10.jpg
Declaration of Hariha Shrine as the Shrine of the Diocese Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large11.jpg
Faithful Praying at Harihar Shrine Image copyrights - Diocese of Shimogasmsss_gallery/large12.jpg