Shimoga: May 7, 2014:
On the 7th of May, 2014, at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Shimoga took place solemn Episcopal consecration celebration of His Lordship Francis Serrao. He was consecrated Bishop of Shimoga Diocese and on the same day he took canonical possession of the Diocese and started his pastoral ministry with the pastoral motto “Service of Faith Fullness of Life”.
The principal Consecrator was His Grace Archbishop Salvatore Pennacchio, Apostolic Nuncio to India and Nepal. It was his first visit to the Diocese of Shimoga. During the homily His Grace said, the core pastoral ministry of a Bishop is to serve. By serving the faithful entrusted to his pastoral care Bishop follow the example of Christ. The Co-consecrators were His Grace Archbishop Bernad Moras, the Archbishop of Bangalore Archdiocese; His Grace Archbishop Vincent Michael Concessao, Bishop Emeritus of Delhi Archdiocese; His Lordship Bishop Aloysius Paul D'Souza, the Bishop of Mangalore; His Lordship Gerald Isaac Lobo, Bishop of Udupi; His Lordship Peter Machado, Bishop of Belgaum; His Lordship Thomasappa Anthony Swamy, Bishop of Chikmangalur; His Lordship Thomas Anthony Vazhapilly, Bishop of Mysore; His Lordship Robert Miranda, Bishop of Gulbarga; His Lordship Mar George Njaralakkattu, Syro-Malabar bishop of Mandya; His Lordship Mar Joseph Arumachadath, Syro-Malabar bishop of Bhadravathi; His Lordship Alex Vadakkumthala, Bishop of Kannur and His Lordship Henry D’Souza, Bishop of Bellary who was also the apostolic administrator of the Shimoga diocese. Rev. Msgr. Romanus Mbena, First Counsellor who accompanied Apostolic Nuncio was also present and read the Mandate from the Holy see in Latin before the consecration ceremony.
After the consecration all the priests of the Diocese paid honor and obedience to the New Ordinary. At the same celebration were present a great number of Jesuits priests from Karnataka and other provinces, priests from other dioceses, women religious, and huge crowd of faithful, family members, friends and some non-Christian people to show their love and happiness for the new Bishop.
There were present numbers of political dignitaries among them were Mr. Oscar Fernandes, the Central minister of India for Road Transport and Highways, Mr. K. Abhay Chandra Jain, Karnataka state minister for Youth Services and Fisheries and Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) from Mangalore and Shimoga.
After the Holy Eucharist there was felicitation function to His Lordship Francis Serrao, the new Bishop of Shimoga during which the Apostolic nuncio and all other dignitaries were honored on the behalf of the faithful of the Diocese of Shimoga.