SMSSS Annual Day - 2022 and Conferring of "Chaitanyashri”
Shivamogga, May 10, 2022: The Shimoga Multipurpose Social Service Society® celebrated its Annual Day - 2022 through a public programme on 10 May 2022 at Lagana Mandira, Gadikoppa, Shimoga. Most Rev. Dr Francis Serrao SJ, the Bishop of the diocese of Shimoga and the President of SMSSS presided over the programme. Dr Selvamani R., IAS, Deputy Commissioner, Shivamogga District inaugurated the programme. The esteemed presence of His Holiness Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharya Mahaswamiji, Shri Taralabalu Jagadguru Brihanmath, Sirigere and his speech kept the audience spellbound. Dr Amjad Hussain Hafiz Karnataki, Sahitya Academy’s Bal Sahitya Puraskar of 2020 Award Winner, Shikaripura and Rev. Fr Praveen Martis SJ, St Aloysius College, Harihar were the Chief guests. Rev. Msgr Felix Joseph Noronha, the Vicar General of the diocese of Shimoga and the Vice-president of SMSSS and Mrs Precilla Martis, the President of Streebandhu Multipurpose Souharda Co-operative Limited were the Special Invitees.
The guests were accorded a grand welcome through Purna-Kumbha. Students from Loyola High School, Shivamogga invoked God's blessings on the programme and upon everyone present in the auditorium through a devotional Prayer Dance. Rev. Msgr Felix Joseph Noronha welcomed the dignitaries and the participants. Dr Selvamani R, IAS, Deputy Commissioner, Shivamogga District along with the dignitaries inaugurated the programme.
In his inaugural address the Deputy Commissioner appreciated the efforts of the Society, the result of which is seen in the large gathering for the programme. Through Self Help Groups a lot of development has taken place. Women are able to make savings and through borrowing loans women had brought in lot of development in their families. He noted that giving importance for the empowerment of women and improving the health condition of family members in the rural will develop the society. He wished every success to all women, the change makers in the society.
In his keynote address Rev. Dr Clifford Roshan Pinto, the Director of SMSSS quoted the words of Venerable Fulton J. Sheen, “Show me your hands; Do they have scars from giving? Show me your feet; Are they wounded in service? Show me your heart; Have you left a place for divine love?” The Society has gone beyond the boundaries in giving, has walked miles together without any wounds or scars. This has become a possibility because there is enough space for experiencing God’s love. God’s love is experienced through serving God’s creation. We are not celebrating the years but celebrating the depth of God’s love experienced through service. A documentary on the recent activities of the Society gave a glimpse of Society’s love for the poor.
Dr Amjad Hussain Hafiz Karnataki, Sahitya Academy’s Bal Sahitya Puraskar 2020 Award Winner said “Amma, mother is the word that replicates original love. Nothing can replace this.” He highly appreciated the work of SMSSS and noted that the service of this society has crossed all barriers of Caste, Creed, Culture, etc. The society today needs this type of service which builds religious harmony and promotes peace. Only when we give importance to educating people and providing good health care, we can think of developing the society. We should all become the heralds of peace and harmony.
Most Rev. Dr Francis Serrao SJ, the Bishop of Shimoga and the President of SMSSS declared that Rev. Dr Leo D’Souza SJ, Scientist and Former Principal of St Aloysius College, Mangalore will be conferred “Chaitanyashri” 2020 and His Holiness Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharya Mahaswamiji, Shri Taralabalu Jagadguru Brihanmath, Sirigere will be conferred “Chaitanyashri” 2021 for their contribution to the society in the field of Social Justice, Communal Harmony and Promotion of Human Rights. The President spoke about the achievements of both these highly renowned personalities. Rev. Dr Leo D’Souza SJ has, through his research and his great love for the uneducated and unemployed youth has made a remarkable difference in the lives of thousands of poor people. His Holiness Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharya Mahaswamiji through his Saddharma Nyaya Peetha, which is an open court session, every Monday, throughout the year, has brought peace in thousands of families through amicable settlement of family disputes. Their commitment in their work and their simplicity has made them great. The President congratulated both of them for their contribution to the society and noted that they truly deserve “Chaitanyashri.”
“Chaitanyashri 2020” Rev. Dr Leo D’Souza SJ thanked the society for recognizing his work and honouring him with the award. He opined that the award is not for him alone but for his community as well because it is the combined work of the community that has contributed in his progress. He also explained how the research has helped the poor people in earning their livelihood throughout the year.
“Chaitanyashri 2021” His Holiness Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharya Mahaswamiji said that there are two types of awards: one which is earned through the submission of applications and recommendation letters, the other is people recognize the great works of people and honour them with awards. He noted that there are several who work for no recognition. The society needs people like these. The Swamiji observed that true religion is not fighting. Religion grew among people. God did not create religion. The religious leaders do not teach pr proclaim fight. Today’s gathering is a true example of harmonious living. We all should accept and live the fact is peace is the source and summit of all religions. He also gave several examples of how the Saddharma Nyaya Peetha has helped in resolving several family issues. Due to too much of attachment to the worldly things the families are broken. People are not ready to accept rejection. He appreciated the works of SMSSS and thanked everyone for recognizing his contribution to the society and honouring him.
Rev. Fr Praveen Martis SJ spoke about the resemblance in the personalities of these two Chaitanyashri Award receivers. Both are spiritual gurus belonging to two different religions. But both have gone beyond religious boundaries and helped the poor in their own way. We too have to cross all barriers if we have to make a difference in the lives of others. In his presidential address, Most Rev. Dr Francis Serrao SJ noted that the two great personalities are a model for everyone. Their simplicity, their love for the poor and their commitment should motivate us. Though these two personalities were born as simple human beings, they made the difference. How we are born is not important but how we live is what makes our personality. Feeling our own pain indicates that we are alive, but feeling other’s pain is an indication that we are human beings. We should become humans. He also appreciated the work of SMSSS.
On this occasion the children of the members of Streebandhu Multipurpose Souharda Cooperative Limited who excelled in 10th standard and II PUC final exams of 2021 were honoured for their excellence. The Society also honoured six achievers for their achievements in different fields. Mrs Precilla Martis facilitated the achievers. Mr Jagadeesha KH proposed the vote of thanks. Mrs Gloria Jyothi Furtado and Mrs Sylvia Maria Correa compered the programme. The celebration ended with lunch. 2250 people participated in the programme.