The Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, on Xmas eve joined the midnight mass and also formally inaugurated and crib-set and a special exhibition depicting The Rosary Way – a unique meditation on the life of Lord Jesus – in the presence of Archbishop of Kolkata, Rev Thomas D’Souza, Fr Franklin Menzes, Pro-Vicar, The Cathedral of the Most Holy Rosary, Mr Abhishek Banerjee, Member of Parliament, Mr Vineet Goyal, Kolkata Police Commissioner and Don Bosco Alumni members Mr Pramode Agarwal and Mr Subrata Ganguly.
The exhibits at the special exhibition, created by Church Art of Kolkata, displayed in front of the Cathedral of the Most Holy Rosary, are most apt as 20 panels narrate the story of the announcement of the Birth of Jesus till his Resurrection and the glorification of his Mother Mary.
“As in the past years, this year too, as Christians heed to the call of green Christmas, tradition recalls a Catholic Saint who returned to nature by promoting “presepio vivente” – a living Crib – depiction of the birth of Jesus as described in the gospels of Matthew and Luke,” said Fr Franklin Menezes, Pro-Vicar of The Cathedral of the Most Holy Rosary, Burrabazar. The Cathedral was founded in 1799.
“The set of twenty pictures at the exhibition is a panoramic representation of the various turning points in Lord Jesus’ life considered sacred like birth, baptism, transfiguration, eucharist, crucifixion, resurrection, ascension, descent, assumption, coronation and so on,” said Mr Subrata Ganguly, curator of the exhibition and founder of creative arts firm Church Art.
“Nativity scenes exhibit figures representing the infant Jesus, his mother Mary, and Joseph. Other characters from the nativity story, such as shepherds, the Magi, and angels, may be displayed near the manger,” said Fr Dominic Gomes, Vicar General, Archdiocese of Calcutta, while commenting on the crib set at the Cathedral.
The Vatican has displayed a scene in St. Peter’s Square near its Christmas tree since 1982, and the Pope has blessed the managers of children assembled in St. Peter’s Square for a special ceremony for many years. In 2015, the first-ever crib set depicting Jesus’ birth from India, designed by the Kolkata-based organization Church Art, was added to the International Nativity Museum of Bethlehem’s collection of 223 nativity representations from over 93 countries.