A Pongal Thanksgiving at CDM

“Now you together are Christ’s body; but each of you is a different part of it.” Cor 12:27

The Tamil Apostolate celebrated its Pongal mass on the 3rd Sunday of Ordinary Time, also Sunday of the Word of God.

Parishioners congregated to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet in Tamil half an hour before the mass. During this time too, a small crowd gathered at the porch of the church to get a fire going, to boil milk in an earthenware pot and to cook the sakkarai pongal or sweet pongal.

Although anxious and worried when a thunderstorm broke out just minutes before the mass, the heavy rains did not dampen the spirits of the more than 300 congregation.

Incidentally, the last mass in Tamil that was organised for the community was on December 18 2021, the day of the massive floods. The mass had to be cancelled as inundated roads brought traffic to a standstill. Many from the Tamil community were severely affected by the floods, losing precious documents, valuable household items and their means of transportation to the flood waters that reached more than 6ft high.

It was fitting then that the Pongal mass, traditionally celebrated in Catholic churches in Malaysia as a thanksgiving celebration, regrouped the community about a month after the floods, all decked out in colourful traditional attire, in God’s house.

Despite the hardships endured, the community was grateful for the quick assistance provided, the financial aid received and for the safety of their families.

In his homily, main celebrant Fr Michel Dass, assistant parish priest of CDM, said just like Jesus, everyone has their story to tell. Our stories should always be attached to Jesus’ story so that Jesus lives in our life story.

“It is the same with the kolam. If the kolam is created with a single colour, it will not look attractive. Our lives also portray so many colours but Jesus must always be the center of our lives.”

Parish priest Rev Fr Alan Pereira concelebrated the mass with Fr Michel. At the end of the mass, both priests together with seminarian Brother Cantona Cyril were adorned with handcrafted Indian shawls signifying the congregations’ respect and gratitude.

Softcopies of the photos taken on that day can be bought at here.