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Dates of St. Xavier exposition announced

Oct. 15, 2013

Archbishop Filipe Neri Ferrao of Goa Daman and Diu announced the dates of the decennial exposition of the sacred relics of Goa's patron saint, St Francis Xavier. The exposition at Old Goa will be held next year from November 22, 2014, till January 4, 2015. The archbishop issued the decree confirming the holding of the solemn event, which was last held in November 2004-January2005, in conformity with a long-standing practice followed by the archdiocese. The relics will be kept open for veneration of the faithful for 44 days.

A committee to prepare for the exposition, which draws hundreds and thousands of pilgrims from various parts of the country and the world, will be constituted soon. "The organizing committee will take charge of the preparations and draw up the whole plan once it is formed," a source at the bishop's place said. Declining to comment further, the source said it is too early to provide more details, as the committee will work out the modalities. The sacred relics of the Spanish saint are taken in a ceremonial procession from its resting place in the mausoleum in Basilica of Bom Jesus across the church complex to the more spacious Se Cathedral for veneration during the exposition.

More than 2.25 million faithful, cutting across religious lines, venerated the relics during the last exposition. The Basque saint was born in Navarre, Spain, on April 7, 1506, and arrived in Goa on May 6, 1542. After missionary work in India and other countries, he died on December 3, 1552, on the Sancian island on his way to China. Pope Paul V beatified him on October 25, 1619, and Pope Gregory XV canonized him in 1622.

Source: UCAN



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