Easter vigil service attacked in Margao, Goa

Easter vigil service attacked in Margao
10:38 PM, April 3, 2018
India(Goa):Fr Gonsalves said it was an act of a malicious mind and that they do not hold any group or community responsible.

(Photo credit: nativityscottsdale.org)

In an attempt to disturb the Easter vigil service at Carmelite Monastery in Margao, some unidentified people threw heavy stones on the premises injuring a woman and damaging two parked vehicles.

When people were walking into the chapel after the Blessing of the Fire outside the premises, three stones were reportedly thrown apparently from a high rise building near the monastery. One stone fell on a bonnet of a car and from there landed on the foot of a woman causing her minor injuries while the windshield of another car was damaged by another stone.

Superior of the Carmelite Monastery Fr Archibald Gonsalves said that this is the third year in succession when the midnight services held at the Monastery for Christmas and Easter have been stoned.

“Last year the 24 hour long service we had for veneration of the Blessed Sacrament was also sought to be disturbed by similar stone throwing,” he said, adding that every time the premises were stoned they had complained to the police.

Unfortunately, the three police personnel deputed this year were busy managing the traffic and could not spot the person who threw the stones.

Fr Gonsalves said it was an act of a malicious mind and that they do not hold any group or community responsible as the monastery has very good relationship with people of other communities. Muslim and Hindus use the Carmelite hall free of cost for their various functions including religious celebrations.

“We have very good relationship with other communities as all our services whether the hall, the medical care, the orphanage and even the food bank is freely available for people irrespective of their creed or caste,” Fr Gonsalves said.

Though the police inspected the site and some of the nearby buildings, they could not find anyone.

Barnabe Sapeco of the All Goa Catholic Minority Front contacted South Goa Superintendent of Police Arvind Gawas, following which Deputy Superintendent of Police Raut Dessai and Margao Town Police Inspector Kapil Nayak visited the monastery late on Monday evening.

They found stones, which appear similar to the ones thrown on Saturday night, stored in the crevices by the side of the staircase leading to the monastery from the main road. Although the monastery has CCTV camera installed, it did not capture anything, as the camera does not cover the steps area clearly.

Following police suggestion, Fr Gonsalves agreed to strengthen the CCTV camera network by installing the dome type camera that would cover a larger area.


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