The diocese of Bellary in the southern Indian state of Karnataka has dedicated a new shrine to migrant laborers, especially those engaged in construction works.
Bishop Henry D’Souza of Bellary blessed and dedicated the Infant Jesus Shrine in Raichur, a city located between Krishna and Tungabhadra rivers and 409 km north of Bengaluru, the state capital, on May 31.
The bishop described the shrine as a masterpiece and a blessing to the diocese.
Father P R Paulraj, who completed the construction, said the shrine is dedicated to the construction workers of India. He said he got the idea after witnessing and helping many migrants and construction workers who were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Father Paulraj thanked the workers and the Christian laborers who contributed in completing the church. He cited Benjamin, a lay Catholic engineer, who spent his time and energy to build the shrine.
The priest also paid tribute to Father Patrick Doyle (1812-1877), an Irish missionary who served Bellary and Raichur missions for 30 years in the 19th century. Popularly known as “Dayalu Swami,” the missionary was appointed parish priest of Raichur in 1840. He built St. Lazarus Church in 1857 which is now the St. Anthony Cathedral Bellary.