All roads in the State lead to Old Goa for the annual feast of St Francis Xavier (SFX), popularly known as ‘GoenchoSaib’, on Monday.
On the feast day, Masses were held at 3.45 am, 5 am, 6.15 am, 7.30 am, 8.45 am with the the Feast Mass held at 10.30 am wherein the Bishop of Baroda Sebastiao Mascarenhas, SFX, was the main celebrant while, Archbishop of Goa and Daman Filipe Neri Cardinal Ferrao was the concelebrant. Several Cardinals and Bishops such as Bishop of Sindhudurg Allwyn Barreto, Bishop of Daltonganj Theodore Mascarenhas, Bishop Emeritus of Port Blair Aleixo Das de Neves Dias, SFX, besides Vicar Generals and parish priests were also be present. besides religious leaders several political leaders also attended the feast mass which included chief minister Dr Pramod sawant,Calangute MLA Michael lobo Curtorim MLA Alex reginald Lourenco and others, The theme for this year is ‘Like St Francis Xavier, let us do as Jesus did’. hundreds of pilgrims from Goa and parts of India on a walking pilgrimage have reached Old Goa for the feast. Also, several devotees have been camping within the precincts of Basilica of Bom Jesus throughout the novenas.
Meanwhile, the Goa Police also made elaborate security arrangements for lakhs of devotees thronging Old Goa for the annual feast of SFX. Also traffic police have made adequate steps to regulate traffic.