Francis Gonsalves


Benedict and benedictions

Benedict, for most people, is the name of the Pope, the head of the Catholic Church. The name stems fr­om the Latin bene-dicere, which means blessing; though the etymology implies “to speak well”.

Mother Mary of Bandra

Bandra — Mumbai’s “Queen of the Suburbs” — celebrates life ever so often at myriad festivals. The weeklong “Bandra Fair” that begins on the Sunday following September 8 conjures up a heady, hearty dose of faith, fun and fanfare for many Mumbaikars. Irrespective of class, creed or caste, they congregate to celebrate the birthday of one of Bandra’s mothers, Mary, implored by the title: Mother of God.

Do Gods get angry?

Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit’s comment: “Aisa lagta hai ki Indra devta humse kuch naraz hain” — meaning, “Indra seems unhappy with us” — absolving herself for not meeting the Commonwealth Games

Rakhi: The bond of love

Rakshabandhan, I believe, not only binds together two words wondrously: raksha (protection) and bandhan (bond), but also weaves together worlds of creeds and cultures that Man diabolically dissects and destroys. Originally celebrated by Hindus in northern India, Rakshabandhan has rich religious and social connotations that cannot be confined to just one religion or region.

Truth will set you free

Delhi’s Tihar Ashram is Asia’s largest jail with some 12,000 captives held for offences ranging from petty theft to multiple murders.

Cain, Abel & God’s gotra

“Cain, where is your brother Abel?” (Genesis 4:9) is God’s probing question that sounds strikingly similar to the one God asks Adam in the same verse of the previous chapter: “Adam, where are you?” (G

For God’s greater glory

Ignatius of Loyola. Know him? Perhaps not! Jesuits? Know them? Perhaps not! Xavier’s School or Loyola College?

From Adam or ape?

The Bible has been used — and misused — in various ways. For over a billion bhakts worldwide it is sacred scripture providing sustenance and strength for their pilgrim path.

Jesus and the World Cup

There’s this fable about Jesus going to a football match between the “Catholic Conquerors” and “Protestant Punchers”. Both teams were excellent and the match was exciting.

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I want to begin with a little story that was told to me by a leading executive at Aptech. He was exercising in a gym with a lot of younger people.

Shekhar Kapur’s Bandit Queen didn’t make the cut. Neither did Shaji Karun’s Piravi, which bagged 31 international awards.