Saint Lazarus feast: flag hoisting marks launch of grand celebration in R. A. Puram

Celebrations have begun at Our Lady of Guidance Church in R. A. Puram popularly known as Saint Lazarus Church for the annual feast of the community’s patron saint.

The key events are on January 27 and 28.

The saint’s flag was hoisted on Thursday evening; this was followed by Mass and blessing of the four chariots ( ther). Fr. D. F. Bosco, parish priest of St. Teresa’s in Nungambakkam was the main celebrant.
The grandest evening will be on Jan.27 when many colourfully-decorated chariots, bearing statues of saints and Mother Mary will be taken out in a procession through the church neighbourhood in south R. A. Puram.
Nine statues will go in procession on Saturday, Jan. 27 evening. ‘The procession generally ends at midnight.
The next morning – Jan. 28 -, after the 9.15 am Holy Mass in English, all the nine statues will do the rounds again in procession.
This feast, first started many decades ago, and nurtured by a community of Catholics who made this part of R A Puram and the church zone their home, is promoted by a Trust and has been integrated into the parish celebrations.
– Report by Juliana Sridhar