Thousands throng Infant Jesus Shrine

Thousands of devotees thronged the Infant Jesus Shrine at Viveknagar on Tuesday to participate in the annual feast.

In the evening, a chariot carrying a statue of Infant Jesus, flagged off by Archbishop Bernard Moras of Bangalore, wound its way through Neelasandra and Austin Town areas. Later, the Holy Flag was lowered to mark the culmination of the 10-day prayer and devotion which preceded the feast. Earlier in the day, Holy Masses were celebrated at regular intervals with hundreds of devotees taking part in the prayers.

The devotion to the Holy Child Jesus has long been a tradition of the Catholic Church. The history of devotion to Infant Jesus originally started in Prague in the 17th Century when a statue of Infant Jesus was brought to Bohemia (now Czech Republic) and eventually given to the Discalced Carmelites in Prague. Since then, the statue has remained in Prague and has drawn many devotees worldwide.

Devotion to Infant Jesus in Bangalore started in the mid-60s at Rose Garden, now part of Viveknagar. On June 29, 1979, a new church was inaugurated and 10 years later, on the same day, a shrine was opened to honour the Holy Child.

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