AROUND SLOVAKIA

Church Feast began with Roma theatre and accompanying activities

VEĽKÝ Šariš, a town in the eastern Slovakia has always belonged among pilgrimage sites where Christians from far and wide tend to wander. On Sunday, July 14, a church feast there was accompanied by events in the Church of St James. In the nearby Complex of John Paul II events had already began on July 12.

Roma from Jarovnice re-enact the story of Ceferino Giménez Malla, a beatified Roma from Spain.Roma from Jarovnice re-enact the story of Ceferino Giménez Malla, a beatified Roma from Spain. (Source: TASR)

VEĽKÝ Šariš, a town in the eastern Slovakia has always belonged among pilgrimage sites where Christians from far and wide tend to wander. On Sunday, July 14, a church feast there was accompanied by events in the Church of St James. In the nearby Complex of John Paul II events had already began on July 12.

This year, Roma in the settlement under the Bikoš Hill participated in the accompanying events – for the first time ever – through the evangelisation programme Forum Romalum. On Tuesday, July 9, a holy mass took place in the settlement, on an improvised stage, celebrated by the administrator of St James parish in Veľký Šariš Bartolomej Salanci.

Salanci told the SITA newswire that before the mass, Roma believers from Jarovnice performed a theatre piece from the life of the first beatified Roma – Ceferino Giménez Malla from Spain. Also local children from the settlement got included in the programme, singing and dancing after three months of rehearsing with cannonic nuns from Jarovnice. A band also from Jarovnice, Terne Gines, culminated the show.

Friday meant a spiritual programme concentrated in the St James Church. On Saturday, the Order of Capuchins was introduced more in detail, followed by gospels performed by Tóno Mesároš and Simona Martousová. In the evening, a rock holy mass took place in the Complex of John Paul II.

Sunday was dedicated to masses – one by Prešov Archbishop Bernard Bober, who also pronounced the St James Church a diocese place of worship – and a religious programme with pilgrims in the afternoon. An exhibition Chapters from the Religious History and the History of Veľký Šariš was opened in the Šariš Museum. This will become a permanent exhibition.

About 200 Roma came to watch the Forum Romalum programme.

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