First X’mas in 95 years in Kozhikode; wheel-chair can’t dim the joy
Kozhikode: It was through these wide portals that the now sagely, then a 19-year-old novice strode into the celestial realm of ecclesiastical knowledge. Father Abraham Adappur is back now in Christ hall, Malapparamba, which was his first station in the month of June, 1944, on the road to becoming a Jesuit priest. Today is his first Christmas in Kozhikode, as he completes one year of his return to the city.
Despite enjoying pastoral tenures in Rome and Kochi, this City of Truth was always a luminous blossom like the lights of Christmas in his heart. It was this affinity that made him leave Lumen Jyothis Jesuit House, Kochi, for Kozhikode as the shadows of life began to lengthen.
The nonagenarian is at a loss for words to explain his love for the city. One reason could be that the people here are good human beings, capable of love. Another could be that it was ‘Mathrubhumi,’ head-quartered here, that made him a writer. For it was the late editor of ‘Mathrubhumi Weekly', N V Krishna Warrier, who commissioned an article from him on Mother Teresa. Those days Malayalees hardly knew anything about the Yugoslav, born as Agnes in Skopje, now the capital of Macedonia. He himself has lost track of the number of articles he has written since then. Fr. Adappur has authored 26 titles so far.
“Now I belong to the community of patients. Despite being confined to wheel chair, I will celebrate Christmas. There are nearly 20 clerics for company, of whom I am the oldest. By the grace of the Lord, I am not troubled by health issues,” says the elderly father with a gentle smile. Both Fr. K J Thomas and Fr. Jose Thaipparambil, who are present, nod in assent.
A manger will be built in the Provincial House. A contemporary issue will be the topic of Christmas musing. Last year it was the deluge. This year, because of the Covid-19 pandemic, celebrations will be muted.
All priests, including the wheel-chair bound six, will offer evening Mass in the chapel on the occasion of Christmas. There will be meditation for three days. Feasting with all the employees of the Provincial House, will be followed by giving them gifts. Thus will end the first Christmas of Fr. Adappur spent in his favourite city.