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Fr. Tony



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Dear brothers and sisters, and the viewers of this web site, I am Fr. Joseph Anthony Andrade better  known as Fr. Tony Andrade. I was born and brought up in Barkur. My primary education was in Barkur. In 1980 I joined the seminary to become priest and was ordained to the Holy Order of priesthood on the 19th of December, 1992. I served a short period of time in Bangalore (India) and then went to the USA to serve in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis in the state of Minnesota. Presently I am the parish priest of St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church located in St. Paul, Minnesota (visit our web site:-

I Hope and pray this column "Spiritual Corner" will inspire many viewers of our web site. As all of us know the need of spirituality in our daily life. We walk our faith journey trusting in God our creator and we are certain one day we will meet our creator God in Heaven. Meanwhile here on earth we need good insights to enlighten our minds and hearts in our spiritual life. in this column I will write articles which will be short and precise that may help our interested viewers to reflect on their own spirituality. I welcome others also to share their articles and reflections. This column is open to all the faith denominations. What is important is that we inspire each other on our own spiritual journey.

My sincere thanks to Kishoo de Barkur, the designer of this beautiful web site, and for giving me this opportunity to share my thoughts and reflection on our web site.

Fr. Joseph Anthony Andrade

Diwali: The festival of lights.

Every year the Hindu community celebrates the feast of Diwali. It is a festival of light. Signifying the conquest of darkness by light, the victory of goodness over evil. In different religions the symbol of light is made use of to show the glory of God, the victory of good over evil, and the participation of human beings in the light and glory of God!.

Deepawali, the Hindu feast of light, is one of the most pan-Indian feasts which is celebrated with great enthusiasm and joy by all sections of people. The feast brings tighter many myths. Here the word ‘ myth’ is   not used in a pejorative sense but rather as the expression of religious truths by means of stories. These stories bring out the deep yearnings of human beings. The many phenomena of nature manifest to us the relationship of the human being to the ultimate mystery, God himself.

This important feast of Diwali is celebrated 20 days after Dassera, on the 13th day, on the dark fortnight of the month of Ashwin, October- November. The festival proper lasts five days. The first day of Diwali is called Dhanvantari  Triodasi, meaning, the thirteenth lunar day of Krishnapaksh, the dark fortnight of the month of Kartik. The second day of Diwali festivities is known as Narak Chaturdashi, meaning the fourteenth day. Narakasur was a wicked king who fought against the neighboring kings and imprisoned 16,000 women. He also snatched away the chatra  of Indra and the ear-rings of Aditi, the mother of the God’s. He became very proud and ambitious. He became convinced that nobody could conqure him. The third day of Diwali is known as Laxmi Puja the most importnat day of the Diwali festival. It is also known as Chopada- Puja. On this day the sun enters his second course and passes Libra which is represented by balance or scale. The fourth day of Diwali is called Padva or Varsha Pratipada which marks the coronation of king Vikramaditya and the beginging of the Vikrama samvat. in some parts of India people perform Govardhan Puja. The fifth and final day of Diwali festival is called Bhayya Duj, or Bhai Bij or ‘Bhai Tika. The legend behind this day is Yamma the god of death visited his sister Yammi on this day.

There are also other dimensions to this feast. Monsoon is slowly coming to an end and the cloudy, dark period will soon be over. In some parts of the country at this time the birth of a new year is celebrated. So this feast has some relationship to nature. This feast comes as a feast of hope and hard work. The significance of Diwali celebration is that the true and good overcome the untrue and ungodly. Good triumphs over the evil is our conviction.

Diwali brings to our minds the gift of family, children, cleanliness, gaiety, the value of community life,etc. these  are wonderful values which this festival fosters.


Fr. Tony Andrade.


Barkur, located in Udupi Taluk, Karnataka, India. 576 210

Copyright Kishoo, Barkur 2002.