Church authorities at Old Goa asked to be vigilant

Old Goa is a well-frequented archaeological and historical site.


Against the backdrop of the Bodh Gaya blasts, the Goa division of the archaeological survey of India (ASI) has alerted its staff and asked church authorities to closely monitor the movements of tourists in and around the various heritage monuments at Old Goa.

Old Goa, as an important spiritual pilgrimage centre for Catholics and other faiths, and as a well-frequented archaeological and historical site, draws thousands of visitors every day.

ASI oversees the conservation and maintenance of the monuments-comprising a few churches, convents and other archaeological remains-at the world heritage complex.

A few, especially the Basilica of Bom Jesus and Se Cathedral are living monuments, where religious services are held. The House of Professed, adjoining the Basilica, is used by the clergy as a residential quarter.

“The church authorities should monitor the movements of each and every visitor within the premises and its surroundings,” said Ramesh S Mulimani, superintending archaeologist, ASI, Goa.

While ASI has written to the local church authorities, its officials also called on the police top brass at the Panaji headquarters and requested for increased patrolling at the world heritage complex.

The monuments are heavily thronged throughout the day by tourists.

The ASI staff and security personnel posted at every site have been requested to be extra vigilant, while the ASI has also appealed to authorities and citizens to extend their cooperation in protecting the heritage properties.

“It is every citizen’s prime duty to safeguard the cultural assets and to ensure upkeep of the monuments for future generations,” said Mulimani.

The church authorities at the Basilica have also made a case for strengthening of the security systems at the church complex.

“A few policemen are sent after some incident, but everything goes back to normal after a few days,” recalled Fr Savio Baretto, rector, Basilica of Bom Jesus.

He added that the necessity of electronic surveillance systems cannot be overstressed.

“There should be CCTVs, but more guards should also be posted,” said the priest.

A proposal for electronic surveillance was talked about some time back, but there was no follow up.

“We are working on a proposal for installing electronic surveillance,” the ASI chief said.

Source: Times of India

Old Goa , Archaeological Survey Of India , ASI 
English: no original description

English: no original description (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



The luxury tales of a Catholic priest


” COLLECTION OF TWO SUNDAYS, GO TO BISHOP’S HOUSE” This is an announcement, which is made in most of the Parishes. Very few know that part of it is shared with Vatican. Devotees, who contribute faithfully to the collection box must be happy about their financial participation in the Church……without knowing how the money is spent.

Here is the first hand information, as to how some elements within Church misuse their authority. 




Nunzio Scarano

Salerno: Even though he was known to like to live well, police said they were startled when they entered Monsignor Nunzio Scarano’s apartment after he called them one night in January to report a burglary.
The apartment, in one of Salerno’s most up-market neighbourhoods in the city centre, was huge, with art lining the walls and hallways divided by Roman-style columns.
Scarano, a Vatican official with close ties to the Vatican bank and
who is now in Rome’s Queen of Heaven jail, had called police to report that thieves had stolen part of his art collection.
Interviews with two key chief investigators in different judicial and police departments in Salerno, in southern Italy, and police pictures of the apartment viewed by Reuters give the most detailed picture to date of Scarano’s wealth.
The investigators disclosed that the trove of stolen goods estimated to be worth up to 6 million euro ($7.82 million) included six works by Giorgio de Chirico, one by Renato Guttuso, one attributed to Marc Chagall and pieces of religious art.
“We asked ourselves how did this monsignor come to own this place and possess these expensive works of art,” said a senior investigator in the southern Italian city who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity.
“He said they were all donations. It is a luxury apartment and we asked ourselves how he could have bought it and where the money came from,” he said. Magistrates suspect at least some of it may have come from illegal activity in the Salerno area.
Through his lawyer, Silverio Sica, Scarano said that the art work, the apartment and money in his bank accounts, including two at the Vatican bank, all came from donations and that he had done nothing wrong.
The 700 square-metre (7,500 square feet) luxury apartment on Via Romualdo Guarna was not the only piece of property that Scarano owned, either alone or jointly. Investigators discovered that he was part owner of three Salerno real estate companies.
But, most significantly, the investigators discovered that Scarano had withdrawn 560,000 euros in cash last year in one transaction from the Vatican bank, officially known as the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR).
Scarano, well-connected in local high society circles, then divided the cash, most of it in 500 euro notes, among nearly 56 friends. The Italian media has dubbed Scarano “Don 500 euros” because it was apparently his preferred denomination. Each friend gave him a cashier’s check drawn on Italian banks.
He then took all the checks to a bank in Salerno and paid off a mortgage on his apartment, which investigators said he had purchased for about 1.7 million euros. —Reuters

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