Fr. Cornelius, a well known friar in erstwhile KGM Province. A friar loved by young and old. Friar of the people, for people and with people. He was pioneer in many places in Karnataka Province. A friar lived for others and not for himself. A friar who would make others to forget their pains and sorrows with wit and laughter. He would relate to anyone. He acted as a guide and inspiration for many through his witness and works. He would work hard and spend his time in serving others. He was responsible for the construction of many friars especially Kripalyaya in Mysore. He worked very hard against all odds. Initially the villagers were not happy with the presence of the capuchins but with his social nature and human relationships he won them over. He was attacked by some people in the night. He was alone in the house but God’s protection was with him.
He comes from a very spiritual family background. His parents were devotees of St. Francis of Assisi. They special love for Monte Mariano. They had a wonderful relationship with the friars. The seed sown by his parents in his heart and mind, made him to join the capuchins. He worked hard and came up. He was a loving friar and loved the capuchin vocation. All through his studies he worked hard with deep faith in God and in authority.
He, as an young friar went about preaching in Mangalore and was responsible building a church in Magalore. He sacrificed many things while building this church. He is loved and remembered even today.
The provincial council seeing his love for the poor, sent him to Canada for social sciences. He successfully completed his studies. After returning he involved himself in many social apostolates.
He was a vicar Provincial in KGM province. He has been a pastor and many times as a Guardian. Every one has a positive memory about his animation.
I was lucky to have him in Theology. He was our treasurer. He had a wonderful relationship and rapport with the students. He was an inspiration for many of us. He was the most loved and wanted friar during recreation. He would tell jokes and funny incidents of his past life.
Today he completes 50 years of his priesthood. For the Eucharist, there were about 30 friars and priests who concelebrated with him. One of the community members Br. Joel preached a wonderful and heart rending homily. There were about 300 relatives who organised the celebration were present for the Eucharist.
After the Mass we had a small felicitation program. Br. Provincial, Dolphy raised the toast to the celebrant. He gave a short history of his life. He touched his entire life story. I was asked to speak few words which i did. I appreciated for his being humane and fraternal friar.
Fr. Cornelius Monteiero.......