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Selfless, dedicated contributions of Christian missionaries to the field of education hailed

Special Correspondent

Chidambaram urges students to learn, enjoy and make friends during their stint at school

— Photo: S.S. Kumar

With pride: Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram releasing the diamond jubilee souvenir of Rosary Matriculation Higher Secondary School and presenting it to N. Ram, Editor-in-Chief,

CHENNAI: Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram on Monday paid tributes to selfless and dedicated contribution of Christian missionaries in the sphere of education as he revisited his alma mater, the Rosary Matriculation Higher Secondary School here.

Launching the diamond jubilee souvenir of the Rosary school, Mr. Chidambaram, a past pupil at the institution before it became a girls' school, said such committed service to education was no easy task.

“It requires you to surrender completely to the God you believe in, your true calling and the noble cause of serving humanity. Nothing deserves higher praise than the selfless service of missionary and non-missionary teachers,” he said.

Mr. Chidambaram urged students to learn, enjoy and make friends during their stint at the school; he would vouch from his own experience that “the best five years I've spent in any educational institution,” were at the Rosary school.

Mr. Chidambaram spoke of his admission into the “baby class” at Rosary school and the innumerable occasions of being punished for mischief by being made to kneel before the statue of Jesus and say, “Hail Mary.”

“That is why my batch was the last batch of boys in the school,” he joked.

Mr. Chidambaram said the time has come for the alumni to give back to the school in its efforts to expand facilities. He assured the school management of his support at a personal and organisational level. The Minister also gave away mementos to distinguished alumni and teachers who had put in 20-25 years of dedicated service in the school.

Earlier, Mr. Chidambaram was presented with the ‘Universal Pride of Chennai' Award citation by N. Ram, Editor-in-Chief of The Hindu, also an alumnus of the school.

Mr. Ram, who was also honoured with the ‘Pride of Chennai' Award on the occasion, joined Mr. Chidambaram in hailing the outstanding work of Christian missionaries in the spheres of education and healthcare and engaging with the poorest of the poor in a non-discriminatory manner.

He noted that it was important to uphold the contributions of missionaries in times when there are attempts to divide society and spread hatred between communities.

Recalling that the school was academically outstanding in the days he studied there as it is today, Mr. Ram said while the landscape and the milieu around it had changed, the values (of the school) have sustained.

Cecilia Joachim, Provincial, Chennai Province; Lily D'Souza, Superior; and Sriya Pushpam, school principal, were among those who participated.

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