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Karanpura Valley

The Jesuits are a religious order of priests and brothers in the Catholic Church,

committed to the service of Christ and his people.

☇ Karanpura Valley

Karanpura valley (Babupara, Patra and Rajhar
Origin and development

In 1935, When Fr. Benne s.j. was appointed to succeed Fr. Soenens s.j. at Hazaribag he not only visited the Catholic community of Oraon and munda settlers at Danto, Jori, Jamuari, Hario Torar, Thethangi but also towards Santhals in the north and Dalits in the Karanpura valley. But nothing was done for the dalits. In 1979 Fr. Tony Herbert was assigned to pastoral work in the Karanpura valley. At Babupara a small Catholic community had been ministered to off and on for thirty years. They belonged to Ravidas caste. In 1979 Fr.Tony built a mud house for himself and moved from village to village and opened many non formal village school for the dalits and poor children. In the same year a Bhuinyas village of Tilwa came in contact with his work. 1988 Franciscan Clarist sisters were invited to help the mission and stayed a year at Babupara . In 1989 they shifted their resident at Tilwa village. In 1994 Fr. A.T Thomas built a house at patra for the sisters and a health center. Now the dalits are being helped and educated from this center which is named as St. John De Brito.

In 1997, October 24th Fr. A.T Thomas was killed in Sirka jungle by some people who were against the work he was doing. Every year in commemoration of his death anniversary a holy Eucharist and social issue programmes were conducted for peope.

In the end of 1997, the Patra mission tried to revive itself. The shock was such that it is very difficult to explain. A letter shows that many of the catechists are working but with a fear in the naxalite infected areas. However many are very committed and have stakes in their part of mission work. It is a local church that they are building by bits and pieces. The violent they experienced so long has been now experienced by us. Are we ready to carry the mission or stop? We have become victims like the people, but what is that we want to do. (1997, Dec 18)

The rise of naxalite, especially youths are forming groups in the disguise of naxalite form is very confronting the future. The cast struggle of the dalits and others, the muscle power and the landless vs land owner etc are some of the major struggles.

“For Ignatius being a Companion of Jesus in His Salvific mission gave direction and purpose to life. Companionship with Jesus in Mission is Central to Ignatian Spirituality.”

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