St Luke's Chapel,Gorimedu,Pondicherry.
This is the archival image of the St Luke's Chapel as it was in the days of yore.As the Christian saying goes ,'The Blood of the Martyres is the seed of the church'.Many senior members of the church,have played their part in the phenomenal growth of the church spending their time and energy for the cause of christian worship.They are symbols of christian humility having never sought name and fame.'Kudos to the unknown church worker!'
The Pastorate Committee and the members of the St luke's congregation salute the unknown and unsung heroes of St Luke's history.
1THE FIRST WEDDING TO BE SOLEMNISED IN THE NEW ST LUKE'S CHURCH STRUCTURE:
THE MARRIAGE OF MR C.EBENEZER SUJITH,BSC WITH R.MARIE STELLA,MSC,BED ON 9TH OF MAY 2007.
2. THE FIRST VBS INAUGURATED IN THE NEW ST LUKE'S CHURCH STRUCTURE: 7TH MAY 2007.
3. ST LUKE'S CHURCH ,WHICH WAS WITHOUT A REGULAR CHURCH KEYBOARD(FOR ORGAN MUSIC) FOR ABOUT TWO YEARS,ITS OLD KEYBOARD HAVING GOT INTO A BAD SHAPE,FINALLY ,RECEIVED ITS NEW YAMAHA DIGITAL 520 KEYBOARD ,WHICH WAS DEDICATED FOR USE IN THE CHURCH ON THE 25TH OF FEBRUARY 2007,THROUGH THE EFFORTS OF MR RAJADURAI ,A VETERAN CHURCH WORKER ,WHO SOLICITED A DONATION FOR THIS CAUSE FROM A MEMBER OF ST LUKE'S CHURCH.
4.THE LANDED AREA IN ST LUKE'S CHURCH PREMISES INCREASED FROM 5400 SQ FT TO 23000 SQ FT THROUGH THE INITIATIVES TAKEN BY MR RAJADURAI DURING THE EARLY YEARS OF THE CHURCH.
5.BISHOP AZARAIAH,IN THE NINETIES (1990S),WHILE ON A VISIT TO ST LUKE'S CHURCH WAS SO IMPRESSED BY MR RAJADURAI'S NURTURE OF TREES IN ST LUKE'S CAMPUS THAT HE SANCTIONED AN AMOUNT OF RS 30,000/- FOR THE SINKING OF A BOREWELL IN THE PREMISES OF ST LUKE'S.THAT BOREWELL CONTINUES TO BE USE TO THIS DAY.
6.In the 1960s or 1970s,Bro D.G.S.Dinakaran had preached the good news in the premises of St Luke's church during his early years as an evangelical preacher.Mr Dharmaraj Manickam has played a stellar role since the early days of the church.
7.The original St Luke's Church was a purely English Church in its early days.
8.The evening Tamil service was introduced in July 2002,by Rev Jaquiline Jothi.
9.The American make Reed (Pump) organ at St John's Church ,Pondicherry,was shifted to St Luke's ,Pondicherry,probably in the early nineties, as the St John's church could mange with a Keyboard and ,later ,an Indian make,Artronica Electronic Oscillator Console Organ,(which it had purchased for about Rs 35,000/- at that time) .That decision to donate the Reed Organ caused a great furore in St John's Church at time and so that Organ was shifted back to St John's ,where it was probably ,put to use for a few more years.It was said that an air pump motor was tried out for that Organ. That Organ has long gone into a state of desrepair as has the Artronica Organ.
10.The democratically elected Pastorate committee took initiatives to organise quite a few outdoor gospel meetings in the premises of St Luke's Church.The last such convention was conducted with Bro Arul Raj,the well known evangelist.
11.St Luke's having a dynamic congregational power was able to muster quite a signinificant amount in Lakhs of rupees and and contribute to the building of the St John Church in the French Quarter of Pondicherry.Ironically ,the old structure of St John's Church which had a lot of history was demolished to make way for the new one.
TRIVIA-THE CHURCHES,IN GENERAL.
1.The TELC Arulnathar Church in Kellys,Chennai,had upto the late 1990s Organ accompaniment with the aid of a Hammond Organ(2 manual and full pedal board), quite unusual in this part of the world.My Uncle,Mr Paul Somasundaram, recalled an event in the 1960s when a full dedication service was conducted for that Hammond Organ in that church.It is sad to see its state of repair for it now functions as a keyboard stand for the Yamaha Keyboard that is used in its stead.Its unique and glorious notes and sounds and combinations are heard no more.
2.The Emmanuel Methodist Church in Vepery had a Pipe Organ until the time when the church was renovated in probably 1999 or 2000.That Church is a musician's paradise as it always has a rich collection of Pianos, Organs(Technics,Viscount Digital) ,keyboards, etc.I recall a visit to the EMC in the 1980 or 1981 with my father when a Christian theme film was being screened for the Sunday school children of the church.My father being an enthusiastic church attender, I imbibed that quality from him. The old pipe organ exists in a dismantled state in EMC's auditorium waiting and waiting for an installation or restoration for they also serve God ,those who stand and wait for orders(John Milton).
3.The TELC Anbunathar Church in Anna Nagar Chennai,used to have an 2 manual and full pedal board Artronica Electronic Oscillator Organ but that has now been donated to a TELC church in Tiruvallur,the church having purchased a Yamaha 2000 series keyboard.
4.The CSI Christ Church on Anna Salai(Mount Road) has probably a Pipe Organ that may never play again.The Church had dismantled that magnificent pipe organ for its renovation project.The indian specialist died before before the date of its re-installation.The other Indian experts couldn't really puzzle out the scheme of the organ pipes.The church having rejected the offer from foreign companies relies on new indian experts engaged to do that task.That Pipe Organ funtions partially,I was told.
5.The Pipe organ in TELC Adaikalanathar church has no pipes at present.Probably the Church is attempting to restore the Pipe organ.
6.The Pipe Organs in St Matthaias Church (Doveton,Chennai) and St Thomas' Church(Santhome Chennai) have been silent for a long time.Their consoles now house Reginald Electronic Organs. The Pipe Organ at the Roman Catholic Santhome Cathedral is listed as an Antique Pipe Organ on its Web Site.
7.All Saints Church:1reed Organ,1 Reginald(probable retired from service),1 Content Organ,1 Small pipe organ.
8.Holy Redeemer's Church,Madurai:1 Pipe organ(not working),1 Reginald 3 manual organ.
9.The CSI Zion Church at Chindadripet in Chennai has a funtional Pipe Organ now after the restoration that was done a few years back.
10.A small non-functional Pipe Organ at Holy Cross Church in Perambur,Chennai, was brought back to life through the original hard working effort of one Indian,one Mr Selvakumar.
11.The CSI Christ Church in Ambattur,Chennai, continues to use one 1985 make Reginald spinet Organ for its services.
12.The CSI John the baptist Church,Egmore, Chennai, has been using an old basic one Manual Reginald Organ.
13.The Artronica Organ at St Andrews Church,Chennai, remains in a state of disrepair.
14.Artronica Organs are in the following Churches:CSI Trinity Church,Avadi,Chennai,Stephen's Church ,Conoor,One TELC church in Traquebar etc.