Sacred Heart Parish, Andheri East, covers an expanse of roughly 3+ kms stretching from MIDC at one end to the outer boundary wall of Majas Depot at the other. The Church is a landmark in its own right, surrounded by Religious Institutions which have contributed to it being referred to as “Mini Rome” by the surrounding Parishes. The antecedents of the Parish can be traced back to the Sacred Heart Chapel in 1979 which soon became inadequate to meet the spiritual needs of the bulging populace giving rise to the birth of Sacred Heart Parish in 1987. The Church as a structure took time to come up and on September 8, 2000 was finally inaugurated much to the joy and pride of the Parishioners. But it was actually in 1999 that the real building of the Church commenced – The Living Church – The Small Christian Community Programme. Beginning with 27 communities which appeared ample at the time, the number has increased to 36 with the influx of more and more migrants to the area. Today the Parish is well connected through these 36 communities which have been grouped according to the geographical distribution into 7 areas some of the communities have been broken down further into little groups called Clusters. The Clusters presently numbering 107 are instrumental in connecting the families in a community. The youth of the community are a part of the Neighbourhood Youth Group (NYG) in every community.

Beginning primarily as neighbourhood prayer groups, the SCCs have graduated to being the mainstay of the Parish. The involvement is stupendous and the activities varied and customised to include every age group and economic status, ranging from spiritual to socio-cultural, to exposure programmes to training. The year 2009 was doubly significant for the army of 200+ animators of Sacred Heart Parish – the SCC programme is celebrated it’s Silver Jubilee in Mumbai and in the Parish a decade of its formation.

Each baptised Catholic by virtue of his/her Baptism is automatically a member of the Small Christian Community. But to give shape to the Vision Mission of the Parish, each of the 36 communities has a small group of committed persons called animators, who form the core group and voluntarily commit themselves and their time. From among the animators is elected a PPC representative who acts as a link between the community and the Parish and along with the other animators, animates the community. There are also other office bearers namely a Coordinator, a Secretary and a Treasurer. The SCCs have an arduous task to fulfill, living out their mission of sharing, caring and being communitarian.

The animators or core group of each community meet once a month (or sometimes more often if the activities of the month demand) for Gospel Sharing and business discussions. Every meeting is minuted, has an agenda for discussion, and duration of an hour and fifteen minutes. This meeting takes place within the community. At the Parish level is held the Steering Committee Meeting, bi-monthly, which is attended by the coordinators of all the communities, the Religious from the surrounding Institutions who are involved in SCC work and the Parish Pastoral team. This committee plans for the communities on a larger spectrum. These meetings too are minuted and forwarded to Bishop Bosco’s office. Besides, a quarterly report of activities of each community is forwarded to Bishop Bosco’s office at the end of every quarter.

A lot of importance is also attached to training and formation, at the parish level, as well as externally. Over the course of ten years, most animators have benefited, in more ways than one, from training by expert resource persons both at the parish and through long terms courses. New entrants are groomed similarly.

Some of the good work carried out by the animators in their respective communities is reaching out to the sick and housebound through visits, at festive time or during the Marian months of October and May, reaching out to the less privileged with financial support, or payment of school/tuition fees, commemorating the community anniversary with the celebration of the Eucharist followed by a get-together or a whole day picnic thereby fostering spiritual as well as socio-cultural bonding, observing special days as a community and a host of other activities. Spiritual activities like organising the Stations of the Cross in the community during the Lenten season and the Holy Hour in turns at the Parish give the SCC programme a holistic hue and foster communitarian bonding.

It is both noteworthy and praiseworthy that for 15 long years his Lordship struggled to form the SCCs in our Parish. His final attempt in 1999 paid off and today the SCCs are here to stay. Having renewed their commitment to animatorship on July 12th 2009, there is no doubt that the animators will continue to work selflessly to uphold the Vision Mission statement of the Parish to become and remain “Vibrant with the Spirit of the Risen Lord towards a community of deeper faith, love and service”.

SCC Steering Committee 2023 – 2026
1Clergy TeamFr. John Mascarenhas SVDParish Priest & Director of Parish SCCs 
2 Fr. Callisto Gomes SVDCo-Pastor 
3 Fr. Edwin Vas SVDCo-Pastor 
4 Fr. Sandesh Patil SVDCo-Pastor 
5 Fr. Christi Selvaraj SVDCo-Pastor 
1SCC Co-ordinating TeamJayesh GeorgeParish SCC Co-ordinator 
2 Sarita AlmeidaAssistant 
3 Michael D’SouzaAssistant 
Community No.Co-ordinatorCommunitySpiritual DirectorArea No.
1Daisy ChiramalImmaculate ConceptionFr. Sandesh Patil SVD1
2Jackline D’SouzaOur Lady of FatimaFr. John Mascarenhas SVD3
3Gretta D’SilvaHoly CrossFr. Edwin Vas SVD3
4Purity D’SouzaDivya JyotiFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD3
5Riya Darryl D’SouzaSt. Anthony’sFr. Callisto Gomes SVD1
6Veronica XaxaMorning StarFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD1
7Savio FernandesGood ShepherdFr. Edwin Vas SVD1
8Pooja ChavanInfant JesusFr. Sandesh Patil SVD1
9Edward FernandesDivine MercyFr. Edwin Vas SVD3
10Joe D’SouzaSt.Theresa of the Child JesusFr. Edwin Vas SVD5
11Lloyd ZaccheusJeevan JyotiFr. Callisto Gomes SVD5
12Shirley FernandesApostles of ChristFr. Sandesh Patil SVD5
13to be electedHoly FamilyFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD2
14Prescilla RodriguesHelpers of JesusFr. John Mascarenhas SVD2
15Berancye XavierAkashdeepFr. Edwin Vas SVD2
16Phyllis PereiraOur Lady of NazarethFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD2
17Judith FaleraSt. Dominic SavioFr. Callisto Gomes SVD4
18Severine PereiraGood SamaritanFr. Sandesh Patil SVD4
19Emreald SajananiChrist the KingFr. Edwin Vas SVD4
20Anthony D’SouzaDayasagarFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD6
21to be electedSt. Paul’sFr. Callisto Gomes SVD6
22Anita D’SouzaPrem SagarFr. Callisto Gomes SVD6
23to be electedShantidaanFr. Sandesh Patil SVD7
24Jose KizhakedathuEmmanuelFr. John Mascarenhas SVD7
25Austin AlvaPavan AtmaFr. John Mascarenhas SVD6
26Shahji FernandesSt. Anne’sFr. Sandesh Patil SVD7
27to be electedHoly TrinityFr. Callisto Gomes SVD2
28Irene J SequeiraSt. Joseph the WorkerFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD4
29Juliana SpencerOur Lady of RosaryFr. Callisto Gomes SVD5
30to be electedShalomFr. Edwin Vas SVD7
31Natasha D’SouzaHosannaFr. Sandesh Patil SVD6
32Irene MathiasSacred HeartFr. Edwin Vas SVD3
33Candida MendozaYahweh’s ClanFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD5
34Racheal NoronhaMystical RoseFr. Callisto Gomes SVD5
35Leon D’SouzaGenesisFr. Sandesh Patil SVD7
36Eurekha AlmeidaSt. ThomasFr. Christi Selvaraj SVD4