Canada: MAC celebrates Monthi Fest with pomp & glory

By Vijay Pereira
Photos:  Rony D'Souza

Mississauga, Sep 11: The Mangalorean Association of Canada celebrated the Monthi Fest - the birth of our Blessed Mother Mary on September 9th, 2012 following all our Mangalorean traditions.  This year marks the tenth anniversary for MAC and over 400 Mangaloreans from all over the Greater Toronto Area participated to offer their devotion and gratitude to our Blessed Mother at St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish in Mississauga. 

The spirit of festive celebrations started filling the atmosphere of Pope John Paul II Hall  with the traditional flower showering ceremony where children eagerly placed flowers in honor of Mother Mary to the accompaniment of ”Sokkad Sangatha Melyan” .  Gerry D’Mello led the prayers for the ceremony.  Rev.Fr.Andrew Lewis blessed the "Bambino", the statue of Infant Mary,  new corn, the 'mood-dhom' candles and the crowd burst out with their favourite festive hymn and “Moriyek Hogolsiyan” during which the children showered flowers at the "Bambino".   

This heart warming ceremony was followed by a solemn procession to the church with our Knights of Columbus as honour guard.

The Holy Mass in Konkani was concelebrated by Rev. Fr. Edwin D’Souza, Rev. Fr. Henry Alva, Rev. Fr. Andrew Lewis, Rev. Fr. Kim D’Souza, Rev. Fr. Ranjan D'Sa, Rev.Fr.Jerome Mascarenhas and Rev.Fr.Lawrence Martis.  MAC spiritual director Fr.Edwin D'Souza was the chief celebrant of the High Mass. The entire liturgical service, prayers, readings, singing and sermon was exclusively in Konkani.  Fr. Ranjan's captivating and edifying homily stirred up a deep zeal for Our Lady.

The walls of the church resounding with the mellifluous sounds of the choir led by the renowned choir director Merlyn Rodrigues charmed the congregation with the selection of Konkani hymns. The whole atmosphere inside the church gave the impression that one was attending a festive Mass in one of the parish churches of Mangalore Diocese!   The entire celebration of the feast left no doubt to the spectator that it was the concerted effort of an efficiently organised team.

After the Holy Mass, the faithfuls were delighted to receive the blessed new corn which was specially flown in from the fields of the homeland for the occasion and which was blessed before the flowers showering ceremony.  Souvenir Rosaries generously donated by Sr.Ferdinanda were also distributed to all.  Children were overjoyed when treats were distributed to them!

The cultural program commenced in the church hall and the emcee for the evening, Manohar Pais, welcomed the enthusiastic guests who flocked the hall in anticipation of another resounding successful program.  Mr. Ronald Fernandes, President of the Mangalorean Association of Canada, with his inimitable charm thanked the clergy, sponsors, volunteers and guests. 

Budding classical dancer Seneca Rego began the program with a traditional dance.  The event sponsors were honoured with a blessed candle. Rony Monteiro and  Santosh D'Souza entertained the crowd with their wit and humour.

The highlight of the evening was a beautiful play "Amchi Fatima Saibhinn"  (Our Lady of Fatima) performed by MAC children youth.   It depicted the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima to the three children in Portugal.  The play was written and directed by the esteemed Mr. Manohar Pais,  whose hard work and dedication motivated the youth to brilliantly display their talent.  The play was in performed completely in amchi baas, Konkani.

The evening continued with the traditional "Noven Jevonn" ceremony where guests received the blessed harvest with milk.  “Monthifest” celebration is never complete without the traditional “Novem” meal. "Konkan Delite", the renowned caterers in Toronto had catered a sumptuous traditional vegetarian “Novem”  meal.  Every participant’s plate was a spread of variety of vegetarian delicious dishes including the traditional 'pothrade' and the sumptuous dessert, ‘Vorn’ which were enjoyed by all.

Just after delicious dinner Rony Monteiro, Leo Rego, Santosh D'Souza and Lucy D'Mello entertained the crowd with a second round of laughter and rib-tickling humour.

Scholarships, which have now become a MAC tradition, were handed out to Sheldon Savio Vaz and Alistar Melroy D’Souza.  Once again the scholarships were generously sponsored by UAE Exchange and Reginald and Mary Fernandes.   Konkan Delite catered a traditional all-vegetarian meal with the highlight of the meal being the delicious “Pathraade”

The evening continued with a Konkani Song sung by Nicole and Nerissa D’Mello that serenaded the listeners with their angelic voices. 

This was followed by traditional folk dance under the leadership of Sonia Monteiro and choreographed by renowned choreographer Lydia Rebello which took full-house crowd back to Mangalore. 

The second highlight of the evening was hilarious skit written and performed by the Konkani world's Comedy King Francis Fernandes Cascia and Santosh D'Souza.  The packed crowd in the hall were left roaring with laughter.

The evening came to an end with the announcement of the raffle prizes and finally the solemn singing of the Laudate.

A myriad of volunteers generously donated their time and energy, working tirelessly to ensure that Our Lady was honoured through a memorable evening. Mangalorean Association of Canada will always indebted to all the volunteers, committee members and sponsors who guarantee the astounding success of the Monthi Fest annually.

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Comment on this article

  • Veronica Rego, Karama

    Thu, Sep 13 2012

    Excellent coverage by Daijiworld. Good to see so many Mangaloreans in Canada coming together under one roof to celebrate the Nativity of our blessed Mother. Surely, She will send heavenly blessings in abundance on all of you. Good to see Francisbab and Manohar Pais. For a moment, I thought this function was held in Dubai when I spotted both these talented artists. We miss you both in Dubai. Francisbab, missing you and Luizabai a lot. Hope you both alongwith Johnson & fly are keeping well. Take care. Good job.

    DisAgree [3] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • philomin rodrigues, manglore,dubai

    Wed, Sep 12 2012

    Wish u all happy monti fest.nice pics ,nice to see u vallu uncle,n i pray that also in canada organize the manglorean konkani programs n keep konkani baas live.wish u n ur family very good luck.n all manglorean i wish all of u happy monti fest.without ur support nobody can do thank u all 4 ur big support.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • VEERA DSOUZA, Mangalore/Canada

    Wed, Sep 12 2012

    Well organized, well planned program with delicious food. Enjoyed the whole program.Thanks MAC for organizing this program. Happy Monti Fest

    DisAgree [2] Agree [7] Reply Report Abuse

  • Edmund Pereira, Mangalore/Toronto

    Wed, Sep 12 2012

    The celebration this year was truly outstanding - the excellent organization, hard-work and initiative were plain for all to see. Seamless ution of the program, creative use of technology for the play, brought vividly to life what the producer/writer/director/singer [Mr. Manohar Pais] had in mind - great job Manohar. The length of the program was just right and as usual the food was great. It was wonderful to have Mr. Francis Cascia to regale us with his inimitable sense of humour. We were also greatly blessed to have additional talent at the event - specifically Santosh D'Souza who was very entertaining. Thank you all for bringing this wonderful celebration so close to us - year after year. God Bless!

    DisAgree [5] Agree [7] Reply Report Abuse

  • Antony Tauro, Mangalore/Calgary

    Wed, Sep 12 2012

    I can really see the spirit of Mother Mary in every one of you in the celebration.

    DisAgree [4] Agree [7] Reply Report Abuse

  • Ronald & Suneetha, Mississauga, Canada

    Tue, Sep 11 2012

    Dear MAC,
    Nice pictures and well planned program. we salute you and your team. Good food as well. once again thanks all of you.

    DisAgree [4] Agree [13] Reply Report Abuse

  • Henry Pinto N Family, Mullakad/Orlando, USA

    Tue, Sep 11 2012

    Well planned grand. Wish all of you a very feasty Monti Fest.

    DisAgree [6] Agree [9] Reply Report Abuse

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Title : Canada: MAC celebrates Monthi Fest with pomp & glory


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