Report: Antony D'Cunha, Permude
Pics: Dilip Correa

Muscat, Sep 11: Joy of nine days novena and flower showering by community children, Monthi Fest celebration, “Novem” meal on Banana leaf in native tradition and cultural programme at Holy Spirit Catholic Church Ghala Parish, the Mangalorean community will not forget in a hurry.

Mangalorean guest priest renowned for his inspiring homilies – Fr Stany Goveas, with his deep insight on spirituality and strong belief on power of prayer, has won the hearts and minds of the community.































































The tradition that began in Monte Mariano Church at Farangipet in 1763 to integrate the aspirations of our agrarian families continues to bind the community together and integrate all Mangalorean Catholics spread across the world.

In keeping with this very own age old tradition, the Mangalorean catholic community of Holy Spirit Church - Ghala celebrated the Monthi Fest, on Saturday, 6thSeptember, 2014 at 4.00 PM with recitation of Rosary at the Grotto, showering of flowers to infant Mary by children, blessing of “Novem” hand-picked from the paddy fields of our homeland followed by Concelebrated High Mass in Konkani culminating with customary community “Novem” meal as the beats of Music and cultural programmeentertained the diners.

After the Rosary, the Priests, Children carrying Flowers together with live Country Band, carrying Infant Mary in cradle marched in procession towards Grotto for Showering of Flowers and blessing of “Novem”.

Concelebrated High Mass in Konkani by Mangalorean Guest Priest – Fr Stany Goveas, together with Parish Priest - Fr Albert D'Silva, and another Mangalorean Priest – Fr AnilD’Costa, began at 4.30 PM. Fr Stany Goveas, in his homily focused on Mother Mary’s virtues and her role in our families and emphasized on importance of prayer in our families. Fr Albert D’Silva – Parish Priest with native touch, expressed his gratitude to Fr Stany, and thanked each and everyone responsible for making the celebration most beautiful and meaningful.

The Choir being an integral part of the celebration, added melody to the devotion. Mixed - male and female choir team in newly adopted attire sang to the Glory of God and the congregation actively joined their voices for a meaningful participation. Choir was led by Canon D’Souza with AvilCutinhaon the keyboard. Male team consistedHubert D’Souza, Francis D’Mello, Jawahar Pinto, Rion D’Souza,Rony Lobo, Cavin D’Souza, Joel Mendonca, Joel D’Souza, Sydney Rebello, Cletus Mathias and Female team consistedCharlotte Cutinha, Ida Pinto, Princy D’Souza, Ashwini Martin and Maria Mathias.

The congregation was systematically guided by the volunteers throughout the celebration. After the Mass, the blessed Paddy Corns (Novem) and the holy pictures of Mother Mary were distributed and all the children received goody bags while refreshments were served to the gathering.

Preparations for this event were on for quite some time under the leadership of Michael Goveas, vibrant leader of the Mangalorean community, ardent supporter of the Konkani Culture. Helen Sequeira, talented actress of the community and LaveenaD’Sa, prominent community leader and program coordinator, had taken the responsibilities of Mass and Liturgy related services. Nirmala Goveas, excellent singer, GVOM finalist, well known writer, Konkani culture supporter and public speaker, had taken the responsibilities of Cultural and Entertainment giving a new dimension to the entire show with many innovative ideas and Konkani traditional themes. The executive committee members - Michael Goveas (President, Konkani Community and Parish Council Member representing Mangalorean Community), Edward Mendonca (Vice President), Robert Saldanha (Treasurer), Helen Sequeira, Rony Lobo, and Glenda Castelino, planned, organized and executed the task very efficiently.

Cultural part of the programme began with extending birthday wishes to Mother Mary and showcasing St Anna and St Joachim (Patrons of Grandparents) with Infant Mary together with Angels. Sunita and Sunil Furtado, played the role of St Anna and St Joachim respectively. Little children Kia/Kate, Walwin and Rolwin, played Angels role.

Bath Kanduyan group dance by Pearl, Lael, Neal, Gail, Stacy, Lien, Aldrean, Lovette, Shane, Clida, Aaron, Melanie and choregraphed by Dynette Fernandes, brought back the memories of our homeland. “NovenchJeevan” group dance by young talents - Calvin, Lanettee, Grace, Shaun, Lionel, Cristine and choreographed by Dynette Fernandes, showcased the happiness of agrarian families during harvest.

Clarence Pinto, with his inimitable style and good command over Konkani conducted early part of the programme.

Michael Goveas, in his welcome speech very thoughtfully expressed his feelings, expressing gratitude for the support and cooperation extended by the community members while Peter Gantalkatte and Savita D’Souza, in their role as Gurkar and Gurkaarn, added comedy to the show, and the audience fully enjoyed the moments.

Fr Stany Goveas, Fr Albert D’Silva and Fr Sabestian together with Executive Committee, were escorted to the dias in procession with live Country Band. Band troupe gave native touch to the programme and the Band team of five – Preetam, Stimson, Ivan, Lloyd and Joyson, with their skills entertained the audience. Joker duo were Shalesh Cutinha and Ronald D’Souza added colour to the show.

Cutting of Floral chain by Priests followed by traditional Kuvalo (Ash Gourd) and Coconut breaking by Edward Mendonca and Helen Sequeira respectively, gave customary touch, while Priests blessed the variety of vegetarian delicacies prepared by the community and sought God’s blessings on the meal. Rehan Fernandes, in Luwad Liya’s role invited the gathering in customary way “Sakdank Jevnak Udak Ailay-h” to partake in the meal.

Later part of the programme was conducted by Peter Ghantalkatte, with flow of words in unique way, kept the audience fully engaged throughout the show. Talented Young Anchor – Priyanka Mendonca, impressed the audience by her confidence and presentation skills.

Group dance by tiny tots Gloria Barboza, Clarita Saldanha, Laura D’Sa, Larissa Saldanha, Ashvita Cutinho, Ayana Fernandes, Roshel, Cheryl D’Sa, Shaina D’Souza, Jeslin D’Souza, Cleona Rodrigues, Riya Lobo, Alan Fernandes, Kaveen D’Souza, RansleyD’Cunha, Riyon Lobo, Zephan Furtado, Macniel D’Souza, Shawn Lewis and Rayner D’Cunha, to “O BELE BELE” which is choreographed by Glenda Castelino entertained the audience.

Muscat’s Maina famed Jane Ida Pinto, with her melodious voice gave an impressive and thrilling performance with a brilliant number “Chintana” which was gracefully supported with a dance performance by Rion D Souza,Amanda Pinto and Rebecca D’Souza. “Neerige Bare Chenni Bindige Hidkondu” group dance by LizyBarboza, Sharon D’Costa, Melina Goveas, Johan Furtado, Rhea Olivera, Chelsea D’Sa, Kane D’Souza, Liza D’Sa, Muriel D’Souza, Rebecca Pinto and Shancy Mendonca, which another dance choreographed by Glenda Castelino rocked the stage.
Songs by Charlotte Cutinha,Kirti Dsouza, Nirmala Goveas, Cavin and Canon D’Souza and Joel Mendonca, brought rhythm in the audience.

Duet dance by Canon and Princy mesmerized the audience.

MCCP Leo’s group dance choreographed by Dynette Fernandes again entertained and enthralled the audience. The dancers Dynette Fernades, Jayal Tharakkan,Joshua Tharakkan, Craig,Pearl and Glen gave their best of performance.

Group dance by adults – Canon D’ Souza, Kevin D’Souza, Rion D’Souza, Pincy D’Souza, Amanda Pinto, Maria D’Souza and Rebecca D’Souza, set the stage rocking. Dance was choreographed by Princy Dsouza

Skit by Peter, Roshan, Ashok, Praveen, Savita, Neshwil, Lloyd and Wilson, tickled the funny bones of audience. Many won prizes and consolation prizes in the Bonanza draw.

John Gonsalves, Jossy D’Souza and Victor D’Souza, shouldered the responsibilities of food section.

Aslita D’Souza, Cynthia Saldanha, Sabrina Pinto, Philomena Mendonca, Leena Fernandes, Philomena Moras, Leena Baretto and Dynette Fernandes, co-ordinated with various activities to ensure perfection in organizing the programme. Manuel Carvalho of Bright Projects LLC and Arif Gill, did the stage decoration and sound system.

As usual, “Baila Baila…..” brought the audience on the floor and all age groups thoroughly enjoyed the event.