National / World

Mangalureans celebrate Monthi Fest in Chicago

Media Release

Chicago, Sept 16:  It was one of the best days of summer, which welcomed the celebrants to St Bernadine Church’s Fearon Hall, Forest Park, Illinois. It was one of the star cultural programmes presented by the Mangalurean Konkan Christian Association annually. Traditionally, the event also signifies the unity and nurturance among the kith and kin by offering the new crop to the Creator and partake it with family. This celebration is similar in its concept to Onam in Kerala and Thankgiving in USA.  

The programme was well attended by Mangalurean Catholics around Illinois and surrounding states,and visitors from India.

The programme began with a procession of celebrants, especially, children carrying flowers to express their love, respect and devotion to the birth of Mary. It culminated in front of the church grotto of Mother Mary.  With the singing of 'Sokkod Sangatha Mellyam' and 'Moriyek Hogollsiyam', children rejoiced with admiration, joy and respect, to offer flowers to Infant Mary.

Eucharist was celebrated by main celebrant Fr Cyril Fernandes and co-celebrants Fr Henry Sequeira and Fr Peter Fernandes.

In his homily, Fr Henry Sequeira narrated how Monthi Fest was celebrated as one of the harvest festival back in Mangaluru diocese.  He presented the history of Monti Fest in Mangaluru. He congratulated all participants for keeping the Mangalurean culture and customs alive in a far away land in USA.

MKCA Choir members, under the leadership of Concy Misquita and instruments played by Suraj Misquita and Sarah Mathias, gave a special touch by singing hymns exclusively in Konkani.

MKCA President, Vissia D’Souza welcomed all attendees and introduced the executive committee and the co-chairs of the programme Ashok and Preema Monteiro.  She thanked all participants for taking part in MKCA family programmes for the past 15 years and recognized the first time attendees of the MKCA programme. She thanked Fr Sanislaw Kuca, parish priest of St Bernardine’s Church for providing the church hall. Benjamin D’Souza presented a token of appreciation on behalf of MKCA to Fr Kuca.  Fr Kuca, who hails from Poland, thanked in return saying 'Dev Borem Korum'.

Fr Henry blessed the new crop, Novem, which was produced in India. All the participants partook the 'Novem in Roce'.  Programme compere Queenie Mendonca, requested all  participants to savour the taste of Mangalurean snacks and the open bar. Attendees were excited to participate in games conducted by Queenie.

The children’s game Hoola Hoop winners were Sherwin Lasrado and Maya Menezes. Sarita D’Souza conducted a quiz about Manglurean Konkan Christian history and presented prizes to all winners. The festive mood was all around the hall and children made full use of the programme by running around and dancing in-and-around the floor.

There was a wonderful home prepared spread of vegetarian dishes by the MKCA family members consisting 11 items along with  'Sannam' and desserts 'Vorn', Kheer and Mango Kulfi to relish on for dinner.

Participants took over the floor and dance till they dropped to the tunes of Konkani, Hindi, Spanish and English songs provided by DJ Shawn D’Souza.

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Title : Mangalureans celebrate Monthi Fest in Chicago


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