Nairobi, Sep 17: In 2016, Kanara Konkani Catholics of Nairobi (KKCN), an informal group of a few Catholic families, celebrated Monti Festh with their guests from the larger Mangalorean community (Mangalorean Cultural Association-MCA) for the first time at Consolata Shrine, Nairobi. It was not only successful, but the idea of celebrating these festivities jointly in the future by both KKCN and MCA was born.
So, beginning in 2017, KKCN and MCA started jointly celebrating these festivals, such as Monti Fest, Hosa Akki Oota, Koral Porba, etc., around the feast day of Nativity of Mother Mary. The celebration comprised offering floral tributes to their deities, prayers, Aarti, and cultural events, followed by a traditional meal, with an odd number of vegetarian dishes.
It was more of a celebration of their heritage and culture, irrespective of their faith and beliefs, and it helped them remain connected to their roots, even though they were thousands of miles away from their Mother Land. It also gave them opportunities to meet and strengthen their bonds and friendships.
This year, the celebration was held on Saturday, September 16, 2023, at Allamano Centre Hall at Consolata Shrine Nairobi.
This time around, it was a simple program, with prayer songs performed by Baby Naira & Kruthika. The "Diya" was lit by Fr. Jackson Murugara, Chairperson of MCA and KKCN.
Sanjay Shamsunder, Chairperson of MCA, welcomed all members and guests.
Aarti was performed by R C Rao along with Ranjan Mulki, followed by floral tributes offered by all members and guests to the deities.
This was followed by adding blessed maize corn to “Payasa” (Sweet dish) by Senior Lady members of the association along with professionals from the food/restaurant industry, accompanied by a Priest. This sweet dish was offered to all during dinner.
At MCA and KKCN, they are blessed to have some of their members as Entrepreneurs in the Hotel Industry, who helped them by catering tasty and traditional meals.
In the past year, they were served by Open House Restaurant, owned by Late Mathew Pinto. Last year it was from Chowpaty Restaurant, owned by Ashok & Sapna Bhandary, and this year it was from Elaichi Restaurant, owned by Yogini Smitha Prabhu.
Awards/Prizes were given to the Best Dressed couple in Traditional attire, which was won by Ram Shiroor, his wife, and the Best Dressed Person in Traditional Attire, male and female, was won by Praveen Paul D’Silva and Dr Adeline Serrao, respectively.