By Ruper Vas (KPG)
Pics by Alphonse Mendonsa, Team Mangalorean
add. pics by Ranjan, Broadway
Abu Dhabi: Members of Abu Dhabi Konkani Prayer Group came together on Friday, 14 September 2012 to celebrate their favorite Family Feast of the year, ' Monti Fest '. Having partaken in the Eucharistic Celebration to commemorate the Nativity of Blessed Virgin Mary ( BVM ) on Thursday, 13 September, along with the whole Konkani Community of Abu Dhabi, members of KPG gathered on Friday evening to share the traditional Novem meal with their members whom they call ‘KPG Family’.
The evening festivity began with Praise and Worship meaningfully lead by Rosy Martis. This laid a strong foundation to the celebration. Rupert Vaz began the cultural program by welcoming the congregation and KPG’s Coordinator, Valerian Dalmaida welcomed it’s Spiritual Director, Fr. Valerian Fernandes and guests of the evening Fr. Lenny, Fr. Gandolf and Fr Reynold.
MC Rupert Vaz explained the history behind the celebration of Monti Fest and welcomed the little children who offered flowers to Infant Mary while the choir, lead by Rohan Correa, sang the traditional and popular Marian Hymns.
Amidst a couple of Marian spot games, little children sang a medley of Marian songs ending with “Bhagi zolma dis maie”. Little children Ryan, Tanya, Ethan, Rosanne, Johanne, Cyrus, Sara, Valen, Rhea, Neola, Leroy, Lancy, Daniel and Annabelle rendered the songs beautifully although they can not read the Konkani script.
Fr. Lenny addressed the congregation with a message that we can reach Jesus through Mary. Congregation sang Happy Birthday to Fr. Valerian who celebrated his birthday on 13 of Sept. Fr. Gandolf lead the ‘Grace before meal’ after which traditional vegetarian dinner was served.
Few quick spot games were conducted by Rupert Vaz to entertain the members, like recognizing the old Hymn, reciting the Seven sorrows of our Lady, giving details of the Bandra’s Mount Mary festivity etc. Members were seen taking part in all the games wholeheartedly. Prizes were arranged by KPG’s Core Group.
It is noteworthy to mention that the food was prepared at the homes of members and buffet consisted Alu Dento, Chana, Sango, Korum, Karatem, Moong and Rice. The joy was visible on the faces of all the members while exchanging wishes and savoring the sumptuous dinner.
Konkani Prayer Group consists of 300 plus members from Mangalore, Goa, Udupi, Chikmaglur, Karwar, Mumbai and all the places in between and around. The group members meet every Friday evening to Praise and Worship the Lord and to listen to God’s Word in their mother tongue, Konkani. Holy Hour of Adoration is observed every 4 Friday of the month. The group also has an Intercessory prayer for the intentions of its members on every Tuesday.
KPG is currently lead by the Core Group consisting of Valerian Almeida (Coordinator), Flavia Crasta (Asst. Coordinator), Rohan Correa, Robert Cardin, Sharmila D’souza, Rosy Martis, Rosy Fernandes and Arun Menezes.