Houston Konkan Catholics celebrate Christmas
The Taj Banquet Hall in Houston, richly decorated in gold and red exploded in a riot of festivities as 150 Houston Konkan Catholics got together to celebrate the festival of Christmas.
The arrival of each family, dressed in all their finery was beautifully photographed by our talented HKCA member, Roshan D’Souza.
Children were encouraged to show off their creativity by decorating plastic ornaments and candy canes whilst the adults happily mingled with family and friends.
An array of delicious appetizers such as Chicken Manchurian, Kebabs, Quesadillas and spiced Channa were heartily enjoyed by our appreciative guests.
Events Director, Ronald Crasta welcomed the guests, introduced Emcees Sheryl Machado and Clarissa Lobo, and DJs Ashton Alva and Aaron Mathias, and gave a brief preview of the exciting line of activities for the evening.
Youngsters Nikita D’Souza and Sian Lobo then held a game of Musical Chairs for the eager kids.
A comic skit directed by Allen Carvalho and brilliantly enacted by HKCA kids, Nicole, Rachel and Reanne D’Souza; Xaria and Xeandra Carvalho; Sheryl and Roschelle D’Souza, and Ava D’Souza was thoroughly enjoyed by the audience.
It was the turn of adults to enjoy a hilarious game of “Christmas Antlers”. The hall erupted in gales of laughter as guests enthusiastically blew up balloons and stuffed them into stockings to strategically place on their team leader’s head.
Our young DJs, Ashton Alva and Aaron Mathias took the evening to another level with catchy Bollywood hits and Goan/Mangalorean bailas. The floor was packed with guests performing energetic moves and popular dance steps.
Vice President, Maxi Pereira thanked the current Core Committee for their incredible efforts in forming the organization and taking it to new heights by fostering the rich heritage of Konkan Catholics with year-round interactive cultural and community activities. He then welcomed the new Core Committee for 2019. On behalf of the new Core Committee, Vice-President-elect, Vikram Fernandes, assured the members that they would work to take the organization forward to greater heights.
The guests were kept on their toes throughout the evening with raffle draws and challenging spot prizes adding to the flavor and excitement of the evening.
The Prayer before Meals was led by Nikita D’Souza, Sian Lobo, Sheryl Machado and Clarissa Lobo in keeping with our Catholic tradition after which guests sat down to enjoy a sumptuous Christmas feast.
A sense of expectation and excitement filled the air as a distant ringing of bells announced the arrival of crowd favorite, the pudgy Santa Claus, played by Jerry Lobo. He sashayed into the hall to the tune of “Santa Claus is coming to town’ and merrily handed out gifts to all the excited kids clamoring around him.
The audience then divided into teams to duel each other in the “Opposite Christmas Carol Game” which was greatly enjoyed by everyone.
Guests then took to the floor to dance the night away and the evening concluded with the grand finale of presenting three delighted winners with lavish and beautifully wrapped gift hampers.
Each guest was also gifted a delicious Christmas Fruit Cake baked by HKCA member, Sandra D’Souza.
The HKCA Christmas party was truly a testimony to the spirit of Christmas where the Core Committee and many dedicated members worked diligently to make it possible for families to get together to celebrate the thousands of years of tradition that mark the holiday season.
Houston Konkan Catholic Association wishes everyone a Merry Christmas.
Pics: Roshan & Nisha D’Souza
Report: Maureen Crasta