In ‘Thanksgiving’ Spirit CASK Annual Reunion Enliven Catholic Tradition and Culture
Mangaluru: Come Thursday, 23 November when millions of Americans celebrate one of the biggest feast of the year-the “Thanksgiving Day”, a celebration to thank God in times of plenty and also for the bountiful harvest, and here locally the members of Catholic Association of South Kanara (CASK) also celebrated their Annual Reunion Day also in a “Thanksgiving” spirit, being grateful to God for all his blessings showered on the 103 year old prestigious Catholic organization in Mangaluru- the CASK! While American Thanksgiving Day falls under a category of festivals that spans cultures, continents and millennial, so did the CASK “Thanksgiving Reunion” which enliven the Catholic Tradition and Culture through songs, music, dance and food.
Yes, once again it was a Saturday evening full of music, dance, entertainment, food and drinks- and as always CASK did throw a glittering and glamorous “Annual Reunion Bash” on Saturday, 18 November 2017 at Lobo’s Riverview-Morgan’s Gate, Mangaluru from 7 pm until everyone decided that they had enough of everything- fun, frolic, food and drinks. And of course it was a grand occasion which will be remembered by all these revelers who made it to this gala fun filled evening.
As they say about Reunions-they can be excitedly anticipated or painfully dreaded. Either way, the first hour or so can be awkward as people shuffle in from all over. Reunions include time for catching up and renewing old relationships. Getting past that awkward hour will get a little easier, if there is lots of fun and easy reunion ice breaker games. And for that matter, the reunion bash of CASK was organized in such a way that everyone had a good time, it was not boring and there were no complaints. Well organized with lots of fun and frolic, especially kudos to the duo comperes- “Bubbly and Smiley” Ms Nayana Fernandes- VP and “Vintage and Active” Ms Gulobi Fernandes-Governing Council Member of CASK, who simply rocked and kept the evening live and entertaining- and also kudos to Ms Patsy Lobo for a well planned programme, with her unique skit and what not.
And the ideal place for this Bash was Lobo’s Riverview-Morgan’s Gate in City, which boasts the rich tradition of Cascia Tile Industry and scenic beauty of Mangaluru riverside making it a unique Tourist Destination at Mangaluru, and also an ideal place for get-together and parties. Located at the heart of Mangaluru without the hectic and Chaotic City life, revelers at this event experienced a whole new world- quite suitable to relax and recreate. The venue was well decorated against the backdrop of Netravathi River/Ullal bridge, with the trees lighted with strings of multi-hued bulbs, in a true party atmosphere. The enchanting venue did set the mood to have some fun and frolic, along with few cocktails, snacks, and of course, ending with sumptuous dinner.
The crowd was predominately mixed- Vintage and young revelers of CASK, joined by their spouses, relatives, sons, daughters, grand kids, friends and well-wishers. In between entertainment, the guests shared news and views about GST, about the inappropriate handling of Central government by PM Modi, and little gossip here and there about their neighbours, children and grand kids etc etc, which was much better than the few young girls in the audience exchanging gossip via SMS or whatsApp through their mobiles. To enliven the atmosphere there was not only live music but also few spot games, comedy act, floor dance and lots of friendship cum fellowship, together with a sumptuous spread of food that added spice to the occasion.
There were folk and traditional Konkani songs rendered by the group “Sumell” of Mandd Sobhann- the World’s Premier Konkani Cultural Organization under the leadership of Eric Ozario-the Gurkar of Maand Sobhan- “Sumell” was introduced to the audience by Prof. Phyllis D’costa. Prior to the cultural part of the evening, the bash began with a thanksgiving prayer rendered by Ms Sonali Mathias and Gasper Hugaart invoking God’s blessings and also thanking Him for all the good things He had done towards CASK during the last 103 years of its existence. In his presidential address, Richard Rodrigues-president of CASK speaking during the occasion appreciated the support and encouragement shown by the CASK members and the community, and requested them to continue with the same trend in the future years, and raise the name of CASK which is the oldest Catholic Laity Organization in South India, established in July 1914, to greater heights.
The songs by the troupe “Sumell” led by Eric Ozario rendered a few traditional Konkani songs, which brought back memories of yester years, and also transformed the venue into a world of traditional music. A comedy skit by Ms Patsy Lobo named ” Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” enthralled the crowd and took them into a world of laughter, and also received loud applaud. The Largest Family comprising of 20 plus members, belonging to Gilbert D’souza and Family were honored with a gift. The gala also comprised of Konkani dance, Line dance, and a scintillating solo dance performance by national-level Dance Plus3 reality show idol- Nicky Pinto, the son of Louis J Pinto. The newly formed Band with “No Name?” gave their best performance, which got the audience into a dance mood and made them to step up on to dance floor and shake their hips.
Apart from all the entertainment, there were also a few spot games, where the winners took home some exciting gifts. After the vote of thanks proposed by Capt. Vincent Pais, it was simply party time, where the revelers made the best of their time on the dance floor swinging to the tunes by the Band, and quite a few others indulged themselves in fellowship, sipping on their favorite “spirits” and having a jolly good time.
To sum it up, the renowned Annual Reunion 2017 of CASK was a spectacular show of unity and entertainment with songs, dances, music and skits in English and in Konkani and also collaborating with Mandd Sobhann for an extra entertainment. In addition, the Reunion was also aimed at fund-raising for the various welfare and social service activities of the Association targeting the marginalized sections of society. CASK Reunion 2017 will go unparalleled in history, while the snapshots incorporated here speak for themselves. Many exclaimed “Oh what an awesome reunion it was!”. Everyone went back home with fond memories of a fun filled party -and promising to come back for the 2018 CASK Reunion .So until we meet again at the next CASK Annual Reunion 2018 celebration, cherish all the fun and frolic you encountered at this 2017 Reunion bash.
About Catholic Association of South Kanara (CASK):
With over 1250 CASK members spread across India and several countries of the world, every year the Association organizes an Annual Reunion of its members in November each year. The Catholic Association of South Kanara (CASK), it is the oldest Catholic Laity Organization in South India, established in July 1914 and Registered under the Societies Act in 1925. CASK publishes a monthly magazine entitled “Mangaluru” since July 1927, one of the oldest monthly magazine in the country with the credit of uninterrupted publication for 90 years. The Bishop of Mangaluru – Dr Aloysius Paul D’Souza is the Patron of CASK.
Over the last 103 years, CASK has worked towards fulfilling the following Objectives of the Association :
– Promote the educational, economic, cultural, social and general welfare of the community;
– Render assistance to the under-privileged and vulnerable groups of society, irrespective of religion, caste, creed or any other distinction;
– Support the publication of books, periodicals, and other literature authored by community members and also support preservation of the Konkani language, literature, culture, heritage, arts, architecture, music and fine arts;
– Act as the voice of the community in upholding its rights and privileges;
– Inter-act, network and function as a link to unite the community spread across India and abroad;
CASK also organizes regular programmes for its members and also special programmes for students, youth, women and other target groups. CASK celebrated its centenary during 2013-2014 and successfully launched and implemented the following programmes in honor of the Centenary, which are still continues:
* “Promotion of Blood, Organ and Whole Body Donations” in collaboration with Fr Muller Hospital. CASK is involved in Creating awareness to encourage people to donate blood and pledge organs and organizes Eye and Paediatric camps.
* “Personality Development Programme” for School/College Students. During the last 5 years, CASK has conducted this programme in 15 schools and 3 Colleges in Mangaluru. Nearly 1,500 students have been the beneficiaries of this programme so far.
* “CASK Education Fund” has been substantially scaled up in order to provide annual scholarship to deserving students irrespective of religion, caste, creed or other distinctions. Each year 100 scholarships are provided at Rs 5,000 each, primarily for purchase of books and extra coaching.
* “Provision of Safe Drinking Water in Schools” – Most rural schools, both Government and private do not have Purified Drinking Water facilities for its students. CASK has installed Safe Drinking Water Units in 6 schools last year and plans to cover 6 more schools this year.
* “Footwear for Barefoot School-Going Children” – We have observed that approximately 20-25% of students attending Rural Schools and a few city school come barefoot to school, thereby exposing the children to snake-bite and infections like hookworm. CASK provided footwear to 500 children of 4 schools last year and plans to cover more schools this year.
The above are some of the ongoing projects. CASK plans to scale-up the above projects and needs support from its members and well-wishers to do such impactful charitable work.
The Present Office-bearers of CASK are: R.C.Rodrigues – President; Nayana Fernandes – Vice-President and Convenor – CASK Reunion 2016; Capt Vincent Pais – Vice-President; Mario Saldanha – Secretary; Dr Anand Pereira – Joint Secretary; Walter D’Sa – Treasurer. For more details of CASK and how you can be a member call : RC Rodrigues at 9845084202 or Nayana Fernandes: 9844075758