With the Theme ‘Help One Another’ Konkan Overseas Returnees Welfare association (KORWA) celebrates the ‘Joy of Christmas’ with Less-Privileged Kids
Mangaluru: “Being unwanted, unloved, un-cared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat”-said Saint Mother Teresa; and Quoting Pope Francis where he had said, “In a world where there is so much wealth, so many resources to feed everyone, it is unfathomable that there are so many poor persons. Poverty today is a cry. I believe in the kindness of others, and that I must love them without fear. None of us can think we are exempt from concern for the poor and for social justice. The world tells us to seek success, power, and money; God tells us to seek humility, service, and love.”
I think Konkan Overseas Returnees Welfare Association (KORWA) members have done the right thing again by sharing the spirit of Christmas with the less-fortunate children of the various orphanages in and around Mangaluru. The Konkan Overseas Returnees’ Welfare Association (KORWA) organized “Christmas celebrations” in St Sebastian Hall, Bendore, Mangaluru, here on 14 December 2019. Following the introduction of the organization, the programme began with a welcome prayer dance by Children from Jeevadan -Gurpur. President of KORWA Elias Sanctis welcomed the gathering. The programme was symbolically inaugurated by Rev Fr Vincent Monteiro-Parish Priest of St Sebastian Church-Bendore along with the KORWA executive members namely President, Elias Sanctis, Convenor Louis Lobo, and Secretary Lancy D’Souza by lighting the candles.
In his inaugural address, Fr Vincent Monteiro said, “Today I am not the chief guest, but all these happy and enthusiastic children are. It gives me immense pleasure to celebrate the joy and spirit of Christmas with all these less-privileged kids. It’s nice to note that Korwa is celebrating the spirit of Christmas once again with the orphanage children. Christmas is life, and these children are the future life of the world. Children are God’s gift to us. We should be grateful to the members of Korwa for putting up this unique programme for the sake of children, thereby bring miles of smiles on their faces. Christmas is all about sharing and giving, and hereby we have the members of KORWA sharing part of their wealth with these children, thereby showing the perfect example of Christmas. and Merry Christmas to you all well in advance”.
The Christmas Celebration was filled with dance, songs, music, mime, skit and much more. The cultural show comprised of dances by Prajna Counselling Centre-Mangaluru, St Angela Home -Bejai; Spandana-Prashanth Nivas-Jeppu; Infant Jesus Hostel-Kulshekar; De Merecede Orphanage-Paneer; Bala Yesu Nilaya-Mary hill; and Sri Arasu Dancing Academy-Karkala-followed by refreshments sponsored by Henry and Frenny Castelino- Balmatta, Mangaluru. Then came a song Miss Manhit, dances by Jeevadan -Gurpur, and Prajna Counselling Centre. Dance Stars Adyar Padavu gave a scintillating dance performance, followed by yet another mesmerizing dance by children of St Agnes Special School, Bendore, Mangaluru. Yet another superb dance performance was by Dance Stars Adyar Padavu, and then song by Miss Manhit.
Gifts were distributed to the kids, and the entry of Santa Claus brought lots of laughter and cheers among the children, as well as adults. Santa distributed sweets, goodies and danced with the children. Sponsors and well-wishers were honoured on the occasion. Msgr Maxim Noronha from Mangalore Diocese, Director of Fatima Retreat House Fr Maxim Misquith and Sr Sagaya- principal of Raymond College, Vamanjoor were the guests of honour for the valedictory function. Speaking on the occasion Msngr Maxim Noronha said “It is a beautiful programme, celebrating Christmas with the children who are less privileged. It is a true way of celebrating Christmas. It is not a family festival but is a festival of unity, brotherhood and joy. We celebrate the coming of Jesus to save us from sin. And we celebrate his coming as Christmas”.
Fr Maxim Misquith said, said Christmas is the time to celebrate joy with our neighbours, the poor and downtrodden forgetting caste, creed and religion. Jesus came to this world and he loved the poor and the downtrodden. We are distributing cakes and sweets within the family. Instead of celebrating Christmas without own people lets celebrate Christmas with the less fortunate in the society like Jesus taught. When we understand the true meaning of Christmas and share the joy it will be a real celebration. We need to compliment KORWA members for bringing the joy of Christmas among the less-fortunate children”. The vote of thanks was proposed by Ms Jessy Pinto of KORWA, and the compering of the function was professionally done by Manoj Lewis. The programme concluded with a sumptuous dinner served by M D’Souza Caterers.
In conclusion, in my perspective, “If we believe Christmas is about peace, then we must convey peace, by giving peace to those around us and by reaching out to others as a peacemaker. If we believe Christmas is about light, then light must shine in our lives, as we brighten up the lives of our brothers and sisters. If Christmas is about love, then love must be at the heart of our lives, as we bring love to those who need to be understood and cared for. If Christmas is about joy, then our lives must radiate joy and we must smile and be happy wherever we are. If Christmas is about hope, hope must grow in our hearts and we must bring hope to those who are down and feel despair.”
” If Christmas is about liberty, liberty must be respected and all people must experience that respect. If Christmas is about God’s Son, then we need to acknowledge His message of peace and love. If Christmas is about the birth of Jesus Christ, then we need to acknowledge this birth with great joy. If Christmas is a celebration of “God with us,” then we need to grow in our realization that God is always in our midst, that God is always with us. May our celebration of the Feast of Christmas bring us all that we desire at this point in our lives”. And thanks to KORWA for bringing the joy of Christmas into the hearts of these under-privileged Children Merry Christmas well in advance!