Manchester, Sep 14: Monthi is the Konkani name for Mother Mary. As Pope Benedict XVI said 'Mary’s greatness consists in the fact that she wants to magnify God, not herself', Konkani speakers of Mangalurean Catholic origin celebrate the Mother Mary’s birthday or nativity feast in a unique way. This feast day is celebrated along with the harvest festival on the same day as thanksgiving for the new crops.
Konkani Cultural Association, popularly known as KCA-UK celebrated Monthi-Fest on September 9 in Jain Community Hall, Manchester-UK, approximately 450 Konkani speaking people from different parts of United Kingdom gathered on time as one family to celebrate the event.
This is the 19th successive celebration by KCA UK.
The celebration began with a procession carrying a statue of Mother Mary, live band performance from Brass Band Group Preston, led by Anil D’Souza uplifted the spirit of participants. Stephi Martis gave the introduction to the celebration. This was soon followed by the shower of flowers by the children and the adults as an offering to Infant Mary to commemorate her birthday; whilst the band simultaneously played the hymn 'Sakkad Sanghatha Melya' and 'Morieak Hogolxieam'. Fr Ivan Michael, the main celebrant of the holy Mass led the liturgy. Fr Lawrence David Noronha and Fr Veeresh Moras were present and supported the liturgy.
This was followed by the holy Mass in Konkani, three priest and six altar boys with a well decorated alter, the venue became a perfect place for worship. The first reading was read by Sharon Vaz, and the second reading was read by Vinjoy Rego. In his homily, Fr Ivan Michael comprehensively explained the meaning of alphabets in the name ‘MARY’.
KCA UK teenagers read the prayers of the faithful, which brought the positive feelings among the participants.
Prior to the end of the holy mass, Arun Noronha thanked everyone involved in preparing for the mass, including the stage set-up team, choir, sponsors, alter service and priests.
Well known Konkani musician and singer Stan Mendonca along with talented musician from Manchester Sujith Rodrigues, brilliantly led the choir.
Fr Ivan Michael blessed the Novem and distributed to everyone. Also, a variety of soft drinks and cake was served.
The president of KCA-UK Marina Monis welcomed all the guests.Cultural activities commenced with a welcome dance, glorifying Mother Mary followed by some amazing dances and comedy. Kids, teenagers and adults from Manchester, Preston, Warrington, and Sunderland came together as one team and entertained the audience with innovative ideas, great unity and perfection.
In the traditional meal there were seven different types of delicious vegetables along with sanna, Kuvalo kadi, rice and vorn. 31 KCA-UK members were involved in preparing this food, served to the guests for the lunch. KCA-UK specially thanked Martin Saldanha and team for their dedicated work in planning, co-ordinating and arranging of the food for all the guests on time. Soon after the lunch, KCA UK Cricket Team was felicitated, who are the title winner of Mangalore United Konkani Association-MUKA, Nottingham organised very first time ‘Konkan League 2023 – Cricket Tournament’
Navendu Mishra is a British Labour Party politician and Member of Parliament (MP) for Stockport, Tameside Councillor Vimal Choksi and well-known surgeon and Ex-president of Indian Association -Manchester Dr. K Gajanan were present. In his note, Mishra thanked and appreciated the work of KCA UK andurged the young Konkani people to join the British politics, whereas Councillor Vimal Choksi extended his support and well wishes the Konkani community.
The cultural event was planned and executed the by group of Master of Ceremonies consists of Sujith Rodrigues, James Ravi Pinto, Santhosh Pinto, Rohan Fernandes, Arshiya Periera and Stephi Martis.
Vinjoy Rego, Wilson Coelho and Lionel Dias volunteered to dedicate themselves to cover the entire day’s photography and video. Ravi Pinto Liverpool and Santhosh Pinto carried out a fund-raising event for the association in the form of auction of items specially brought from Mangalore. The fund collected from this auction would be used towards the day’s expenses. Joseph Sequeira and Anthony Mary Rodrigues conducted the Bingo, where the prizes were awarded to the winners.
The vote of thanks was given by Jyothi Mendonca and expressed her gratitude and thanked everyone who directly or indirectly supported to make the event a grand success. Jyothi also expressed special thanks to the people who worked behind the scenes for days to make the event successful. KCA UK extend their sincere thanks to ‘Forever Manchester’ for funding the cultural activities and supporting the talent within the Konkani community.
Members of MUKA – Nottingham were thanked for their unconditional support during the event.
The event concluded with tea followed by live baila hosted by well-known drummer Rajesh Mascarenhas and Team.
It was a hot sunny day in Manchester, KCA UK appreciated the cooperation, support and the active participation by all the participants.