Melbourne, Sep 16: The Victorian south-east suburb of Aspendale, was once again the hub for Melbourne Konkan Community’s Nativity festivities this year. The St Louis de Montfort’s School Hall in this bayside suburb regaled with an audience of 750 plus with their ‘traditional best’ breaking all previous records with the gigantic hall filled to its capacity for the marathon celebrations that lasted seven hours.
The afternoon commenced with a heartwarming veneration to Mother Mary as hundreds of children offered flowers with the rendition of evergreen hymn - ‘Sakkad Sangatha Melyan, Sakkad Lagi Saryan; Amche Tale Ek Karyan, Moryek Hogolsiya’ by the choir. The celebrations were led by the priests Fr Prakash Menezes and Fr Jacob Alvares. The main celebrant, Fr. Prakash's message in his homily touched the hearts of the congregation as he emphasized the importance of the girl child in the family and reflected on the blessings we receive, drawing parallels to Mother Mary's readiness to accept her divine role.
Following this spiritually uplifting start, the congregation was treated to a delightful spread of tea, coffee and scrumptious cakes generously sponsored by Ferguson Plarre's Bakehouse. The warm conversations and shared moments over these refreshments set the tone for a day filled with togetherness.
Before the second part of the Celebrations commenced, MKC President, Loyal Andrade, welcomed and thanked everyone, summarizing the ten events held during the year with over 2000 people collectively attending. He highlighted the runaway successes of two new events – ‘Women's Wellbeing Day’ and ‘Flavors of Mangalore,’ which were sold out in a record time.
The highlight of the evening was the installation of the ‘MKC Awards Ceremony,’ where exceptional talents in three different fields would be honoured. This year, the accolades went to Mira D'Silva and Nadine D'Silva who were facilitated for their outstanding leadership and sportsmanship, respectively.
A traditional dance was performed followed by the vibrant dances from the tiny tots and the ladies. The evening also featured an exciting game of Housie with amazing prizes, enhancing the fun and excitement of the occasion. A live band by Ashley and his troupe was the cynosure of all eyes. The band performed many Konkani hit numbers that brought back nostalgic memories and the rendition of Baila left a desire for more.
The traditional Mangalurean buffet, featuring dishes like chana tendli, sambhar, beans, eggplant, potato and fish fry, sent taste buds into a delightful food coma. Dessert was equally tantalizing with servings of boondi laddoo and Vorn.
Rita Fernandes, MKC secretary, concluded the evening with heartfelt gratitude to everyone and acknowledged the incredible sponsors who have supported MKC throughout the year, especially during Monthi Fest. A special mention was made of the Victorian Government DFFH for their invaluable support.
As the curtains were drawn on a night filled with joy, dance and celebration, one could not help but reflect on the tremendous sense of community that surrounded the occasion with unmatched enthusiasm and camaraderie. The success of Monthi Fest 2023 was made possible by each and every one of those who attended and were a part of it.
The family and individual memberships registered for this fiscal year crossed 200, signifying the growing strength and unity of the community.
Melbourne Konkan Community Inc. (MKC) is a registered association based in the State of Victoria - Australia. It welcomes all Catholics of Mangalurean origin residing in Melbourne to be a part of this growing community. The MKC committee members can be contacted by emailing to email@example.com.
To know more about MKC and its activities, please login to Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/MelbourneKonkanCommunity .