Patient at Father Muller, Crib Maker Chandayya Sets Example of Harmony
Daijiworld Media Network - Mangalore
Mangalore, Dec 24: Christmas, the festival of sharing and caring is here, and all around, people are seen celebrating and greeting each other. Perhaps the most beautiful thing about Christmas is that the spirit of joy and celebration envelops each and every person, irrespective of religion, caste and creed.
Along with cakes, carols, Kuswar, Santa Claus and gifts, a special feature about Christmas is the variety of cribs one gets to see. Cribs enjoy special attention during Christmas especially as each crib differs from another. Though the basic idea remains the same, each crib is different, be it in size, shape, colours or materials used.
If you chance to pass by the chapel at Father Muller Institutions, Kankanady, what is likely to grab your attention the most is the big and beautiful crib nestled there. The crib is arranged meticulously, maintained well, and decorated attractively with eye-catching colours and illumination.
While you stand mesmerized by the crib, you can't help but wonder who its creator would be.
Believe it or not, the crib has been created by a patient of Father Muller Leprosy Rehabilitation Centre. And his name is Chandayya Gowda.
At 64, Chandayya's enthusiasm, hard work and dedication is no less than that of a teenage boy. Even more amazing is the fact that he has been a patient at the Centre from nearly 42 years, and has been creating the chapel's crib for the past 34 years.
Basically born in a Hindu family in Ashwathapura, Mijar, Chandayya has great love and affection towards all the religions.
Speaking to daijiworld, Chandayya expresses his gratitude to Basil, also a patient, who taught him to make cribs before he passed away.
"Basil was the one who taught me to prepare cribs and told me the story of Jesus. In the initial stages, we used to prepare it together. Ever since he passed away, I have been continuing his work," says Chandayya.
"I know the story of the life of Jesus and the importance of Christmas, which helps me a lot in making the crib even better. People who glance over the crib come to me, wish me and talk to me. Students, patients, priests, management members and doctors come to congratulate me, which makes me really happy," he says, his eyes twinkling with joy.
He also expresses his gratitude to the director and administrators of Father Muller Institutions for their enormous support and encouragement.
It takes him nearly 15 days to prepare the crib using soil, sand, cement, grass, idols and other things.
He also makes a special mention of Stanley, Sylvester and Ivan, the electrical maintenance staff for their beautiful illumination devices which add colour to the crib.
Speaking to Daijiworld, Fr Denis D’Sa, administrator, Father Muller Medical College said that Chandayya is not just a patient in the Leprosy Rehabilitation Unit, but a member of the Father Muller family.
"Chandayya is the one who eagerly takes the initiative in preparing the crib and takes special care of it, year after every year. He has been doing it for nearly three decades with the same enthusiasm," he said.
"It is highly appreciable of Chandayya to engage himself in crib making for so long. He has set an example of harmony and has further motivated everyone to get rid of communal differences in society," he added.
Truly, Chandayya is an epitome of the true spirit of harmony and humanity.