Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Olina Barbose
The Jyoti parish had a memorable Christmas week this year. After the children’s programme on December 26, the second day of the Christmas festivities was dedicated to the youth of the locality. About 65 youngsters came together for this programme on December 27, which began with a short prayer service, followed by the lighting of the traditional oil lamp. Fr. Gregory D’Cunha welcomed all who were present and wished them an enjoyable evening. Mr. Melvin Pangya and Mr. Dayanand Patil from the Development Office, conducted a session for the youth on the theme, ‘In unity lies strength.’ The other highlights of the evening included some fun games and creative competitions. Present along with the parish youth were youngsters from Swadhyaya Parivar and some youth from the other faiths.

The next day, December 28, the elders of the parish came together for a Christmas celebration. The oldest in the group was 87 years. The evening commenced with a short prayer service by the youth of the parish. Next, Fr. Gregory conducted a lively session during which he asked those present to share the reason of their longevity. Most of them proudly responded by saying, “we’ve worked hard, eaten wholesome food and have led stress free lives.” The evening then got into the ‘entertainment mode’, with the old folk singing a medley of popular songs from the yester years. It certainly was a beautiful evening and the elders thanked the organizers of the event for making them “feel wanted”.

On December 29, it was the parents who had a special evening organized for them by the children and the youth. The programme began with the youngsters welcoming the parents and tying ribbons on their wrists. Fr. Gregory too welcomed all and also expressed his appreciation for the efforts put in by their own children. The ice-breaker game set the tone for the evening and soon all the couples were enthusiastically involved in the games and the other activities that followed. Fr. Blany Pinto, Mr. Valerian Soares and Mrs. Mary Soares assisted and guided the youth in organizing the evening.

Finally, on December 30, it was the turn of the women of the parish to have their Christmas get-together. The programme began at 7.00 pm with a short prayer service and words of welcome. Besides the games and the fun, there was also a session on candle making conducted Mrs. Jadhav. The women not only enjoyed the session, but they also felt that they had learnt something useful. As the evening proceeded, the Mother General of the Queen of the Apostles Congregation, Sr. Maria Goretti Quadros, dropped in to greet the women. The programme concluded with Mrs. Sangita Nunes proposing the vote of thanks.

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