Mangaluru, Dec 25, 2019: The city and out skirts reflected a positive out look even in the wake of the recent unrest and curfew. There is every sign that peace is permeating the atmosphere in Mangaluru with Christmas in the air.
The curfew disturbed the normal progress of the festivities, but our resilient citizens are rapidly overcoming the handicaps. Christians made hurried Christmas preparations and a semblance of happiness was visible.
On Christmas eve, December 24, Monday evening the festive activity centered in churches and institutions.Several care institutions and old age homes held the general gathering in the after noon,
Church ceremonies were the focus after 6 pm. At Rosario Cathedral, the seat of the Bishop of Mangaluru, Rev Dr Peter Paul Saldanha presided over the eucharistic celebration along with the priests and congregation who were present in large numbers. similarly all churches in the region including Udupi district held services. Celebrations will continue today December 25, Wednesday - Christmas.
Addressing Christians in general the Bishop of Mangalore at the Rosario Cathedral said that peace is the desire of all, seeking understanding and mutual love. We all pray for this and we are sure to obtain the Blessings of the Infant Christ in to everybody’s life without disparity.
All humans have a special deep worth and this must be recognised, utilised and glorified - as shown by the example of Christ. pointing to Tagore’s narration on the FAQ ’Where is God’; God is not in the church or monuments, but, in the world where the suffering are comforted, labourers sweat to build, with dust and turmoil all around and pain and sorrow. Today, we clamour for peace, from our ivory towers - while our Bible tells us The son of God was born not in palace, in luxury but in a stable with unclean surroundings and abode of animals. He did His work among the lowly in simple way and was charged with crime. Yet, after 2000 years His name is the highest and will rise further. But, humanity today has to take stock and redirect it’s paths and methods for the real good of all in 2020 and beyond. The message of the Reverend bishop was universal and appreciated by all.
The church ceremonies were followed by simple celebrations for a short spell before the quiet of night took over.
The Konkani Catholic traditional goodies Kuswar, fruits, dolls and decorative items sold like hot cakes in the last two days. But this year, shops and bakeries had very little time and resources to cater to the demands.
With little time for preparations, people were in a hurry to buy necessities, prices were high due to high demand. Some bakeries also put up stalls at different places in the city, to avoid rush.
Christmas cakes, Kuswar and other special items, including chips ‘Guliyo’, Kidiyo’, ‘Nevryo’, ‘Kokis’, rice laddoo and ‘Tukudi’ are prepared at homes during Christmas.
The prices were quite high compared to prices in recent times. The raw materials also cost dearer and there was no time for purchases. Bakeries said many orders were placed for customised pastries and cakes but curfew prevented work and raw materials were short and could not cater to needs. But, due to the curfew the materials were too late.
Institutions did their best to take care of the residents/inmates. In old age homes it was good to note that efforts to cheer all concerned proved a success with Santa dancing to the good of all. Hopefully, the coming weeks will see better times and 2020 will bring desired peace, joy and understanding.
"Mangalore Today" extends a special Merry Christmas to all readers and citizens.