Mangaluru, Dec 15, 2014: Konkan Overseas Returnees’ Welfare Association (KORWA) organized annual Christmas Celebrations – 2014, with orphaned children of different orphanages in city, at Loyola Hall of St Aloysius Pre-University College, here on Saturday December 13 evening. Nearly, 1,000 children were overjoyed with the love and empathy shown by the members of KORWA and their well wishers.

Mangalore south MLA J R Lobo, Jesuit Fr Ravi Santosh Kamath of Fatima Retreat House along with KORWA members inaugurated the Christmas Celebrations on the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion, MLA Lobo said, ‘It is a beautiful programme, celebrating Christmas with under-privileged children. It is indeed a true way of celebrating Christmas. It is not a family feast, but is a festival of unity, brotherhood and joy.’ In olden days, pagans were celebrating various festivals and Christmas is the one amongst them. We celebrate Jesus Birthday but it is not the question of Jesus Birth, no one knows the exact date when Jesus was born but we all are sure that 2000 years ago Jesus born in the winter season. We celebrate the coming of Jesus to save us from sin. And we celebrate his new coming as Christmas,’ said MLA Lobo.

MLA Lobo further said, ‘Now-a-days people forget the true meaning of Christmas. Christmas is the time to celebrate joy with our neighbors, the poor and downtrodden regardless of caste, creed and religion. Jesus came to this world; he loved the poor and the downtrodden. We are distributing cakes and sweets within the family. Instead of celebrating Christmas without our own people, let’s celebrate Christmas with the less-fortunate in the society, like Jesus taught. When we understand the true meaning of Christmas and share the joy, it will be a real celebration. Let’s also look forward for peace and harmony during this holiday season. We are seeing some communal disharmony in our district- let’s pray that people live in peace and stop violence and unrest among themselves. Let us hope for a peaceful and calm Christmas in the days to come,’ said MLA Lobo.

Fr Santosh Kamath delivering a meaningful Christmas message to the children and adults said, ‘Yes, Christmas is a season of great joy. It is a time of God showing His great love for us. It can be a time of healing and renewed strength. You see, Christmas is when we celebrate the birth of the Christ child. God sent His Son, Jesus, into the world to be born. His birth brought great joy to the world. Shepherds, wise men, and angels all shared in the excitement of knowing about this great event. We can truly be happy at Christmas! No matter what may be happening, we can know that we are His children. We then become sons and daughters of God. Heaven will be our home one day,’ said Fr Santosh.

Fr Santosh further said, ‘It is wonderful to see that the members of KORWA are doing a marvelous job in keeping the children happy with the spirit of Christmas by putting some joy in their hearts and smiles on their faces. Let us look at Christmas in a new way this year. This year let us invite Jesus into your heart. You will then have a Merry Christmas. The joy and peace you will receive will last all year as you look to God for all your needs to be met. Jesus Is The Reason For The Season! Rejoice! Wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2015 well in advance,’ said Fr Santosh.

The evening entertainment was lined up with bunch of dances, songs, skits and music. From Christmas carols to bollywood dances the Christmas Celebration – 2014 by KORWA enthralled the children as well as adults. The dance performances by children of Spandana (Prashanth Nilaya), De Marcede Orphanage – Panir, Aramiya, Jeevdan, Prajna Counseling Center; professional dance show by Aryans-Mangaluru, and Illusion (St Aloysius College students); skit by Bertram Foundation Home; solo songs by talented crooner Anita D’Souza; mesmerizing solo dance by Almirah Shareena, Christmas songs by Blue Angels – Padua, and much more filled the evening with the best pre-Christmas entertainment one could have.

Violet Pereira of was felicitated for bagging Karnataka Rajyotsav Award – 2014, for her strong presence in e-media.

The trio Santas distributed the gifts to every child at the celebration. All the sponsors/donors were honored on the occasion for their whole-hearted support towards KORWA projects.

MLC Ivan D’Souza who made a guest appearance was complimented for his role in resuming Mangaluru – Kuwait direct flight by KORWA vice president Elias Sanctis. MLC Ivan also lauded social welfare activities of KORWA and its dedicated members.

The inmates of Jeevadhan (NGO) presented welcome dance. KORWA president Louis Lobo welcomed the gathering. Elias Sanctis proposed vote of thanks. Vaibav D’Souza, Reena D’Souza compered the programme.

Courtesy : Bellevision