Mangalorean Association of Canada celebrates Family Social – 2019

Report by Janet D’souza

Photographs by Sunil Bantwal.

Glittering chandeliers!  Vibrant and colorful décor!  Glitzy and spectacular evening wear!  It was an evening unparalleled in its celebration, ambience and execution.   The Annual Family Social organized by the Mangalorean Association of Canada (MAC) on May 4, 2019 at the Payal Banquet and Convention Centre was a resounding success with over 500 guests, an astonishing number of sponsors, amazing gifts and a surprise event.  The Social was hosted by emcee, Melwyn D’Silva who ensured the completion of a flawless program; the live band, Big Foot, who enchanted the guests with their riveting vocals and all time classics and DJ, Kaya whose pulsating music got people flocking on to the dance floor.

The festivities started at around 7 pm with the emcee formally welcoming the guests and introducing the President of MAC, Manohar Pais.  Announcements for delicious appetizers and housekeeping rules followed and once done, the band set up the tone for the evening with some mellow music that beguiled the guests to sway and dance.  Line dancing was next and everyone, novices and the experienced, enthusiastically participated in it.    

The crème de la crème of the Family Social was the Jive dance competition.  The competitors performed with consummate perfection and unparalleled technique much to the excitement of an enthusiastic crowd.  It was definitely a difficult decision for the judges who determined the 3 winners after 2 sets of music and pre-determined rules.  The top winner was Derryl and Melanie Vaz; the second winner was Lloyd and Ayesha D’Costa and the third winner was Raveen and Natalia Lobo.  A surprise Salsa presentation was then performed by Angelo and Kathy De Torres, with their sensual movements and fluid swaying rhythmic steps.  Their energy and liveliness captivated the audience and in a wonderful spirit of community and camaraderie, both stayed on stage to teach a few Salsa movements to the guests.

Rev. Fr. Henry Alva led the Grace and he thanked God for showering his blessings and encouraged the association to continue their contributions to the community.  Dinner was served at 9.30 pm and was an amazing and ample buffet of salads, vegetables, meat and desserts that were delicious and satiated all types of tastes and palates.    Manohar Pais, President of MAC then addressed the audience, welcomed and introduced his new Executive Committee, thanked the guests for their support and participation, recapped the accomplishments of the association and highlighted the generosity of the sponsors. 

Sponsors contribute to the development of the association and provide them with the means to grow and fulfill their objectives and also generate immense goodwill within the community.  The sponsors for MAC are its pillars of strength never failing to demonstrate their abundant munificence.  2019 was also spectacular as MAC had sponsors from across the world spreading from Ontario to Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Kuwait and Mangalore, India.  In recognition of their support and in appreciation for their continual encouragement, the sponsors were called upon, welcomed on stage and each was honored with a rose.  The amazing door prizes and 50/50 draw attracted the attention of guests who rushed to buy tickets.  The much awaited raffle and 50/50 draw was a huge success with 50% of the collection going towards Sneha Sagar, an orphanage for children in Mumbai.

A noteworthy mention to Sunil Bantwal, the photographer, who worked tirelessly to capture moments and memories that will be treasured by all guests.   An event of this magnitude requires the strong shoulders, selfless support, time and skills of an entire village and the Mangalorean community came together as one to volunteer to make this Family Social an overwhelming success.  MAC recognizes and thanks the collaboration and help of its guests, members and volunteers who with their passion and enthusiasm embodies the motto, “Together we make a difference”. 

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MAC organized Lenten Mission with renowned preachers

By Gerry D’Mello

Pictures by Ronald D’Souza

The Mangalorean Association of Canada had a great beginning in this Year 2019 with the graceful and spirit-filled spiritual mission during the Lenten season.   The main preacher was Sr.Hazel D’Souza, a renowned preacher from Mumbai, accompanied by Rev.Fr.Roshan D’Souza.  Rev.Fr.Edwin D’Souza, the Spiritual Director of MAC was the main celebrant for all the Masses. 

Starting from March 9th the spiritual thirst-quenching retreat talks were preached on every Saturdays during the Holy month of Lent.  All talks were based on the Holy Bible. The graceful retreat was focussed on in-depth enlightenment towards the Word of God.  There was a special spiritual talk addressed to the Youth on 30th March 2019 by Sr.Hazel.  This spiritual program was held at Sts.Martha & Mary Church, Mississauga. Konkani choir with angelic singing led by Ms. Merlyn Rodrigues was soul-elevating. The turnout was reasonably good and it was encouraging to see the number was increasing week after week.  Undoubtedly, this spiritual event conducted by MAC has succeeded stirring-up the spirituality of many Mangaloreans and Goans residing in Mississauga & surrounding areas.

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Fr. Edwin’s Sacerdotal Golden Jubilee Celebration – June 10, 2017

A priest’s life is dedicated to the service of his flock. It is a life of obedience and requires dedication, patience and immense spirituality. Achieving 50 years as an ordained priest is indeed a testimony of faithfulness, devotion and perseverance accompanied by gratitude to God for the call to follow him.

Such a milestone was celebrated by MAC on June 10, 2017 as Rev. Fr. Edwin D’Souza, Spiritual Director of Mangalorean Association of Canada (MAC) and former Parish Priest of Sts. Martha & Mary Catholic Church, Mississauga completed 50 years as an ordained priest.

Fr. Edwin’s celebration started off with a solemn mass presided over by him with co-celebrants, Monsignor Thomas Kalarathil, Rev. Fr. Martin Pereira and Rev. Fr. Andrew Lewis.

A cultural program and dinner was then held in the church hall with guests that included close family and friends. The emcee for the evening, Vidya Alvares welcomed the guests and Jake Pereira’s trumpet rendition of the hymn “How great thou art” set a joyous tone for the remainder of the event. A toast was raised by Janet D’Souza who spoke about Fr. Edwin’s childhood, his spontaneous decision to become a priest, some highlights that included his meetings with Pope Benedict XVI, Pope John Paul II and Mother Teresa.

A touching tribute was paid by his sister, Mrs. Celestine Martis who stressed on the close bond between brother and sister.

Virginia Kanary, an ex-parishioner of Fr. Edwin, narrated a moving story about the deep faith, support and solace Fr. Edwin offered in times of her great need.

Prem Lobo, a visiting famous singer from Mangalore composed and dedicated a song to Fr.Edwin. It was sung by Prem, Dora, Renee and Gerry D’Mello accompanied by Wilson D’Souza on the guitar.

A magnificent cake was cut by Fr.Edwin as everyone applauded wholeheartedly.

The highlight of the event was a felicitation ceremony where Manohar Pais, President of MAC, respectfully draped a shawl round Fr. Edwin’s shoulders.

The church hall then reverberated with the fast paced, enthralling Hollywood & Bollywood fusion performance by Elvis Menezes, Symona Albuquerque, Deandra Albuquerque, Kirsten D’Souza and Jayden D’Souza. Kierra Mathias, the young lady with the golden voice sang “Give thanks with a grateful heart” moving people to give her a standing ovation. The incredibly talented Elvis Menezes entertained the guests with a tap dance.

Dinner was a sumptuous and scrumptious spread of dishes cooked to perfection by Konkan Delite. Everyone enjoyed the food which was followed by the mouth-watering delicacy, Vorn.

The Baila sung by Prem Lobo, Manohar Pais, Gerry D’Mello and Wilson D’Souza had everyone swaying and dancing to the melodious tunes.

The evening ended with a Vote of Thanks by Melwyn Menezes, Vice President of MAC who offered his appreciation to the clergy and the guests who participated in this wonderful celebration. Melwyn also thanked each and every one for helping to make this event memorable and successful for Fr. Edwin whose selfless love and caring has endeared him to one and all.

For more pictures of the event click on link below:

MAC Family Picnic 2017

Balmy clear skies, pleasant breeze, shaded trees and lively spirits – even the heavens smiled and cheered as Mangalorean Association of Canada (MAC) concluded the Annual Family Picnic on June 24, 2017 at the Meadowvale Conservation Park, Mississauga.

With the blow of a whistle and a blaring megaphone announcement by emcee, Janet D’Souza for everyone to gather, the festivities began with a prayer invoking God’s blessings and some housekeeping rules.

The first game was for children ages 5 and under and they eagerly played “Passing the ball”. Other new and innovative games such as Leap Frog, Dodge ball, Bottle game and Arm race tested the agility and balance of the children who participated wholeheartedly.

It was gratifying to note that the picnic grounds had a huge gathering of teenagers and young adults who played to win yet demonstrated sportsmanship and enthusiasm. Our seniors were not to be left out as they played Bean Bag Toss with precision and aim. The Family relay was unique as it brought families together in a game of co-operation and mutual competitiveness

Lunch was a delicious array of potluck dishes ranging from sannas, pork, samosas, salads and vegetables. With a thanksgiving prayer, people respectfully and graciously helped themselves to the laid out buffet.

50/50 and Bingo tickets were sold by the committee members after which delicious watermelon was served courtesy of Paul Mathias.

Group games such as volley ball and throw ball generated immense interest among the men and women. Women, young and old, rolled up their sleeves and prepared to play a spirited and aggressive yet enjoyable game of throw ball. The men flexed their muscles and arms and demonstrated their killer instincts and winning edge during the volley ball game. Every single participant in the two games had a thrilling set of games.

The referees, Charles D’Souza and Reynold Sequeira conducted the games ensuring fairplay.

What is a picnic without water? The Water Balloon Throw is one of the most popular organized games among children and adults. As the line-up was formed, men, women and children coached their partners on throwing and catching techniques. Poof! Splat! The balloons broke and drenched the unfortunate but the lucky winners were the ones who were able to successfully catch a water balloon without breaking it.

Tug O War! That heavy rope which determines sheer brute strength, technique and team work! Men and women, children and teens did not hesitate to form teams and in a show of unity heave themselves to victory and the other team to defeat.

While the games were being played, the MAC ladies prepared masala tea and served it with biscuits. Content and replete with a hot cuppa chai, it was time for the 50/50 draw and Bingo. Ably conducted by Reynold Sequeira, the winners were thrilled to make some money.

Manohar Pais, President of MAC introduced Vidya Alvares, the Sports Secretary who successfully masterminded the Annual Picnic and the games. He also presented the remainder of his Executive Committee members and highlighted their portfolios.

Olwin Pereira, Cultural Co-ordinator thanked the community as well as committee members who worked hard to organize the event. A shout out to Ivan Lobo whose camera and photographic skills captured the memorable event and action in beautiful pictures.

As the sun set in the horizon, the evening came to an end, people folded their umbrellas, packed their belongings and left tired but content, smiling and happy to mingle with old friends, share a gossip or two or just soak in the sun with fellow Mangaloreans.

MAC was tremendously successful in its objective to bring the community together, provide a venue to meet and mingle and offer opportunities for our youth to have a day of fun yet show initiative and leadership.

For more pictures of the event click on link below:

MAC Hosts MAC Social 2017!

It was an evening out of a fairy tale – glamorous setting, dazzling men and women in their glitzy evening wear, a riveting live band and a scrumptious buffet. With a record crowd of over 600 people, the Annual Family Social organized by Mangalorean Association of Canada (MAC) on April 29 at Payal Banquet and Convention Centre was a remarkable success. Hosted by emcee, Jude Menezes who executed the programme flawlessly to the live band, Memory Lane who enthralled the guests with their amazing vocals and accompaniment, it was an evening of indulgence, fun and spontaneity.

The evening began with a welcome address from Jude. He then invited the guests, who required no cajoling, to dance to some lilting upbeat tunes. This was quickly followed by a vibrant line dancing session with over 200 dancers in organized lines on the dance floor. One of the highlights of the evening was a performance by Samantha and Savannah Goveas who captivated the audience with their choreography, grace and dynamic personalities. In a strong show of solidarity, MAC invited two Canadians of Indian origin who are running to be members of Ontario’s Provincial Parliament. Janet D’Souza, former vice-president of MAC introduced the two politicians. Everest Vijay Dante and Clyde Roach then enlightened the audience with their priorities, their commitment and mandate and enlisted the support of people in their riding.

The climax of the event was the Cha Cha Cha and Jive competition which added glitter and glamour to an already glimmering show. Couples moved with impressive precision and unison to the fast paced music and it was equivalent to watching “Dancing with the stars”.The judges, after a careful selection process announced the winners in each category. Mel and Daryll won the Cha Cha Cha competition followed by Wilson and Sharon. Gordon and Claudette won the Jive competition followed by Brannigan and Shinella.

Dinner was a sumptuous buffet of delicious food followed by delectable desserts. Satiated, the guests eagerly awaited more fun and dancing. The after dinner session started off with Manohar Pais, president of MAC, addressing the audience. He acknowledged the sponsors for their generosity and collaboration, recognized the hard work of his executive members and the numerous volunteers and expressed thanks to the guests who chose to be part of the Social. A 50/50 draw was announced and guests rushed to buy tickets hoping to win the big pot. The night was young and the guests even more enthusiastic. The band did not disappoint and played well loved music to keep the momentum going.

MAC extended special thanks to the main sponsors, other sponsors and well-wishers of the event. The main sponsors were Alex Kuzhel of Sutton Group Admiral Realty, Manoj D’Cunha of Sunlife Financial, Arif Shora of Remax Realty and Dr SaimaShora of Shora Dentistry and Shah Ahmed of Rexdale Hyundai Motors. MAC also thanked Lovina D’Souza, fondly known as Photographer Lavi for capturing the night with her lens and freezing epic moments for posterity.

MAC also acknowledged and applauded the support, commitment and dedication of all its members and volunteers who worked hard to organize an event of this magnitude.

And finally, at 2 am, it was time to close the doors on a magnificent and outstanding event of the year, the Annual Family Social 2017.

For pictures of the event click on link below:

MAC Celebrates Monthi Fest 2017

With a passion appropriate to this solemn yet festive event, the Mangalorean Association of Canada (MAC) organized and hosted the traditional Monthi Fest on September 17 at the Maximilian Kolbe Parish in Mississauga.

Leading the religious ceremonies, Gerry D’Mello welcomed the guests and enlightened the audience with the significance of Monthi Fest. Young and older angelic children, dressed in their finery, placed flowers in honour of Mother Mary to the accompaniment of ‘Sokkad Sangatha Melyan’ and ‘Moriyek Hogolsiyan’. With the blessing of the sheaves of grain, the congregation followed by the Knights of Columbus, the priests and young men carrying the statue of our Mother Mary walked eagerly in a procession to the church for a Konkani mass.

The church resounded with the singing of the Konkani choir led by Merlyn Rodrigues. From the subdued anticipation of the faithful Catholics gathered for mass to the solemn assemblage of Fr Edwin D’Souza, Fr Henry Alva, Fr Andrew Lewis, Fr Roshan D’Souza, Fr Martin Pereira and Deacon Sarfaraz Pinto to the powerful, soul-stirring homily preached by Fr Roshan D’Souza, people participated in the excitement of reminiscent traditions, the taste of sugarcane and traditions from back home.

The cultural programme commenced in the church hall with a light snack and an introductory welcome speech by Manohar Pais, president of MAC. He introduced the comperes of the evening, Nisha Pereira and Jake Pereira who set the evening on fire with their warmth and enthusiasm.

A vivacious and graceful classical dance glorified Mother Mary. The pièce de résistance of the evening was a tableau depiction of the ‘Sorrowful Mysteries’. Written and directed by Manohar Pais, the actors brought to life the suffering and sacrifice of Jesus and the unwavering love of Mother Mary with their evocative and exquisite performances. Such was the passion and powerful emotion displayed by the actors during the play, it no longer felt like acting but undeniably real. An exuberant dance was performed by young children to music provided by Rohan Crasta and choreographed by Nina Crasta and Marjoreen Machado.

Manohar Pais and Melwyn Menezes, vice-president of MAC extended their gratitude to the many sponsors by inviting them on stage and applauding their generosity. Fr Edwin D’Souza then blessed the new corn or the ‘Noven’ ensuring the continuation of a tradition endearingly followed by Catholics universally. This was followed by a sumptuous vegetarian dinner lovingly cooked catered by Loy D’Souza of Konkan Delite. Of noteworthy mention was the ‘Vorn’, a delectable dessert made of coconut milk, rice, cane sugar and cashews.

The dinner was followed by a spectacular dance choreographed by Carol Lobo. In striking costumes and jewellery, the dancers transported the audience to Mangaluru and the cultural traditions of their hometowns.

Music can be sweeping and glorious expressing so many emotions and each culture has its own intrinsic form. Choreographed and organized by Sonia Monteiro, the group performance of singers set the stage on fire with their incredible Konkani songs kindling a rush of memories from times long forgotten. A mesmerizing Bollywood dance by the group called ‘Funky Five’ coordinated by Eryl Menezes captivated the audience who enthusiastically supported the young performers.

Education has always been a priority for MAC who initiated a scholarship programme for first year university entrants. The 2017 scholarship winners were Clementina D’Souza and Kenneth Pinto, both gifted youngsters with an incredible work ethic and determined focus on their career path. The scholarship awards were presented by Janet D’Souza and the awards were handed over by Maxim D’Mello, former president of MAC and Prescilla D’Mello and Reginald Fernandes, former auditor of MAC and Mary Fernandes.

The final item in the programme was the 50/50 raffle draw and the awarding of door prizes. As much as 50% of the proceeds from the raffle draw were allocated to the building of a church in Manipur. With the singing of ‘Laudate’, the beautiful Nativity cultural programme was concluded.

MAC sincerely appreciates the support and participation of all the volunteers especially Leon Lobo, Earl Dacara, Ivan Lobo and Michele D’mello and the dedication and commitment of its members and organizers who worked tirelessly to make Monthi Fest an astounding success.

For pictures of the event please click on the link below: