JK News Today
Jammu, December 19
St. Mary’s Cathedral Church reverberated with choral melodies as the spirit of Christmas was ushered in by organizing an enthralling Carols Competition that witnessed twenty teams vying for honours and heralding the message of Christmas through mellifluous songs. Students, parishioners and choir troupe members, dressed in colourful fineries, painted the Church in Christmas hue and brought alive the nativity scene through the sprightly competition, which is held each year in the loving memory of (Late) Fr. Raphael Jeykumar.
The curtain of the spirited competition was lifted with the hoisting of traditional Christmas Star by Rt. Rev. Ivan Pereira, the Bishop of Jammu-Srinagar Diocese. The event was further glorified with the valued presence of Rev. Fr. Jose Vadakkel, the Vicar General, Fr. Thomas Niravathu, Fr. Shaiju Chacko, Fr. Santosh, Fr. Suresh Britto and Fr. Premful. Among other guests, Inspector Bishnesh Kumar, SHO of Gandhi Nagar Police Station also graced the event as a special vedette.
The participants presented well-coordinated carols in Hindi as well as Punjabi in front of the luminaries and the large gathering of people who had come from nearby churches and institutions. Rev. Fr. George GP, Rev. Fr. Jaya Pradeep and Ms. Agnes, acclaimed musicians in Christian devotional music from Punjab, were the adjudicators of the competition.
All the teams participated with a true spirit of competition and delightfully proclaimed the coming of Jesus through their singing. Melodious blending voices and active presentation kept the august gathering mesmerized throughout. The fun-filled jamboree of most-loved carols was followed by the declaration of results which witnessed a huge round of applause and cheer from the audience.
St. Peter Church, Prem Nagar was adjudged the winner of the competition while the second prize was bagged by Presentation Convent Sr. Sec. School, Jammu and St. Peter’s High School, Jammu secured the third prize.
Speaking on the occasion, Fr. Joshy Mathew gave accolades to the winners and called competition as an initiator of the 10-day celebrations for Christmas. “As carols are the soul of Christmas celebrations, a competition such as this set the right mood of the holy celebration”, he said.
Sending out warm greetings of Christmas, Bishop Ivan Pereira wished and prayed for peace in the State and harmony among the people. Describing Jesus as the prince of peace whose only intention of taking birth among the humans was to save everyone from wretchedness and sin, Bishop exclaimed that Christmas is a powerful sign of God’s unconditional love. He congratulated all the participating teams for spreading this message through their presentations at the competition.
The splendid event was coordinated by Bunty Gill and Anish Mattoo while Neha John and Arun Nayyar were the masters of ceremonies. The extravaganza drew to a close with the sharing of Christmas cakes amidst heightened jubilation and counting of days until the big day.