Chennai – Don Guanella Evening School celebrated the Pongal Festival on January 14th. The people of Tamilnadu mark this festival by making pongal, colorful Rangoli art and thanking the Lord for the harvest. Br. Praveen conducted party games and awarded prizes to the winners. All the children thanked Fr. Samson from DGMS who gave a beautiful explanation of the festival and blessed the pongal pot. Sweet pongal was served to all the children before they left went home. The following day Ms. Stella, a Guanellian Cooperators from Bengaluru, offered a class on “Motivation” for the Evening School youth. She began by stating that the future depends on each young person, therefore everyone needs to maximize themselves for the good of all. The youth had the opportunity to ask questions and share puzzling aspects of their life. The class ended by singing a Marian hymn.
Chennai – Don Guanella Special School had multiple occasions to celebrate and to be happy. To celebrate New Year’s Amazon staff from the online company, sponsored school uniform T-Shirts for DGSS children. They entertained our children with a creative cultural program and various games. Staff and students were very thankful for the generosity of Amazon and the staff members.
Pongal is a festive celebration throughout India, but especially in Tamilnadu, as it is infused with their culture and tradition. On this special day, DGSS celebrated Pongal by sharing Indian traditions with the entire community. We also remembered and thanked God, nature, formators, and all those who helped us to celebrate the feast.
Cuddalore – The Pongal celebration was held at St. Joseph’s Seminary on January 14th. Solemn Mass was celebrated by Rev. Fr. Amalorbavanathan. After Mass the pongal was served with sugar cane. Then to further celebrate the day the formaters conducted traditional games for the confreres, seminarians and staff. Some of the games included, chasing roosters, breaking the pots and tug of war. The formaters were like our own companions to the seminarians throughout the competitions, they made the day very fun.
Bangalore – Pongal is a harvest festival celebrated in India at the end of the harvest season. It is one of the most important festivals celebrated by the Tamil people in Tamil Nadu. In Tamil, the word Pongal means “overflowing” which signifies abundance and prosperity. It is the celebration of the farmers in order to thank God for the fruitful harvest of the year. Besides God they also thank the sun and the bulls who worked the crops. On the day of Pongal, at sunrise, there is a symbolic ritual of boiling fresh milk in new clay pots. When the milk boils over and bubbles out of the vessel, people shout, “Pongalo Pongal!” Joining with the farmers of the state, Guanella Preethi Nivas also celebrated Pongal on January 15th by thanking God for the fruitful results of all our works. In the morning as one family, Oratory children, the fathers, brothers, beloved grandpas, lay people and staff celebrated Pongal. With grateful hearts the community gathered before the Lord and offered Holy Mass; praying for farmers and workers all over the world. Later there was a volleyball match between the brothers and everyone enjoyed eating the Pongal rice, black sugar cane and other Pongal specialties. The celebration came to an end with the final blessing of the Administrator, Fr. A.P. Samy.
India is a land of agriculture. Seasonal changes play a very important role for Indian farmers. Their lifestyles and celebrations are linked to the seasonal landmarks throughout the year. Pongal, the harvest festival of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, is one Indian festival in tune with a farmer’s lifestyle. It marks the closing of the winter season and corresponds to the time when the sun is moving from Dakshinayanam (south) to Uttarayanam (north), known as Uttarayan Punyakalam and is considered auspicious. As per the Tamil calender, Pongal is celebrated four days from the last day of the month of Margazhi (December — January) to the third day of the month of Thai (January — February). Thus, according to the Gregorian calender, Pongal is celebrated from January 12th to 15th; Pongal day or the first day of Thai falls on January 14th.
Cuddalore – St. Joseph’s Evening School celebrated Pongal on January 13th. The Staff and students with Fr. Britto and Fr. Paul Arokia Raj, the rector, gathered on the football field and started their celebration by preparing the Pongal meal, it was offered in thanksgiving to God and shared by the students with a piece of sugar cane.
Bangalore – Thanking the Lord for his great Providence in our life, Pongal was celebrated on January 20th with our oratory children at Guanella Preethi Nivas. The celebration began that morning, with the prayers and blessings of Fr. Samson. The oratory girls and our workers cooked the sweet Pongal. Many colorful Rangoli and traditional pot-breaking games were organized commonly for the children to enjoy. The celebration ended with a prayer by Brother Deva.
Chennai – The Don Guanella Major Seminary Community and the poor from around Karayanchavady celebrated Pongal on January 15th. The celebration began with Mass in thanksgiving for the blessings of the previous year. After Mass the Pongal meal was cooked and served to all. Unstructured togetherness and traditional games were conducted by the Brothers; who also distributed prizes to the winners. Sharing of the sugarcane strengthened the bounds of unity between the people and the Guanellian community. Fr. Batistta embraced all the events with the spirit of an Indian.
Chennai – The Staff and Children of Don Guanella Eevening School celebrated Pongal on January 14th. As everyone arrived at the Divine Providence Province house, the fire was lit to inaugurate the feast and prayers were led by Bro. Periyanayagam. While the Pongal was cooking, party and outdoor kept the children busy. When the pongal was ready, it was blessed; everyone shouted “PONGALO PONGAL” and shared with each other. The children were sent home with sugarcane.