On the 6th of December 2015, CFCI- Goa organized an advent gathering at Sneh Banquet Hall, Porvorim, something they do every year. This year however was totally different from previous gatherings since they decided to merge the youth and the singles together for one giant gathering party. The aim of the joint gathering was to foster a sense of unity among the members as well as to let the youth know that they have a bigger brother or sister to whom they can look up to and learn from.
Youth from the chapters of Panjim, Margao, Siolim and Porvorim & Singles from Caranzalem, Margao, St. Cruz and Porvorim chapters attended the programme. The Panjim youth took great pains to decorate the venue by giving it a true Advent feel.
The mood setter for the day was Sammy from the Porvorim chapter who captivated the crowd with his terrific enthusiasm, humorous jokes and soothing strumming on the guitar.
The day began with an ice breaker organised by Lianne and Steffi from the Caranzalem chapter. After this, the assembly was led into worship by Ben Alain also from the Caranzalem chapter and he was duly accompanied by the First Aid music ministry. He exhorted the gathering to prepare themselves and their hearts for the birth of Christ and that they should not be like the inn keeper who said no to Jesus but rather like the stable that accepted him.
The participants were then asked to form groups which included members of different chapters and a mixture of both singles and youth for a treasure hunt activity. It was a fun activity which allowed participants to interact and get to know the members of other chapters. Everyone participated whole heartedly and finally the game ended with everyone struggling to catch their breath but having thoroughly enjoyed themselves.
This was followed by a snack break and numerous spot games organised by Sammy which entertained one and all. During this time, members of CFCI Youth Porvorim chapter performed a dance to a song they had composed. It was wonderful to see such great talent on display from the youth.
All through the day, there was a photo booth very ably coordinated by Trevor from the Caranzalem chapter. The singles, youth and formators had a ball of a time posing in front of the camera along with the numerous props that they had made before the event.
A sumptuous buffet greeted everyone at lunch time and even before anyone could get some rest, the ever lively Pierre had begun a session of Karaoke. The youth and singles thoroughly enjoyed themselves singing to their favourite tunes and dancing their heart out.
After a quick gathering song, Vernon from the Porvorim chapter enlightened the gathering about the significance of the Advent wreath and candles. He stressed on the coming of Christ and our preparation for the same. He went a step further to talk about the ancestry of Jesus and told us that though Jesus had some pretty bad people in his lineage, his birth and life on earth helped to purify his family tree. Like Jesus, the gathering was exhorted to strive and work towards healing broken relationships and building up our families and communities.
This was followed by a very lively praise fest led by Chernoll from the St. Cruz chapter accompanied by the First Aid band. The evening concluded with a small snack and Rasna and brought to an end one of the most memorable days in recent times.
Compiled by: Silverio Souza (Porvorim chapter) & Kim Elaine (Caranzalem chapter)