09 Sep 2014  |   01:03am IST

Agonda’s classically different Parish priest sings harmony tune

Parish troupe led by Fr Cardozo sang bhajans and classical songs in various Ganesh mandals in the village


CANACONA: Visiting different private and public Ganesh idols across the State has long been an inter-religious tradition for the Christian community, but a parish group in Canacona taluka went a step ahead and actually participated in bhajans at various Sarvajanik Ganesh idols in the village.

In an unique gesture of inter-religious harmony, parishioners of Agonda shared in the joys of Ganesh festival by singing bhajans at various Sarvajanik Ganesh idols along with the Hindu community in the village.

Led by Agonda Assistant Parish Priest and music maestro Fr Peter Cardozo, the Agonda parish troupe sang different Indian classical ragas at Dessaiwada-Agonda club hall, where a Sarvajanik Ganesh idol was venerated for 11 days.

Such was the appreciation by the Hindu community, that the troupe led by Fr Cardozo was then invited to perform in many other Sarvajanik Ganesh idols during the last 10 days in the village.

According to sources, the St Anne’s troupe will also present a Bhajan programme as part of an all religious meet in the village on September 11.

Narrating the idea behind his initiative, Fr Cardozo said: “The people of Agonda are peace-loving and it was our cherished endeavour to share in the celebrations of Hindu festivals by our Hindu brethren in the village. In the past, we used to visit Hindu houses during Ganesh time, or for that matter during any other festivities.”

“But we were contemplating this initiative (to sing bhajans) since long to make ourselves available at (Sarvajanik) Public Ganesh venerations. The aim was to sing Bhajans to the Hindu deity, especially Ganesh idol, which is revered by Hindus with great faith, pomp and gaiety.”

“We took a month to practice some of the bhajans in Indian classical music, which is the great culture of our great country. I then asked our troupe members to join for the practice,” said Fr Cardozo.

Fr Cardozo, a priest of the Pilar Society, also runs a music school in the village.

Incidentally, singing bhajans is nothing new for Fr Cardozo. During his earlier tenure at the Society’s headquarters in Pilar, Fr Cardozo had been part of various groups visiting and singing bhajans at Hindu homes during Ganesh festivities.