PENAMPANG – Saint Michael Church here hosted the 21st Penampang parish-level Pesta Kaamatan on 19 May 2018.
It was the third time for St Michael as host since the parish-level celebration started in 1998 (first time) and the second time was in 2010. The nine zones under the parish – Buayan, Kolopis, Kinarut, Limbanak, Minintod, Penampang, Sugud, Sukang Mabpai, and Terian take turns to host the event.
The theme for this year was Encounter the face of Christ in purification of culture – also the theme for the celebration at archdiocesan level at St Peter Claver Ranau on May 29 at 9:30 am.
The theme was touched upon by Archbishop John Wong in his homily. He challenged the faithful to go beyond their culture or race in revealing the face of Christ.
In his message in the souvenir magazine, Father Wilfred Atin wrote that the challenge for Christians (not just KDM) is to ‘sanctify’ the seemingly bad cultural practices (eg drinking) so that not only the “good aspects” of them be seen but also the “Christian values” of them.
Only when, he continued, “we are able to bring people to notice Christian values in a particular culture then we are able to find the face of Christ in it.”
The celebration continued at the parish hall after Mass.
The clergy – Abp Wong, Father Aloysius Fidelis (past rector), Father Erik Jerome, and Father Wiandigool Runsab (present assistant pastor) took turns to beat the gong for a total number of 21 times to mark the occasion.
Then Fr Runsab announced that the 2019 host will be St Pio Labak Kinarut. The Labak representative was vested with a woven hat and basket with rice grains (symbols of Kaamatan) by Lewis Juit, chairman of Penampang Zone Pastoral Committee.
There followed lunch, judging of traditional cooked food, stage choral singing, gong beating contest, sumazau dance competition, and wrapped up with prize presentations to the winners.