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Children’s performances steal show at Kaamatan Festival programme

The children in traditional attire perform at the cultural programme at the 18th Archdiocesan Kaamatan Festival hosted by St Peter Claver Ranau, 29 May 2018.  The festival is held every two years hosted by the parishes on a rotation basis.

RANAU – The children’s performances at the cultural programme organised as part of the 18th Archdiocesan Kaamatan (Harvest) Festival stole the show on 29 May 2018 at St Peter Claver here.

They showcased the talents of the parish’s children and brought home the point that if children are taught early the traditions and folklore of the Kadazandusun and Murut peoples they may be able to withstand the onslaught of modernisation and secularisation.

Other parishes also took part in the cultural programme at the SK St Benedict field after the concelebrated Thanksgiving Mass presided by Archbishop John Wong.  Among the concelebrants were Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Joseph Marino, Archbishop Emeritus John Lee and Bishop Cornelius Piong of Keningau who once served in Ranau from 1981 to 1987.

Over 1000 people from across the archdiocese, mostly in the traditional black-and-gold attire, turned up to celebrate the event.

In his message, Abp Marino elaborated on the meaning of the theme, Discovering the Face of Christ in Refining the Culture.

“The Kaamatan festivity is the result of a long tradition imbued with a spirit of thanksgiving to God at the end of the harvest season and prayers of supplication for a bountiful harvest in the future…Kaamatan brings us to the soil, the earth itself, where in planting and reaping we discover the paradigm of Christian life, and we become aware of the words of our Lord, ‘Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies it bears much fruit (Jn 12:24).  This image, so familiar with those who work the land, becomes the motif for our lives as Christians, indeed, for the life of Christ himself.” the nuncio said.

A significant event that happened amid the festivity was the guided tour of the mission school premises by Abp Marino with Abp Wong, Father Nicholas Stephen, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Wilfred M Tangau, headmistress Mdm Whine Awang, and others in the hope that those who have some means would contribute funds to the renovation of some of  the school’s dilapidated buildings.

The day before, May 28, seven parishes took part in the traditional sports competition  such as tug-of-war, sling-shooting, blowpiping, javelin, Rampanau, cocomut bowling, shot put, pinang-peeling, padding pounding, and coconut-grating with host parish St Peter Claver Ranau as the overall champion with eight golds and one bronze followed by Holy Family Telipok with one gold, three silver and one bronze and St Michael Penampang with one gold, one silver and one bronze.

The first day ended with a concert which was well attended despite a heavy downpour in the early evening.

The next host and organiser of the biennial event in 2020 will be Holy Nativity Terawi.

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