THERE is no greater joy than being with your family, friends, and kababayans in a very special occasion such as Christmas.
That is how members of the Bibak association of Manitoba felt during their Christmas gathering where they warmly welcomed the 11 new immigrants in Canada who hailed from the Cordillera.
Apart from giving them recognition during the program, Bibak Santa also gave them special gifts with their families.
BIBAK association of Manitoba President Marife Cadag said the occasion was full of fun highlighted by the Cordillera indigenous cultural tradition of playing the gongs and presentation of the Balangbang Dance with the advisers and elders of the organization leading the tradition.
“Christmas party for us is a gathering of Bibak association of Manitoba members with their families, new immigrants and guests sharing their potluck of Filipino and Canadian cuisines and desserts. The “wat wat” is new this year which is also served with the traditional rice wine,” Cadag said.
In New Zealand, Organisation of Cordillerans New Zealand continue to practice the Christmas tradition back home such as the playing of the gangsa on such very special occasion.
Their Christmas party celebration this year centered on the Hawaiian theme which was highlighted by music and dance presentations participated by the young generations.
The organization’s acting adviser Myriam Benito said every year the main parts of OCNZ Christmas party (Cordillerans living in Auckland City) inlcude the NZ & Phil national anthem; Thanksgiving prayer; Opening gangsa where everyone is invited to dance; re-enactment of the birth of Jesus; Christmas carols; dance for all, and shared dinner.
She added that in NZ the spirit of Christmas begins in November when Santa Parades are held in the cities and suburbs throughout the country. Most work places hold End of Year company lunch, dinner or parties to celebrate.
“December is the start of summer (finishes end of February) in NZ and that’s the reason for our Christmas party theme on Hawaiian. Christmas in NZ is more about family get-together,” Benito said.
Truly, you will feel the joy of Christmas even away from home being part of a Cordilleran organization abroad. Happy Christmas!
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