Marielle Moawad: “Christmas is the family’s holiday. We in Zgharta are like a big family. That is how we have been and that is how we will always be…”
The René Moawad Foundation launched its annual event ‘Christmas Village 2016’, under the theme ‘Live Love Zgharta’. The three days event (December 21st to 23rd), which includes a variety of activities and event-shows for children and adults, is taking place at the St. John the Baptist Church square, Zgharta.
Present at the inauguration were: The event coordinator Lawyer Marielle Michel Moawad, Father Estefan Franjieh representing bishop Boulos Abdul Sater, Mrs. Randa Jawad Boulos, the mayor of Zgharta-Ehden Dr. Cesar Bassim along with the members of the Municipal Council, the head of the Zgharta Lebanese Red Cross branch Mrs. Josephine Harfouch, the president of the ‘Ajyyal’ association Ms. Marianne Sarkis, the head of Caritas’s Zgharta province Mrs. Dora Akila Abdullah, the head of the Women’s Cultural Committee Mrs. Amal Tadros along with ladies from the Committee, the president of INNERWEEL-Zgharta Ms. Roula Yammine, the president of the ‘Al Khair wa Al Tanmiya’ Foundation Mikhael Doueihy, in addition to representatives from the Educational Cultural Council and the ‘Richat Ater’ Forum, representatives of cultural, social and educational instances and associations, and a crowd of Zgharta-Zawiyat citizens.
RMF Executive Director Michel Moawad personally participated in the second day of the events at the Christmas Village.
The inauguration had kicked off with the Lebanese National Anthem, followed by Mrs. Marielle Moawad’s welcoming speech:
“Like each year, we are all gathered here for this event. Christmas isn’t complete in Zgharta without this now traditional ‘Christmas Village’. It is thanks to our efforts and your cooperation, that we were able to create this special atmosphere in our city.
“Like each year, we are always here for the occasion, whatever the circumstances. Christmas is the holiday of joy, love, giving and sharing. It is the holiday of our children and we insist on giving them the opportunity to rejoice with the birth of the Savior. It is also the family’s holiday, and we in Zgharta are like a big family. That is how we have been and that is how we will always be, God willing.
“Tonight and over the next three days we will try to sow joy in Zgharta and in everyone’s heart, young and old, despite the rainy weather… May God bless us with all goodness! Christmas is for all and we all want to celebrate and rejoice.
“I thank you all for coming tonight, and I thank all those who joined us for the Christmas Village, especially the team who worked hard to do the preparations so that we can offer something special for our children and for our city.
“I wish you a Merry Christmas in the hope that the New Year brings to you and your families Health, Goodness and Blessings.
“Our slogan remains “Live Love Zgharta”. Wishing you a great holiday!”
After the official launching, the participants walked around the village, while enjoying the music and beats of the Parade and the Christmas songs and melodies. They were briefed on the exhibits and tasted freshly cooked snacks.
A distinguished feature for ‘Christmas Village 2016’ is that it is held in the heart of Zgharta. This has created an atmosphere of joy and vitality in all the streets of Zgharta and its commercial market, despite the rainy weather.
The ‘Christmas Market’ is a special feature this year. It is spread in homes and wooden platforms exhibiting Christmas products and decorated Christmas candles, kits, towels, cups and boxes of chocolate. All the products are hand-made by local social associations.
The ‘Food Market’, occupies a large space at the Christmas Village square. It offers a wide range of food and cuisines including an Italian kitchen, a French kitchen, a German kitchen and a Japanese kitchen, and of course Lebanese sweets, especially prepared by local women for Christmas. Portrait painting occupied a special corner, where face drawing was done on old CDs.
As part of Christmas Village 2016, the ‘Golden International Circus’ offered its breath-taking performances at the theater of the Milad Ghazal Moawad Cultural and Sports Center. The various shows witnessed a lively interaction from the children in the audience, who were amazed by the performances with special music in the background.
Ghinwa also staged her show “Ghinwa La Magie de Noël”. It was attended by a big crowd of children who interacted by singing along, dancing in great joy and taking souvenir photos with Ghinwa and her show characters.