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Mokokchung, Nagaland

Children’s Christmas Cake Carol: The annual chorus attains 28

By Imliyanger Aier Updated: Dec 21, 2017 12:53 am
Glimpse from the archives of the C5 from the yesteryears. EM Images

Imliyanger Aier
Mokokchung, Dec. 20 (EMN): Come Christmas time, Mokokchung town is known far and wide for her extravagant ways it celebrates Christmas. As always, the town dons a festive look as every nook and cranny of the town is adorned with their best decorations for the festive season. All the Shops and buildings are cleaned and painted, glittering lights encompass all the streets and every colony tries to outdo one another with innovative decors.
Despite all the hectic seasons activities happening around in this quaint town, one event stands out always from the rest and which every denizens of Mokokchung looks forward to-The annual Children’s Christmas Cake Carol Competition, or the popular acronym C5.
C5, is the annual Christmas choral competition where children representing nine fellowships under MTBA (Mokokchung Town Baptist Church) participates for the much coveted prize- a massive Christmas cake, and bragging rights for the entire calendar year until the next.
Delving into its glorious history, Mokokchung witnessed the first C5- first and one of its kind in Nagaland on 18th December, 1989, at Imlong Place, the main Town square. With parents and well-wishers to cheer the children, the foundation of C5 was fulfilled and took a firm root there and then.
It was incepted in November, 1989 under the aegis of Mokokchung Town Baptist Church. The brainchild behind this annual event was Mr. I. Sashi Longkumer, who brought the concept of hoarding children to learn Christmas songs who otherwise were whiling away their holidays aimlessly, was warmly embraced by the Church youth leaders and the Church apex body.
Speaking with a former church leader, he said, at that juncture, Nagaland was caught up in a time of violence and Mokokchung was also reeling under the ‘rule of the gun’; it was a time when people stayed indoors with the setting of the sun. C5 was thus a ‘rescue mission’ by the Church youth leaders with peace and harmony as its underlying message.
From the financial aspect, C5 had a humble beginning with a meagre 50 Rupees donated by the generous Mr&Mrs Manen. The Youth Department under Mr. Sashi as its convener, decided to draw lots of 2 Rupees each to procure goodies for the little singers. While preparations were going on, a number of shops and bakeries as well as individuals loosened their purse-strings towards this event.
One of the most important consequences of C5 is that it has succeeded in spreading this tradition throughout Nagaland, especially in the Ao region. The rationale for C5’s popularity is this: it edifies them to celebrate the season in the true spirit, fills the gap between the year-end examination and Christmas Day, and heralds the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. At the same time, it affords a platform to children for exhibiting their vocal talent and instills the beauty of co-operation.
From a humble acoustic guitar and some musical instruments to electric guitars and the Violin, C5 has grown steadily both in size and in form. An event such as this also showcases the creativity of the Youth Fellowship leaders in terms of apparels, jiggling one’s body, blending different genres of music et al. C5 is ‘hi-tech’ in every sense of the word but it continues to retain all the doctrines as was envisaged 28 years ago.
This year C5 will celebrate it’s 28th birthday and as a prelude to this and in continuation of its tradition the 28th C5 will be held on 21st December, 2017, under the theme,” A thrill of hope”, at the Main Town Square, or Imlong Place.
Altogether nine elfin choral assemblies representing nine fellowships under MTBA are all geared up to battle it out for the ultimate honours.

By Imliyanger Aier Updated: Dec 21, 2017 12:53:33 am