Mumbai: Celebration of nuns who teach dance
by Nirmala Carvalho

The Sister Disciples of the Divine Master run the institute "Divya Kala Kendra”, offering lessons in music and dance of Indian and Western tradition. The purpose of the school is to support respect for plurality.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - The Sister Disciples of the Divine Master are celebrating the second anniversary of the "Divya Kala Kendra" arts center in Prarthanlaya (Mumbai). In the center the nuns teach music, songs and dances typical of the Indian tradition. A delegation from Rome, where the congregation is based, was present for the ceremony. Speaking to AsiaNews, Sr. Lidia Awoki, among the general councilors from Italy, states: "We are very proud that our sisters make this great contribution to society, keeping alive the rich cultural heritage of India".

The nun explains that "the charism of the Sister Disciples of the Divine Master is not the social apostolate [but priestly and liturgical, ed.]. Despite this, wherever we are, our presence is witness and we contribute to the development of society ". The center "Divya Kala Kendra", she adds, "helps to shape and outline the future of society".

In the center for the figurative arts, the religious teach liturgical music of both Hindi and Western tradition. Sister Sushma, with a degree in Indian classical dance, teaches various types of traditional dances: Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Orissi and Kathak. Sr. Amita Mascarenhas, regional superior of the community, transmits her skills on the music typical of the Hindustan region [which includes the northern areas of the Indian subcontinent, ed.].

The aim of the school is to support respect for plurality, to transmit the richness of Indian cultural heritage and to impart its diversity to students, so that everyone can remain faithful to their identity, contributing to society and to the process of national construction. During the ceremony, the pupils performed with guitar and piano in compositions of classical and western derivation. They also performed the traditional Koli dance.