Santa, Brass Band, Jingle Bells, They Say it All: Love is His form
It’s Christmas, said the chill in the air, the kindred spirit that all share, the joyous giggle on every face and warmth of every embrace! Mirth and celebration marked the Christmas celebrations at Muddenahalli as Swami arrived at the Sri Sathya Sai Premamrutham at about 10 A.M. greeted by devotees and students who were seated. The entire hall and stage were decorated with beautiful balloons, holly and other typical Christmas décor. Two Christmas trees that were bedecked with lights, stars, gifts, snowflakes and colourful balls adorned either sides of the grand stage.
Bhagawan was welcomed into the hall with the ceremonial Poorna Kumbam and Vedic chants by the students of the Sri Sathya Sai Prashantiniketanam, Chikkaballapur campus. As Bhagawan entered the hall, Christmas carols and songs were rendered by students – both boys and girls. As Swami walked down the aisles blessing all those who had gathered there, He accepted letters from some, spoke to some others and went around distributing chocolates to all, showering His love on everybody.
Once Bhagawan was seated, the mornings programme began with a presentation by Sai’s Angels – the brass band of the Muddenahalli campus. They began their presentation with a couple of carols such as the First Noel, Gloria and Silent Night. They also rendered popular pieces like theme music from Mission Impossible and the Govinda Krishna Jai Bhajan, during which there were solo performances as interludes by students playing on flute, hornet, trombone, clarinet, trumpet, saxophone, tuba and the euphonium.
They ended with a jazz version of Swami’s all-time favourite – ‘Love is my Form’ to a thunderous applause from the audience. They were ably supported by their musician-coach Mr Dimitris Lambrianos on the piano. After the performance, Bhagawan blessed all the students with tokens of His love and appreciation.
The second musical presentation for the morning was by the devotees of Singapore. They too rendered popular Christmas carols like Deck the Halls, We Wish you a Merry Christmas, Mary’s Boy Child and went on to offer a couple of beautiful songs on Swami’s love and grace. The songs were sung with a lot of devotion and struck an emotional chord with all who were present.
The last number was the ever-green Jingle Bells during which Santa Claus made his entry on a specially designed sleigh pulled by students dressed as reindeers. Once Santa received Swami’s blessings, he went around the hall distributing sweets and chocolates to one and all. The choir was joined by the brass band while this song was being sung with much joy and excitement.
After the performance, Swami blessed all the devotees from Singapore with tokens of His love. Santa Claus and his reindeers also received special blessings.
Arati was then offered to Swami and Prasadam was distributed to everyone.