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What is Sao Joao Festival?

Context:

As in every monsoon, Catholics in Goa will celebrate Sao Joao, the feast of St John the Baptist.

Relevance:

GS I- Festivals, Prelims

What is Sao Joao ?

  • The celebrations will include revellers sporting crowns made of fruits, flowers and leaves, and the major draw of the feast is the water bodies – wells, ponds, fountains, rivers – in which the revellers take the “leap of joy”. Enjoyed by children and adults alike, the festival also includes playing the traditional gumott (percussion instrument), a boat festival, servings of feni, and a place of pride for new sons-in-law.
  • In Goa, Catholics celebrate all the feasts of the Roman Catholic Church, which include the feast of St John the Baptist on June 24 (John the Baptist because he had baptised Jesus Christ on the river Jordan).
  • In Goa, Sao Joao is an occasion for the family and the villagers to get to know their newly wed daughters’ husbands a little better.
  • Traditionally, the new son-in-law would be crowned with festive headgear of fruits and leaves, taken around the village and would then jump into the well with other revelers.

-Source: Indian Express


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August 2022
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