Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online

3/8/2011 (4 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Fire destroyed many of the group's costumes

Maybe that's why they call it "Fat Tuesday," the day of celebration before the beginning of Lent at Mardi Gras celebrations. In Brazil, the celebrated dance troupe, the Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel are strutting their stuff with pride - in spite of what is perceived as "negative body image" and a massive fire that destroyed the majority of their costumes.

The show must go on, as even a massive fire failed to prevent Brazil's samba competition from preceding as normal.

The show must go on, as even a massive fire failed to prevent Brazil's samba competition from preceding as normal.

Highlights

By Catholic Online

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/8/2011 (4 years ago)

Published in Lent / Easter

Keywords: Mardi Gras, Brazil, Fat Tuesday


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Members of the troupe, to use a euphemism, "have a lot to show." Chubby men shake it in togas, and plump women swan about in little more than white bras and kickers. The troupe was among samba groups opening two days of Carnival parades at Rio de Janeiro's Sambadrome.

It was not all flamboyance and high spirits at the event. The Portela group lost most of their elaborate costumes and floats in a fire last month. At first, the group entered in relative silence, with its 300-strong percussion section abruptly quieting its thundering drums and crouching down in a moment of silence for its losses in the fire.

After a moment of silence for a few seconds, the drummers leaped back up with a raucous beat as Portela's thousands of members marched on to the cheers and applause of fans.

"Our community looks beautiful tonight," Portela president Nilo Figueredo said. "It is really a community of warriors."

The fire in early February raged through warehouses where Portela and two other elite samba groups were preparing for Carnival, incinerating more than 8,000 feather and glitter costumes and many of the big, meticulously decorated floats.

Portela had 3,255 outfits destroyed or severely damaged. Many wondered whether the group, which has not missed a parade in its 84-year history, would be able to put on a show at all.

It later became clear that the 2011 Carnival would be marked more than ever by the festival's quintessential ability to bring hope and happiness, even if fleeting, to those who have little. It also steeled samba group members' fierce allegiances in a city where fans are as devoted to their groups as they are to their soccer teams.

"We're ready and we're strong - no one is sitting here sad, thinking of what we lost," one member, Maria Alice Alves, clad in a metallic silver and blue outfit, said before Portela marched in.

"Our objective is always perfection," said Alessandro Meireles, a 30-year-old who has been a member of Portela's percussion section for a decade. "Even if we can't win, we're going to put on the show people expect of us."

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2015 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for February 2016
Universal:
That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity.
Evangelization: That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community.



Comments


More Lent / Easter

Can you answer these four challenging questions about Lent?

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Take our Lent quiz! See how much you know about the tradition of Lent! Take our Lent quiz, then challenge your friends. See how much you know about this special season in the Liturgical year. The quiz has just a few questions, but will certainly provide a quick ... continue reading


The Way of the Cross continues on Watch

Image of

By Tony Magliano

In his strong identification with the poor and vulnerable, Jesus makes it perfectly clear that when we meet the needs of these least brothers and sisters, we are ultimately serving him. And when we - as individuals, churches, states and nations - do not adequately meet ... continue reading


Take this thought provoking Stations of the Cross survey

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

How familiar are you with the Stations of the Cross? Take the Catholic Online survey now to share your answers to our questions. Your responses will help us serve you better by tailoring content that suits your needs. The survey is short and should take just 1 minute ... continue reading


'God hasn't forsaken me': Church of England to release short films addressing serious topics for Lent and Easter Watch

Image of The Church of England plans to launch a JustPray campaign throughout Lent, with its final video released on Easter Sunday (Shutterstock).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Church of England is set to launch its latest campaign called the "Psalm 22 project," which will feature stories of former homeless and ex drug addicts who tackled some of life's most difficult trials. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Psalm 22 refers to the ... continue reading


10 important things to consider during Lent Watch

Image of What are our options during Lent? (Shutterstock)

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Every year we give something up for Lent. Sometimes picking what to give up is hard and other times we consider doing something extra to really immerse ourselves in what God has for us - but what are our options? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Lent isn't just ... continue reading


5 little-known facts about Lent you need to learn this Ash Wednesday Watch

Image of Lent is more than just fasting (Rhoy Cobilla, InterAksyon.com).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Everyone knows that Mardi Gras kicks off the upcoming 40-day Lent, which honors the time Jesus fasted in the wilderness, but did you know there is more to it? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Recently the Independent released their list of "5 things you might not ... continue reading


Ash Wednesday: 'Seek To Experience God's Presence Within' Watch

Image of

By F. K. Bartels

"You may ask me: 'But, does God exist? And if he exists does he really concern himself with us? Can we reach him?' It is, indeed, true that we cannot place God on the table, we cannot touch him or pick him up like an ordinary object. We must rediscover our capacity to ... continue reading


POPE'S MASS: Ash Wednesday (FULL TEXT: English) Watch

Image of

By Pope Francis, Libreria Editrice Vaticana

The unofficial English translation to Pope Francis' prepared homily for the 2016 Ash Wednesday Mass: The Word of God, the beginning of the Lenten journey, addressed to the Church and to each of us invitations.The first is that of St. Paul: " Be reconciled to God " ( ... continue reading


Pope Francis' special Ash Wednesday message for 'Keep Lent' initiative Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Pope Francis sent out his first audio message for "Keep Lent" over social media. 'Keep Lent' is an initiative of the Prelature of the Pontifical Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii's youth ministry office. According to the Vatican Radio, "The initiative begins on Ash ... continue reading


Fat Tuesday - Mardi Gras Meant to Be More than a Party Watch

Image of Some have tried to argue that this term meant that people should discard their moral faith commitments and for the night and just

By Fr. Randy Sly

One could call this celebration the last gasp of Ordinary time as the Church anticipates the penitential Season of the forty days of Lent. Rich foods are consumed as pilgrims prepare for times of fasting, abstinence, confession and penance. Ironically, carnival ... continue reading


All Lent / Easter News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Isaiah 58:9-14
9 Then you will cry for help and Yahweh will answer; you will call and he ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 86:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
1 [Prayer Of David] Listen to me, Yahweh, answer me, for I am poor and ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 5:27-32
27 When he went out after this, he noticed a tax collector, Levi by name, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for February 13th, 2016 Image

St. Catherine de Ricci
February 13: St. Catherine was born in Florence in 1522. Her ... Read More