Introduction - A Showcase of A Way of Tea and Delicate Crusine
In order to promote Chiu Chow culture and providing an re-union opportunity for Chiu Chow Villagers, from 1:00pm to 5:30pm on September 15, Chiu Chow Benevolent Association of BC Canada hosted the First Chiu Chow Cultural Festival at Radisson Hotel in Richmond.
Admission was free. One could try out Chiu Chow Kung Fu Tea and purchase Chiu Chow mashed yam moon cake, shrimp and crab dates, sweet and sour vegetable as well as a variety of family-styled local Chiu Chow cruisine. Recreational activities included well-known Chiu Chow folk songs and a few Chiu Chow dramas; as well, Miss Kan Kwan Ming (translated) sang a few songs. The festival showcased Chiu Chow folklore knickknacks, and introduced the beauty of the Chiu Chow region and areas, allowing a display of the various facets of Chiu Chow’s cites, counties, and villages. There were also lucky draws and free lanterns, as well as high quality tea leaf foods for purchase.
The festival boasted the first of similar events in Vancouver and North America; participants enjoyed the day with the brand new programme.
“I Went to the First Chiu Chow Cultural Festival”
Kwan Wai Man (關慧文)
Cannot say I had known a great deal about Chiu Chow culture until lately – it turned out that a culture can be so sensuous.
September 15 – the First Chiu Chow Cultural Festival had its doors opened. Some time past twelve, people started to mushroom in and crowded the display and food booths. It had became loud and suddenly the Radisson Hotel hall was getting filled. The whole venue was vitalized with the energy of the Chiu Chow Man.
Stepping into the venue and one would find herself in the midst of tea fragrance, the nontrivial brewing procedure brought out the tenderness of Chiu Chow Kung Fu Tea, each drop was invaluable. What you would do is to warm up the tea pot and cups with hot water, so that the tea leaf fragrance would come out of them. After a little time of brewing, each cup would then be poured the tea while each cup would be ensured hot and nice. The process was carried out with great care and delicacy – just like the virtue of patience of Chiu Chow ladies who are also tender and gentle, the more one get to know them the more one appreciates their inner beauty.
And what about Chiu Chow candies? There they were just as they were, nothing extravagant. One likes those candies because of their originial sweetness and taste. They were there telling you about the practical side of Chiu Chow character, that Chiu Chow men and women are authentic and no-frills.
Four hours of programme, four hours of songs and music. On top of singers on stage there were video movies ensuring your satisfaction of entertainment. As a non-Chiu Chower I did not understand the content. What I did notice was the ups and downs of the songs and variances of the actors’ facial expressions, making a high-powered atmosphere – just like Chiu Chow men and women – strong yet having that side gentleness.
The Festival was a success. Not only because of the 2000 plus that attended, and not only because of the entertainment and foods and drinks, but allowing a non-Chiu Chower like me to find great interest in making a Chiu Chow friend over the fine wine, having a nice talk about culture and life!
The Title Sponsor of the Festival was the family of our late ex-Vice President. Mrs. Lo was willing to become the take up the Title Sponsorship without hesitation. She and her two sons support was a great encouragement to us.
As a token of thankfulness , CCBA would like to commite this page to the commenmoration of some of Vice President Lo’s contriubtiion in his life, as a charge to the rest of us. Please refer to Section 3, Book 3 of CCBA’s quarterly bulletins for Vice President Lo’s life story.
Paul has touched many of us in his walk on earth. We have been blessed by his warm friendship and hospitality. His dedication and contribution were significant to many Christian ministries. One of the reasons we committed ourselves to serve as volunteer EMAS staff was because of Paul, whose zeal in serving the Lord was so impressive. Even in his sickness, God’s business was always first in his mind. He surely was a living example for us, and an inspiration and encouragement to many. We were honored to have the following tributes to him, but words would not be sufficient to express our sincere thanks and deepest appreciation to Paul and his family:
“With brother Paul Lo’s leaving to be with the Lord, it sure cast a shadow of sadness over us. But knowing that he is only asleep in the Lord, and that one day we shall wake up with him together to sing praises as of old times, let’s be encouraged. and give thanks unceasingly. Brother Paul went with us to China East on my last trip. He was a generous man and a faithful servant of God! I miss him very much. May God grant peace and comfort to Jady and family.”
“I first became acquainted with Paul when I assumed my role with EMAS in 1997. During these years were not only has occasion to interact at EMAS board meetings, but also while traveling with the China East term, while visiting Hong Kong to explore opening an EMAS branch office, and whilst enjoying hospitality in his Vancouver home. It was a challenge to keep up with Paul, not just temporally, but also in relationship. He has touched the hearts of so many; it seemed like there were multitudes of people who trusted him, on both sides of the Pacific. He taught me that effective leadership comes from having taken the time to develop deep relationships. Thank you Paul – your lesson continues to be cherished.”
Wayne Elford, Executive Director
EMAS & CMDS Canada
Thanks be to God for the provision of funds, so that we could participate in building the first Pok Oi Hospital in China. A hospital in Toronto donated an X-ray machine and ten beds which were transported to Vancouver by a Canadian Military Airplane on a cold night, arriving very late in the day. A friend who was also a believer of Christ owned and operated a moving company, he and his son waited all night till midnight at the airport so that the cargos can be moved into his warehouse. Not only did he busy himself the whole night, he was willing to help me transport over to Lingsia free of charge. Not until after that did I found out that this brother was suffering from Cancer, and was undergoing chemotherapy, only he did not say a word about his own difficulty. Because of his love of God he sacraficed that much over the work of Lingsia, my heart was deeply touched and greatly encouraged.
Dr. Ian Ma