2010 Festa

 

2010 Centennial Festa President's Message 

Festa 2010- Evelyn DaRosa Feliciano and Family

In 2010, the United Portuguese S.E.S. Festa do Divino Espirito Santo will be celebrating its 100th year. My family and I are both extremely blessed and honored to be the Centennial Presidents of this great Festa. It is with enormous pride in our Portuguese heritage and culture that we embark on this centennial celebration. The 2010 Centennial U.P.S.E.S. Festa will not only celebrate our present, but also commemorate and honor our past. The Festa will promote the remarkable 100 year history of San Diego's Oldest Ethnic Festival.

In 1985, my parents Cristiano and Evelina DaRosa had the privilege of being the 75th Presidents or "Festeiros" of the Festa. Thanks to them, I had the honor of reigning as the 75th U.P.S.E.S. Queen. Having grown up participating in the Festa since the young age of 3, I understood the true meaning of being Queen and representing Queen Saint Isabel of Portugal. Now it is with devout devotion to the Holy Spirit and in honor of Queen Saint Isabel, that my daughter Karinna Evelina and my son Joshua Michael reign as the 100th U.P.S.E.S. Festa Queen and King.

Showing our gratefulness to the Holy Spirit and giving back to the Portuguese Community of San Diego has been something that my family has yearned to do since my husband Michael was diagnosed with brain cancer back in 1998. Michael was given less than a 30% chance of surviving one year. By the blessings of our Lord above, Michael not only exceeded doctor's expectations, but went back to his occupation of being Captain of our family's purse seiner, the M/V Capt. Cristiano DaRosa. Michael left port on a voyage exactly one year to the date and time of his brain surgery with our son, Joshua by his side. We believe it was our faith in God and blessings from the Divine Holy Spirit that gave us an extra 5 years with Michael, until his death in 2003.

One week before the 97th U.P.S.E.S. Festa in 2007, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. No child should have to go through one parent with cancer, let alone two and in such a short time of each other. My concern was never for myself but for my family and I began to question why God would put my children through this hardship again. I prayed to the Holy Spirit and Queen Saint Isabel in the middle of the U.P.S.E.S. Hall, in front of the picture of the Holy Spirit Coroa (crown) that was depicted on the "Welcome" sign of then Festa Presidents Jose & Maria Drummond. I begged the Holy Spirit to spare my life not for myself but for my young children. I made a "Promesa", or promise to the Holy Spirit that I would host the Festa someday, in memory of my husband Michael. At this point, I released my anxiety and distress. It was then that I realized it is not our place to question God's plan but to accept it and deal with it the best way we know how to. It is with this immense faith in the Holy Spirit I sincerely believe my family and I were able to overcome. WE HAVE TRULY BEEN BLESSED.

In 2008, with an earnest desire to fulfill my "promesa" and honor the Holy Spirit, I submitted my name to be the 99th Festa President. Unfortunately, I was not chosen. The Holy Spirit had other plans for my family and I. In 2009, I took the opportunity to submit my name a second time and by some Grace of God, was chosen. My family and I had an overwhelming feeling of gratitude, excitement, and honor as we were announced the 100th Presidents of the Festa. It is with this heartfelt need to pay homage, and an enormous feeling of thanksgiving for all of the blessings that have been bestowed upon my family and I by the Holy Spirit and in honor of Queen Saint Isabel of Portugal that we become the Centennial Presidents of the U.P.S.E.S. Festa do Divino Espirito Santo.

My family and I would like to acknowledge and thank everyone who gives of their time and talents for the Festa and the Portuguese Community of San Diego. These people are the true "Festa Presidents". This Festa is yours. It is your faith in the Holy Spirit and the true meaning of the Festa that has enabled it to continue. You are the ones that give countless hours to the Bazaar, Security, Parade, Kitchen, and Fundraisers. Everyone from the people in the bazaar booths, to the men that hang flags along the parade route, to the people that wrap utensils for the luncheons, to the cooks, to the ones that put the Festa parade on the street, to the ones that spend countless hours in front of computers doing paperwork, to the ones that serve on fundraising committees, each and every one of you are the true "Festeiros". Without all of your help this Festa could not have thrived for the past 100 years and counting. I hope that you will help us continue for many more years by participating in some of the Festa fundraisers scheduled throughout the next year. Hope to see you all at the U.P.S.E.S. 2010 Centennial Festa do Divino Espirito Santo being held on May 21- 23, 2010!

May Queen Saint Isabel inspire and guide you and may the Holy Spirit watch over you always!

Evelyn DaRosa Feliciano and Family

U.P.S.E.S. 2010 Centennial Festa President

 

Message from King Joshua Michael

My family has the honor and privilege of being the 2010 Festa Presidents. I will proudly reign as the 2010 Centennial Festa King. I have been involved with the Festa since I was 2 years old and been proud to participate every year. Pride in my roots and in my heritage is something that my family has instilled in me from a very young age.

One thing that both of my Parents and also my Grandparents have taught me is to always give back to your community. I was raised attending many fundraisers and dinners at the Portuguese Hall. I have danced in the Portuguese-American Dancers, served in the U.P.S.E.S. Youth Group holding both the offices of President and Vice President, and playing for the F.C. Portugal of San Diego soccer team. I hope that one day I can teach my children to be proud of where they come from, and to realize that wherever they go in life, they are Portuguese first and foremost!

One thing I have learned and experienced about the Portuguese Community of San Diego is how they come together and are bound by their faith in the Holy Spirit. The Festa is a testament to that, going on 100 years strong. I am proud to be a part of that and thank you all! The 2010 Festa is in memory of my Father Michael, who died of brain cancer and in thanksgiving for my Mother being healthy today after fighting breast cancer. I know those times in our lives were difficult and I credit my faith in God and the Holy Spirit for helping us through it. My Father is surely with us as we celebrate this Centennial Festa Year and he is truly missed.

Serving as the 2010 Festa King will be an experience that I will never forget.

Joshua Michael Feliciano

2010 Centennial U.P.S.E.S. Festa King

 

 

Message from Queen Karinna Evelina

It is with great honor and pride that I represent Queen Saint Isabel of Portugal in the 2010 U.P.S.E.S. Centennial Festa. I am honored to represent such a saint, who lived her life serving others who are less fortunate. I can only hope in my reign as Queen that I am as selfless and loving as Queen Saint Isabel.

I take pride in participating in this 100 year tradition. I have been involved in the U.P.S.E.S. Festa every year since the age of 2, when I served as Festa Princess in 1995. I have also served as Duchess in 2003 and Small Queen in 2005. I could only dream of some day being big Queen. I want to thank my Mother Evelyn Feliciano for making that dream come true.

Over the years, my family has instilled in me pride and appreciation of my heritage, my culture, and my ancestry. I plan to someday do the same with my children so that the Portuguese Community of San Diego and this valued tradition of honoring the Holy Spirit may continue. I want to recognize everyone who organizes and helps this Festa carry forward. Without them, the Festa would not go on.

The 2010 Festa is being done in memory of my Father, Michael Feliciano, who passed away in 2003 of brain cancer. I know although he cannot physically be here, he is spiritually by my family's side. I thank the Holy Spirit for giving us the time we had with my Father, and for healing my Mother of her breast cancer in 2007. Without the Holy Spirit, I could not have gotten through those portions of my life.

To the past 99 Queens, I am honored to stand by your side as the 100th Queen and can only hope to serve as well as you have.

Sincerely,

Karinna Evelina Feliciano

2010 Centennial U.P.S.E.S. Festa Queen