Equality, tolerance and freedom are the key themes of the “People’s Festival” in Santa Maria del Cedro


By John

Great success for the first edition of the Festa dei Popoli, hosted on February 6th inside the sumptuous Carcere dell’Impresa, home of the Cedro Museum. The initiative, desired by Monsignor Stefano RegaBishop of the Diocese of San Marco Argentano – Scalea, and coordinated by the Head of the Ecumenism and Interreligious Dialogue Office, Don Fiorino Imperio, was placed at the end of the school competition “Perì ‘etz hadar the fruit of the most beautiful tree”, born from a need to valorise the Cedar of Santa Maria del Cedro, an identity marker of the Riviera dei Cedri, which has become today, thanks to the vision far-sighted of the Regional Councilor for Agricultural Policies, Gianluca Gallo, and to the protection and promotion work carried out by the Calabria Cedar Consortium and the International Cedar Academy, a DOP branded product and symbol of peace and intercultural dialogue, capable of giving Calabria a key role in the development policies that they embrace the Mediterranean.
During the event, themes of great importance were touched upon, such as equality, tolerance, freedom, founding values ​​for human society, in which “unity in diversity” is possible, a concept as simple as it is essential, which it allows us to discover and appreciate the beauty that resides in all corners of the world. The participation of the civil and religious authorities, the Mayor of Santa Maria del Cedro, Ugo Vetereof the President of the Calabria Cedar Consortium, Angelo Adduci, and representatives of the different ethnic groups present in the diocesan territory, including the Occitan, Polish, Arbereshe and Indian communities, each of whom showed a bit of themselves, through the performance of popular dances and songs, and the tasting of typical gastronomic specialties.
An afternoon full of discoveries and joyful conviviality, accompanied by an exciting musical interlude by the Masters Salvatore Cauteruccio And Riccardo Galimi, and culminated with the awarding of the first three classified by Monsignor Stefano Rega, who recalled the importance of the symbolic value of the Cedar, and of intercultural and interreligious dialogue as a universal instrument of peace, to be passed down as a fundamental value to future generations, for building a better world.
In fact, the concrete and “social role” of culture has re-emerged as a means of discussion and sharing of thoughts and hopes. Today more than ever, it is not possible to remain indifferent to the tragedies that afflict the world. In this context, it is essential to remain united to break down the barriers of otherness and inequality. However, to make this “dream” possible, it is equally important to work together to build bridges of peace and to rethink the role of the individual as a “small part” of a unitary whole, in which nothing is an end in itself, and where everyone, in its own way, it is an essential part of the great mosaic that is life.