Life in Yogyakarta

By Clare, fcJ

In recent weeks different members of our FCJ community in Yogyakarta have attended various gatherings of people. Four of us took part in the womens’ competitions to celebrate Indonesian Independence Day. We had great fun. To our huge surprise we won the cooking competition with our ‘Crispy Lotus Banana’. On 11th August, a group of us celebrated the Feast of St Clare with our Basic Ecclesial Community. It was a delight to see the children and young people dancing and singing. Different groups of us attended Independence Day celebrations in our villages on 16th and 17th August, respectively. This was a wonderful celebration of interfaith neighbourliness. Our neighbours were delighted that we came to join in the prayer and celebration. On Sunday 18th August, five of us made the journey to East Java for the wedding of one of our former students. It was deeply touching to be present at a traditional village wedding. How lovely to be part of such a joy-filled ceremony.

Banana Feast

Every year as part of the celebrations for Indonesian Independence Day various competitions take place in our village. For the women there was a cooking competition. This year’s main ingredient was banana. Competitors were free to cook anything they wished. The main cooking was done at home and the decorating was done together in the village hall. The overall budget was strictly limited. Who would have thought that so many varieties of food could be produced from the humble banana? Amongst the produce were fried bananas, banana chips, banana cake, banana fritters, banana pizza and banana rice. Our offering was crispy lotus banana. The bananas were mashed and wrapped in thin, sweet pastry before being quickly fried in hot oil. The judge was one of the chefs from the nearby Grand Keisha Hotel. He praised all the entrants and gave some input on each product (we needed to use more expensive cheese!) To our amazement and joy the FCJ entry gained first prize. Everyone who was present that day really enjoyed the event.

Members of the Yogyakarta community hard at work.
Congratulations Riska and Qoirul

On Sunday 18th August five of us went to Magetan, in East Java, to be present at the wedding of Riska, our dear friend. Riska spent the best part of four years living with us while she completed her studies. Early that morning Riska and Qoirul were married according to the rules of Islam and later in the day they had a Javanese celebration which included its own ritual. It was so lovely to be present on this special day for Riska and her whole family, including Rebi, Riska’s Aunt, who had lived with the FCJs in Yogyakarta for the best part of twenty years. How lovely to be part of such a happy and joy-filled day.

FCJ sisters and friends at the wedding of Qoirul and Riska.