KEEPING TRADITIONS ALIVE: Gabriel Bridgemohan gets his hair cut by his father Emmanuel outside the La Divina Pastora Church in Siparia on Good Friday. Photo by AYANNA KINSALE – AYANNA KINSALE
ON GOOD FRIDAY, a veteran barber welcomed the return of the Easter tradition of haircuts for children.
Sookoo Bridgemohan, 67, spoke with Newsday while his assistants cut children’s hair outside of the La Divina Pastora Roman Catholic Church in Siparia.
Bridgemohan, a resident of Penal, has been cutting children’s hair outside the church on Good Friday for the last 44 years.
“I missed two years through this covid thing (pandemic). Now that I am back, a lot of people have come.” Bridgemohan found it difficult not to be able to cut children’s hair outside the church on Good Friday over the last two years.
“I lost a lot of faith because I love the children and I sacrifice and fast and pray for the children.” Bridgemohan says he abstains from eating before he cuts children’s hair.
He was happy the pandemic restrictions were relaxed enough to allow him to resume the activity. Bridgemohan was heartened to watch his assistants trimming children’s hair as they sat under a tent with him.
He said some of the children whose hair he has cut over the years have grown up to be distinguished adults in Trinidad and Tobago. “I cut children’s hair. They are doctors today.” Bridgemohan also cuts adults’ hair as well.
According to superstition, a haircut on Good Friday is said to prevent headaches during the coming year.
While children were getting their hair cut, other people were providing meals and money to homeless people who were also outside the church. Inside the church, several worshippers presented offerings to the Siparee Mai statue in the hope that their prayers would be answered.