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Carnival cruise line chooses Miss Dominican Republic as Mardi Gras Godmother

Miss Dominican Republic, Kimberly Jimenez

SeatradeCruise.com is reporting, “With a global television audience estimated at 500 million looking on, Carnival President Christine Duffy presented Jiménez with the new ‘Spirit of Carnival’ award for embodying the company’s values of fun, friendship, diversity and inclusion during Sunday’s ‘Miss Universe’ broadcast, and bestowed the honor of serving as godmother.

Mardi Gras is planned to debut this year at Port Canaveral as the Americas’ first LNG-powered cruise ship.

 

Advocate for women, children and families

Born in Puerto Rico and raised in the Dominican Republic, Jiménez is a champion for at-risk youth and an advocate for adoption, volunteering for the past three years at Los Niños de Cristo orphanage, a nonprofit foundation that serves abused and abandoned girls. She also serves as a founding member of the Dominican Republic Women’s Club, dedicated to providing services to indigent women suffering from breast cancer. Jimenez and her family were left homeless after Hurricane Maria.

‘Kimberly is a role model for female empowerment and has a passion for so many worthwhile causes, particularly those that assist women, children and families,’ Duffy said.

Duffy served on the selection committee for the Miss Universe competition, one of eight members of the all-female panel. She said that seeing so many smart and talented women in the competition representing 74 nations was like being on board a Carnival ship, with a fleetwide team from 120 countries.”

Nancy Reagan

Speaking as a U.S. Navy veteran, it’s a great tradition to have a godmother of a ship! History.Navy.Mil states, “When a woman accepts the Secretary of the Navy’s invitation to sponsor a new ship, she has agreed to stand as the central figure in an event with a heritage reaching backward into the dim recesses of recorded history. Just as the passage of years has witnessed momentous changes in ships, so also has the christening-launching ceremony we know today evolved from earlier practices. Nevertheless, the tradition, meaning, and spiritual overtones remain constant. The vast size, power, and unpredictability of the sea must certainly have awed the first sailors to venture far from shore. Instinctively, they would seek divine protection for themselves and their craft from the capricious nature of wind and water.”

 

The HollandAmerica.com website has a great blog post about the history of godmothers for cruise ships, “Since the ancient Babylonian, Greek and Roman times, deities have been called upon to keep ships safe on the water. Nearly every world culture has a traditional ceremony to launch a new ship. While the Ottoman Empire sacrificed sheep to then feast upon, today’s passenger ships are christened by a godmother with the traditional breaking a bottle of champagne on the hull.

It is believed that a godmother brings a feminine benevolent spirit to the ship and protects the future sailings. Interestingly, in the Middle Ages women on a ship were considered bad luck and not allowed to sail on merchant or military vessels. Sailors feared a woman on board would anger the sea gods and cause bad weather and rough sailing. In fact, there were times if a woman was discovered on board a ship, she would be thrown overboard.”

Click on the links below for the full stories mentioned in this blog post:

https://www.history.navy.mil/research/histories/ship-histories/christening-launching-and-commissioning-of-u-s-navy-ships.html

https://www.hollandamerica.com/blog/topics/news/why-do-cruise-ships-have-godmothers/

https://www.seatrade-cruise.com/people-opinions/carnival-taps-miss-dominican-republic-mardi-gras-godmother

About Scott Lara

Navy Veteran, Travel Agent, love to cruise!

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