Daily Archives:October 11th, 2017

Bongkud community organises vocation programme

The children dressed in different religious attire sitting in the front row during the programme, St Victor Bongkud, 8 Oct 2017.

BONGKUD, Ranau – The Catholic Community of St Victor Chapel here organised a vocation programme for the youths of Bongkud and Kibbas on 8 Oct 2017.

The programme began with a Mass wherein Pauline Sister Laura Anggie was invited to share her vocation story.

After lunch, several Sunday School children gave a presentation dressed in religious habits of the congregations present in Sabah.

Then the religious congregations were given time to introduce their respective congregation: (1) Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception (FSIC), Daughters of St Paul (FSP), Marist Brothers (FMS), Putri Karmel (PKarm), Carmelitae Sancti Elias Brothers (CSE), Carmelite Nuns (OCD) by the Secular Carmelites (OCDS), and Order of Friars Minor (OFM).

All the congregations were given tokens of appreciation.

The programme ended with the youths visiting the different booths set up by the religious.

Vatican releases papal schedule for visit to Myanmar and Bangladesh

VATICAN CITY – The Vatican released on 10 Oct 2017 the schedule of Pope Francis’ apostolic visit to Myanmar and Bangladesh.   The two-nation papal visit was announced earlier by the Vatican on August 28.  ‎After visiting Myanmar, Nov 27 to 30, he will proceed to neighbouring Bangladesh,  Nov 30 to Dec 2.

He is scheduled to land in Yangon, Myanmar in the afternoon on Nov 27, where he will be given an official welcome.  The following afternoon (Nov 28) he will fly to the capital Nay Pyi Taw, where after meeting the president, government officials and the diplomatic corps, he will fly back to Yangon at night.

On Nov 29 the Holy Father will celebrate his first public Mass, meet the Buddhist supreme council and Myanmar’s bishops.  Pope Francis will wrap up his Myanmar with a Mass for young people on Nov 30 and fly to neighbouring Bangladesh in the afternoon.

After a welcome ceremony at Dhaka airport, the Pope will pay homage to Bangladesh’s martyrs and father of the nation.  He will then pay a courtesy visit to the president and address the diplomatic corps.  On Dec 1, the Pope will celebrate a public Mass with priestly ordination, meet the prime minister, the country’s bishops and representatives of various religions and Christian Churches.  On the last day, Dec 2,  the Pope will visit a home run by the Missionaries of Charity of Mother Teresa, address priests, religious seminarians and novices.  Before flying back to Rome in the evening, he will meet the young people. – vatican radio

Ranau parish conducts inaugural animal blessing

Pet owners pose with their pets and the concelebrants after the Mass, SPC Ranau, 4 Oct 2017.

RANAU –  Mass at St Peter Claver Church here was a colourful sea of snuggly animals, as over 200 people toted their favourite animals to be blessed on 4 Oct 2017, a long-time dream of Father Nicholas Stephen, the parish priest.

This scene of friends – furry and otherwise – was one of many throughout the world, as parishes celebrated St Francis’ feast day on Oct 4, in many places a week full of activities that included animal blessings, Transitus services, commemorations, festivals and special Masses.

The day before, the church celebrated the Transitus, remembering the death of St Francis. “Embracing Otherness” and “Engaging Francis” were the themes of some events that, in addition to honouring St Francis’ care for all creation, encouraged people to join social ministry projects and celebrate the colours, cultures and creeds of others, just as the patron saint would.

Fr  Stephen used the opportunity to reflect on St Francis as the patron saint of ecology. He said, “Have you ever wondered why many churches offer a special blessing for animals on the feast of St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of ecology?”

He said, “People bring their pets for a blessing because they want to thank God for their non-human companions, for their friendship and beauty. But there is an even more important reason to bless animals, especially at this time of the unprecedented ecological crisis that we face. First, the blessing of animals reminds us that all creatures have been created and blessed by God. Their worth extends far beyond a mere commodity value that we humans ascribe to them. Second, the blessing of the animals offers us an opportunity to strengthen within us a sense of compassion for all God’s creatures. It can also reawaken in us our religious responsibility to protect them – much like Noah did – from a disaster.”

“In memory of the blessing of Francis, we give thanks, we simply give thanks, for gratitude is the memory of the heart.” Fr Stephen continued, “We thank those in all our ministries who have supported us and worked with us to help people (the poor, the missions, local works), and to pray that love will continue to live on in our lives and in our ministries as we fill our hearts with beautiful memories of Christ, of Francis, of Franciscan men and women whose work we continue into the next century.” – Friar Aiden Peter Jr OFM

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