Author Archives: AY

Kuching youths prepare for Archdiocesan Youth Day 2019

KUCHING –  The Kuching Archdiocesan Youth Commission (KAYC), in collaboration with all the parishes and youth groups in the archdiocese, will be organising Kuching Archdiocesan Youth Day for three consecutive years. The theme will be taken from the World Youth Day 2019 in Panama, which has been announced by Pope Francis.

The themes constitute a journey of faith, love, and hope and, on this journey, the youths will be accompanied by the Virgin Mary, “for he has looked with favour on the lowliness of his servant. Surely, from now on all generations will call me blessed.” (Lk 1:48)

The first two themes (2017 and 2018) are meant to be celebrated at the parish level and the highlight for the Kuching Archdiocesan Youth Day will be in 2019.

This year, 31 Aug- 3 Sept 2017, with the theme taken from the Gospel of Luke, “For The Mighty One has done great things for me, and Holy is His name,” (Lk 1:49), about 500 youths from different areas in the archdiocese gathered at the Archdiocesan Curia and Cathedral Pastoral Centre (ACCPC) to deepen their faith and learn about the Blessed Mother.

The gathering ended with a Closing Mass presided by Archbishop Simon Poh. – kchadyouth

The rosary is a weapon – but maybe not the way Rupa Huq thinks

‘St Dominic Receives the Rosary,’  by Plautilla Nelli

Father Matthew Pittam is a priest of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham and currently serves as Parish Priest in a rural parish in the English Midlands. He is also a school chaplain and is passionate about ministry with young people. Fr Matthew is the author of Building the Kingdom in the Classroom, which details his experiences of ministry in schools. 

The rosary is immensely powerful, but it is God’s strength at work, not ours

Two weeks before Ealing Council voted to ban pro-life vigils, the local MP Rupa Huq accused the Good Counsel Network of “weaponising the rosary” as they prayed silently outside the local abortion clinic. It is interesting that this non-Catholic MP should have perceived that the rosary was being used in this way. For Catholics the rosary has indeed always been a spiritual weapon – and we should not be afraid to say so.

Many religious orders wear the rosary as part of their religious habit. For a number, such as the Dominicans since around 1475, the rosary is worn on the left hip because that was traditionally where soldiers wore their swords. The rosary is, for those religious who wear it, a protection and weapon against evil. As well as an aid to devotion, wearing a rosary in place of a sword is a powerful witness to the need for an awareness of spiritual warfare.

On October 3 the Church remembered Blessed Bartolo Longo, known as “the apostle of the rosary.”  He was born in Italy in 1841 but when he went to college he drifted away from the Catholicism of his childhood and came under the influence of the occult, later being “ordained” as a Satanist priest. He also developed a deep hatred of Catholicism and sought to draw Catholics into the life of the occult. Eventually he reached a point of despair and complete mental anguish, which led him to seek the help of a Catholic priest. The priest advised him to “promulgate the rosary” in order to seek salvation.

From being suicidal, Blessed Bartolo was transformed and became a great advocate of the holy rosary as a weapon in the fight against spiritual darkness. He would have commended actions like those taken by the Good Counsel Network.

When we pray the rosary we join a great spiritual chain with Our Lady and all those millions of others who pray each day. At the Annunciation Mary joined her will perfectly to the will of God. So when we say the rosary we join our will to hers, which is to seek the will of God in all things. It is in this very submission, in our weakness, where we find the strength of the weapon of the rosary.

It is in this personal vulnerability that the rosary differs so greatly from the weapons that we are so used to in our damaged world. Using a gun or swords (or even methods of abortion) means wielding our power over those who are more vulnerable than us. In wielding the rosary we make ourselves vulnerable, for the benefit of others, by submitting to the will of God through the Blessed Virgin Mary. Obviously, we do not consider it a weapon to do harm or to hurt another but by using the rosary in protest, we do as Jesus tells his disciples, “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves” (Matthew 10:16).

My favourite idea about the rosary is that it is ‘Scripture on a string’. It is here that the weapon finds its power. When Jesus was tempted by the Devil in Matthew’s Gospel, it was his use of Scripture which allowed him to fight and win the spiritual battle. St Paul goes on to instruct the Church in Ephesus to put on “the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.”  The rosary provides a good introduction to many of the events of the Gospels and is a good starting place to load our spiritual arsenal. For me,  it was certainly a springboard into greater immersion in the Word of God.

So in accusing the Good Counsel Network of weaponising the rosary, Rupa Huq unwittingly revealed its true purpose. If only more Catholics would return to this devotion and take up arms with Our Lady. – catholic herald, 20 Oct 2017

Reflection for 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time (A)


First Reading
Exodus 22:20-26
The Lord teaches that compassion ought to be shown to the alien and to the poor.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 18:2-4,47,51
The Lord is our strength.

Second Reading
1 Thessalonians 1:5c-10
Paul tells the Thessalonians that their conversion to the Lord has been an example to all believers.

Gospel Reading
Matthew 22:34-40
The Pharisees continue to test Jesus with a question about the greatest commandment.

Background on the Gospel Reading

This week’s Gospel follows close behind the Gospel read last Sunday. It is the last of three questions put to Jesus by Jewish religious leaders who are trying to trick him into saying something that might get him arrested. This reminds us that the context for today’s reading is the mounting tension between Jesus and the religious leaders in Jerusalem.

The Herodians and the Pharisees asked the first question, which was about taxes. The Sadducees asked the second question, which was about the Resurrection (see Matthew 22:22-33). The third question, considered in today’s Gospel, is asked by a Pharisee who asks Jesus about the greatest of the commandments.

The question requires Jesus to interpret the Law of Moses. The Mosaic Law consists of the Ten Commandments and many additional rules, numbering over six hundred. Adherence to the Mosaic Law, for a devout Jew, is an expression of faithfulness to God’s covenant with Israel. The ranking of the Commandments was regularly debated among the teachers of the Law.

Jesus answers the Pharisees’ question with a two-fold summary. Jesus says that all of the commandments can be summarised in two commandments: love God and love your neighbour. Both of these were central elements of the religious tradition Jesus learned from his Jewish community. Indeed these continue to be central aspects of contemporary Jewish religious understanding. Jesus’ response to his questioners proposed an integral connection between these two aspects of the Jewish Law. Love of God finds its expression in our love for our neighbour. –

Catholic Sabah marks 60 years of existence in December

PENAMPANG – Come December, Catholic Sabah marks 60 years of existence.

Catholic Sabah, as the official newspaper of the three arch/dioceses in Sabah, shares in the mission of proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ and His Gospel values by providing information, education and a forum for discussion. The Catholic Sabah provides objective and accurate current information about the Church, both worldwide and local, received through wire services, news magazines and local reports.

Brief History
Catholic Sabah was first published in the year 1957 as a parish bulletin for Penampang Mission. In 1971 the bulletin became an eight-page tabloid-sized, fortnightly edition in English and Kadazan.  Later, Bahasa Malaysia and Chinese pages were added.

The newspaper has gone through tremendous changes to be the product it is today. Over the years changes were made to the masthead, the number of pages, contents, and design.

It is currently published by the Archdiocese of Kota Kinabalu with a print-run of around 8,700 copies per issue.

The Catholic Sabah commands a readership of approximately 18,000 Catholics throughout the state.

Who reads Catholic Sabah
It is distributed/sold in all the Catholic churches in Sabah as well as a few parishes in West Malaysia. The paper features local parish news, Vatican news, news from the Catholic world, well-researched articles on contemporary religious issues and popular syndicated columns of Catholic interest.

Pope Francis entrusts church’s mission to St John Paul II

VATICAN CITY –  Pope Francis has proclaimed October 2019 an “Extraordinary Missionary Month” to be marked and celebrated in the whole Church throughout the world, and entrusted the mission of the Church in the world especially to St John Paul II.

The Holy Father recalled his intention to celebrate the Extraordinary Missionary Month on Sunday, 22 Oct 2017 – World Mission Sunday – during the course of remarks to pilgrims and tourists gathered in St Peter’s Square beneath the window of the Papal apartments in the Apostolic Palace, to pray the traditional Angelus with him at noon.

“Today,” said Pope Francis, “World Mission Day is celebrated, on the theme: Mission at the heart of the Christian faith. I urge everyone to live the joy of mission by witnessing the Gospel in the environs where each one lives and works.”

The Pope went on to say, “At the same time, we are called upon to support with affection, concrete help, and prayer, the missionaries who have gone out to proclaim Christ to those who still do not know Him.”

“I also recall,” he continued, “that I intend to promote an Extraordinary Missionary Month in October 2019, in order to nourish the ardour of the evangelising activity of the Church ad gentes. On the day of the liturgical memory of Saint John Paul II, missionary Pope, we entrust to his intercession the mission of the Church in the world.” – vatican radio

Pope offers clarifications on new process for liturgical translations

VATICAN CITY – In a letter responding to questions raised by Cardinal Robert Sarah on the new process of translating liturgical texts from Latin into vernacular languages, Pope Francis offered several points of clarification.

The Pope discussed points regarding the approval of new translations and the relationship between translations and Latin texts.

He clarified that while in the past, it was the task of the Vatican’s liturgical office to judge whether or not a translation is faithful to the original Latin, episcopal conferences themselves have now been given the faculty of “judging the goodness and consistency of one and the other term in the translations from the original, in dialogue with the Holy See.”

Dated 15 Oct 2017, the Pope’s letter was in response to one he had received from Cardinal Sarah, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, at the end of September thanking the Pope for his recent motu proprio “Magnum Principium” (MP) on the translation of liturgical texts, and offering a commentary on how to interpret the motu proprio.

The motu proprio, published Sept 9, granted episcopal conferences the task of both preparing and approving texts that had been “faithfully” translated from the original Latin, while cementing the role of the Apostolic See in confirming the translations approved by bishops.

In his commentary, Cardinal Sarah had argued that the new process for translating liturgical texts still follows the rules put into place with the 2001 Instruction Liturgiam Authenticam (LA), which said the vernacular versions must faithfully reflect the language and structure of the Latin texts.

Sarah also looked at the role of the Holy See and bishops’ conferences in both “recognising” (recognitio) and “confirming” (confirmatio) modifications to liturgical texts, arguing that the term “recognitio” used in the new canons involves adaptions of texts, while “confirmatio” involves translations.

Because of this, the terms are different, even if they are “interchangeable with respect to the responsibility of the Holy See,” Sarah said. He also argued that the “recognitio” of liturgical texts implies a preliminary consultation with the Holy See before translation processes begin, with the “confirmatio” of the Holy See being the final step.

In his letter to Cardinal Sarah, the Pope thanked him for his commitment and for sending the commentary, but offered some simple “observations” on the commentary “which I consider to be important, especially for the proper application and understanding of the motu proprio and to avoid any misunderstanding.”

The first point Francis made was that his motu proprio Magnum Principium “abolished” the process for translating used by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments after LA was published in 2001. Magnum Principium, he said, “sought to change” this process.

The Pope said of the terms “recognitio” and “confirmatio,” that it cannot be said that they are “strictly synonymous or interchangeable or that they are interchangeable at the level of responsibility of the Holy See.”

The distinction between “recognitio” and “confirmatio,” he said, emphasises “the different responsibility” that the Apostolic See and episcopal conferences have in liturgical translations.

“Magnum Principium no longer claims that translations must conform on all points to the norms of LA, as was done in the past,” the Pope said, explaining that because of this, individual numbers in LA have to be “carefully re-understood.”

He said this includes numbers 79-84, which deal specifically with the requirement for a vernacular translation to have the “recognitio” of Rome. These numbers, Francis said, “have been abrogated,” and “re-formulated” with the publication of MP.

The “confirmatio” of the Vatican, then, “no longer supposes a detailed word-by-word examination,” he said, except in obvious cases which can be brought to the bishops for further reflection. This, the Pope said, applies to texts such as the Eucharistic Prayers or sacramental formulas.

Pope Francis said the new norms imply “a triple fidelity,” first of all to the original Latin text, to the particular languages the text is translated into, and to the comprehension of the text by its recipients.

In this sense, the “recognitio” of the texts only implies “the verification and preservation of conformity” to the Code of Canon Law and the communion of the Church, he said.

Francis also emphasised that in the process of translating liturgical texts, there should be no “spirit of imposition” on bishops conferences of a translation done by the Vatican’s liturgical department.

The Pope said “it is wrong to attribute to the ‘confirmatio’ the purpose of the ‘recognitio,’” which is to “verify and safeguard” in accordance with the law. He also stressed that the “confirmatio” is not “merely a formal act, but necessary for the edition of the translated liturgical book,” and is granted after the version has been submitted to the Apostolic See for a confirmation of the bishops’ approved text.

Pope Francis closed his letter noting that Cardinal Sarah’s commentary had been published on several websites, and asked that the cardinal transmit his response to the same outlets, as well as to members and consultors of the Congregation for Divine Worship. –  CNA/EWTN News

SH catechetical ministry organises candlelight rosary procession

Rosary procession begins after the recitation of the First Glorious Mystery inside the Sacred Heart Cathedral KK, 22 Oct 2017.

KOTA KINABALU – The catechetical ministry of the Sacred Heart Cathedral Parish here organised a rosary procession in conjunction with the centenary of the Fatima Apparitions (13 May – 13 Oct 1917) on 22 Oct 2017.

The event commenced with offering of flowers and short prayers at the feet of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

Father Max Hontor proclaimed the Word and gave a short reflection on the Fatima Apparitions.

The Glorious Mysteries were prayed in English (first and fifth decades), BM (second and fourth) and Mandarin (third) at designated stations around the cathedral compound starting from the cathedral itself, behind the parish centre, exit junction, St Francis Kindergarten, and back to the cathedral.

The candles were lighted outside the cathedral before the procession began after the First Glorious Mystery.

Rain fell while the devotees were praying the fourth decade at the kindergarten but there was no unruly behaviour while scampering for shelter.  Many came prepared for rain.  They blew off their candles before entering the cathedral.

The event ended with a blessing from Fr Hontor inside the cathedral.

Pope Francis has granted a plenary indulgence opportunity for the 100th anniversary of the Fatima apparitions throughout the centennial year, from 27 Nov 2016 to 26 Nov 2017.

There are three ways to obtain the indulgence, detailed in a statement from the Fatima Shrine in Portugal.

To obtain the plenary indulgence, the faithful must also fulfill the ordinary conditions: go to Confession and Communion, be interiorly detached from sin, and pray for the intentions of the Holy Father.

1. Make a pilgrimage to the shrine

To the faithful who make a pilgrimage to the Fatima Shrine in Portugal and participate in a celebration of prayer dedicated to the Virgin. In addition, the faithful must pray the Our Father, recite the Creed and invoke the Mother of God.

2. Pray before any statue of Our Lady of Fatima

To the faithful who visit with devotion a statue of Our Lady of Fatima solemnly exposed for public veneration in any church, oratory or proper place during the days of the anniversary of the apparitions, the 13th of each month from May to October 2017, and there devoutly participate in some celebration or prayer in honor of the Virgin Mary. In addition, the faithful must pray the Our Father, recite the Creed and invoke Our Lady of Fatima.

3. The elderly and infirm

To the faithful who, because of age, illness or other serious cause, are unable to get around, may pray in front of a statue of Our Lady of Fatima and must spiritually unite themselves to the jubilee celebrations on the days of the apparitions, the 13th of each month, between May and October 2017. They must also “offer to merciful God with confidence, through Mary, their prayers and sufferings or the sacrifices they make in their own lives.”

SH Chinese-speaking senior parishioners visit KKIP church

KKIP, Telipok – The Chinese-speaking senior parishioners of Sacred Heart Cathedral (SHC) Karaminsing visited the newly blessed Church of the Divine Mercy here on 22 Oct 2017.

After the 7 am Chinese Mass at SHC, almost 90 senior parishioners gathered at the right wing of the parish centre for a quick breakfast before boarding three chartered buses for their trip to the Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park (KKIP) church.

The church was officially blessed and opened the day before (Oct 21) by Archbishop John Wong.

Led by Charlie and Catherine Chia of the Chinese unit of the SH Pastoral Care of the Aged Ministry, the group prayed the Divine Mercy chaplet before the huge mural of the Divine Mercy Image painted on the sanctuary wall.

A collection was made for the upkeep of the church and given to David Andrew of the catechetical ministry there. He briefed the visitors on the history of the church.

Later, the group left for their annual lunch (with games) at Wong Kok Restaurant Penampang.

The outing is part of the yearly activities organised by the pastoral care unit.

KKIP church finally blessed after almost two years

Abp Wong opens the door of the Church of Divine Mercy at the rite of opening, KKIP, 21 Oct 2017.

TELIPOK – The Catholic Church of the Divine Mercy, Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park (KKIP) here was finally blessed and opened for public use after almost two years on 21 Oct 2017.

Archbishop John Wong officiated the rite of blessing in the presence of almost 1000 people including Archbishop Emeritus John Lee, present pastors Fathers David Sham, Mitchelly Kiun and Mattheus Luta, and past pastors Fathers Aloysius Fidelis, Ambrose Atang, Edward Raymond, Michael Modoit and Rayner Bisius.

The rite of opening was marked by ribbon-cutting before opening the sliding church door and unveiling the commemorative plaque at the church entrance by Abp Wong.

The prelate blessed the water before using it to sprinkle on the people present and the building including the chapel behind the church.  Mass then continued as usual.

After the Mass, speeches were given by Albert Lim, Telipok Parish Pastoral Council chairman; Fr Sham and Abp Wong.

In his speech, Fr Sham thanked all those involved in realising the project including Abp Emeritus Lee who mandated him to carry out the building project and the many donors in cash and kind including the state government and KKIP.

On his part, Abp Wong reminded the faithful of the task given to them to bring God’s mercy to all those around them as members of the pastoral community there.

After all the speeches, all adjourned outside for the reception and cake-cutting under makeshift tents and under intermittent showers.

Prior to its current name, the chapel was known as Our Lady of Fatima Chapel.  It was in the path of the KKIP Development Programme, a state government project that has been designated as the nucleus of growth for the state in 1994.  Occupying an area of 8,320 acres, the park falls within the Knowledge Corridor of Sabah, where the Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS), Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) and other training and research institutions are located.

KKIP offered to land swap (similar 3-acre land) with KK Archdiocese which was accepted. Abp Lee officiated the groundbreaking ceremony on 5 May 2012 and the church was renamed Catholic Church of the Divine Mercy KKIP.  Construction work began on 12 Dec 2012.

The final agreement with KKIP was signed on 1 Aug 2014.  The first Mass was celebrated on 25 Dec 2015.  However, the Occupation Certificate was only given on 12 May 2017 by KK City Hall.

The church is only the first phase of the building project that includes a presbytery, catechetical centre with a kindergarten (scheduled to begin in 2018), and a church hall.  Its landmark is the 25 ft tall statue of the Divine Mercy at the entrance to the church compound.

Sunday service (Liturgy of the Word with Communion Service) is at 8:00 am and if there is Mass, between 10 am and 2 pm (depends on the availability of the priest as all the three priests have to administer to the three main churches of St Catherine Inanam, Good Shepherd Manggatal, and Holy Family Telipok and their numerous outstation chapels).

MCC releases theme for 2018 Catechetical Sunday

MELAKA – The Malaysian Catechetical Commission (MCC) released the theme for next year’s Catechetical Sunday at its meeting held on 9-13 Oct 2017 at the Good Shepherd Catholic Seminary here.

Nineteen delegates from the different arch/dioceses/vicariate in the Malaysia-Singapore- Brunei Region attended the meeting chaired by Jesuit Father Alvin Ho of Kuala Lumpur.  In attendance was Bishop Cornelius Piong, episcopal president of the commission.

The meeting began with Mass on Oct 9, presided by Father Simon Yong SJ from the Diocese of Melaka- Johor and the meeting closed with a Mass presided by Bp Piong on Oct 13.

In his homily, the prelate encouraged all MCC members to move forward united in God, serving with Him so that we may serve as He served and be ready to face the challenges in the catechetical ministry in line with the theme for Catechetical Sunday 2018: “Christ, our Hope.”

The meeting deliberated on many issues and concerns. One of the deliberations was to discuss on the theme for Catechetical Sunday 2018: “Christ, Our Hope” (Heb.10:23). The theme was chosen in continuation with 2017 theme, “Christ, Our Joy.” And for this year, all are urged to be more hopeful in spite of all the challenges, sacrifices and persecution encountered. The reflection for this theme will be prepared by Father Michael Sia of Miri Diocese.

Other deliberations pertained to the outcome of the Malaysian Catechetical Series survey carried out within the year, the needs of the MCS, the formation of catechists at diocesan and national levels, the catechetical weekend camps, and the syllabus for RCIA process.

The last item on the agenda dealt with reports from the arch/diocesan catechetical commissions.

In his closing remarks, the chairman thanked everyone for their active participation at the meeting.

Sibu Diocese will host the next meeting on 27-31 Aug 2018. – sr dariah ajap fsic

Copyright © 2017. Powered by WordPress & Romangie Theme.