Daily Archives:August 17th, 2018

Stella Maris launches first-ever Hymn Festival

TANJUNG ARU – In conjunction with Stewardship Sunday 8 July 2018, Stella Maris Parish (SMP) launched a Hymn Festival where parishioners were invited, for the first time in the parish, to participate in hymn composition.  The parishioners were given the opportunity and freedom to create and compose a new hymn for the Vision and Mission of the parish.

Eighteen entries were received from individuals and ministries.

The battle of the presentations was officiated by parish priest Msgr Primus Jouil, with Ian Baxter as the main judge, and two other judges in the persons of Jessel Yansalang and Pontius Otigil.

Representing the primary level were Tayneisha Jasmine Roeshan, 9, and her sister Sumeisha Jeslyn Roeshan, 10, who also happened to be the youngest contestants.  They had strong support from their parents and grandparents.

Their winning entries were entitled “Children of God’s Delight” and “Christ our Light and Saviour.”  They bagged the 1st and 2nd prizes, the first going to Jasmine for her composition “Christ our Light and Savior”.

All 18 contestants received certificates of participation.

In the English open category, the first place went to the Sacristans led by Sister Carmen Cordova, fsic.  Second place went to Jonathan Juhakim and third to the JWG Lower Level led by Lainie Lamau.

In the Bahasa Malaysia category, the first place was won by the Kerasulan Bahasa led by Jasmine Eve Petrus who was also the overall winner.  The second place was won by KKD St Faustina led by Daniel Anggang and the third went to Eva Stephen.

Contestant Sister Bernardine shared how she was inspired to compose the hymn “Journey Together as Christ-centred Family.” She recalled how the flow of words came to her and with the help of the Holy Spirit she managed to compose a meaningful hymn.

Another contestant Lainie Lamau revealed that she was inspired to compose while ironing her clothes.  Slowly, word by word, the hymn “One vision One mission with Love” was created through her discipline and obedience to listen to the inspiration that welled from within.

Jonathan Johakim also shared how he was fired up to create the hymn entitled “Now as we journey together (reaching our vision),” and was grateful to Neil Mah for his guidance.

The parishioners contributed RM2,600 towards this festival, providing for the first prize at  RM300, second prize at RM200 and the third at RM150.  The overall winner received RM500 with a crystal plaque. – Teresa Alberto

 

Stella Maris parish marks Stewardship Sunday for the first time

TANJUNG ARU – Stella Maris Parish (SMP) marked Stewardship Sunday for the first time on 8 July 2018.

Twenty-one ministries and groups participated in the event by displaying their talents in singing (basking by RCIA), skills in cooking, handicrafts and henna painting, and parting with their pre-loved goods. A lot of goods were put up for sale and the atmosphere was joyful, cheerful, full of love and the spirit of giving.

The participating ministries and groups commented, “We may be tired but we enjoyed this day so much!  Let’s do it again!”  The crowd that came was impacted by the cheerful giving of time and talent.

The parish benefited from the celebration of Stewardship Sunday as it provided the ministries and groups with opportunities to serve and through the process of organising, they exercised their leadership skills.

Ten percent of their net sales was contributed to the parish, while 90 percent went to the ministries and groups funds. – Teresa Alberto

Francis Lodungi returns unopposed as KUK Chairman

INANAM – Francis Lodungi returned unopposed as KUK Chairman of St Mary’s Chapel Kg Kionsom here recently.

The physical and spiritual development of the chapel was made possible with the guidance of Father David Sham, parish priest of St Catherine Inanam, and the leadership of the KUK committee chairman, Francis Lodungi.

From a wooden shelter with only a handful of faithful, the chapel now has a new concrete building and a hall that can accommodate over 400 worshippers. Last year also saw the construction of an additional building which is now occupied by Merpati Putih Kindergarten.

It was for these reasons that when the past KUK’s tenure of office expired recently, the Catholic community in Kionsom and neighbouring villages supported the proposal that Lodungi be re-nominated for the chairman post.

Three other candidates were also roped in to challenge the incumbent but all pulled out on polling day.

“A heavy responsibility… however, I will try my best to carry out my duties as expected by the community,” Francis said upon declared the victor uncontested to continue helming the committee for the 2019-2021 period.

He pledged to continue working for the betterment of the Church and is optimistic that better time is ahead with the full cooperation of all committee members and the community, as well as the guidance of the Inanam parish leadership.

Francis will be assisted by members who were also unanimously elected into the committee.

The other elected members were Alice William Doses (deputy chairperson), Casssy Tongguk (treasurer), Felicia Edna Julius (secretary), Dennisia Francis (assistant secretary), Theresa Dunggi (Women’s League), Julia Miki (assistant CWL), Stella Kaggi (Liturgical), Peter Yong (Catechetical) Rolend Kisin (Youth), Alexcius Maidis (Music) and Robert Guntis (Chief Warden). – Joseph Bingkasan

Apologetics Ministry introduces Lectio Eucharist to SHC parishioners

KOTA KINABALU – The Apologetics Ministry introduced a 10-week series on the Lectio Eucharist to the parishioners of Sacred Heart Cathedral and its sub-parish Church of Mary Immaculate from 6 Apr-6 July 2018 , which attracted about 60 participants.

Renowned theologian Dr Brant Pitre guided the participants through Scripture, history, and Church teaching to illuminate the wonder and miracle of the Eucharist. With deep insight, Pitre gave a fresh perspective for understanding the mystery that is the Eucharist.

This study series feature important questions on the Eucharist, such as: How do we respond to the Eucharist? How do we react to the idea that the Mass is the most dynamic and powerful sacrifice in all of human history? How do we respond to the Church teaching that it is a profound encounter with the life of the Trinity, imparting grace and strength to us and changing us from within? What does it mean when we claim that, in the Mass, the Paschal mystery – life, death, and resurrection – is made present? Do we experience the reality that Jesus Christ is truly present in every Eucharist that has ever been, is, or ever will be celebrated? Do we believe that Jesus is longing to be united with us in this most blessed sacrament?

Over the course of this study, Pitre took the participants back to the biblical roots of the Eucharist. Together they saw how this sacrament is deeply rooted in Sacred Scripture,  explored its origins, its foreshadowing in the many mysterious and miraculous events of the Old Testament and Gospels, and the essential purpose and reality of Jesus’ words and actions at the Last Supper.

In conclusion, the participants were led to examine how the Eucharist is not just a something, but rather Someone with whom they are meant to be in communion.

Lisa Tsen, who received a Certificate of Attendance from Fr Paul Lo  at the conclusion of the study said, “The Lectio sessions have straightened my spiritual faith and given me the insight of God’s infinite love for mankind.”

She added “I felt enlightened by the explanation of the mystery of the Holy Mass, truly a Trinitarian mystery, and a taste of heaven. It has also given me an urge to read the Bible following a devotional plan and a study guide to deepen my understanding.”

Another participant, Mary Lee, a member of  the Secular Carmelites, shared that the 10-session study on Discovering the Mass in the Bible has renewed her sense of awe, attentiveness and thanksgiving at the immensity of God’s love for humankind which is beyond human comprehension.

She said, “It has helped me to perceive clearly that when I receive the gracious gift of the Holy Eucharist – I am receiving the body, blood, soul and divinity of the risen glorified Lord Jesus who wishes to unite his entirety with mine in all my nothingness, my unworthiness, my loneliness, my human frailty and imperfections. How can I then not adore and acclaim the Lord who chose to remain humbly hidden, little and invisible in the Holy Eucharist …?”

Monica Chong, who completed the study, could only marvel how the sessions have left her in awe and “feeling great wonderment and overwhelmed with emotions”.

She shared, “The study teaches us the great mystery of love and mercy of our Lord, to know that He waits for us in every Mass, to celebrate and actively participate more meaningfully, to see the wound and pain when we neglect Him, when our mind wanders, though physically present but is somewhere else.” – Apologetics Ministry

Clergy learn about SSA and other gender identity issues

PENAMPANG – As a follow up of the recently held annual meeting of the Regional Commission on Family, Laity and Life of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei in Bukit Mertajam, Bryan Crucis Shen, at the invitation of Archbishop John Wong, conducted talks  on “Understanding Same-Sex Attraction (SSA): a psych-development view from clinical experiences”  at Vianney Home here on 2 July 2018.

Forty participants comprising bishops, priests and deacons from the Archdiocese of Kota Kinabalu, and the Dioseses of Keningau and Sandakan attended the five informational sessions.

Shen holds a Master’s degree in Social Science (Counselling) from the University of South Australia. He is a Registered Counsellor as well as a recognised Clinical Supervisor with the Singapore Association for Counselling (SAC).

He has been spending time since 1997 providing counselling programmes in religious training houses, organisations and schools in Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines.

The speaker said the talks “aim to put aside fear, misconceptions and prejudice, and bring forth appropriate attitudes and responses.”

To help the clergy to better grasp the talks, Shen explained  terminologies such as Gay, SSA,  Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender (LGBT), Gender Dysphoria and To Come Out.

He went on to explain what Normal Gender Identity Development is about, and explored on what could go wrong.

“There are eight factors contributing to SSA,” said the speaker. These are divided into four groups: first group focuses on Intra-psychic Factors consisting of 1) Same-Sex Disaffiliation (lack of connection to the same gender); 2) Gender Incongruence (feeling different from people of the same gender); 3) Unhealthy Childhood Relationship with the opposite gender; and 4) Gender Concept Distortion.

Second group  consists of External Factors such as 5) Sexual Conditioning; and 6) Sexual Abuse, physically, mentally or morally.

Third group covers other Mental Health Factors such as (7) Certain Personality Traits.

Fourth group looks to Biological Contributions as (8) Some Biological and Physical Factors.

At the end of the sessions, Shen suggested to the attendees what they could do as catechists, teachers, parents, priests, religious, school principles, leaders.

He stated that “The work of forming the next generation to be good parents, good role models, administrators of justice, protectors of the vulnerable, etc., has great importance in preventing SSA and other gender identity issues. Knowing and defending ourselves against obstacles to these is also important. Even more important is the knowledge of Chasity through practice, experiencing its benefits to these virtues, distinguishing the difference between outer value and intrinsic value, and then including this knowledge in our prayer, teaching and formation.”

Archbishop Wong thanked Shen for a fruitful and important talk on SSA to the clergy, enabling them an understanding on SSA in the psychological perspective. – Fr Mattheus Luta

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