Daily Archives:October 12th, 2018

Trauma healing through contemplation

KOTA KINABALU – Difficult life experiences such as adverse childhood experience could cause trauma and toxic stress on the person which can lead to physical and emotional illness and substance abuse problems.

“But there is hope beyond hurt,” said Fr Cornelio Jaranilla, OCD, at the talk on Trauma Healing through Contemplation, on 10 -11 September 2018 at Sacred Heart Cathedral, organized by Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites (OCDS).

“The best therapy is contemplation. When you experience God, you will be released from your traumas and pain,” said the Filipino priest, who is also a clinical therapist, better known as Fr Kuni in the Philippines.

“Prayer of contemplation is like a ‘turbo-mode’ of healing because it is God’s unconditional love,” he said.

Fr Kuni said as age matures and the body develops, the mental and psychological areas also develop.  However, if traumatized during childhood they will either develop positively or negatively.

Trauma causes a psychological injury called Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and can be intervened through therapy. As a registered clinical therapist, Fr Kuni generously conducted a group therapy to the 76 participants, as well as personal therapy to some.

The psychotherapy conducted is called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) involving an erasing of painful memory and installation of positive beliefs.

Through his many experiences, he said in Asian countries like Cambodia, Pakistan, Myanmar and India, adverse childhood experiences are mainly caused by cultural structure where children suffer the most.

“The Church should emphasize on family therapy through the Basic Ecclesial Community (BECs) because change (healing) does not happen at the top but in the family and in the community.”

“To install positive beliefs, one needs two to five years, so we need a community-based therapy,” he said, thus the need for local therapists instead of a fly-in fly-out therapist.

Fr Kuni emphasized that mental and psychological development must go hand in hand with their spiritual development. Spiritual awakening happens at an early stage of life and a response to the awakening is always necessary. To the degree that a person responds to the awakening, life will be changed.

In the spirituality of the Carmelites, St Theresa of Avila and St John of the Cross call this spiritual development; the Three Spiritual Ways. It begins with Purification which is a stage of putting one’s life in order, Illumination where the person receives enlightenment and increased peace and finally Union where prayer of infused contemplation happens.

Fr Kuni said in order to progress in each stage, the person must enter into dark nights where he or she is stripped purposefully of consolations of God but at the same time, is assured of His presence.

“Mid-life crisis, which is characterized by tension, conflict and discontentment, can lead you to the dark night. It is a time for transition – leading one to open to the Mystery,” he said.

In each stage, Fr Kuni said God purifies the soul and thus heals the traumas, in order to bring the soul closer to Him. Linda Edward

Enriching spiritual life as a community through LSS

KOTA KINABALU – The Sacred Heart Cathedral English Prayer Group hosted a Life in the Spirit Seminar (LSS) with international speakers at Sacred Heart Cathedral Parish Centre on 24-26 Aug 2018.

Father Varghese Mathew Parackal based in Holy Family Church, Australia is widely travelled and has facilitated retreats in Asia, Oceania, Africa and Germany for the past 15 years.  His retreats, among others, include Inner Healing retreats, Holy Spirit retreats, and Healing and Deliverance retreats.

The other invited speaker was Joseph Fernandez from the Archdiocese of Singapore.  He has ministered in Australia, India and the U.S. leading Praise and Worship and giving talks.

The seminar, themed “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest”, received overwhelming response not only from local parishioners but also from as far as Sarawak and Labuan.

Among the highlights of the seminar were a session on Inner Healing before the Blessed Sacrament and an Exhortation on Deliverance.  The seminar concluded with Mass presided by Fr Parackal.

It is the hope of the English Prayer Meeting group that activities like these would assist in overcoming issues of secularism and apathy in the Archdiocese by bringing parishioners into a deeper experience of the work of the Holy Spirit.

Hence the English Prayer Meeting group looks forward to organize Life in the Spirit Seminar annually through the engagement of prominent speakers.

The organizing committee thanked all donors and the SHC parish for their support to make this seminar possible.

Faith formation and Praise and Worship will continue every Friday at 8:00 pm at Room F7. – Joseph Carlos Leong


Deacon Friar Claurence Motoyou to be ordained priest

KOTA KINABALU (CS) –   Franciscan Friar Claurence Motoyou, 47, ordained to the Diaconate at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Johor Bahru on 5 Dec 2017, is to be ordained priest at Sacred Heart Cathedral Karamunsing by Archbishop John Wong on 27 Oct 2018.

Motoyou will be joined by Friar Cruzender Alex at Mass for a joint Ordination, where Alex will be ordained to the Diaconate. The Mass will begin at 10.00 am.

Hailing from Kg Lokawi, Putatan, Deacon Claurence, 47, is the fourth of a brood of six born to Fredoline Motoyou (deceased) and Rose Onis Mosoly.

After completing his tertiary education in 1989, he went on to Universiti Sains Malaysia Penang where he graduated with honours in Computer Science in 1994.

What led him to pursue priestly formation?  As undramatic as it sounds, Motoyou was nevertheless attracted to the call to priesthood through his frequent contact with the Franciscan Sisters of Immaculate Conception (FSIC) and joining them in their activities and monthly mission outreach programs to share the love of God to others.

Under the spiritual guidance of Franciscan Sister Frances Mani, presently Mother General of FSIC, he realized his call to the religious vocation.

Without much ado, he resigned from the IT company, where he worked as a system analyst and computer programmer, to join the Order of Friars Minor (OFM) in Singapore.

It was mainly through the FSIC, especially Sr Mani, that he had gotten to know the friars.  The life of the friars in sharing the Gospel after the example of St Francis of Assisi eventually led him to want to share their mission.

Motoyou completed his seminary studies at St Francis Xavier Major Seminary, Singapore.

In less than a month to being ordained a priest, Motoyou reflected on the moment of grace and acknowledged that “It is only by God’s grace that all things are made possible.”

Humbled by the lengthy years of priestly formation, he added “I know that I am far from being perfect.  God’s call is a journey of life that each of us has to respond individually, yet at the same time, it is a pilgrimage that I make with my brothers and sisters…”

Currently, Deacon Motoyou is serving at the Church of Immaculate Conception in the Diocese of Melaka-Johor.


CMI launches Silver Jubilee exhibition, unveils building plan extension

BUKIT PADANG – The parishioners of the Church of Mary Immaculate (CMI) swelled with pride and grateful joy as they witnessed the Silver Jubilee Exhibition and the unveiling of the proposed extension of the Church building after the Sunday Mass on 2 Sep 2018.

The launching and unveiling, which was a collaboration between the Silver Jubilee Organizing Committee (SJC) and Steering Committee (SC), was held at the foyer of the Church where the main exhibits were displayed.

The event was officiated by Fr Paul Lo who was also the celebrant at Mass.  A simple prayer was said by Fr Lo before the launching and unveiling.

On the occasion of the Silver Jubilee, the organizing committee has put up the history of CMI, its timeline and a tribute to Fr Thomas Sham who oversaw the building of CMI.

Other exhibits showcased CMI’s ministries and groups, which lined up the covered walkway at the side of the Church leading to the canteen. The nineteen ministries and groups, which participated in the exhibition, have been preparing for months.  Each group with its own specific roles and functions has its own story to tell, either by the photographs exhibited or the designs of their exhibits.  More importantly, they have come together ensuring that this event would bring meaning to the anniversary celebration.

In respect of the proposed building extension, perspective drawings of the extension, floor layouts consisting of an open hall, a rectory, six multi-rooms, canteen and toilets, and a location map were on display.

The consultants, together with the fundraising chairman, were also present at the event to inform those with inquiries regarding the building extension.  Leaflets containing a message from the parish priest, a brief history of the Church and name lists of the Steering, Building and Fundraising Committees were also distributed for the information of parishioners, donors and sponsors.

Fr Lo and parishioners alike visited the exhibits.  The event ended with a simple fellowship with light refreshments served at the Church canteen for all attendees.

Parishioners were informed that approval has been received from the Archbishop that commencing from October 2018, the third bag collection will henceforth go towards the building fund for the extension of CMI. – SOCCOM CMI


Ignite the flame within

LABUAN – The Life in the Spirit Seminar (LSS), which was organized by the English Prayer Group of the Blessed Sacrament parish here on Sep 7-9 attracted an encouraging response.

The seminar, with theme “Ignite the Flame Within”, was facilitated by full time by a Catholic lay missionary, Jude Antoine.

Among the participants was a group from Brunei Church in Seria. The local participants included parishioners from both the English and Bahasa Malaysia speaking groups, and students from the local colleges and institutions.

The talks on New Life, God’s Love, Transformation and Ministry through Inner Healing and Baptism of the Holy Spirit have touched many.

Antoine reminded the attendees in no uncertain terms “No one can force you to be renewed or to change if you do not surrender or submit to the Holy Spirit!”

Those who testified later during the sharing session spoke of receiving the ‘gift of tongues’ and experiencing ‘personal miracles’.

It was indeed a blessed time for the LSS participants and a sure sign that God continues to bless the island parish and her faithful. – Gerard Lean



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