Tag Archives: commissioning

Commissioning of first Catholic Boys and Girls Brigade in Kuching

KUCHING – The 11th Kuching Company, The Boys Brigade (BB) and The Girls Brigade (GB) were officially commissioned by Fr Felix Au, rector of Blessed Sacrament Church (BSC) here, as another initiative to reach out to its community on 12 August 2018.

In his resolve to promote faith formation and discipline at a tender age, Fr Felix gave his blessings for the setting up of both a BB and GB Company at BSC. A recruitment drive for helpers and officers began late December last year.

In March 2018, the only existing Catholic Boys Brigade Company in Sarawak conducted their first BB meeting at BSC. The GB, a separate organisation, held their meeting the following month.

There are currently four Catholic Boys Brigade Companies in Malaysia. The other three are in Sabah. The Church’s Girls Brigade stands on record as the first ever Catholic GB company in Sarawak.

The objective of the Boys Brigade is the advancement of Christ’s Kingdom among members and the promotion of habits of Obedience, Reverence, Discipline, Self-Respect and all that tends towards a true Christian Character.

It upholds the motto – Sure and Stedfast, taken from Hebrews 6:19. The original Old English (King James Version) spelling of ‘Stedfast’ has been retained.

Meanwhile the objective of the Girls Brigade is Seek, Serve and Follow Christ with the aim to help girls become followers of the Lord Jesus Christ and through Self-Control, Reverence and a sense of Responsibility to find true Enrichment of Life.

There are different levels of recruitment into both the Boys Brigade and Girls Brigade, which may vary slightly. However, both the BB and GB are currently collaborating to focus only on the Junior Section, which is open to boys and girls aged 9-12 years old. There are plans to start a Senior Section for youths of 13-18 years’ age group next year.

The 11th Kuching Company Boys Brigade now has seven Officers and 20 boys, with Clement Sii as their Captain. He was from the 2nd Kuching Company Boys’ Brigade at Trinity Methodist Church.

The 11th Kuching Company Girls Brigade has four Officers serving 14 girls. Its Captain is Julita Chen from 3rd Kuching Company Girls’ Brigade at Trinity Methodist Church. Ivy Chai

Boys’ Brigade in Malaysian Catholic Church:

  1. 1st Binatang Company (Bintangor), Sarawak, formed in 1974 at Church of Christ The King. But after that closed down in 1980.
  2. 4th Kota Kinabalu Company, formed in1982 at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Sabah.
  3. 11th Kota Kinabalu Company, formed in 2015 at Stella Maris Church, Tanjung Aru, Sabah.
  4. 13th Kota Kinabalu Company, formed in 2018 at St. Simon Church, Likas, Sabah.
  5. 11th Kuching Company, currently the only Catholic BB in Sarawak. Formed in 2018 at Blessed Sacrament Church, Kuching, Sarawak.

CMI altar servers commissioned for the first time

BUKIT PADANG – Some 27 altar servers of the Church of Mary Immaculate here were commissioned over the weekend of 17-18 Mar 2018.

Fifteen were commissioned by Archbishop John Wong during the Chinese Sunset Mass Mar 17 while another 12 were commissioned also by the prelate at the 9 am English Mass Mar 18.

It was a historic first in the history of this church that will mark  25 years of existence in October this year.

Altar servers are a post-Trent innovation in parish churches. Formerly, ordained acolytes performed these functions.  When priestly training developed in seminaries, professed acolytes were no longer available in parishes. In the parishes, only men and boys served at the altar.

In 1994, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments clarified that service at the altar is to be considered one of the liturgical functions (such as those of lector and cantor) that, according to canon 230 §2 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law, lay people, male or female, may perform. At the same time the Congregation pointed out that this canon of the Code of Canon Law is only permissive and does not oblige to admit female altar servers.

The term “acolyte” is sometimes applied to altar servers, but in the proper sense means someone who has been received the ministry of that name, usually reserved for those who are to be promoted to the permanent or transitory diaconate. These must receive the ministry of acolyte, which formerly was classified as a minor order, at least six months before being ordained as deacons.

The altar server ministry is very important and is open to any boy (or girl) at least 9 years old who has made his first communion.  Like all calls to ministry, it is God who makes the invitation. The server is the priest and deacon’s right hand helper. Servers are to perform their duties in a sincere and reverent manner. This is rightly expected of them by God and his people.

Although the procedures vary from church to church, the main duty of altar servers is to assist the priest during the Mass. This includes:

  • Processing with the cross and candles down the aisle to signify the beginning and end of the Mass.
  • Processing with candles to light the Gospel.
  • Delivering the Book of Gospels to the priest.
  • Helping the priest/deacon prepare the altar for the Eucharist

Altar servers typically wear  an alb . This garment is worn over the clothes and tied with a cincture at the waist.  The cincture is the name for a braided cord that is tied around the waist. When tied properly, it is adjustable. The loose ends should always hang on the left side.

Altar servers have to get to church 5-20 minutes early, depending on the church.

SHC parish catechists commissioned for another year

English parish catechists pose with Fr Max Hontor and Sem Russell Lawrine after the Mass, 27 Jan 2018 SHC.

KOTA KINABALU – Over the weekend celebrating Catechetical Sunday on 27-28 Jan 2018, parish catechists of Sacred Heart Cathedral (SHC) here and Church of Mary Immaculate (CMI) Bukit Padang were commissioned for service for another year.

Parish catechists refer to the volunteers serving in Faith Formation (Sunday School) and Rite of Christian Initiation (RCIA).  Some of them also serve in the Children’s Liturgy of the Word (CLOW).

Thirty-seven were commissioned by Father Max Hontor at the English Sunset Mass Jan 27 while on the next day 61 were commissioned at the Chinese Mass and 80 at the BM Mass both by Father Paul Lo.  Four were commissioned at CMI by Fr Hontor at the 9 am English Mass.

Earlier, on Jan 18, all the parish catechists prepared themselves for the event with a short programme of Holy Hour at the cathedral and reflection-group sharing at the parish centre.

The theme for this year was Christ our Hope who places his hope in us.

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