Catholic Communicators told to be resourceful in facing COVID-19 pandemic

Catholic communicators in the Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei region have been called to be imaginative and resourceful in facing the challenges that have arisen due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nov 21, 2020

KOTA KINABALU: Catholic communicators in the Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei region have been called to be imaginative and resourceful in facing the challenges that have arisen due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cardinal-designate Cornelius Sim advised them that during this time of uncertainty, they should not wait for certainty but rather enter into a moment of creativity and search for opportunities. Sim, who is President of the Regional Episcopal Commission for Social Communications of the Bishops’ Conference for Singapore, Malaysia and Brunei, was speaking at the close of its annual general meeting conducted online using Google Meet Oct 29.

The marathon AGM that went on throughout the day from 9.00am to 5.00pm was attended on-and-off by about 15 members from across the region, giving particular focus to how Catholics in the region are coping with current challenges.

Sim, who is Bishop of the Apostolic Vicariate of Brunei, in contrast to the apparent stability conveyed by the image of a shepherd with feet firmly planted on the ground, proposed that they adopt another model.

“The model of a fisherman might be more appropriate for the current  moment; a fisherman far out on the open sea faced with violent storms, afraid, and without familiar landmarks to navigate by.

“It is during these challenging times, while many simply wait around to see familiar fixed points re-emerge, that SOCCOM members are called to be resourceful  and imaginative, and to identify new directions.

“You are called to find opportunities the Lord is revealing so we can continue to be relevant and focused in our ministry,” he said in his closing remarks.

Describing the state of fear that people are in whilst forced to  stay indoors in order to stay safe, he said that, instead of shuttering doors, they should make sure that as Christians, they do not shut Jesus Christ out of their homes and hearts.

As at that first Pentecost when the disciples were full of fear boarded up in the upper room, Jesus appeared and said, “Peace be with you!”

“It’s time for us to let the Lord come in and allow our hearts to be rekindled with a new enthusiasm and hope by his Spirit.

“It’s also a time to reflect and to pray fervently, examine the state of our faith, and let the energy of the Spirit lead us out into a new day,” he told Catholic social communicators.

SOCCOM officials in the region decided to hold its AGM next year in Sibu, Sarawak, tentatively from Oct 18 to 21. –– Regional Episcopal Commission for Social Communications of Singapore, Malaysia & Brunei

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