Negeri priests convene to celebrate the Feast of the Visitation

The Church of the Visitation celebrated the Solemnity of Pentecost and the Parish Feast of The Visitation on May 31.

Jun 27, 2020

By Paul Peter Fernandez
The Church of the Visitation celebrated the Solemnity of Pentecost and the Parish Feast of The Visitation on May 31. The multilingual Mass to celebrate the birthday of the Church and the Blessed Virgin Mary’s visit to her cousin Elizabeth, was livestreamed as the country was still under the Movement Control Order (MCO) which began on March 18.

The priests from the Negeri District were the celebrants. They were Fr Terrance Thomas (the main celebrant), Fr Peter Anthoney, Carmelite Fr Christopher Loh OCD, and Fr Xavier Andrew.

The 6.00pm Mass was preceded by the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in four languages, led by Fr Xavier and assisted by Deacon Philip Tay. Both the Adoration and the Mass were live streamed.

“After 50 days of Easter, the Church celebrates Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit descends on  the apostles and on  all of us too,” said Fr Loh in his homily in English.

“Like the apostles, who were locked in the upper room and living in fear of persecution by the Jews, we too are in a similar situation today since the announcement of the MCO on 18th March, where social distancing and wearing of face masks became the norm to protect us from the coronavirus. In the current pandemic, many have lost their loved ones, their jobs, resulting in them becoming worried, scared and frightened, like the apostles.

“Many are worried that things will not be the same again after the MCO when the Church will not be operating in the usual manner like before. Businesses will never be the same anymore. Priests are wondering if Catholics will come back to church after months of lockdown and getting  used to following Masses online at home.”

Referring to the day’s Responsorial Palm, “Send forth your Spirit, O Lord, and renew the face of the earth”, Fr Loh reminded us that the Holy Spirit we receive at Pentecost is not a spirit of timidity but, rather, a Spirit that transforms us, like the apostles, to become courageous. He concluded his homily by asking us to allow the Holy Spirit to transform us and to allow the words of Jesus to dwell in our hearts. Be courageous and just like the resurrected Jesus entered the room where the apostles were. “Peace be with you” always.

The usual order of the Mass proceeded after the homilies. At the end of the Mass, Fr Xavier Andrew wished viewers a Happy Feast Day of the Pentecost and Visitation. He said we should continue to pray and rely on God’s power and prayer that the day may come when we can attend and participate in the Mass as we used to.

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