Malacca Johore Diocese News Update #172

In these dark times, we sometimes lose our self-esteem and self-confidence. We question the quality of our lives and become uncertain about the gifts, talents, and abilities that we have been given.

May 03, 2024

Greetings to you, dear friends of MJD.

The Prime Minister was corrected by the King — divisive allies of the PM. The ETS is reaching Johor. Mt Ruang, Indonesia erupts. Dust clouds, dark skies and smoky air can be expected. Floods are reported in many states. TikTok featured unimaginable floods in Dubai and Saudi. Iran-Israel tensions raise fear. WW3, the Nuclear War and its destructiveness are becoming news items. Explosive! Upsetting!

M.A.D. Time: It is an acronym for Making A Difference Time. The Maaf Zahir Batin 365 days or MZB365 calls us to ‘fight hatred with grace daily’, with a reminder that forgiveness goes beyond Ramadan. Our Muhibah Story, a photo campaign on social media to showcase Malaysians of different races and religions coming together has been launched.

Pope Francis, at the Fourth World Gathering of the Global Christian Forum from April 15 to 20 in Accra, Ghana praised the global diversity present as reflecting “a beautiful mosaic of contemporary Christianity” and sharing a common identity as followers of Jesus Christ. The theme, That the World May Know, will explore how to bear witness to Christ in today’s world to better proclaim the love and truth of Jesus Christ to the nations, with the aim “together, let’s make a difference for God’s glory”. Where there is love, mercy, unity, forgiveness and justice, the Kingdom of God reigns.

Pope Francis reminded us about the virtue of fortitude, which is the ability to live with courage and to confront the inner — and outer — turmoil of life. He added further: “A Christian without courage, who does not turn his strength to good, who does not bother anyone, is a useless Christian”. To be M.A.D. we need courage.

Thought for the Week: The Weak!
Paul was a persecutor of the Church. Moses was a murderer. Jonah ran from God’s Will. Miriam was a gossip. Gideon and Thomas both doubted. Jeremiah was depressed and suicidal. Elijah was burned out. John the Baptist was a loudmouth. Martha was a worry-wart. Noah got drunk. These are well-known Biblical individuals who had flaws and weaknesses in their lives but God used their strength to glorify Himself.

In these dark times, we sometimes lose our self-esteem and self-confidence. We question the quality of our lives and become uncertain about the gifts, talents, and abilities that we have been given. We find ourselves saying, “I’m not perfect. I have all kinds of problems. I have no ability. I have no gifts. I’m just not worthy. Why would God want me? HE wouldn’t want to use somebody like me.”

The lesson from the weak: The good news is that God doesn’t require a job interview for salvation. He doesn’t look at financial gain or loss. He’s not prejudiced or partial, not judging, grudging, sassy, or brassy, not deaf to our cry, or blind to our needs. He knows who we are and what we are and loves us despite ourselves. God is ALWAYS with us. Sure, there are lots of reasons why God shouldn’t call us. But if we are in love with Him, if we hunger for Him, He’ll use us despite who we are, where we’ve been, what we have done, or the fact that we are not perfect!

Announcements for the Week

1. Join MJD’s Creation Justice Ministry’s collaboration with Caritas MJD, the Forestry Department, on the Mangrove Project. Join us in Restoring Mangroves + explore Kukup Island + Stingless Bee Farm on Sunday July 28! Contact the Creation Justice Committee of your parish for more details.

2. A Kursus Evangelisasi Peribadi (Personal Evanglisation Course), is being organised by the diocesan team, with the theme Mari, ikutlah AKU, dan kamu akan Ku jadikan penjala manusia. (Mat 4:19). from July - Nov. For more information, email: [email protected]

3. Mental Health & Stress of Teenagers Today! organised by the diocesan family life ministry. Target audience: Parents, educators, guardians to teenagers and all those interested. On May 5, from 8.00pm- 10.00pm with host, Andrew Chew. (Zoom Meet ID 89453900441; Zoom passcode 669939)

4. The Special Children’s Parents Support Group want to reach out to parents with special children who have, autism or any mental or physical disabilities. Open to all language groups. Contact Veronica Dass Tel: 016 2095001. 5. Diocesan Priesthood Vocation Discernment Weekend in Mandarin will be held on May 18-19 at the Church of St Louis, Kluang with the theme Good for us to be Here (Mk 9:5). For more details, please contact Msgr Peter Ng

QnQ: The Q asked: What is Earth Day?
EARTH DAY is the World’s Largest Environmental Movement celebrated every April 22. Individuals from all backgrounds and walks of life unite in a global effort to advance sustainability and climate action, The theme for 2024 PLANET vs PLASTICS, aims to tackle the plastics crises head-on, by a bold 60 per cent reduction in plastic production by 2040 and forging a plasticfree future because recycling is not the answer. Plastics are a health risk. https:// Here is the link to the 49 sec video

Being filled and led by the Spirit may take you places you never planned, but the will of God will never lead you where the grace of God cannot keep you. Walk in the Spirit. A blessed week to all of you, out there.

Something to tickle you: “The will of GOD will never take you to where the grace of God will not protect you.” — Bernadette Devlin

Bishop Bernard Paul

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