Malacca Johore Diocese News Update #73

We, as Church, the People of God and the New Israel, are called, sent to build His Kingdom and realise the dream of the Father.

Jan 14, 2022

Greetings and Peace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you, dear People of God. The Ordinary Times are here. We are preparing for Catechetical Sunday. You have been generous in your contribution to the Christmas Project: The Orang Asal Education Fund and the National Relief Fund for the Flood victims. A special thank you to all of you.

Time to look ahead: “A people without a vision, perish” (Prov.29:18)

We, as Church, the People of God and the New Israel, are called, sent to build His Kingdom and realise the dream of the Father.

It is His Vision and Mission we serve. It begins with LISTENING. It is unbelievable that a nation’s leaders and civil service are not listening to the feedback from the rakyat and the warnings. .

A thought for the week: Just Shine
A little girl got the dubious part of the Bethlehem star in a Christmas play. After her first rehearsal, she burst through the door with her costume, a five-pointed star lined in shiny gold tinsel, designed to drape over her like a sandwich board. “What exactly will you be doing in the play?” the father asked. “I just stand there and shine,” she told him.

Strange that the little girl got it. At some point, from Star of Bethlehem to adulthood, we obstruct that light. What is stopping us from just standing there and shining?

I started my own list of possible obstructions: fear, perfectionism, prejudice, comparisons, lack of healthy self-esteem, distractions, worry, anxiety etc. What are the obstructions in your life?

Announcements for this week:

1. The KKM and the KPM continue to remind us that the fully vaccinated are permitted at worship and Masses. That’s the National Protocol. All parishes are reminded to find other means to minister to the unvaccinated, those who cannot be vaccinated, the children and the antivaxxers without breaking the law.

2. The Advent 2021 Project, organised by the Caritas- MJDOHD, raised RM 27,000 for the Orang Asal Children’s Education Programme. Caritas Malaysia to date raised RM 502,000 for the flood victims. A grateful thanks to all well-wishers for your generosity. God bless you all.

3. Clergy updates:

a. Deacon William Pillai will be ordained on February 22, 2022 at 10.00am at the Church of St Henry, Batu Pahat.

b. Fr Christopher Lee is the Associate Juridical Vicar taking over from Fr Anthony Ng effective January 1, 2022.

c. Fr Damian Charles, will be Bishop’s Delegate to the PSO, continue to assist the Tribunal as notary, and assist Fr Claurence with the Migrant-Refugee Ministry. He will read Canon Law at Universiti Santo Tomas, Philippines.

d. Fr Paul Sia, has been appointed as assistant to the diocesan bishop-appointed exorcist, Fr Benedict Yee and minister with the Deliverance Exorcism Office (DEO).

e. Deacon Sixtus OFM, will be doing his diaconatein- action at St Joseph, Plentong. Other responsibilities include, being a member of the MPI Media Production team and being assistant to Fr Martinian with MJD’s Social Communication.

This week’s Question and Query.

The Q asks: Listening Church? What does it entail?
The FIVE TYPES OF LISTENING essential to “DO GOD’s WILL” are given below:

1. Listening to one another — via Annual General Meetings, Annual Clergy Discernments, Parish Pastoral Assemblies, District Pastoral Assemblies, Language Pastoral Assemblies and Vicariate Pastoral Assemblies makes us aware of our relevance and irrelevance, people’s real needs, the directions to take and increases a sense of ownership of the pastoral plan or thrust.

2. Listening to the Holy Spirit in the Church — in the People of God, often referred to as the sensus fidelium. It is time to discern, to separate the guiding voice of the Spirit from the many distracting, deceiving and divisive voices which may be the ego, the world and the evil one.

3. Listening to the New Wine — the new times, the new normals and the new sociological shifts demand that we look at new ways of doing things, employing new approaches and being open to new methodologies for a new COVID generation. The truth and doctrines of faith do not change. But the presentation and packaging can change. Only “new wines skins can hold new wine”. The Spirit calls us to redesign, remodel or re-invent and be relevant to the times.

4. Listening to the Inner Word, the rhema — the prompting word, the action word. It calls you to be the change-bringer, courageous, not cowardly, being a “boleh” in the midst of the many “tak boleh’s” and being different, not mediocre. The gift of the Spirit is courage, to step out and be different.

5. Listening to Emerging Pastoral Plans — with your pastoral think-tanks. Be faithful to it. Respect the process. Give value to planning and being purpose- driven. We are missionary, not maintenance.

No community, no nation, no church can be built without a “listening attitude”.

God bless you all. “Religion speaks of sin and guilt; but spirituality says “learn from error”. Let us continue “Building His Kingdom Together”.

Bishop Bernard Paul
January 14, 2022

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Total Comments:2

Arokiamary +60177700426
5 types of listening..points noted Your Grace. Speak Lord..your servant is listening..let it be done according to thy Word..
Please send an exorcism team to my premises. Thank you. We belong to OLOG parish. Tq.