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St Catherine of Laboure raises funds from charity dinner

IMG_9365aKOTA KINABALU – A spirit of love and a great show of communal support pervaded the charity dinner organised by the building committee of St Catherine of Laboure, Putatan at Putera Theatre Ballroom Aug 3, with 1,100 people in attendance.

The event was one of the major fundraising drives for the building of St Catherine of Laboure, Putatan, for which construction work began in December 2012.

The proposed Church, as was reminded by the chairman of the building committee, Stephen Sondoh, was a dream come true from as far back as 1960 to have a church erected in Putatan.

The dream soon became a reality with the donation of a 2-acre land by Catherine Moinin and family.  With the formation of a steering committee under the leadership of Stephen Sondoh, the successful garnering of the necessary technical and professional support, the generous contributions and donations, and other funds raised, the project was launched in December 2012.

The church building is a 4-level structure, housing at different levels a chapel, a museum, a church hall, the church proper with a mezzanine floor, Sunday school, and offices, and estimated to cost RM7 million to complete.  To date, the hard work of the committee as well as the generosity of the people have raised RM3.5 million.

At the charity dinner event, Archbishop John Wong managed to raise singlehandedly RM12,000.00 just by crooning his favourite Chinese song, to the delight of all present!  The proceeds raised that evening totalled RM125,000.00.  With words of encouragement, Archbishop John validated the hard work and sacrifices of the committee, and called them on to entrust the whole project to their Heavenly Father who, with His Divine intervention, would hasten the completion of the church.

Grateful for the support of the Archbishop, clergy, local State leaders, donors and parishioners, Sondoh said he was confident the Church would be completed in due time.   He called for continued support and would welcome contributions which should be channeled through RTDKK St. Catherine Church, Putatan Account: Maybank No. 510189007514.

Further information could be accessed from email:

Also present for the event were Mother General Sr Grace Deosing, Msgr Primus Jouil, Fr Fundes Motiung and YB Datuk Marcus Mojigoh. – Stephen Sondoh


What’s the difference?  Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant

PACE BENE, Papar – More than a hundred educators, including some Sunday School facilitators, had an opportunity to come together to deepen their understanding on the differences in the practices and beliefs of the Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant Christians.

The unique course, made up of 8 sessions, was delivered by Deacon Dr Sherman Kuek at Pace Bene Retreat Centre in Papar Aug 15-17.

Deacon Dr Sherman Kuek is a permanent deacon of the Catholic Church, a secular Franciscan and a theologian.  He is incardinated in the Johor-Melaka Diocese where he serves as Director of the Diocesan Pastoral Institute. He spends much of his time giving catechetical formation. He has written several books on theology and social teaching.

In her welcoming note, Sr Rita Chew, head of the Archdiocesan Education Commission, urged all participants to see it as an opportune time to gain knowledge for themselves as the tight schedule of teachers with its insurmountable workload, coupled with last-minute demands from the Department do not always make it easy for them to get away for the weekend.

She underscored that today we live in a digital world of push button or touch screen where it is just as easy to get information on religious issues, but faith is something we need to experience, put it into practice, and pass it on.

She urged the participants to be open to a new or even different outlook, and after the seminar to be able to offer what they have discovered to the school society.

With the on-going interaction among the various Christian groups, people have become increasingly curious about the differences in the practices and beliefs of the Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant Christians.

The course is designed to help participants gain a deeper understanding of the differences while at the same time to strengthen their understanding and value of the Catholic Church, thus  avoiding premature conclusions about other Christians before seeking first to understand their beliefs.

Through the sessions, Deacon Sherman brought the participants to understand more clearly the practices and rules, worship, liturgies, sacraments, Salvation, and the absolute view of the Catholic Church on issues of morality as abortion and contraception, marriage and divorce. – AEC/Abigail

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