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Challenges in faith also come from within the Christian circle

PENAMPANG – What is the reality of living in a campus? The students and parents from around Penampang parish were enlightened with talks and sharing pertinent to challenges living outside homes and having to be independent in all areas of life inside a campus. 49 high school and higher learning institution students and 26 parents attended Keep In Touch Always (KITA) program in Assumption of Our Lady Church, Sugud, May 21. Fr Wiandigool Runsab, assistant priest of St Michael Parish opened the program with an exhortation.

Noel Walter Joimil, 18, would be entering matriculation college and was asked about his expectation when he arrives in Labuan. He has no idea how it is going to be but he foresees challenges would come in various forms: emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually and pressure in study. As a response, Sharon Natasha, 19, testified her own experience in Labuan Matriculation College, “College life is different from home life, but just be positive and confident. If you miss home, be involved in healthy recreational activities, it helps a lot.”

Feliny Tony, 22, has just finished her study in one of the universities in Peninsular.   Interestingly she shared that challenges in faith also come from within the Christian circle, “Do not judge your friends or anyone especially if they have not been to church for a long time.” A judgemental attitude towards others is detrimental to one’s growth in faith and hampers relationship.

Among the speakers for KITA this time were Charles Bisius, Sr Terry Loukang fsic and Wendy Justine. “Jesus Christ is the source of strength to face all challenges wherever we are,” said Sr Terry. The students were told to hold on to Jesus and to remember that the Holy Spirit is working alongside us all the time. She also reminded them to not be embarrassed to practise their faith, as some Christians are afraid to be called ‘holy’ because others considered it as ‘not cool’.

The participants were provided information on rights and responsibilities as citizens of Malaysia and the next steps they can adopt after leaving home for studies. KITA directory prepared by KK Archdiocese Human Development Commission and information materials were distributed by the organizers, as well as materials on Why Christians worship Trinity God, legal implications towards Islam converts and many more.

A parent, Pilar Walter when asked about her opinion on KITA program, expressed her gratitude to all leaders and religious for holding the program as it provides eye-opening knowledge. Her third son would be enrolling in Labuan Matriculation this year and she told him to bring the Bible, holy water and the rosary and to always pray. – Helda Biun, TPBP 

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