“Our Lenten theme Ignite Hope, is a call to be…
PENAMPANG – For the first time in its history, the Association of Catechists or Persatuan Katekist (PEKA) had a meeting with an archdiocesan head recently. Thirty-eight catechists from the 13 parishes with a majority of Malay-Kadazan-Dusun-speaking parishioners attended this historic meeting with Archbishop John Wong on 3 Feb 2016 at the Archdiocesan Centre here. Spiritual Adviser Fr Alex Sipanu was also present.
According to its chairman, John Ansim, the meeting discussed a range of topics. Among the topics discussed were the catechist’s attire during Sunday service, a need for a leaders formation centre, a common reference term for the catechist who is leading the Sunday service, and a need to come up with an organisational chart. At present it is under the Catechetical Commission.
The association was formed in 1973 to look after the welfare of the catechists and their families. Many of the catechists had been trained in the former PUSKAT in Keningau which was started by Fr George Bauer in 1966. The catechist has long been part of the local Church especially in the rural parishes where there are numerous outstation chapels, few priests, and where majority of the faithful are Malay, Kadazan and Dusun speaking. In the absence of the priest, the catechist (man or woman) conducts the Liturgy of the Word with Communion Service on Sundays and feast days. He or she also presides at funeral services.
The members meet once in two months. Their next meeting will be held in Kudat.