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PAPAR – For the archbishop’s pastoral visit, St Joseph Parish here organised a three-in-one celebration on 20-21 May 2017.
The celebration consisted of the meeting with the Parish Pastoral Council (PPC), Mass with Rite of Confirmation and a mini-bazaar in aid of St Macarius Sumbiling Bongawan Chapel’s renovation.
The morning began with Archbishop John Wong having light breakfast with Father Thomas Yip and PPC members before having a brief meeting with them chaired by Johnny Sitamin.
At the meeting, the prelate shared on the latest development of the archdiocese, that is, the new archdiocesan centre building project to be sited on the old Shan Tao Primary School along Sang Kancil Tiga Karamunsing, and its planned fundraisers.
The highlight of the visit was the concelebrated Mass preceded by a procession of representatives of the parish committees and communities in traditional attire and carrying banners, accompanied by the beating of gongs.
In his homily, the prelate reminded the congregation to adhere to Jesus’ commandment to love God and to love each other. He also exhorted them to remember Jesus’ promise of the Holy Spirit to be with them always.
During the Mass, 164 candidates received the Sacrament of Confirmation.
After the Mass, Sitamin thanked Abp Wong for his pastoral visit, the parishioners for their response and support for the bazaar, and for the collaboration among communities in preparing for the event.
The chairman also noted the prelate’s visit to St Anne Penampang Baru the day before and presiding at the sunset Mass there.
In turn, the prelate exhorted the parishioners to keep alive their Easter faith, encouraged the 164 confirmands to be active in the parish or outstation chapels, and advised the parishioners to discuss any pertinent issues with their pastors as his pastoral visit are limited in length.
After his speech, the prelate officiated the opening of the mini bazaar and visited the various stalls.– William Charles Mindus /SOCCOM Papar Limbahau