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Renewing Leadership Identity: A Reflective Recollection for Mass Servers

TERAWI – Holy Nativity Parish Terawi (HNPT) Parish Liturgy team recently hosted a spiritual recollection event for all their Mass Servers. The event, held at HNPT on 17 February, 2024, brought together a diverse group of 222 participants, including Catechists, Communion Ministers, Commentators, Lectors, Psalmists, Choir Members, Musicians, Altar Boys, Sacristans, and Wardens from HNPT, St. Simon’s Church, Duvanson, St. Peter’s Church, Tombovo, and Our Lady of Fatima Church, Talang Taun. This event derived following the formation of their new Pastoral Committee. The recollection that was graced by HNPT Rector, Rev. Fr Michael Modoit, aims to rejuvenate the spirits of the existing Mass servers and to refine the information for their newly anointed servers of the divine liturgy. Assistant Rector, Rev Fr Jack Johimi presented in the second session.

Rev Fr Michael Modoit explaining what is Leadership as one Parish
Rev Fr Jack Johimi explaining on Service in the church

In the first session, Rev. Fr Michael Modoit delved on the subject of Leadership; leadership as one parish. The mission is to nurture leaders in the Catholic faith and rekindle the faith as Christian Catholic. He ardently expressed the need to emplace the aura of leadership into the diverse ministries of the Church, align with the vision and mission of the Archdiocese of Kota Kinabalu:

"A caring communion of Christ-centred communities journeying together in faith, hope and love, empowered by the Holy Spirit in the evangelising mission of building the Kingdom of God."


Father Michael emphasised that leaders have the incredible power to influence. He stressed the importance of how leaders guide others, that our leadership should reflect Christ. In essence, we are called to lead others towards Him. He acknowledged the diversity in leadership styles, each with its own vision and character, but underlined that, regardless of the approach, every form of leadership holds equal significance. For his presentation he shared the idea of Servant Leadership a leadership that is exemplified by a leader who emulates Christ, as we are encouraged to follow in the footsteps of Christ.

In conclusion, Fr. Michael emphasised the importance of cultivating leadership through prayer, urging everyone to open their hearts to the Lord. This connection with Him enables the Holy Spirit to enter our lives. He extended his best wishes to everyone for their service in the Church.


During the second session, Fr. Jack Johimi delivered a presentation on “Service” within the Catholic Church. He characterised ‘service’ as the endeavour to fulfil the needs of others, emphasising that to serve is to contribute and accomplishing whatever is necessary for their well-being.

The Catholic Church, on a global scale, extends its service to all, regardless on distinctions of race, religion, and other factors, aligning with the teachings of Jesus. Citing John 13:34, Fr. Jack reiterated the commandment: “A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another as I have love you.” Therefore, “serve with love”.

He further explained the Basic Criteria in Serving the Church: –

1. Honouring God
Someone who reveres and worships God, demonstrating spiritual strength in their faith by adhering to the teachings of Jesus. They embody the principle of loving one another and, as a result, selflessly serve others, regardless of their identity or background.

2. Faithful to Christ, the Teacher
Following the example of Christ, who is our ultimate Teacher, service should be extended to the least significant individuals and extended to entire communities. It is crucial to avoid showing preference or favouritism in our service, treating everyone equally. Just as we offer our faith to Jesus, mirroring our commitment to others as we would to Jesus, the exemplary Teacher.

3. Prepare to participate in Christ’s suffering
At times, we may encounter setbacks or shortcomings in our service. It is essential to overcome these challenges, learn from them, and refrain from being swayed by our emotions or making excuses, as this is not spiritually beneficial. Instead, we should exhibit understanding, compassion, and genuine concern for the well-being of others, willingly shouldering any shortcomings they may have.

4. Humble like Christ (John 13: 1-20)

Where Christ washed the feet of the twelve disciples during the night of the last supper. We must work hard to be a good servant like Christ. While serving, one must not be proud of oneself, and do not look down upon others. Be aware of imperfection, and strive to improve. For any job well done or vice versa, one must always be grateful for having participated in serving the church, that serves the Lord.

“I think I have some reason to be proud of what I, in union with Christ Jesus, have been able to do for God.”
(Roman 15: 17)

5. Behave like a Servant
Serve without complaining. Do and complete what need to be done the best you could. One must serve wholeheartedly, with 100% commitment. In Mass, the priest represents Christ. Therefore, when one serves, he or she is serving the Lord.

Finally, Fr Jack summed up his talk with the three (3) main tasks of the Catholic Church.
a) Proclaim     b) Holiness      c) Shepherd

In carrying out the tasks, pray first and give your commitment wholeheartedly.

By Clarissa Mijin HNPT Soccom

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