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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bishop Julius' Pastoral Visit to the Parish of St Martin, Telupid

Telupid:  St Martin's Parish of Telupid, some 130 km from Sandakan, is one of the four parishes of the Diocese of Sandakan with some 6,000 Catholics, mostly of the Dusun indigenous people. It covers an area of approximately 14,203 sq kilometers and is currently served by one priest, Fr Marcellinus Pongking, one full time and 30 part time catechists.
                    
Bishop Julius D Gitom made a one day pastoral visit to the said parish, on Sunday 9th May 2010 after attending the 17th Anniversary of the Keningau Diocese at St Anthony's Church, Tenom on Saturday 8th May 2010.

He presided the Eucharistic Celebration of the 6th Sunday of Easter, attended by some 500 parishioners. 
This year some 75 catechumens from the RCIA/RCIC processes were admitted into the community during Easter Sunday. Among them, two neophytes shared their personal experience;
Francisca Saiban, a Christian from another denomination, enrolled in the one year  long RCIA process. Her desire to know more and search further about the Catholic faith was because of her friends in the Youth Choir, who constantly gave her the support and encouragement. She enjoyed the community life of Catholics and would look forward to be always a part of the family.

'I must give credits to my choir member friends, my faith animators, sponsors and parents for accompanying me in my journey of faith. I am now fully involved in the Parish Youth Apostolate.' she added.
Donny David, another neophyte shared that he did not know about God until he took the courage to attend the RCIA process. He attended Holy Mass on Sunday, simply because he liked to be with his friends who were mostly Catholics.

He went on to say, 'Today, I attend mass because I want to be with God. I want to build up my relationship with Jesus Christ. If I follow Him, He will be with me till the end of time.'

The prelate, in his homily said that God chose them (the two young neophytes) to be His witnesses, through the Sacrament of Initiation. Easter is not just about Christ's resurrection but more so, that He lives in us. We therefore need to delve in His living Words, worship Him, come in communion with Him and others as a community and to offer our service to the Lord in building His Kingdom. BECs is one sure way of gathering the People of God together and with that as a 'council' could solve things together for the good of the Church.

The prelate will be in Telupid again on Saturday, 22nd May 2010 attend the  Parish "Pesta Kaamatan.' scheduled to be held at St Mary's Chapel, Kampung Wonod, Mile 4, Telupid.


 RCIA sessions after Holy Mass at the 'open wing' of the Church, led by Catechist Terry


Members of the Parish Youth Apostolate held a meeting at the newly built hostel block


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