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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Congress for Asian Catholic Laity in Seoul, Korea

 The beautiful and majestic Myeondong Cathedral
Seoul : Some 400 participants, including Cardinals, Arch/bishops, clergy, religious brothers and sisters and lay  faithful from over 20 countries and 38 international lay associations, ecclesial movements and new communities gathered here today, 1st September 2010 to attend the Congress for Asian Catholic Laity , to search for effective ways of proclaiming the Good News.
Bishop Julius with delegates from other parts of Asia
Rt Rev Julius Dusin Gitom DD, the Bishop of the Diocese of Sandakan and the Bishop in-charge of laity for the Catholic Bishop Conference of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei led a delegation of six members , three each from Sabah and Peninsular, to the said conference.
Cardinal Stanislaw presiding the mass
The Congress, with the theme 'Proclaiming Jesus Christ in Asia Today' began with the Eucharistic celebration at the Myeongdong Cathedral, of the Seoul Archdiocese, built in 1898 and dedicated to the Blessed Virgin of Immaculate Conception. Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, the President of the Pontifical Council for Laity presided the celebration.
Bishop Rolando
Immediately after the holy mass, participants assembled at the Coste Hall, adjacent to the Cathedral to begin the day's session with initial greetings and introduction. Among those who addressed the floor were Cardinal 
Stanislaw, Bishop Rolando Joven Tria Tirona, Chairman of Laity and Family, FABC and the Korean Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Honorable Yoo In Choon.
Professor Felipe Gomes SJ on the right
 Conference proper began with the presentation of the first paper on 'Two thousands years of the Church's mission in Asia : waves of evangelization, holiness and martrdom' by Professor Felipe Gomes, SJ currently  lecturing in a Seminary in Vietnam..
Cardinal Telephore
Cardinal Telephore Placidus Toppo of India presented the second conference paper, 'Jesus Christ, a gift for Asia : prerequisites, tasks and challenges of evangelizing today'. He challenged the participants to adopt a two dimension approach in evangelization; first is the 'go and tell' dimension and the second, being the life witness, 'come and see' dimension.
 The participants
 Fr Dr Clarence Devadass of Malaysia
Right after lunch, the conference continued with contributions from the delegates from the delegates of various Asian countries touching on the current situation of the Catholic church and the laity. Malaysia was represented by Fr Dr Clarence Devadass,  Parish Priest of Church of Our Lady Fatima, Kuala Lumpur.
Above : Hon Minister Yoo In Choon  Below : Bishop Julius with other Arch/bishops
The first day ended with a dinner reception hosted by the Honourable Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Yoo In Choon, at the Seoul Royal Hotel, Myeong-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul.
A presentation by the high school students from Buchun City in between talks

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