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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Episcopal Ordination of Coadjutor Archbishop Most Rev John Wong

 Kota Kinabalu : Some 2,500 people from across the three arch/dioceses in Sabah as well as those from Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia attended the Episcopal Ordination of Coadjutor Archbishop Most Rev. John Wong Soo Kau, at Sacred Heart Cathedral on Friday, 1st October 2010.

The packed Cathedral
Most Rev John Wong,  aged 42 years and the youngest among all Arc/bishops in the Malaysia, Singapore  and Brunei region, hails from Sandakan. He is the 7th child in a family of 11 children. His mother and all his siblings are residing in Sandakan.

The late Fr Tobias Chi, the then rector of St Mary's Church, Sandakan had much influence for his priestly vocation. He served as assistant rector at Sacred Heart Cathedral, Kota Kinabalu from 1999 - 2002. He then left for Rome to do a two-year study on Carmelite Spirituality. On his return in 2004, he was made rector of the Catholic Diocesan Centre since then.

Parishioners were seen coming into the Cathedral as early as 1.30 pm and by 2.30 pm, it was announced that all the 1,500 seats were taken up. All chairs placed at the pitched canopies  in front of the Cathedral Parish hall as well as the veranda of the hall were eventually occupied just before the celebration proper.
The president, Most Rev Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam and all arch/bishops of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei were present at the auspicious and historic occasion to lend support to the archbishop-elect. The First Counsellor, Msgr Marek Zalewski of the Apostolic Nunciature of Thailand witnessed the grandiose ceremony and he read out the ‘bull’ during the presentation of the bishop-elect.
Examination of the candidate, the Bishop elect
The Bishop-elect protrates himself
Most Rev Datuk John Lee, the archbishop of Kota Kinabalu presided the eucharistic celebration / ordination,  concelebrated by Archbishop Nicholas Chia of Singapore, Archbishop Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam of Kuala Lumpur, Archbishop John Ha of Kuching, Bishop Julius Dusin Gitom of Sandakan and Bishop Datuk Cornelius Piong of Keningau.
Laying on of hands
After the investiture with ring, miter and pastoral staff to the new coadjutor archbishop of Kota Kinabalu, Most Rev John Wong by the principal consecrator, Archbishop Datuk John Lee, there was an unceasing round of applause, an indication of much rejoicing among the faithful of the local Church. He was then led to the chair prepared for him accompanied by the consecrating bishops, Bishop Julius and Bishop Datuk Cornelius Piong.
Placing the open Book of the Gospels upon the head of the Bishop-elect
Most Rev. John Wong

Just before the final blessing, the newly ordained coadjutor archbishop shared that he was most thankful to the Lord for His love and mercy in choosing him to be a bishop, co-shepherding with Archbishop Datuk Lee, the people of God in the Archdiocese.
He said, “I feel inadequate and unworthy to serve in such a capacity. I believe the Lord will not just call me to serve but surely He will do His part and journey with me till the end of time”.
He appreciated the presence of all the arch/bishops of CBC – MSB. “Your attendance today gives me the assurance and affirmation to carry forth my duty as a bishop. Being the youngest, I have much to learn from you all”.
Round of applause to the newly ordained Coadjutor Archbishop
Archbishop John Lee, in his speech called on all faithful to give their undivided support and prayer to the newly ordained bishop that he may assume duty with confidence, co-shepherding with him the largest number of Catholics in the country.
Speaking in Chinese, he extended his appreciation to Rose Chung, the mother of the Coadjutor Archbishop and all his 11 siblings and immediate family members for their presence.
Rose Chung
He went on to say, ‘Dear Rose, thank you very much for your sacrifice for imparting unto John the Catholic faith. You had nurtured him and today you not only have a son as a priest but a Coadjutor Archbishop”.

Michael Wong
In an interview with Michael Wong, the eldest brother of the Coadjuctor Archbishop before the start of the event shared that he was particularly happy to see his brother elevated to the said position.
‘It never cross my mind that my brother, Most Rev John Wong will assume duty as a Coadjutor Archbishop.  God works in mysterious ways. I pray that he will shepherd the flock, like the apostles entrusted the great mission by Jesus Christ’.

A group photo with all Arch/bishops and clergy
Most Rev John Wong with his mother, siblings and immediate family members
Right after the celebration, the parishioners adjourned to the Cathedral Parish Hall for a fellowship meal and a special presentation, a song entitled ‘God on the Mountain’ by all the priests of the Archdiocese of Kota Kinabalu marked the beginning of the evening’s event.

The dinner reception at the Cathedral Parish Hall
Coadjutor Archbishop John Wong and Fr Dr Charles Chiew proceeding to the hall


  1. congratz to Bishop John Wong for his episcopal ordination....~

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