Sandakan : Around 30 leaders and representatives from the Parish Pastoral Council, from the various ministries and groupings of the 3 language communities of St. Mary’s Cathedral Parish, converged in Room A, Parish Hall, 22nd August 2011 to deliberate on the upcoming Parish Delegate Assembly. The objectives are for them to plan, to conduct / facilitate the continuation of an ongoing mini assemblies towards establishing the formulation of the Vision and Mission Statement for the Diocese of Sandakan.
The discussion was facilitated by Jacob Chin (Parish Delegate Assembly Task Force Coordinator) and assisted by Airene Gumanas, both attended the Diocesan Facilitator Training Program held last year and are ex PPC members. In his briefing, Jacob explained that the setting up of the task force for the Parish Delegate Assemblies (PDA) is mainly to facilitate / assist in organizing mini assemblies at grass root level through the many channels available i.e BECs, Parish Groups, Youth Groups, Parish Ministries or Communities, Migrants, Sub-Parishes in collecting feedback for the formulation of the Vision and Mission statement of the Diocese. In order to be able to have an effective working committee from the main language communities (Bahasa, Mandarin and English), it is beneficial for them (task force) to attend a half day training program on how to conduct the mini PDA.
The session began with a power point presentation by the Executive Secretary of Sandakan Diocese, Francis Tan on the overview of the Church and the role of the parishioners in shaping the future of the Catholic Church in Sandakan. He explained that the task force as a means of reaching out to parishioners to gather their views and concerns regarding pastoral needs and issues and be documented for the main Parish Delegates Assembly.
The PPC Chairman, Patrick Seah noted that an effective way of reaching out to the parishioners is through the role of the various communities such as the BECs or language based communities. He called upon those present to work hand in hand for the success of this task. The meeting concluded with a closing prayer led by Michael Lai.