By Mario Domingo, Tawau
|EMCs with Mgsr Nicholas Ong, rector of Holy Trinity Church, Tawau|
Tawau : In conjunction with the Year Of Faith, some 40 Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion (EMC) attended a day of Recollection on Saturday 2nd March 2013. The day began with the Enthronement of the Bible and ended with Adoration and Benediction.
The most memorable part of the session for all participants was the opportunity to watch a movie about Pope John XXIII: “The Pope of Peace”. It was an opportune time for the EMCs to know the origin of the Second Vatican Council and the process of selecting a new Pope. The movie features the story of the blessed Pope, born 25 November 1881 as Angelino @Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli, the fourth child of fourteen broods. Ordained a priest in 1904 and served in various posts including appointment as Papal Nuncio in several countries, including France in 1944. He did much to help the Jews during the Holocaust. Pope Pius XII made Roncalli a Cardinal in 1953. Pope John was elected on 28 October 1958 at the age of 77. He surprised those who expected him to be a caretaker Pope by calling the historic Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). He did not live to see it to completion, dying in 1963, four-and-a –half years after his election, and two months after the completion of his final encyclical, Pacem in Terris. Pope John was beloved for his evident warmth and kindness. He was beatified on 3rd September 2000.
The movie tells the story of Roncalli during his election to the papacy in parallel to his life from the early days of childhood to the days as a Catholic priest. It also narrates how he outdid himself and of expectation during his years in the Pontificate. Elected supposedly as an interim Pope that would just keep the status quo and listen to the advisers around him, he proved to be his own man when he surprised the Church and world by calling for the Second Vatican Council. This film also underscores his personality like his wonderful sense of humour and great charity towards others, especially the poor, downtrodden, and outcast.
The Pope of Peace is one excellent story not only for Catholics but also for people who admire and emulate outstanding people who made great contributions to the history of the world and mankind. Seeing this movie touches the heart so deeply that it makes you cry over and over again; reflecting on the Pope’s gentleness and Christ like kindness.
In the Sunset Mass that follows, all the EMCs from the 3 language group; English, Bahasa and Chinese were commissioned by Monsignor Nicholas Ong, the Rector. Meanwhile 4 new EMCs were installed in the occasion. In addressing the EMCs, the Rector urged them to be examples of Christian living in faith and conduct; to strive to grow in holiness through the sacrament of unity and love. In response, the EMCs pledged to undertake the office of giving the body and blood of the Lord to the brethrens, and so serve to build up the church; to administer the Holy Eucharist with utmost care and reverence and to strive more earnestly than ever to live the Christian life, to give good example, and to take their faith more seriously.