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Friday, September 6, 2013


Reported by : DaliusLL
Photos by: Dexter, Romeo and Bryan Francis

Sandakan : Jesus said, “I have come not to be served but to serve….” Mark 10:45 has inspired 37 men, women and children from the BECs of Indah Jaya, Chi Hwa, Kg. Bakau and 2 PPC representatives from St. Mary's Cathedral to Kg. Sukang Paitan on 31st. Aug -1st Sept 2013 for community work at St. Francis of Assisi Chapel. Their visit to this remote Chapel about 200 km from Sandakan Town is to foster relationship and experience true Christian fellowship so that together, they may share and grow in faith through a Gotong Royong (community work) project.

The two days outing saw them engaged in a four-community work project ~ putting up wire mesh fences around the Chapel, extension of the Chapel’s entrance roofing, cleaning and digging up the drainage at the Chapel’s compound and improving the walkway to the Rest House. It was heart-warming to see the group working together cheerfully with the faithful there under the scorching heat. The most enjoyable experience probably came from the children, those from the BECs mingling with the local children. The women prepared meals for the two-day visit. At night they were serenaded with beautiful music by our acoustic guitarists, Hildi Poili and Leonnie Degullacion.

We had a memorable fellowship with Fr. Thomas Makajil who was there to celebrate the Hari Merdeka and Sunday Mass and the Paitan Mission Catechist, Peter Saimin. The ladies and children stayed in the Mission house, while the men at the Rest house and the youth slept in the Chapel.
During the concluding Sunday Mass at St. Francis Of Assisi Chapel, Fr. Thomas expressed his gratitude to the visiting parishioners of St. Mary's Cathedral who came all the way from Sandakan to volunteer in the community work. On behalf of the community there, he thanked them for serving others generously in giving their time, talent and resources.

“The activity rendered by you definitely will touch the lives of other fellow Catholics in showing genuine God’s love in practical way” he pointed out. At the same note, he hoped that the faithful there too will be inspired and continue to contribute to the improvement of the mission in Paitan. He envisioned that one day in the future, with prayers, support and hard work of the local faithful, the mission will become a full fledged Parish. 

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