Julita, SOCCOM, Tawau
Holy Trinity Parish, Tawau - 19th January 2014, the Second Sunday of Ordinary time in the Liturgical year was also the Feast of Sto. Nino, the Holy Infant of Jesus. This Feast has become a yearly event for the Filipino Community in Holy Trinity Parish Tawau in remembrance of the history of faith and salvation.
The 11.00 am Thanksgiving Mass was presided over by Msgr. Nicholas Ong and con celebrated by Fr. David A. Garaman and Fr.Johnny Raju. Some 500 Filipino parishioners attended the Holy Mass. 14 members of the Filipino Pastoral Community from St. Mary's Cathedral Parish, Sandakan participated in the celebration.
Referring to the Gospel reading from John 1: 29 - 34, Msgr Nicholas in his homily urged parishioners to value the free gift that God gives to all humankind which is salvation itself. Christ is the suffering servant of God, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world with one purpose and that is to save us all.
He said, "God gives us salvation freely, the only thing we must do is to come to Mass every Sunday, receive the body and blood of Christ with faith for our salvation. Receiving communion with faith and responding 'AMEN' shows that we believe and our faith will lead us to salvation. Receiving communion without acknowledging our faith, will not lead us to salvation."
With this strong and clear message once again all parents and Godparents are reminded to pursue, to encourage and bring their children to Mass that they will be enriched in their faith and knowledge in Christ. This will empower them to have the ability to overcome challenges of the world and to be saved.
He added that Sto Nino or the Holy infant of Jesus symbolizes total dependency of the Father. By putting ourselves in the hand of God the Father, with hope and faithfulness, the compassion of God will be revealed through the Holy Spirit. Be like children, innocent and fully trusting the Father.
In conjunction with World Day of Migrants and Refugees, themed Migrants and Refugees: Towards a better world, Msgr Nicholas said that we are only passing through this world, let us move along together, growing in mutual respect, caring and upholding tolerance for a better world for all.
After the Thanksgiving Mass, parishioners adjourned to the Parish Hall for a luncheon fellowship.
The celebration themed "Jesus is the source of light and hope" was filled with presentations by the various groups of the Filipino community.