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Saturday, January 23, 2016

“ MERCY” ~ THE THEME FOR BEC VISITS 2016

By Julita, SOCCOM Tawau
Tawau : As we journey in the Extraordinary year of Mercy (8th December 2015 - 20th November 2016), Holy Trinity Tawau continues to build communities through the Basic Ecclesial Communities. The concept of BECs was introduced 8 years ago in the parish, sharing and spreading the Good News in the neighborhood as well as other communities in the parish. 
A meeting to evaluate the current status of BECs; understanding the realities, discerning the situation and planning ahead was held on 19th January, between Msgr Nicholas Ong, the Parish Priest, Sr Liza fsic, Andrew Kiat, the PPC Chairman, Gilbert Jack, Chairman of the BEC Core Group and a few other BEC Coordinators. The theme chosen for house visits is 'mercy' in line with the Extraordinary Year of Mercy.
In his word of welcome, Msgr. Nicholas Ong firmly said, "I have faith in the BECs. It’s a way to bring Christ to others through the teaching of the church, and so I believe in the concept, the new way of being Church. We can put our effort together in this wonderful approach in building up small communities."
The BEC Core Group of Holy Trinity Tawau consists of the Parish Priest, Religious Sister of the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception and BEC Coordinators and leaders. They are committed to assist BECs in the parish to sustain, develop and grow. They schedule visits to the various BECs, journeying and lending support to the communities.  They help neighbourhood communities to start BECs if they so desire.
Since 2009 up till to date, Msgr. Nicholas Ong, the anchor of the program has accomplished 264 visits to the BECs. He is never alone in his pastoral visits. He is always accompanied by the religious sisters and the BEC Core Group members.    
In the earlier visits, all BEC gatherings focused on the Word of God for the coming week. Later it was changed to the themes based on the Youth Catechism ( Youcat ) in order for members to be familiar with the teaching of the church regarding our faith.
There are about 25 BEC areas that are actively involved in weekly gatherings and sharings.  It was resolved that others that are not so active, need to be motivated and supported by the Core Group.
Programs in the BECs have transformed many families in the neighbourhood. People are more involved in church activities, not as individuals but as families. 
The BEC Core Group of Holy Trinity Parish Tawau are committed in the following;

  • Monitor the progress and activity carried out by each BEC areas
  • To hold Faith formation sessions for members
  • To motivate BECs to get involve in activities/programs organized by the Church or any ministry in the church
  • To cooperate with the Parish Priest, Parish Pastoral Council and the Advisory Team in fulfilling its pastoral goals
Some random responses from families /individuals of BEC areas regularly visited by the BEC Core Group members :

  • It strengthens relationship bonding among family members and families within the neighborhood
  • Lapse Catholics are being renewed and slowly transformed to return to the church
  • Members acquire deeper knowledge about the faith
  • Members serve the Church as one big family with care and trust 
  • The bond between husband and wife is nourished by the sharing from other couples regarding married life
  • Acquire joy and peace through service rendered to the Church
  • Acquire spiritual growth and maturity
  • Children and teenagers are exposed to the church teaching at an earlier age
Holy Trinity Parish Tawau is committed to continue their mission in reaching out to families and new BEC areas this year. May God’s blessing be with all the members and grant them strength, wisdom and guidance in their journey.

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