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Friday, March 11, 2016

24 Hours For the Lord

By Dalius LL 
Soccom Sandakan
Sandakan: As part of the Jubilee Year of Mercy, Pope Francis has decreed that dioceses around the world hold 24 hours of adoration and confession on Friday 4th March and Saturday 5th March preceding the fourth week of Lent. This is a great way to immerse ourselves in this special Year of Mercy.
St. Mary's Cathedral responded to the Pontiff's call to open its door for a 24 hours for Jesus in prayer, adoration and the Sacrament of reconciliation. It is the Holy Father’s wish that during the Year of Mercy and within the Lenten season, the Church celebrates the 24 hours for the Lord in every part of the world. 
For St. Mary's Cathedral, the 24-hour for the Lord commenced right after the Station of the Cross, with Eucharistic celebration at 6.00 pm on Friday, 4th March and ended next day at 6.00 pm, Saturday 5th March with Sunset Mass.
In the Opening Mass on Friday, Bishop Julius Dusin Gitom shared that it is the Holy Father’s wish that in every part of the world, the merciful, forgiving presence of Jesus be manifested during this 24-hour period through Eucharistic Adoration and Sacrament of penance. 

The prelate stressed that this event is an opportunity for us to reflect ones relationship with the Lord especially during this Year of mercy. In response to the Gospel reading, the prelate shared that the Lord is clearly calling for all of us to come back to Him. 
There is a need of conversion by loving God with all our heart, mind, strength and soul. If we want to feel the mercy of love deeper, then we must accept first God’s mercy in our heart. “The first commandment is to love God, but loving God is not enough if not reflected in our action towards others, especially those who are in need, which is in accordance to the second commandment” said the prelate. 
Through the reading, he reiterated that reaching out to others is a form of loving our neighbours and should be practiced in our daily life. May this Year of Mercy be truly manifested in our daily life and in our church. He encouraged all parishioners to make it a time with the Lord in these 24 hours with the Lord in the Cathedral.
The Parish Liturgical Committee has assigned a schedule with an hour each to the various ministries, communities and groupings in the parish. It was successfully attended for the 24-hour event in the Cathedral.

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