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Monday, June 13, 2016


Article by Julita Kantod
Photos by SOCCOM Tawau
Tawau : For the next 4 days, 7th - 10th June, all participants in their assigned group would assemble for the Morning Prayer followed by Eucharistic celebration. The Morning Prayer provided participants silent moment for personal reflection on how Christ had refreshed them to enter into a new day.
The Eucharistic celebration for the second day, 7th June was presided over by Bishop Cornelius Piong  of Keningau,  con celebrated by Archbishop John Wong of Kota Kinabalu and Bishop Julius Dusin Gitom of Sandakan.
Bishop Cornelius Piong during his homily called on the young people to begin the day in Christ, with Christ and for Christ by glorifying His name every moment of life.  Without Christ we are nothing.
The prelate said, 'SYD4 is an opportunity to receive God’s grace.  His presence in you may strengthen you to face difficulties and unpleasant moment. Continue to be witnesses of God, always in union with one another. You are the Light and Salt of the world. That is your mission, to be the disciple of Christ, to continue His mission by proclaiming the good news .'
He went on to say that to grow in faith one needs to develop a close relationship with God, nourishing oneself with His grace. It is important to be firmly grounded and deeply rooted, trusting and believing in Him. Be in union with Christ for He is the way, the truth and life.

In conclusion, he called on the young people to exercise the faith they professed by serving the family and the community.  He asked them to remain as good disciples of Christ by being committed and effective in ministry. 
After the Eucharistic celebration, participants were divided into five groups at five allotted venues. Each group was assigned  a priest, presenting a catechesis on faith.  Group members discussed and shared on the following;
  • how my faith begins and  how is my relationship with Christ during my preparation for SYD4
  • the gift / grace that I received during my preparation towards SYD and the 
  • meaning of the CROSS 

Their sharing  signaled  that the young people are  trying their best to know, love and serve God. They are learning to put God in their lives. They have hope yet at times they stumble, fall and lose hope. However the grace of God continue to strengthen them to move on. They believe SYD4 is the platform in enriching their spiritual life, sharing with others, getting to know new friends and learning to live in communion with other youth from across Sabah.
The afternoon session focused on the role and responsibility of the youth in the family. Participants were divided into 3 groups according to their age range ; 15 – 19 years, 20 – 25 years and 26 years and above with Bro. Jude Antoine, Fr Charles Chiew and Julita facilitating the group respectively.

The talk relates to the life of the family, what is family and why is family considered the core pillar of the future generation. The talk highlighted on the role and the responsibility of the teenager, the young adult and the young married couples towards their family. The session has raised awareness among the participants the importance of the family unit, the relationship among family members and the caring attitude of each member.
The evening session was the 'family night.' There was a slot on recapitulation of the day's program, reminding and reinforcing what had been shared.


An allotted time was set aside for participants to call home using their own handsets. They had the opportunity to talk to their family members; parents and siblings. Communication is the necessary and essential   thread that binds the family together. The scene was beautiful and touching.
There was also a session by the caregivers from the congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception for those who seek counseling. 

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