Article by GS and
Photos by Airene and Rogena
Sandakan : Sometime in November last year, Rt Rev Julius Dusin Gitom, the Bishop of Sandakan issued a pastoral letter to all parishes to support Paitan Mission financially. Thus, it is the responsibility of all parishes to contribute to the Paitan Mission Fund. Each parish may in its own way organize any fund raiser towards the cause. Half of the proceeds will be for the parish development fund while the other half is for the said mission fund.
Early February this year, when the prelate assumed the role as the rector of St Mary’s Cathedral, it was decided to hold a fund raiser in the form of a food and sale bazaar in conjunction with the 133rd anniversary of the Cathedral Parish. John Pang was appointed to spearhead the event.
Working papers, organization chart, road map and check lists were put in place. It took the Main Organizing Team some six months to lay the ground and preparation work. Announcement of the fund raiser was published in the bulletin each week till the bazaar proper on 14th August 2016 to drum up the event.
Almost all Church groups and sub parishes responded and participated in the bazaar. 75 stalls filled up the whole Parish Hall, the Canteen Area and the adjacent compound. The whole day event was filled with festive joy. The whole church was full of life ad mist a vibrant setting of much interaction. The event was an excellent platform to bring the people together putting above all, for the betterment and advancement of the Church.
Set to raise some RM200,000 at the onset but by the grace of God, the team managed to rope in RM242,094 instead.
In the post mortem meeting on 25th August, Bishop Julius thanked God Almighty for the great success of the event. He appreciated all members of the MOT for their commitment, team spirit and hard work. He was a little sceptical at the beginning but with the intervention of the Holy Spirit, all things unfolded beautifully. Nothing is impossible with God. Beyond that, the event and the process have brought the people closer to one another. Everyone came forth to chip in. It was indeed a respond to Jesus’ prayer for unity – ‘That they may be one.’
John Pang, the Chairman of the fund raiser expressed his appreciation to Bishop Julius for the trust in appointing him to spearhead the event. He thanked his committee for the support and commitment throughout the tedious but fruitful and meaningful journey. He also thanked all sponsors, all groups and faithful who have contributed to the success of the event.