By: Julita Kantod
The Parishioners of Holy Trinity Parish Tawau are composed of different nationalities and cultures. The 4 main communities namely the Kadazan, Dusun and Murut, Chinese, Indonesian and the Filipinos have been journeying together since before. A minority is Iban and other local ethnic groups.
These various communities made the Church as a place of communion in faith and also in terms of the development of communal living. Through the Church, all this diversity is sustained besides creating a relationship as one big family regardless of status, race and language.
World Migrant Day which falls on 25th October 2016 was celebrated jointly by all categories of people with peace and joy in the celebration of Holy Mass. Participation in various communities has been organized by the Parish Integral Human Development Committee under the leadership of Clarence Chin, the Chairperson.
Approximately 1000 parishioners took part in the Eucharistic celebration in conjunction with the Migrant Sunday. The Liturgy ministers served as readers, commentators, warden, choir and the offertory bearers represented by and from the various communities.
The Eucharistic Mass was presided by Msgr. Nicholas Ong, the rector of Holy Trinity church. In his homily, he emphasized the message of the Holy Father on the migrant "I absolutely agree with the Holy Father Pope Francis that Migrants is a challenge for the whole world. But no matter what situation, we have to know that they are indeed in need of a job to survive "he said. Migrants not only contribute to the economic growth but also contribute their efforts in the spiritual growth. " I am very grateful for our parish where migrants are treated without partiality as other people. We walk together in peace and understanding. Only through acceptance that we can live in unity, "he said.
A short slide show on Migrant presented after the announcement and before the closing prayer.
So far, the Holy Trinity Church in cooperation with the Indonesian consulate has provided a place for children to attend classes called Community Learning Centre so that these children have the opportunity to learn the basic education in their lives.
After Mass, all parishioners were invited to participate in a Dialogue on issues related to marriage, baptism, burial, procedure and payment for treatment in the hospital. This is an important issue for all Migrants in order to give awareness and to educate them on the requirements or of certain documents needed in the process.
Approximately 100 people composed of migrants and local people also took part in this dialogue session. The session ended at 1:30 p.m with the closing prayer of Msgr. Nicholas Ong.