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Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

by Euthalia, Parish SOCCOM

Sandakan: The 9-day Novena masses from 6th – 14th August and the day-long rosary rally on 15th August culminated to the celebration of the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was also aimed to prepare the faithful to celebrate the 136th Anniversary of St Mary’s Cathedral Parish on 18th August.
This year, it was celebrated differently. We not only celebrate the Feast of the Assumption of Mother Mary but we also celebrate our Parish’s 136th Anniversary. At the same time, the Diocesan Youth Carnival (Temasya Belia Keuskupan) was held on the 12th – 16th August with more than 400 participants. Around 1,500 parishioners flooded our parish to celebrate the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Prior to the Eucharistic celebration, the Holy Rosary Prayer in three languages (Bahasa Malaysia, English and Chinese) was held at the frontage of the Diocesan Pastoral Centre. After the crowning ceremony of Mother Mary, it was followed by a procession from the Pastoral Centre to the grotto.
Rt. Rev. Julius Dusin Gitom, the Bishop of Sandakan presided over the Eucharistic celebration, con celebrated by Fr. David Garaman, the rector of St Mary’s Cathedral, Fr. Christopher Ireneus, the assistant rector, Fr Thomas Makajil, the resident priest of Paitan Mission and Romo Hendra of Tg Selor, Kalimantan.
In his homily, Bishop Julius called on the faithful to be always thankful that God gave us Mother Mary. We received 3 mysteries from Mother Mary and she’s being protected by God from sin. The first mystery is that Mother Mary is free from sin and she bore and gave birth to Jesus. The second mystery is that Mother Mary has been chosen by God to be the Mother of Jesus. Angel Gabriel appeared and announced to Mother Mary that she shall conceive by the power of the Holy Spirit and give birth to a Son and her Son will be called the Son of God. Mother Mary with her strong faith, obedient and loyal accepted God’s plan. The third mystery is the assumption of Mother Mary into heaven. Even though she is already in heaven, but she is still very close to us. She always supports us not only as individual but also as a community.
The question is, "Are we willing to let Mother Mary come into our life and support us?"  Sometimes our answer is "Yes" when we pray or when we are in a comfortable situation. There are times when we are not too sure especially when are in doubt. It is very important for us to pray to Mother Mary because through her our prayer will be delivered to Jesus Christ, Her son. Let us continue to pray and receive blessing from God. And, we also pray for other community, especially those who seldom come to church. We pray to Mother Mary to help us to be faithful servants of God in accomplishing our Diocesan Vision through the 1st Mission goal "to commit ourselves to building a Christ-centered community, serving one another with love through nurturing active church participation with the Eucharist as the source and summit of Christian life."
After the mass, red roses were blessed and distributed to all parishioners.

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