Search This Blog

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

3rd Parish Pastoral Assembly

By Romeo Francis Barintang

Sandakan : More than 100 participants attended the 3rd St Mary’s Cathedral Parish Pastoral Assembly (PPA) on 19th October 2019 at the Diocesan Pastoral Centre. The last two assemblies were confined to church leaders. This year, apart from lay leaders, parishioners were also invited to participate in the assembly. Also in attendance were Rev. Fr. David A. Garaman, the rector, Rev. Fr. Christopher Ireneus, the assistant rector, religious sisters of the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception (FSIC) and Pilis Malim, the PPC Chairman.
The event began at 8.00 am with the Enthronement of the Bible. Rev. Fr. Christopher Ireneus proclaimed the Gospel reading according to Mark 8 : 14 – 21. In his homily, he shared that the reading is a curious text. Jesus calls his disciples to reflect on the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves which eventually became the Eucharist. The significance of which, is a sign and pledge of his saving and real presence which has become the source and summit of Christian life.
He then facilitated the session on spiritual input based on the 1st mission goal, ‘to nurture active participation in the church with the Eucharist as the source and summit of Christian life.’ The vitality and quality of ministries/communities are seen on how they serve the church in the various ways of their charism. The Eucharist has been the source and center of Christianity throughout the ages and reflection on it brings to mind the many demands of Christian living.
We are called to be the “salt of the earth” and “light of the world” as in Mt 5 : 13 -16. This task belongs to every believer and it is the duty of all Catholic faithful. A Catholic parish builds first and foremost on solid foundation (Matt 16: 18) “and I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church”. Our parishes need to encourage, support, and sustain lay people in living their faith placing their gifts for the service of others (cf 1 Pt 4 : 10).
Fr. David, the rector in his keynote address touched on the theme of the assembly “Nurturing active church participation with the Eucharist as the source and summit of Christian life” which is also the main pastoral focus for our diocese. The theme invites us to reflect and act towards achieving our desired goal as a community to become truly a “Christ-centered community serving one another with love.”
He appealed to all participants that regardless of background and culture, all of us have a very special place in the life of the Church. He congratulated all for working hard in ensuring the parish continues to be a visible sign of God’s presence in the world. The message is clear that all of us are invited to go deeper into our relationship with the Eucharist so that we may be strengthened in our commitment. We become what we receive; Christ to one another until the Kingdom comes.
Pilis Malim, the PPC Chairman presented the resolutions of the 2nd PPA and the findings of the just concluded survey on the implementation of the 1st diocesan mission goal.
Rt. Rev. Julius Dusin Gitom, the Bishop of Sandakan graced the official launching of the proposed extension and upgrading of St Joseph’s Church which shall take off next month and is expected to be completed before the end of next year.
Michael Ibau, acting Chairman of the Parish Property and Maintenance Committee presented a report on all projects carried out for the year. The projects include those of St Mary’s Cathedral, St Joseph’s Church, St Mark’s Church and St Peter’s Chapel, Sungai Manila.
Isaac Pang, the Chairman of the Parish Finance Committee and Elaine Lim, the treasurer briefed the participants the parish financial status for the period from January to September 2019.  The Envelope Pledge System, reinstated last December has contributed much to the parish coffer. 
Dalius Lobinjang, the moderator for the group discussion session posed the question on how can we enhance our approach in realizing the mission of “nurturing active church participation” towards achieving the diocesan vision from the perspective as church leaders and as parishioners.
Among the well accepted responses were;
·         Organize session on Training of Trainers
·         Leaders must be opened to new ideas
·         Leaders must not hold on to position for too long.
·         Youths to be given the opportunity to hold leadership role
·         Leaders must adopt the attitude of being a servant leader
·         Leaders have no other option but to serve others
·         Parishioners need to have mutual understanding in building up the Kingdom of God
·         Parishioners need to be involved in ministries and to
·         Participate in church activities to instill in them the sense of belonging
The assembly ended at 3.15 pm with the recitation of the Diocesan Prayer.

No comments:

Post a Comment


New Advent