More than 10,000 faithful and guests are expected to gather at the Singapore Indoor Stadium on July 4 afternoon to participate in a thanksgiving Eucharistic celebration to commemorate the nation’s 50th birthday.
The Mass will commence at 2 pm. However there will be a pre-Mass and post-Mass segment during which the role of the Catholic Church in Singapore will be highlighted through a multimedia-and-stage production. The segment before the Mass will trace the early beginnings of the local Church and the second segment after the Mass will showcase the future of the Church.
“Both 30-minute productions will feature members of the clergy, Religious and laity – both the young and the young at heart,” revealed Franciscan Friar Derrick Yap, chairman of the organising committee.
Singaporean singer-songwriter Corrinne May will also compose and perform an original song for the occasion.
The Mass and “live” stage productions will be backed up by two 100-strong combined choirs and supported by a 60-member orchestra.
The archdiocese has adopted the theme of “joy” for its SG50 commemoration, which captures the essence of the celebration.
Said Friar Derrick: “The human soul needs to celebrate: to remember with grateful hearts, to bond as a human family, to dream together the future. And the organising committee hopes that through the Mass and the productions that precede and follow, we can truly celebrate, especially to be grateful to God for his blessings.”
SG50 banners will also be put up at all parishes to show the archdiocese’s participation in union with the rest of the nation, as well as to exhort Catholics to pray for Singapore. In a coordinated move, each parish will be assigned two particular intentions from among the fruits of the Holy Spirit – Joy, Peace, Charity, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Generosity, Gentleness, Faithfulness, Modesty, Self-control and Chastity.
The banner that will be displayed at each church will indicate the two intentions the parish will be praying for.
“These banners are not merely for display, but they are also meant to remind Catholics to keep the nation in prayer. In addition, the message helps to evangelise,” said Mr Paul Tan, a committee member who is coordinating the exercise.
Friar Derrick added, “In a fast and ever changing world, this is really a timely opportunity for the entire Catholic population to do our bit to help sanctify our little red dot of a nation.”
Besides the Mass, other activities are also being planned to involve and engage the faithful all over Singapore to be part of this national celebration.
Parish groups like the Society of St Vincent de Paul and Kanektas Youth Ministry will be organising “50,000 Meals for the Poor” and facilitating an initiative called “50,000 Prayers for the Nation”.
In these initiatives, Catholics can look forward to offering a meal for the poor, a Mass, a fast, a decade of the rosary, or an act of charity for the intentions and well-being of Singapore. A dedicated Catholic SG50 website for participants to simply “click and offer” these prayers or acts of charity will go “live” from June 1.
The thanksgiving Mass at the indoor stadium will not be the only Eucharistic celebration commemorating SG50. On the National Day weekend of Aug 8-9, all parishes will also be dedicating their Sunday Masses to the occasion.
Tickets for the SG50 Mass will be sent to all parishes from June 1. Parishioners who are keen to attend the Mass are advised to register with their parish offices on a first-come-first-served basis. The number of tickets allotted to each parish is based on a uniform percentage calculated against the population size of the parish.