School of Witness graduates pose for a photo with Father Albert Ng who regularly celebrates Mass for them. Photo courtesy of the Catholic Archdiocesan Youth Centre
SINGAPORE – Sixteen local Catholic youths and two from overseas attended the 2nd School of Witness (SOW) held from Jan 6 to Feb 10 at the Catholic Archdiocesan Youth Centre.
The six-week school helped the participants to discover their true identity in Christ and gave them a deep experience of community life. They were challenged to put out into the deep, come out of their comfort zone to serve and be witnesses.
After experiencing six weeks of intensive community life, teachings, prayer sessions, and outreaches, the participants were commissioned by Archbishop Nicholas Chia. The participants’ parents were present at the commissioning Mass.
Archbishop Chia encouraged the participants to be witnesses to their friends, families, in their parishes and schools.
St. Francis Xavier parishioner, Louisa Tan, said: “I came to SOW looking for meaning in life. It was a very tough struggle initially, but as time went on and I opened myself up to God, I went through an entire process of healing and grew so much closer to God. At the same time I learnt how to surrender to God. Now I know that even if everyone doesn’t love me, as long as I have God’s love and His unconditional acceptance, that’s enough reason for me to live my life to the fullest.”
“SOW has brought me to decide how I should change my lifestyle for Jesus,” said Nativity Church parishioner Gabriel Zachary Patrick. “At the beginning I came to the school not knowing that I’m broken before God. But in the first few days I was shown how much God loves me. It was also wonderful to live in the community as we helped one another to grow in Christ. I was also able to use my gifts and talents for the outreaches.
The Youth Ministry Office (YMO) conducts the programme annually in collaboration with the Institute for World Evangelization (ICPE Mission).
By Mariana Wijayanti