JULY 26, 2015, Vol 65, No 15

The crowd at the Prisons Week Mass.The crowd at the Prisons Week Mass.
“It can be daunting and frustrating at times when those we seek to help fail to listen and respond,” said Archbishop William Goh during the annual Prisons Week Mass held at the Church of St Mary of the Angels on July 5.

But “before we label such people [convicts] as ‘goners’,” said the archbishop, “the Gospel reminds us to think carefully and not allow prejudice to prevent us from reaching out to people in need.”

He then invited all present to ask themselves why people end up in jail.

Parents upbringing of their children are vital to their character and behaviour, he said.


LET THERE BE PEACE ON EARTH:
A combined Canossian schools choir comprising St Anthony’s Canossian Primary and Secondary Schools, Canossa Convent Primary School and the Canossian School for the hearing impaired, took part in an interfaith concert to mark SG50. The 180-strong choir sang Let There Be Peace on Earth at the July 6 event titled Harmony in Diversity: Concert in Celebration of Singapore’s Religious and Racial Harmony.

The concert, held at The Star Vista, was organised by New Creation Church and Taoist Federation (Singapore). The event brought together 10 of the major religions and the four main races in Singapore in an ensemble of song and dance. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was the guest of honour.
Verbum Dei Sr Maria Jose M Egido conducting The Word Prayed workshop at the Bible Symposium on July 11. Verbum Dei Sr Maria Jose M Egido conducting The Word Prayed workshop at the Bible Symposium on July 11.

The Word of God is “someone”, not “something”.

This point was repeatedly emphasised during the July 11 Bible Symposium, the first such event organised by the newly formed Archdiocesan Biblical Apostolate.

“The Word of God is Jesus … with a voice, a face and a heart,” said Verbum Dei Sr Sandra Seow at the daylong event held at Catholic Junior College. “In the Word, Jesus came to give us His very self.”

Have you “known and met the author” of the Bible, she asked the more than 500-strong crowd at the school’s auditorium.
On July 4, we celebrated not only a national Church event, but also premiered our first historical video and launched a virtual exhibition on the history of the Church. Screened at the pre-Mass segment of the Joy SG50 event, Our Catholic Light traces how the light of Christ has been conveyed through the ages, how it reached Singapore and how it dwells in the Church.

This was conveyed through interviews with priests, Religious Brothers and Sisters, Church workers and volunteers. Similarly, the virtual exhibition aims to tell the story of Catholicism in Singapore through the voices of people who helped to build the Church. Valerie Siew from the Chancery Office shares how the video and virtual exhibition came about.
Infant Jesus Sisters being interviewed in CHIJMES garden.Infant Jesus Sisters being interviewed in CHIJMES garden.
About 10,000 Catholics and guests packed the Singapore Indoor Stadium for the SG50 Thanksgiving Mass.About 10,000 Catholics and guests packed the Singapore Indoor Stadium for the SG50 Thanksgiving Mass.Archbishop William Goh and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong pose for a photo with Archbishop Emeritus Nicholas Chia and Fr Robert Balhetchet (in wheelchairs) and other pioneering clergy and ReligiousArchbishop William Goh and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong pose for a photo with Archbishop Emeritus Nicholas Chia and Fr Robert Balhetchet (in wheelchairs) and other pioneering clergy and Religious

“I’m very proud to be a Catholic!”

This was the sentiment expressed by participants after the Joy SG50 Thanksgiving celebration on July 4.

About 10,000 people, including about 1,800 volunteers, packed the Singapore Indoor Stadium to give thanks for the nation’s 50 years of existence. During the five-and-a-half hour event, they listened to stirring speeches from guest-of-honour, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, and Archbishop William Goh, as well as a special message from Pope Francis himself.

However, for many, it was the sight of priests, Religious and laity performing song-and-dance items together after the Mass that made a deep impression on them.