OCTOBER 04, 2015, Vol 65, No 20

GEORGETOWN, MALAYSIA – Br Anthony Rogers (left), director of the La Salle Brothers in  Malaysia, was conferred the Darjah Setia Pangkuan Negeri (DSPN), which carries the title “Dato”, in conjunction with the 77th birthday of the Yang Dipertua Negeri of Penang, Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas.

The conferment was in recognition of the Lasallian contribution to education in Malaysia. The investiture ceremony was held on Saturday, Sept 5, in Penang.

By ANDREW SCOTT
Dr Chen Shiling with husband Liam at the health screening of clients from the Association for Persons with Special Needs Centre for Adults.Dr Chen Shiling with husband Liam at the health screening of clients from the Association for Persons with Special Needs Centre for Adults.
Led by God, Dr Chen Shiling felt a calling to minister to the community

On her first day as a volunteer with a group of intellectually disabled (ID) children and adults, 17-year-old Chen Shiling was so frightened that she decided she was never coming back.

Yet she found herself inexplicably drawn to them before the day ended. So for the next six years, she returned every Sunday to interact and help out at MINDS (Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore) Youth Group.

She took a break from volunteering after graduating from the National University of Singapore at age 23 but connected with MINDS again five years ago. By then she had become a medical doctor.

Dr Chen told CatholicNews, “That year I felt very strongly that there was something out there in the community for me. So I went back to MINDS and said to them, “I’m a doctor now. What can I do for you?”
Belgian Fr Paul Staes Scheut MissionsBelgian Fr Paul Staes Scheut MissionsWhen was the last time you had fun?
This question sounds as if “having fun” is something of a special achievement, like a football player scoring a hat-trick. If it refers to enjoying myself, I can say that I truly enjoy most of what I do, by choice or by assignment.

Name an occasion you felt embarrassed/humiliated.
When I was desperately looking for a toilet in a Toa Payoh mall, I ended up with smelly pants and in need of a thorough clean-up. Diminished control: side-effect of my recent radiation therapy for prostate cancer. I now travel around with “spare underwear”.

Name an occasion/incident when you felt God was far away.
It’s not so much a question of feeling God far away but, rather, that at times I find myself not living in a close relationship with the Father, or the Son, or the Holy Spirit. This happens when I’m concerned mainly about my own preferences or likes and dislikes.

What has sustained your life as a Religious, especially in the face of challenges/changes?
Closeness to the people I’m called to serve. As religious missionaries, we CICM often end up not living in a community of confreres, not even in a community at all. Nevertheless closeness to people is our crucial support.
Q: Is it proper to have a tea ceremony at or after a Catholic church wedding?

A: Weddings are joyful times when families come together to celebrate a special moment in the lives of their children. The Church recognises this special moment and sees it as a blessing and the fulfilment of the God-given vocation to life and to love.

The Church has always supported the inculturation of the Christian faith to local cultures. Even in marriage, the Church recognises that local cultures are expressions of this joyful occasion and encourages a tasteful inculturation of the celebrations.
 
Therefore, it is permissible, for example, for an Indian couple to include in the exchange of rings a further expression of this commitment by the tying of the thali. This is the gold thread which the groom ties to the neck of the bride.

Similarly, in Chinese culture, the tea ceremony is one beautiful element that couples, while celebrating the gift of marriage in a Catholic ceremony, may also express it towards their elders as a sign of filial piety and love. The commandment to honour parents is in turn a call for blessing upon the children in their marriage, and on their future children that God may bless them with.
Questions on the Faith is a new column for you to have your questions answered by authorities on various topics. Just email your question to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and include your full name, address and contact number. All decisions on submissions rest with those answering the questions. Published submissions will be edited.