FEBRUARY 1, 2009, Vol 59, No 3

Palestinians mourn during the funeral for their relatives killed during an Israeli offensive in Beit Lahiya, Gaza Strip, on Jan 15. Archbishop Nicholas Chia said that the Church is in solidarity with the people in Gaza, who are suffering fear, death and deprivation. The Church also understands the desire of the Israelis to live without threats from rockets, he said. Both communities have a right to live with dignity and in peace, he added. CNS photo

SINGAPORE – The deaf community from Johor and Singapore attended a two-day annual retreat themed "Jesus the bread of Life" at St. Francis Xavier Major Seminary on Dec 7-8.

It was conducted by Brother Lionel Thomas, a seminarian from the Malacca-Johor diocese.

Participants were given a deeper insight and understanding of the Eucharist. Other activities included Praise and Worship during which members jumped and clapped as they let their "fingers do the talking"; Holy Hour when they knelt in adoration and prayed in Sign Language; a forum; and meditation based on biblical verses.

MANILA – A replica of a Black Nazarene is placed outside a church in Manila, Philippines, before being paraded in the capital on Jan 7.

Some 80,000 pilgrims turned out for the annual celebration escorting the statue of Jesus through the streets.

SINGAPORE – The prayer room at St. Joseph Church (Bukit Timah) was burglarised on Monday Jan 5 and the monstrance containing the Blessed Sacrament, stolen.

The break-in was discovered at about 6.00am that morning by the caretakers of the church. The caretakers, a husband and wife team, then informed parish priest Father Edmund Chong.

The glass case in which the monstrance holding the Blessed Sacrament was kept, was smashed. The monstrance and Blessed Sacrament were missing.

The prayer room, called The Upper Room, is located in a separate wing from the main church. It is locked daily from 10.00pm to 6.00am.

SINGAPORE – Some 600 adoptees, mainly elderly, from various communities were treated to a Chinese New Year nine-course lunch at Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Upper Serangoon Road, on Monday Jan 19.

Guests were seated by 10.00am. But for the organisers, Matthew 25 and Willing Hearts, the day began at 6.30am as their volunteers prepared the food and activities.