MARCH 5, 2017, Vol 67, No 05

Live the Promise, Experience the Joy

It was 11pm and the end of a stressful work day for Calvin and Elizabeth (their names have been changed to protect their identity). Most couples would be at home or out enjoying themselves. But for this couple, there was still work to be done.

Driving to the fertility clinic, waves of frustration and pain washed over them as they headed for another in-vitro fertilisation session, an artificial means of getting pregnant which is prohibited by the Church.

It was a desperate attempt by a frustrated couple who had been trying for a baby for years but who had been thwarted at every turn.

Since the launch of the GIFT campaign, Catholic Foundation has received many heart-warming responses. Lionel, a member of one of OYP’s young adult communities, shares how being a regular giver to the Church despite being a young person still early in his career, has helped him realise his true richness as a child of God.

Youths and young adults during a time of worship at the Catholic Youth Day organised by the Office for Young People in 2016. Photo: Office for Young People.

I am unsure if this happens with everyone who first embarks onto life as a young working adult. But when I first started working six years ago, it always felt as if I never had enough money.

Every month, I looked at my bank statement, and would be fraught with disappointment. To null my worries, I would spend much time dreaming about how I can be rich someday.

My perceived financial scarcity had led to some interesting behaviours, and affected the way I understood the act of almsgiving to the Church. When I attended Mass, I would usually pick out the smallest note in my wallet to give during offertory, hastily crumpling it up in my fist so that no one would notice.

Members of the Focolare Movement’s Singapore delegation meet Pope Francis.

Madam Delphine Sng, a parishioner at the Church of St Francis Xavier, never dreamed she would get to meet the Holy Father. But when Pope Francis came to be just in front of her, at a recent private audience, she felt the call to work for humanity in a new way.

Madam Sng had travelled with her husband, Theodore Chan, as part of the Focolare Movement’s Singapore delegation to the international Economy of Communion (EoC) conference, held at Castel Gandolfo, near Rome, from Feb 2-5.

The EoC is one of the key, continuing projects in the Focolare Movement, inspired by the first Christians, who put everything into communion so that no one would be in need.

Participants of Marriage Encounter’s 2017 World Council Meeting in Quito, Ecuador. Singaporean couple Shelley Ee (front row, fourth from left) and her husband Daniel (directly behind her) helped chair the meeting.

The Worldwide Marriage Encounter (WWME) held its 2017 World Council Meeting from Feb 2-8 to discuss further ways to accompany married couples as well as those in irregular unions.

Six WWME ecclesial teams, representing the continents of Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America, Pacific and Pan Africa, attended the meeting and each team composed of a married couple and priest.

Singaporean couple Daniel and Shelley Ee and Filipino Fr Nathaniel Gomez, who are serving their third year as the International Ecclesial Team (IET), chaired the meeting held in Quito, Ecuador.

Prof Leo Tan speaking at the ‘My Journey’ series of talks on Feb 16.

He does not see any contradiction between his Catholic faith and his work in science.

Rather, Prof Leo Tan finds that the “heart of man precedes the discovery of facts by science”, that man imagines all the possibilities and science seeks to find the answers to explain it.

The former director of the Singapore Science Centre, who is an educator and marine biologist, was speaking at a series of talks organised by the Catholic Business Network titled “My Journey”.

About 75 people attended the event held on Feb 16 at the indoor sports hall of St Joseph’s Institution.