SEPTEMBER 2, 2018, Vol 68, No 18

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Monsignor Philip Heng, SJ


In the last two parts of our journey in “Living a More Discerning Life” series, we reflected on discovering the deeper meaning of our daily living and our lack of “self-awareness” that can prevent us from living a more meaningful, peaceful and joyful life.

In this third part, it would be valuable that we reflect on the “ultimate destination of our life.” A greater clarity of this would give us a better sense of the direction, purpose and quality of our daily living.

What do most parents dream of for their children? Many, if not all, hope that they become “successful” in their lives. To achieve this, they perhaps hope that their children will study well, score good grades, have a good job, live comfortably, and better still become rich and famous. Parents know that such dreams do not come on a platter. Thus, parents make much sacrifices for their children.


David Fong

The late St Pope John Paul II was convinced that the well-being of both society and the Church depends on the vitality and strength of the family.

He could see during his time that the family would be subject to numerous forces that would seek to destroy it or in some way deform it. The complementary nature of man (husband) and woman (wife) and its purpose (indissoluble union and procreativity) have been increasingly rejected and a false vision of reality substituted for God’s created order.

In Familiaris Consortio, he wrote, “The future of humanity passes by way of the family. It is, therefore, indispensable and urgent that every person of good will should endeavour to save and foster the values and requirements of the Family.”

The annual Novena procession invariably draws large crowds. File Photo

Father Paul Pang, CSSR

My memory of the Novena devotions stretches back to over 60 years when I was still a non-Catholic. They were conducted in a parlour in the Redemptorist House, with about a dozen people. As the number of devotees increased, the devotions were transferred to the tiny chapel adjacent to the priest’s residence.

And, the numbers still continued to grow and the chapel had to be demolished to make way for a larger one. Eventually, it became necessary to build the two side wings. Today, because the Church was declared a conservation project, we were not allowed to demolish it to make way for the new Church. So the right wing merged with the new Church.

What attracts the large crowd of people of different races and religions to the Novena devotions? Redemptorist Fr Juan Campos, who spent many years of his life in China, said: “It is not we who draw the crowds. It is Mother Mary.” Fr Kevin O’Shea, a visiting Redemptorist, said the people flock to the Novena because we all need a mother figure in our life.
In this series on Catholic social service organisations, Catholic News features Boys’ Town. It celebrates its 70th anniversary as a place for young boys who need care and guidance to nurture them for their adult life.


Boarders are given the opportunity to grow and develop their potential.

Jared Ng

What started as a residential care for war-torn orphans after World War II has today evolved into a continuum of services and a one-stop children and youth centre.

Boys’ Town helps children and youth from disadvantaged and disengaged families who have faced hardships resulting from troubled home situations, financial struggles, abandonment and abuse.

The charity serves both boys and girls, from infant to young adults and its services include residential, fostering, youth outreach, clinical intervention and family reunification.