To many, the Christmas festivities and holidays are the best part of the Christian calendar year and everyone enjoys this celebration joyously. As part of Christmas, everyone gets involved in greetings, shopping, singing, caroling, visiting, partying, eating delicious food, exchanging gifts with family members and friends and also helping to bring joy in the lives of the poor. All Christian families and friends join together with others to celebrate the joy, love and happiness of the birth of Child Jesus, the Son of God.
Our parish of St Joseph’s Zommi Catholic Community celebrated a wonderful Christmas this year. The presence of Her Excellency Kamala Shirin Lakhdir, who is the United States Ambassador to Malaysia made their celebration a significant and meaningful one. Together with her team, she joined the community for Christmas Day Mass at 11.30am. After Mass, they organized a fellowship with the community and the Ambassador had a meal with them. She also joined in the stage shows and entertainment held at Dewan Msgr. Anthony Thomas. The Zommi community thanked the Ambassador and her colleagues and presented them with gifts.
December has come to an end. This holiday season will end too and we will head back to work soon and our children will return to school. We will bid farewell to the year 2019 and welcome 2020. It is a wonderful time to reflect on the year that’s been, as we bid it a fond farewell. As a parish, we started 2019 with exciting formations, get-togethers, events and fellowships. I am very grateful to all parish leaders from the various ministries and committees as well as volunteers who dedicated valuable time and worked collaboratively to bring success to all our events and celebrations. We truly couldn’t have done it without you!
The Holy Father Pope Francis, in his message on Christmas Day, invites us to “bring tenderness to all, and brighten the darkness of this world.” As we move forward to our third-year parish vision, “Committing Ourselves to New Evangelisation” with the mission to embrace, to care for and to heal the 5Ls – the Last, Lost, Least, Little and Lonely, let us commit ourselves to bringing the light of Christ to them. As we look forward in expectation, let us stay together and work hand in hand to bring light to all, and live our faith devotedly. We need every one of you to come together to accomplish a shared goal – our vision and mission. Let’s learn how to embrace, to care for and to heal the 5Ls and give our best this coming year.
1 January 2020 will mark the 53rd World Day of Peace. The Holy Father explains that peace as a journey of hope is to be embarked upon in a spirit of dialogue, reconciliation and ecological conversion. He also adds that peace has “great and precious value, the object of our hope and the aspiration of the entire human family.” Peace requires patience and trust which is something that we “must build up continually” and it is a journey “in constant pursuit of the common good”. The peace process is to be made together step by step, not with empty words but with convinced witnesses as peacemakers who are open to dialogue and to live in forgiveness. Pope Francis recalls his Encyclical Letter, “Laudato Si” which invites us not to be hostile towards others and lack respect for our common home or be abusively exploiting of natural resources. The Holy Father concludes with a prayer that “the Holy Spirit prompts in us ways of thinking and speaking, that make us artisans of justice and peace.”
Let’s have a fresh start and may all your efforts produce great success in the year 2020. The Lord will bring peace, joy, happiness and success in your life. Happy New Year and God bless you always.
by Rev Fr George P.