Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Welcome to the Macau-China Bulletin: August 2012

"The kingdom of heaven is like yeast: 
a woman takes it, mixed with 
three measures of flour until all the 
whole mass of dough began to rise."
(Matthew 13.33)

The month of July brought a lot of news from China ... not always pleasant,though. The events over the last episcopal ordinations have thrown the relations between the Church and China into a lot of tension. But the message of Jesus, as seed and yeast, is growing. So today we share with you the experiences of life and mission during the eventful month of July.

University students in continuing education

China must be evangelized by the Chinese. Christian college students are the target group for the mission ... like the mustard seed (Matthew 13.31-32).
Young Christian professionals 
in the northeastern city of Harbin.
Prayer ...
Study ... ...
... And shared joy.

163rd Foundation Day of the Claretians

Concelebrated Mass on July 16, 2012 
in the Parish of St. Benedict, Hong Kong. 
163rd Foundation Day of the Congregation was celebrated with our collaborators, friends and well-wishers in Hong Kong on 16 July 2012. About 120 people participated in the solemn Mass celebrated in the parish of St Benedict in Hong Kong, headed by the Chancellor of the diocese  and concelebrated by 10 priests.

A group of priest friends in Hong Kong. Celebration Time!
Then we met in a fraternal agape to thank the Diocese and the parish of St. Benedict for accepting our Missionaries.
Collaborators in our ministry in Hong Kong.
  More friends and colleagues
Also so many of our friends, for over the past five years, have helped our young missionaries in the hard work of learning the Chinese / Cantonese and then their incorporation into the pastoral work of the diocese. A number of friends from Macau and Mainland also took part in the Foundation day celebrations. Currently Fr. Jose serves as Assistant parish priest in this parish and Fr. Ezakías begins his ministry also as Assistant parish priest in St. Teresa's Church in Hong Kong.
The community of Macau / Hong Kong 
Br Sid Ching

"Doctor Jesus"

Meet our friend, an Australian Oblate of Mary Immaculate, Fr. John!  You would find him loading his heavy backpack with easy to read booklets, visiting the Prisons in Hong Kong - five days a week - to meet and encourage and to share the Good News with the prisoners. Surprised? Then, must know this as well: for the past 27 years, he was working with the poor and needy in Hong Kong

We met him in his humble apartment in Hong Kong: it's just 10 square meters, no more! And half the given place is with boxes of books, piling up to the ceiling. He lives there for years. 
"Prisoners need to hear the Good News. The Bible ... perhaps is too big to handle ... we must give them something much simpler. In addition, most of them are non-Christians", he says. Thus he came up with the idea of "Doctor Jesus". It's is a booklet he prepared and his friends helped him publish. Each page carries a sentence of the gospel and a testimony of the prisoners.

 Fr. John with a group of collaborators
"Doctor Jesus" is available in English and Chinese.
You may visit:

Fr. John has also prepared a summary of the Old and New Testament (two volumes):

These books are also available in Chinese.
Last year, Fr. John has distributed over a thousand copies of our "Daily Gospel 2012" (Chinese edition) among the prisoners and they really liked them ... Naturally, they expect to receive the "Daily Gospel 2013 " this year!
Claretian Publications join forces and work together with Fr. John to bring the Word of God to the most distant, separated, abandoned. 
You may also visit:

The Word Made Voice!

Finding Fr. John of the previous story was made possible by one of his friends and collaborator, Professor Paul Ginnivan, another Australian professor of English in Beijing, whom we encountered.

A great gift: Professor Paul has an excellent voice and diction in English, but he is affected with cancer. To give thanks to God for his life, he offered to record in English the New Testament of our Bible... in a slow and meditative reading. In late July gave us his completed work - hundreds of hours of testing and recording! This material will be available free of charge through our website, once the editing process is completed. 

Professor Paul Ginnivan - has recorded the entire
 New Testament of the Christian Community Bible in English

Mission in Henan Province

Henan Province
Henan is a province of China located in the center-east. With nearly one hundred million inhabitants, is the most populous province in China. Henan is often regarded as the cradle of Chinese civilization. Northern Henan, along the Yellow River, has been the core of ancient China for at least half of its history. Several archaeological sites in this area reveal that different prehistoric cultures were active here.

Our veteran Chinese missionary, Fr. Peter Chao, has been in Zhumadian City, Province of Henan,  giving retreats and conferences to priests and to different groups of religious from 9 - 25 July, 2012. Fr. Peter, Having taught at the National Seminary of China (Beijing), gets a way to exercise the ministry in different parts of China.

Zhumadian is a city in southern Henan Province. Its area is 15,083 km ² and a population of over 7 million.
Henan landscape
Fr. Peter Chao, CMF  and the participants of the  
retreat, together with the local bishop
Fr. Peter Chao with another group of religious  
at the end of the second retreat

To train the trainers...

They have paid for their trip ... some come from thousands of miles, spending several days in train, eager to learn more about the Gospel and bring it to life, to be the leaven of the Kingdom in the places of their study or work.
An association called "Jericho", which consists of a group of Christian professionals who live and work in Macau, was responsible for gathering these young evangelists from the Mainland and providing them with necessary training.
The group of young Chinese with 
the Bishop of Macau, 
Mgr Joseph Lai.

The Bishop of Macao serves youngsters
during a meeting at the Cathedral.

Electronic Bible - in the size of a cell phone!

Here it is! The whole Bible in Chinese, in the form of a cell phone! The device has possibility to search for books, chapters and verses and also includes a library of electronic books, songs and  lectures. The device is supported with 8 GB memory. Indeed, a creative work of young Chinese professionals, spreading the good news through all possible means!

Church of St Benedict celebrates Silver Jubilee

The St Benedict Parish at Shatin Wai, Hong Kong celebrated the Silver Jubilee of the establishing of the parish on 8 July 2012. The parish was established on 11 July, the feast day of St Benedict, in 1987. 
 Church of St Benedict, Shatin Wai, Hong Kong
The Silver Jubilee celebrations together with the feasts of the Patron Saint of the parish and of the Blesseds and Martyrs of China [which falls on 9 July] had a beautiful culmination with a concelebrated Holy Eucharist by John Cardinal Tong Hon, Bishop of Hong Kong. During his homily Cardinal Tong exhorted the faithful to focus on the example of St. Benedict in following the Lord through Prayer, Work and Silence.
The Parish Council with John Cardinal Tong Hon and priests and nuns 
who formerly served in the parish, during the Jubilee Dinner
The Parish had a half-year long preparation as a run-up to the Jubilee celebrations. The renewal of Marriage Vows Ceremony, for couples married for 25 or more years and a prayer concert by the Parish Choir were two of the highlights of the celebrations. The celebrations were concluded with the Jubilee Dinner attended by over 400 parishioners.
Fr. Rossa [first from the left], together with other dignitaries on the dais during the Jubilee Celebrations

Fr. Jose Cherukara joined this Parish as its Assistant Parish Priest in the Month of November 2011. This is the first parish in the Diocese of Hong Kong in which the Claretians Missionaries begin to render our services. Fr. Rossa, Superior, Macau-Hong Kong Community was also part of the Jubilee Celebrations.

Music and Celebrations keep the Church pews filled!

In China, people are flocking to the city’s oldest Catholic church for a sense of community, entertainment, or a wedding ceremony, even if they are not Catholic.

Fr. Ezakias appointed in St. Teresa's Church

Fr Antony Swamy Ezakias, after successfully completing his two-year Chinese language course in the Chinese University of Hong Kong, is appointed as Assistant Parish Priest in St. Teresa's Parish, Kowloon. After a two-months vacation in India, Fr. Ezakias moved to the new Parish on 7 July 2012.
 A Photo taken in 1955 of St. Teresa's Church in Kowloon

Another view of the Tower of the Church 
The Construction of the Church began in September 1931, and was completed on 18 December 1932. It is the second largest Catholic Church in Hong Kong. The Church building is now classified as Class-II historical building.
A recent view of the Church

Three more permanent diacons for the Diocese of HK

John Cardinal Tong Hon, the Bishop of Hong Kong has ordained three new permanent deacons for the diocese on July 14 at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on Caine Road. Seen here with their wives are, from left to right: Deacon Nestor Kwan Chung-wah, Deacon Faustus Lam Sair-ling and Deacon Paul Siu Wai-leung. Around 1,000 people attended the Mass which was concelebrated by John Cardinal Tong Hon and Joseph Cardinal Zen Ze Kiun, the former bishop of the diocese.
- Courtesy: Sunday Examiner, 22 July 2012 

Hong Kong rallies behind Shanghai bishop

It was reported that an investigation, by the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association and the Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church in China, into alleged violations related to the licit ordination of  auxiliary Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin, for Shanghai, has concluded 
The bishop, who has Vatican recognition, gave up his positions in the government Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association and the Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church in China following his ordination on July 7 (Sunday Examiner, July 15 and 22). Reports say he has since been confined to the compound of Sheshan seminary and prohibited from assuming his duties as bishop.
Catholic Church News Image of Ordination probe ends, prelate still in seminary
Sheshan Seminary in Shanghai

On July 16, around 300 people gathered in front of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in Hong Kong’s Western District to recite the rosary, while an estimated 1,000 crowded into St Margaret’s Church, Happy Valley, for a Mass in support of Bishop Thaddeus Ma. 

Father Franco Mella, of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, a rights advocate who has worked with the poor on the mainland for decades, said Bishop Ma’s actions could have an important impact on Catholics in China. “Bishop Ma is probably the first bishop to openly say that he wants more freedom and this will definitely influence Christians in China to express their wishes courageously,” he said.

 An estimated 1,000 crowded into St Margaret’s Church, Happy Valley, 
for a Mass in support of Bishop Thaddeus Ma.

The Mass was concelebrated by the former bishop of Hong Kong, Joseph Cardinal Zen Ze-kiun, along with about 20 other priests. “Some brothers in China have submitted themselves to be slaves, while some others have become corrupted as they fail to withstand temptation,” said Cardinal Zen. He asked the congregation to “pray for the ones who fell down to rise, the hesitating ones to be strong and the strong ones to hold on right through to the end.”
- Courtesy: Sunday Examiner, July 22

Latinos in Macau!

We are a group of priests and religious working
in Macau and China. We come from Brazil, Peru,
Mexico, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Argentina -
All united in the same mission in this frontier of the Church.

From the Editor's Desk :-

"Daily Gospel 2013" in Simplified Chinese:
We have told that there are two ways of writing Chinese: traditional (used in Macau, Hong Kong and Taiwan) and simplified, which is used throughout China, Singapore, and Malaysia, etc. The Daily Gospel 2013 in simplified version for the Mainland and Singapore is now ready!
Cover of the "Daily Gospel 2013" in Simplified Chinese 
for Mainland China and Singapore.

La Biblia de Nuestro Pueblo: 

Is going to press: The Bible of Our People with Lectio Divina . It's a totally new project for the Spanish speaking regions. Each chapter of the Bible comes with a guide of "Lectio Divina": Read, Think, Pray and Act. The text of the Bible is taken form our previously published Spanish Bible "La Biblia de Nuestro Pueblo", already widespread throughout Latin America and published by Claretians. Here is the new cover:
Cover of the new Bible with Lectio Divina.

Claretians' 163rd Foundation Day Celebrations in Hong Kong

Anyone wonders why the Chinese sweep the Olympic Medals in 
Gymnastics and and other martial arts? See this and enjoy!