Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Welcome to China Bulletin Blog - January 2014

We start the New Year 2014 with renewed vigor and hope!
 Once again:
"Thank you Lord", 
for all what you have given us and
  "Yes", to what is yet to come!

Advent and Christmas Celebrations

We had numerous activities in the season of Advent, in preparation for Christmas. Lighting of the Christmas tree is a traditional event at St. Benedict Church, in Hong Kong. 
The parishioners write their Christmas wish and prayer on beautiful wishing-cards and decorate the Christmas Tree, set in the lobby of the Church. 
 The Nativity Scene by the English Sunday School kids
On the second Sunday of the Advent, the parishioners gather together in the evening to light the Christmas Tree  amidst singing of carols and the children enacting the Nativity scene. 
Fr. Alberto with Jose some of the parishioners of 
St. Benedict Church, Hong Kong
On the third Sunday of the Advent, Fr. Alberto guided the Advent recollection for the English Speaking Community of St. Benedict. 

He based his talk on the Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis, "The Joy of the Gospel". 

We had a family gathering in Macau, together with Fr. Provincial and our associates to celebrate Christmas, and had an 'Indian lunch' !
...and indeed some 'adventurous fun time' later on!!
Novena Mass
From 16 - 24 December, the Filipinos celebrate what they call "Simbang Gabi" = Celebration overnight. It is a tradition that dates back several centuries, when the first missionaries came to the Philippines. All churches in the country are full at about 4 in the morning, to celebrate the Mass.
In Macau, we continue the tradition and celebrate the 'novena' of Masses in preparation for Christmas at 5 in the morning. A few of our neighbours come to our residence, some of them, straight from work ... others just with very little sleep, but we're here!

Biblical Apostolate and New Evangelization

Meeting of Representatives of Asian Bishops for the Biblical Apostolate
Delegates from 19 Asian countries gathered in Thailand to reflect on the Apostolic Exhortation of Pope Francis: "The Joy of the Gospel" . The meeting was convened by the Federation of Asian Bishops' Conference [FABC] for the Biblical Apostolate

Meeting of representatives of Asia in Pattaya, 
Thailand from 5 - 7 December 2013.
 Some moments of the meeting and visit to a Buddhist monastery
Chapel of the Redemptorist Fathers' Center in Pattaya
 With Teresa , our team coordinator for Bible translation
in a modern Chinese-Buddhist temple in Bangkok, Thailand.

The New Campus of the University of Macau

Nothing can stop us from dreaming big! It does not cost us anything! Recently, together with a group of friends we visited the new campus of the University of Macau, not yet operational. The facility is immense spread over more than a square kilometer (100 acres). 

 Visiting the new campus of the
University of Macau with some friends.

The cost amounts to more than a billion dollars ... fully paid by the rich who come to leave their fortunes in the casinos in this city: they come to the "City of Dreams"  and by the time say goodbye, it turns out to be the "City of Nightmares!"
Another view of the new campus.
Fr. Mario with Divine and Jessica. Divine  work with us in Macau 
and Jessica helps us in Hong Kong.

Christmas Wishes and Prayers!

The Claretian Community of Macau - Hong Kong
Wish you the Heaven's choicest blessings 
In this season of Christmas 
Pray that may you enjoy good health, 
Lots of cheers and God's blessings in abundance
in the New Year 2014 
 Yeah! When we wish you Christmas, we are indeed 
thrilled to share our joy with you! In the picture: 
Ezakias, Mario, Alberto Jessica 
Divine, Ian and Jose! 
 Haha! Did anyone say, Mario did not jump?! 
We put an end to the debates with some 
Hawk-eye inspection. Later, Mario himself clarified: 
"I was the first to touch-down"!! 

Our Visitors

Fr. Alberto had a couple of his family members from Argentina visiting him in Macau. Here are some of the stills from their trip in Macau and Hong Kong:
Fr. Alberto often repeats that being in this part of the world involves a high amount of risk! But, the truth is, for him life without any risks is life, less fun!  Here, he is at a height of 233 mts, atop Macau Tower.
With his niece Adiela
With Jessica, Adiela and Mirtha
Dinner time!

Jingle bells...jingle bells!

Dare to dance like them?  
First, Christmas and then, the New Year... 
It's time to rejoice and of course, 
time to make some 'moves'!