Malacca Johore Diocese News Update #86

The Pre-Synodal Diocesan Assembly of the MJD ended on May 3, 2022. Some 176 representatives gathered to listen to each other, feel the leading of the Holy Spirit, and reach consensus and diocesan pastoral direction.

May 13, 2022

Greetings and peace of the risen Lord be with you, dear Catholics of Malacca and Johore, continue to be surprised by the Lord, who makes all things new.

The Pre-Synodal Diocesan Assembly of the MJD concluded May 3, 2022. Some 176 representatives gathered to listen to each other, feel the leading of the Holy Spirit, and reach consensus and diocesan pastoral direction. The final diocesan report will be presented at the next Conference of Catholic Bishops of Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei, to finalize a national report.

Here is what many have commented: The prayerful spirit of gatherings, respect in group sharing, openness to seeing the big picture, an awareness that God controls and that the Spirit reveals to believers in community. Fakes and false times are there. Fake news! Fake reports! False claims! Attack integrity, personal life, vulnerable family members, the fearless, the honest and the uncompromising. Use cyberspace, pay cybertroopers, millions to ‘memputihkan yang hitam; menghitamkan yang putih”. The forgeries are in league to scratch their backs and give legitimacy to the glorification of crimes. Fakes are escorted by the police. Fakes can fool some people once in a while, but they can’t fool everyone all the time. Counterfeits may be too convinced that they are genuine. But can they cheat death and judgment? Unless they were deceived, thinking that their God can be deceived.

Some quotes from Scott Peck in his book “The People of The Lie”:

1. The wicked, the people of lies, hate the light because it reveals itself. … They will destroy light, goodness, love in order to avoid the pain of self-awareness.

2. A predominant characteristic of lying people is scapegoating. Because, in their hearts, they consider themselves blameless, they have to take it out on anyone who blames them. They sacrifice others to preserve their image of perfection.

1 Jn.1:8 says “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.” Malacca Johore Diocese News Update #86 15 24 25 – 28 Tamil Mass @ 8.00am, Church of St John Britto, Penang English Mass @ 10.30am, Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, Penang SSVP State Council of Penang AGM @ 15.00pm, Church of Immaculate Conception, Pulau Tikus Catholic Health Care Asia (CHCA) @ 3:00 p.m., ZOOM Confirmation – Our Lady of Fatima Church of the Holy Rosary, Kota Bahru Catholic visit to Jeli and Tanah Merah Diocese of Penang Diary of Bishop Sebastian Francis May Kuala Archdiocese of Lumpur Diary of Archbishop Julian Leow 17 – 18 May 19 28 Clergy Recollection Archdiocesan Finance Meeting Confirmation Mass at St Jude’s Church, Rawang

A thought for the week:
The wisest Socrates, the ancient Greek philosopher, wanted to know who was the wisest person in Athens. The Oracle of Delphi said: “You are!”

“It is impossible”, answered Socrates, “because I know that I know nothing.” “Therefore, says the Oracle, you are the wisest person in Athens.”

Eckhart Tolle believed that giving up trying to understand, surrendering and feeling comfortable with ignorance is Wisdom.

Adyashanti said that the door to God is the insecurity of knowing nothing. Carry the grace of this uncertainty and all wisdom will be yours.

Ben Gillison in Wise Quotes 88 said, “Wisdom is a mixture of experience, courage and intelligence. We all want to be wise and make wise decisions because when we do, we tap into the best of ourselves. Quite often, being wise is simply giving yourself plenty of time to think things through (isn’t it not often enough that quick judgments yield worse results than thoughtful decisions!). Listening to sound advice – from wise friends and mentors, who give us a more balanced perspective when we think about an idea – is a good way to tap into smarter choices.

Announcements for this week

1. The monthly clergy recollection is scheduled for May 17-18 at Majodi

2. The seminarians from Penang and Kuching will be back for their vacation in July.

3. On Saturday, May 21, the Bishop will participate in the Sheikh Imran Open Day.

4. The nine-day novena to the Holy Spirit in preparation for the great feast of Pentecost will begin with the feast of the Ascension, from May 27 to June 4.

5. The Church celebrates World Communications Sunday on the weekend of May 29 or the Seventh Sunday of Easter.

6. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul’s Easter Joy Hampers project collected a total of 135 baskets worth RM200 each, for friends in need in South Johor (FIN).

7. Caritas-MJDOHD’s Orang Asli Back to School project raised RM28,000 to help struggling Orang Asli children. A total of 300 schoolchildren from Kampung Orang Asli to Kota Tinggi, Mersing and Kluang benefited from this project. To the generous benefactors of the above two projects, thank you.

Question and question for this week:

The Q asked: Why did Pope Francis say that the liturgy should not be a “battlefield?”

Here is what Pope Francis said:

1. The liturgical life and its study should lead to greater unity of the Church and not to division. When liturgical life is like a divisive banner, there’s the stench of the devil in there.

2. It is not possible to worship God by making the liturgy a battleground for issues that are not essential, even outdated, and to take sides from the liturgy, with ideologies that divide the Church.

3. Close-minded people use the liturgical framework to defend their points of view. This is the drama that we are experiencing in ecclesial groups that are moving away from the Church, calling into question the Council, the authority of the bishops to preserve tradition. And the liturgy is for that. Just a thought: The liturgy feeds us and frees us to feed the hungry and free the prisoners.

Walk in his peace. “Religion does not tolerate any questions. But Spirituality calls everything into question”. We are the living parts of the Body of Christ. Together you and I are planting spaces of God where we are planted.

Bishop Bernard Paul
May 13, 2022

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