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BE INITIATING, Take The First Step, As Disciples Of Hope- Day 5 Of Novena To Our Lady

KAMPUNG PANDAN:-As the feast of Our Lady of Good Health progresses into the fifth day, some 500 faithful converged for the evening celebrations, where Rosary and Novena preceded at 7pm. The Mass began at 7.30pm with Capuchin priest, Fr Sebastian Aputharaj presiding with Archbishop Emeritus Murphy Pakiam and parish priest Fr Edwin Peter as con-celebrants.

The theme for September 5, 2017 at the Chapel of Our Lady of Good Health in Kampung Pandan was "Be Initiating". The focus is on Special Needs. Fr Sebastian said, let us all pray together for those physically challenged and those mentally challenged, the special needs people.

After proclaiming the Gospel, Fr Sebastian delivered his homily. He began his sermon by exalting God, with the sung praises..."You are my God, You are my Shepherd, You are my Fortress and You are my Saviour".

The Capuchin priest from India then shared about a story of a father who usually took his son for a walk, daily. Then one day he took him to the mountains, where he shouted I love you, and there was echo (a sound that is heard after it has been reflected off a surface such as a wall or a cliff or mountain). The mountains threw back the echoes of his spoken words. Then his son also shouted some words and it echoes back.

Fr Sebastian said when we give love, we get love back. When we give peace to others, we get peace in return. It echoes back. What we do, it will come back to us.

Mother Mary took the first step, in her Magnificat, by saying Yes to God. She initiated, she responded, so that salvation be brought into the world through the birth of Jesus. Mary trusted God to do the rest, but she responded by initiating to take the first step.

The same with Jesus. He took the first step by washing the feet of His disciples. He initiated to humble Himself and setting a good example for His disciples to follow; to have humility and be of service to others.

Fr Sebastian also spoke about a story where if we were living in a forest, surrounded with wild animals, we need to ensure our survival and we need to initiate the first step to safeguard ourselves. What do we do?. Example, if there are lethal piranhas in the river, when we needed to cross over; we can feed meat to it and cross safely.

After Mass, Fr Edwin in his speech thanked all for coming to pray and celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Good Health. He commanded the BEC Zone A for animating the Mass and welcome the RCIA candidates to experience the novena.

Fr Edwin also said on Saturday, September 9, there will be a candlelight procession. This year we will be using tea candles instead.

Many also visited the beautifully decorated grotto dedicated to Our Lady of Good Health, just opposite the chapel's main entrance. Many stayed back to enjoy a simple meal in the fellowship, that was held in the chapel's grounds.

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