Friday, August 24, 2012

Quality time with my God daughter.

When I was growing up my Baptism Godparents were unknown to me. If you asked me how they looked like I can't even remember.

Perhaps, it's a Malaysian Chinese Catholic scenario. My first Holy Communion and even Confirmation was just a big deal during mass but after that there was no big family and friends gatherings to celebrate the event.

It is only after my marriage into a Catholic Malayalee family since 2001, that I realised what I've missed out all these years.

I discovered that all the Sacraments of the Church are celebrated afterwards with a big family and friends party either at home or in a restaurant with lots of pomp and splendour.

Mary Isabelle, my little three-year-old cradle Catholic, I'm so happy for you that so far you have had a great start.

I also discovered that many of my husband's family members have good to great relationships with their Godparents.

Compared to my almost non-existant relationship - it is to me, FANTASTIC!

Unfortunately, I have not been a very good Godparent. One reason, I think is we, Patrick and I, have too many Godchildren - both adults and children.

Doesn't help that my personality type is introverted and that I enjoy my own company the best.

However, this recent long Raya holidays, I've decided to start building relationship with at least one Godchild at a time.

So I made a date with Kimberly, one of our countless gifts from God, to go out and watch a movie last Tuesday.

It was a long overdue date which we were supposed to do for her birthday in January. As usual, things got busy and the date was delayed.

We watched The Wimpy Kid 3, a story about a teenager who was too much into video games and not into outdoor sports, a trait his dad wanted him to have.

It was funny and both of us laughed a lot. It also gave me the opportunity to explain some Americanised expressions to Kim.

After the movie, we had lunch at McDs and also her favourite dessert - ice shavings.

                                          Kim and I at McDonalds after the movie.

           Kim enjoying her favourite Sesame flavoured ice shavings after lunch...yummy.

But what I most treasured most was the moment she started to open up to me. Although it was just a few personal sharings about her life, but I was happy to be her listening ear.

I suddenly remembered what the facilitator of Mary Isabelle's Baptism told us, that Godparents play a very important role because sometimes when children find it hard to communicate with their parents, Godparents are the ones they can turn to.

Thank you Lord for that wonderful affirmation.

I was glad Mary Isabelle had some quality time with her Godmother that day too.

You see, Kim is my Godchild and Mary is Kim's parents' Godchild.

That itself is a story for another blog entry.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Yes, I know it's been a long time since I blogged. Apologies to all those who follow the rantings of this soon to be 40-years-young Cradle Catholic. Life has truly been an adventure.

Now in this post of mine, I just wanted to share a video made by one of St Thomas More's 11.30am choir members.

Her name is Marilyn and she hails from Philippines.

Talented in singing and music, she has really given a boost to our choir. Of late, she has contributed yet again through her initiative of creating videos of the songs we sung during mass, including the psalms.

I was really very touched by her efforts and I have nicknamed her the techno evangelist. From her actions, all the songs and psalms can now continue to touch our lives even after the mass has ended.

Especially during challenging times when we need the comfort of the Word of God in song. This is the first of her videos I am posting on my blog. Why?

Because one of our parishioners said some of the youths were very touched by this particular song when it was sung during mass last Sunday

Do take note, that Marilyn just used a tiny MP3 recorder/player to record the singing, so the quality may not be so good.

Marilyn is not the composer of the song. I just wanted to clarify as her name appeared below the song. I think this happened as she uploaded the song into Facebook and I just copied the link onto my blog. I wanted to clarify this to avoid any copyrights issues.

But you know God uses the simple and imperfect things and people to touch His people. Hope this post will bring a smile in your heart today.

Have a superbly blessed day,

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Hail Mary by Mary Isabelle

For those of you who missed this Youtube of our almost three-year-old daughter singing the Hail Mary, here it is again.

Can't blame her proud Catholic parents for showing off her praying skills at this tender age. Today at Easter Vigil mass she sang the response to the Litany with all her heart and attracted a few stares.

Well, thank God those were stares of amazement and approval. I feel that in times when our Faith has somewhat been watered down as compared to a generation ago, my little Mary Isabelle represents a beacon of hope that the future generation of Cradle Catholics would once again know their Faith and live it with
great fervour. Happy Easter everyone...indeed Jesus is Risen! Alleluia!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Guess What it's Good Friday 2012 And It's Pouring

I was just finishing up some work in the office before driving home when I paused to think about the rain every Good Friday at about 3pm (plus minus).

At that moment I saw it was 3.30pm and believe you not, thunder started and the sounds of the rain hitting the roof of the building was resounding.

It was a moving feeling that perhaps only Catholics appreciate (yes, we the symbolic signs and symbol people).

If you noticed after the 3rd Week of Lent I kinda stopped blogging as life was really throwing me an enormous challenge with my daughter falling sick regularly and my husband was away for work many miles across the sea.

To add to that, there was the usual busy preparation of those involved in church ministry as Easter draws nearer.

I was just floored. That is when I realised that I am just so weak without God and it was only with His help and those He sent to assist me during those "lonely" times that I picked up the pieces.

I am happy to say that my desert experience has ended and I'm so excited to experience the Easter that is soon to be upon us all. May you all have a superbly blessed Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter.

P.S. I'm still so happy looking at the fax I received from the Vatican confirming our tickets for the Wednesday audience with Pope Benedict on 18 April 2012. Rome sweet home, here we come...

Saturday, March 10, 2012

A Time To Give

Tomorrow we will enter into the third week of Lent. I know, I know it seems like yesterday when it was Ash Wednesday... then again it seems like yesterday when it was Jan 1 and now we are at the first quarter of the year.

If you have been swept away by life's routine and haven't really quieten down this season of Lent, there's still time. You still have the whole of the 3rd week, 4th week and 5th week before Palm Sunday on April 1.

I know I myself am making a conscious effort despite so much noise and activity living in a fast paced city.

As I mentioned in my earlier posting, inner peace and quiet time with the Lord is a CHOICE. It can be scheduled in. For me my best time is early morning before the rest of the family wakes up and also just after my daughter Mary goes to kindy.

Of course, it is different for everyone. Some of you who are nocturnal creatures may find that the best time is when everyone else in the family has gone to bed at night and peace reigns.

Anyway, the pillars of Lent is fasting, prayer, abstinence and alms giving. I shall not go into what these are cos' if you are Catholic, you already know what they are, right? Opps, perhaps I am taking too much for granted. Maybe some cradle Catholic out there still wonder what exactly these are.

Well, you can check out this site and find out more.

My parish priest Fr Simon has been reminding us that during this time of fasting from food and all things we love too much, we would have spent less and the money saved from these efforts can then be donated to help the needy.

Now, I know most of you have your favourite charity or organisation to give to. However, this Lent I encourage you to expand your giving circle and consider the Church of St Thomas More, my parish.


Well, for starters besides still paying off our RM4mil loan from the Archdiocese for our building fund, we have started actively helping foreign immigrants to have a better life. For a new parish which is paying off a huge loan and serving a growing community made of young families, funding is always a help.

We have been fortunate that God has blessed us with many generous donors thus far in the initial stage of the building fund raising activities. That's how we are no longer worshipping in a badminton hall of a private school and now celebrate mass in a beautiful church.

After starting this blog and being involved in the parish fund raising activities, I created a PayPal Donate button just to see if people actually would donate online.

Well, one very generous Catholic from Singapore (a true loving thy neighbour story here) donated some. My friend Jimmy from the Finance Ministry of my parish and I was very encouraged by it.

However, since I slowed down on blogging, nobody else has donated online. Anyway, here's my appeal once again to the global Catholic community to send some over here.

Having said that, all Malaysians reading this post is most encouraged to charge your credit cards, (debit card or PayPal) and earn some extra points while helping us out.

In fact, there was an announcement in the Budget last year that the government may consider giving tax relief for donations to places of worship.Let's make them honour that soon...

Once again, I'm calling for action, just look at the right side of my blog and you will find the Donate button I'm talking about. Just click and follow the instructions and you would have helped us out immensely.

Thanking you in advance for your generosity this Lent. God bless you.

Monday, March 5, 2012

2nd Week of Lent 2012

As usual time passes really fast and we are already into the second week of Lent. I have been quite happy this year. It's a CHOICE. There have been many challenges to make me feel just the opposite. However, I CHOOSE happiness and inner peace.

My secret?

I focus on Christ and what He had to go through in the desert for 40 days and nights and suddenly all that has happened to me pale in comparison. I even seem extremely petty.

So to stop myself, I switch to gratitude mode. I decide to thank Jesus for all my blessings and instantly I feel happy.

I'm really glad my little cradle Catholic Mary is picking up this habit, as every night before she sleeps, we say our gratitude prayers together.

We start by saying thank you Jesus for everything... then I encourage her to list out what she is thankful for. Is always great to hear her say, I thank you Jesus for Mommy (me...*beaming*), Papa, Aunty Bee, Aunty Da, Ah Ma, Ah Kong (her grandparents), Gaby, Tia, Risqa (her cousins), Teacher Joanne...etc.

My heart sings to see that my little girl has her values in the right places as relationships with our loved ones are priceless.

At two plus she can recite the Our Father and Hail Mary pretty well (actually she sings the Hail Mary much better). She's proof that our Faith is caught and not taught.

In fact, because of her, I've developed a habit of saying grace before meals. However, she's sometimes shy in front of strangers. Guess she might have caught that one too. Opps, sorry Lord, I'm working on it.

I do pray that I do allocate more time for set prayers - the Rosary and the Stations Of The Cross this season. Please pray for me. It's a struggle most modern day typical Cradle Catholics go through. I can just imagine those super Catholics shaking their heads (in disapproval).

Anyway, I discovered a link Catholic on audio Catholic prayers. You can check it out by clicking on the link.Perhaps it might help you. Do let me know what you think of it please. Whether it has helped you or not. I just love living in this information age. Everything I need including food for my soul is just a click away.

Dearest Lord, I pray you will continue to walk this journey of repentance and renewal. Thank you Abba, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Indeed you are my beloved blessed Trinity.

Till we meet again, God's choicest blessings....

Saturday, February 25, 2012

First week of Lent 2012

This year Lent is special because now I have another strong ally praying for me in the heavenly realm. She's my grandmother Mary Fam who recently returned to the Lord this 4th Jan.

She has always been a devout Catholic and I pray that God will give me the strength to pass on the faith through the generations.

I'm very glad my little Mary is picking it up. I'm amazed how she can sing the newly revised mass ordinaries pretty well now and she's not even three.

I know I'm being ambitious trying to explain what Lent is to her in simple terms, but her disinterest tells me mommy is not doing such a great job yet.

Just wanted to thank my beloved Blessed Trinity for the little pockets of peace I enjoy in your presence despite my current hectic lifestyle juggling family, career and ministry.

Without You I would really lose it. Love you to bits for loving the sinner in me.

Your loving daughter,

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

First post for 2012

After a looooooooonnnnnnnnnnggggg break! Here's a few words to break the silence. Wishing all of you a superbly blessed 2012.

For us in Malaysia, many of us are just going back to our offices and starting our work engines again.

I pray this year will have more time to share some stories from my life.

That's all for now.... tata