04/19/2017, 15.21
MALAYSIA

At Easter, Malaysian Catholics celebrate more than a thousand baptisms in Kota Kinabalu

Some received the sacrament during Easter Vigil in the cathedral. Others were baptised at Easter Mass. The catechumens also received first communion and confirmation. More than 200 baptisms took place in Karamunsing; 244 in Ranau.

Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews/HeraldMalaysia) – The Archdiocese of Kota Kinabalu welcomed more than a thousand new members on Easter and Easter Vigil.

With few exceptions, the children and adults who were baptised on Easter Sunday received the preparatory rites on Holy Saturday.

On Saturday, at the Sacred Heart Cathedral in Karamunsing, more than 200 candidates for baptism underwent the ephphetha rite (opening of the ears and mouth), that they might hear the Word of God and profess it for their salvation.

They followed with the recitation of the creed and finally received the anointing with chrism oil blessed at the Chrism Mass on 6 April.

After the ceremony, Archbishop John Wong called on those present to continue the fast of penance until their baptism and take part in the post-baptismal catechesis courses.

Some of the candidates for baptism received the Sacrament that same evening, during Easter Vigil in the Cathedral. Others were baptised next morning, during Easter Mass. The catechumens received first communion and confirmation.

During the celebration of the vigil, Mgr Wong congratulated the new Christians and the 41 people who completed their neo-catechumenal journey. Mass was concelebrated by three priests of the community – Father Bippo Lauria, Father Saimon William and Father Ernesto Lagan.

During the Easter vigil, Fr Nicholas Stephen officiated the baptism and first communion of 244 catechumens in St Peter Claver Church in Ranau. In his homily, Father Nick said that at the end of the day, God is always our refuge, because "he was able to give us, not only life but also salvation."

He added that the Risen Christ brings hope of a brighter tomorrow for those who put their faith in him in a world full of threats and attacks against the lives of Christians around the world.

“With the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, tomorrow will surely come despite the world’s condition today, as we see churches being bombed like in Egypt,” he added.

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