Friday, January 31, 2014

First day of New Year 大年初一

Today is the first day of the Chinese Lunar Year of the Horse.

We attended the Thanksgiving Mass at 9:00 am.

It is a tradition for the Chinese on the first day of  New Year to go to Churches to offer thanksgiving to God the Creator for the blessing of the past year. (Non-Christians will go the the temples)

We also ask our merciful God to shower us blessing and Graces for the coming New Year.

Following ancient Chinese tradition of 3 Rites,  on the first day of the lunar new year, every household will pray to God, giving thanks to Mother Earth for good harvest and honouring ancestors.

No God, no earth; no earth, no harvest; no ancestors, no us.

After Mass, we went down to Seremban to visit my elder sister and 2nd sister-in-law.

(More pictures in Facebook)








Friday, January 24, 2014

New Year is here 新年来啰


Lunar Chinese New Year is just around the corner, and I have bought my favourite lime trees and many types of flowers of the season. 

(More pictures in Facebook) 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

One City Skypark 空中花园

Yesterday evening, we dropped by our Goddaughter Anna's house at Putra Heights to pick up a box of A1 curry pastes.

Godson-in-law brought us out for dinner at a very special place - One City commercial complex at USJ area. 

It is a ten-storey business complex with a rooftop garden.

There are ponds and see-through glass walkway that can see the shops ten floors down. 

昨天傍晚,到Putra Heights 干女儿瑷玲的家拿咖哩酱包。

乾女婿老英(George Ying)请我们到一个很特别的地方用晚餐。

那是苏邦再也的一个新商业区,名字为One City.


Sunday, January 19, 2014

膨果丰收节 Ponggol festival

Ponggal 或Pongal (膨果丰收节) 是南印度,特别是淡米尔拿都州民间的一个重要传统丰收庆典。


一月十九日(星期天),加影圣家教堂的淡米尔语团体,举办了这项膨果丰收节庆典,以传统及缤纷色彩的方式,团体的信德与爱内共融, 来感谢造物主给予的一切恩赐及收获。

 Ponggal 在淡米尔文的意思是煮沸。它也是当天必定会制作的一种甜品名字。这甜品的材料包括米,牛油,腰果,葡萄乾等。

庆典的另一个重要活动是煮牛奶,也就是庆典的名字由来。当器皿内的牛奶煮沸到满溢的时候,大家都会喊 Ponggalo Ponggal, 表示丰收及好运。





 Ponggal (Pongal) is a traditional harvest festival celebrated in Southern India especially Tamil Naidu state in the middle of January.

Today, Tamil-speaking community in the Church of the Holy Family held a Ponggal celebration at the church compound rich in tradition and colors. It is a celebration of Thanksgiving to the Creator for good harvest received, and togetherness as a community of faith and love. 

Ponggal means "boil", "spillover" in Tamil. It is also the name of a sweet rice dish cook on Ponggal day topped with sugar, ghee, cashew nuts and raisins. 

The highlight of the day was the boiling of milk. It was boiled and bubbled over the vessel, a good sign of abundance and prosperity.

The celebrations started at 3:00 pm and ends at 9:00pm. It was filled with activities and entertainer programmes, and 700 are expected to attend. 

Due to family commitment, I attended the first half of the programme only.

(See pictures in Facebook)

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Another dinner feast 又一个盛宴

My body is protesting!

Eyes are closing for needing rest ...

Left shoulder and left hand are yelling in silent ... sending out throbbing pain signal periodically...

The loudest of all is my tummy ... "Hey master, you are eating too much !"

Since the begining of the new year, I have been eating and feasting ... lunch, dinner, more dinner, more dinner extravaganzas ...

Last night, attended yet another dinner .. a wedding dinner of old friend David Chia's youngest son.

Besides eating, I met up with many old friends and acquaintances whom not met for a while.

A long and "tedious" night that saw us leaving our house at 5:30 pm and returned after midnight !

(See pictures in Facebook)





自新年的开始,我真的吃得太多了,不停的餐宴 。。午餐,晚餐,更多的餐宴,更多的食物。。




(更多照片 Facebook)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Happy Birthday

Last night (10-1-2014) we held a small party to celebrate Susan's birthday.
昨晚,我们举行了一个小小的庆生会,庆祝Susan 的生日。

Monday, January 6, 2014

Malaysian reality

Amidst threats of protests, the Malay language mass at the Lady of Lourdes Church in Klang continued to use the term 'Allah' today.

The term was used at least four times during the mass in prayers and hymns. However, for the most part, the congregation used the word 'Tuhan' and 'Bapa' to refer to God.

The Malay language mass was held this afternoon after the English and Tamil mass. The English and Tamil mass did not use the word 'Allah'.

The Malay language mass serves a congregation that are mostly from Sabah and Sarawak, as well as some foreigners from neighbouring countries.

At one point, a hymn was sung in Vietnamese.

Before the final blessing, parish priest Michael Chua who led the mass thanked the congregation for showing up.

"I thank everyone for coming and to show support. It shows the strength of our faith despite claims that there would be a riot but has not happened," he said.

He also thanked the police stationed outside for protecting worshippers and the Church.

Chua said he hoped that Christians will some day be allowed to use refer to God in their own language.

"We to pray that the situation will continue to be peaceful in Malaysia and we can respect one another.

"We pray that Christians will have the freedom to choose their language in worshipping God," he said.

After the mass, Chua said although the turnout during the English and Tamil masses were the same, the

Malay-language mass had a lower turnout than usual.
He estimated the congregation for the Malay language mass today to be around 200 instead of the usual 300.

The controversy begn 2010 the High Court ruled that the Home Ministry's earlier ban on Christian publication The Herald from using the word 'Allah' was unconstitutional.

The landmark decision provoked a series of church burnings and the Court of Appeal last year overturned the decision arguing that the word "Allah" was not integral to the Christian faith.

The Catholic Church is appealing the decision and insists that Islamic authorities have no power to dictate the internal affairs of other religions.

The Sekretariat Solidariti Muslim Klang had today protested at a field some 1km away after the The Herald editor Lawrence Andrew insisted that Christian will continue to use the word 'Allah'.

Chua revealed that he had lodged a police report prior to the protest.

"It was solely to ask for protection," he told journalists.

10:10AM Jan 5, 2014

Progressive Muslims defend Klang church


Amid threats of protest by Muslim pressure groups at a church in Klang this morning, progressive Muslims made a stand outside the church to defend their fellow Christian Malaysians.

Among the group was Marina Mahathir (right in photo), daughter of former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad who like some 40 others, came bearing flowers and stood outside the Our Lady of Lourdes church as mass was in session.

"We are here to show solidarity with the congregation. A lot of us here are Muslims and we believe Islam is a religion of peace.

"It is not something that we only say (in words), but there must also be action," she told journalists outside the church.

A conservative Muslim group dubbed Sekretariat Solidariti Muslim Klang had planned to protest outside the Church after Lawrence Andrew, the editor of Christian publication The Herald, insisted that Christians will continue to use the word Allah.

However, in the face of mounting tension and criticism, they later decided to relocate their protest to a nearby field. 

Selangor Umno which initially said that it too will protest in front of Churches, yesterday banned its members from attending such demonstrations, citing the need to maintain harmony.
Business as usual

Some 900 people turned up at the Church this morning for 8am mass proceeded as usual with parish priest Michael Chua leading the mass.

Lady of Lourdes Church administrator EA Louis said the congregation today, which spilled outside the Church and had to sit on plastic chairs, were no more than the usual.

"It's like any other Sunday. We all know it is our obligation to come pray and worship. We don't feel threatened. Nothing at all," he said.

He added that it was the right of any group to protest and the Church is leaving the matter to the authorities. 

However, he expressed concern that interfaith relations may be affected until government leaders are willing to speak up.

The mass was like any other, with hymns and prayers until the very end, where Chua specifically addressed the recent controversy.

"A word of appreciation to the parishioners for not being cowered by what is happening and coming to mass to worship God," he said.

Chua also thanked supporters from other Churches as well as the Bar Council and MPs such as Seputeh's Teresa Kok and Klang's Charles Santiago who were present.

"The police have contained the protesters at a stadium on the other side so we pray they will be able to demonstrate and express their grievances peacefully and hopefully not march to the Church.

"Father Lawrence has also taken the brunt of blame for everything, and we pray for him. May good sense prevail," he said.

'Gesture of peace'

Later, Chua, met with Marina and the group she was with outside the Church and personally thanked them for support and they reciprocated by handing him flowers.

"I think it is a wonderful gesture to have so many Muslims come in solidarity. We hope this will grow - the ability to see beyond barriers and boundaries and to open hands in friendship to each other," he said.

At this, Marina replied: "It is a reciprocal gesture of peace. In Myanmar, the Archbishop of Rangoon also spoke up for the Rohingyas (Muslims). That is how it should be."

The "Muslim defenders" today were part of a Facebook initiative dubbed "In the Name of Allah" which invited to Muslims to defend the Church from the planned protest.

At least seven police personnel were spotted guarding the Church perimeter while another two community police members were assisting with traffic.

The congregation dispersed peacefully after mass ended at around 9am.

(From Malaysiakini - The online news portal)

Sunday, January 5, 2014

The Wedding 婚礼

Bryan and Sue May were wed on Saturday, Jan 4 at the Sacred Heart Cathedaral, Johor Baru.

The big day consisted of 3 parts:
1. Wedding Mass
2. Tea Ceremony
3. Dinner

Bryan 与 Sue May 的婚礼在星期六,一月四日,假新山圣心主教座堂举行。

1. 婚配弥撒
2. 敬茶礼
3. 婚宴

 ( Pictures in Facebook 照片)

Friday, January 3, 2014

In Johor Baru 人在新山

My family are in Johor Baru to attend my Godson Bryan's (Tony and Susan's youngest son) wedding on Saturday (Jan 4).

Friends and relatives from near and far are expected to attend this great occasion.

Hung and Li from Australia (Vietnamese origin) arrived on Thursday and we were given the task of being their chaperone.

Today we brought them out to visit Johor Baru seafront and old palace garden.

Later we dropped by my parents in law's house.

As usual, my mother-in-law, the best story teller in town, was at work as usual.

Hung and Li were thrilled by her wits and card tricks - four color card games, an old Teochew gambling cards.

Later in the evening, we had dinner at our hotel in-house Cafe. Clide, the British cook, made really good British food !

(More pictures in Facebook)







Wednesday, January 1, 2014

新年快乐 Happy New Year 2014




感恩2013年的恩惠,我降伏的领受了2014年的一个十字架 - 颈脊神经挤捏病症。






他们也带来了几项美食佳肴 - 黄酒鸡,海味猪脚及酿鱼漂。


Tea time 茶点

A new year does not start until we go to church.

This morning, we went to church at 9:00 am to attend the New Year Thanksgiving Mass.

Expressing thanks to God for the blessings received in 2013, we continued to ask for God's blessing for 2014.

Counting the blessing in 2013, I did not complain the Cross, instead of gift, I received in 2014 - Pinched Nerve of my neck.

My wife has been suffering from this condition for more than 5 years, and got over it only a year or two ago.

May be God wanted me to "experience" the pain my wife (and many others) has gone through to enrich my life. I asked God to grant me the strength to bear this cross.

Right now I am experiencing constant throbbing pain in my left hand from shoulder down to the wrist. It is the sensation of pain plus numbness ... . I have to adjust my neck  position to ease the pain. Sleeping is the most torturing time.

Last night, after dinner at my daughter's apartment in Kuala Lumpur, we watched fireworks displaying at the distant skyline of Kuala Lumpur.

Today, after Mass, we welcomed our old friends - Tiew King and Tiew Hui brothers and families for lunch  at our house.

They brought few delicious dishes prepared at home: Rice wine chicken, Sea food with pork knuckles, Fish Maw Special.

(More pictures in Facebook)