First Holy Communion – Mass on 26th November & Camp on 11th to 12th November, 2017

 

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On 26th November 2017, a total of 79 children received the Body of Christ for the first time at the Sacrament of Holy Communion at the respective language masses. Masses were celebrated by Parish Priests, Fr. George Harrison and Fr. Andrew Kooi respectively. Parents, Godparents and relatives were among those who attended the mass. Group photos were taken to remember this special celebration.

Group photo after Tamil mass
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Group photo after English mass
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Group photo after Mandarin mass
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Group photo after Bahasa mass
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These children will continue their faith formation in the Religious Education in the next 8 years before they receive the Sacrament of Confirmation in 2025 that completes the Sacrament of Initiation. (group photos contributed by Soosai, Terry Michael, Julian Yong and Staphany)

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Two weeks before, these children attended a 2-days 1 night live in camp from 11th to 12th November, held at the Casa Visitation. Themed “Jesus, The Bread of Life”, a total 34 catechists helped out at the camp taking the roles as presenters, facilitators and helpers. Over seeing the camp were RE chief coordinator Anthony Param, Assistant Juliana Cantius and respective language coordinators.

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Helping the catechists during the camp were 8 youths who helped out in the ice-breaker, praise and worship session and games. Prior to the camp, the youths met on few occassion for practice.

Youths
The Bible Enthronement like in all previous RE camps was the first activity of the day. A makeshift altar (left) in the hall was prepared where the Word of God - the Bible was placed. 

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Children were then separated into the respective language groups. The Tamil, Mandarin and Bahasa speaking, used the classrooms at the St. Mary’s kindergarten, while the bigger group, the English speaking used the hall. Various activities were carried out to prepare the children for the Sacrament. These included a mock confession, Lap sheets activities, Order of Mass, Letter writing and miracles of the Eucharist.

In the hall, the English speaking group of 41 children had their session and activities.
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The Tamil speaking group of 21 children had their session and activities in one of the classroom.

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The Mandarin speaking group of 8 children in the classroom next door. Being comfortable as they are, they listened attentively to their catechist(s).
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The Bahasa speaking group of 8 children also used one of the classroom for their session and activities.
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Catechists as presenters and facilitators for the Bahasa speaking group preparing for the next session.
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During meal times, all the children came together as one big family. All meals were held in the hall. Catechists were on hand to serve the children.

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Its game time! The fine weather allowed the children to play on the school field and the basketball court under the guidance and supervision of the youths and catechists.

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The camp culminated in the celebration of the Eucharist by Fr. George Harrison at 3.00pm on 12th November. The multi-lingual mass animated by the children were attended by all catechists, youths and some parents. A makeshift altar was prepared in the center of the hall. Fr. George went around sprinkling holy water at the start of the mass. Before the consecration, Fr. George invited all the children to come around the altar. The Mandarin speaking children performed an action song during the Thanksgiving hymn. 

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Action Song FHC
After mass, the children together with Fr. George, the Catechists and Youths had a group photo (below) taken. (
photo contributed by Gerald Victor)

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Receiving Holy Communion worthily brings these children graces that affect both spiritually and physically. Spiritually, their souls become more united to Christ, both through the graces they receive and through the change in their actions that those graces effect. Frequent Communion increases their love for God and for their neighbours, which expresses itself in action, which makes them more like Christ. Parents and Godparents shoulders an important responsibility by actively giving good Christian witness and example and being a role model and support by regularly and faithfully practicing the Catholic faith.

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Camp photos by the Church of The Visitation Social Communication.