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Chinese New Year Mass 2020

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In spite of fears of a slowing world economy and the uncomfortable hot weather, this year's Chinese New Year Mass held at St Ignatius Church (SIC) on Saturday 25 January 2020 was as joyous and well-attended as in previous years. Both inside and outside the church, the young and not-so-young dressed predominantly in red came together as a worshipping community to usher in the Year of the Rat and pray for the blessings & abundance of Almighty God in the year ahead.

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In his homily at this combined English & Mandarin Mass, Fr Francis Chong CDD (Superior General, CDD) advised that we must not neglect our spiritual life even as we aspire to excel in education, attain greater material wealth & hope for good health. Referring to the Beatitudes in the Gospel Reading, Fr Francis reminded that as children of God, our goal is eternal life. We need to let God be the centre of our lives & balance our spiritual life with physical life – for real hope & real joy and the blessings of God.

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SIC Parish Priest Fr Andrew Wong CDD was the main celebrant with Fr Francis, SIC Assistant Parish Priest Fr Lawrence Ng CDD and Fr John Heng from Taiwan as concelebrants. Among the gifts brought to the altar were flowers (representing adoration & admiration), red candles (hope & peace), nian gao (Chinese New Year cakes representing unity & fellowship) and fruits (happiness & achievements).

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A Rite of Commemoration of Ancestors was conducted after the final blessing, beginning with a reading from the Book of Sirach 44:1-15 in remembrance and praise of our forebears for their great contributions & rich heritage; teachings & acts of virtue and piety which deserve our honour & respect; and example for us to imitate. 

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On behalf of the congregation, Fr Andrew offered joss sticks (to honour our ancestors), two baskets of flowers (representing love), three cups of wine (remembrance) and two trays of fruits (admiration). Frs Andrew & Lawrence then blessed oranges which were given out together with ang pows (red envelopes containing money as a symbol of good fortune) to attendees. A lion dance performance then ensued at the church entrance to round out the celebrations.  

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SIC wish all a Blessed and Happy Chinese New Year!

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