Blair reveals what attracted him to Catholicism

17 09 2009

ROME : Religion has a central and unique role in society and its development, according to the former prime minister of England. Tony Blair, a convert to Catholicism, spoke with L’Osservatore Romano about his faith in an interview published in today’s Italian edition.

Tony Blair with Pope Benedict XVI

“My spiritual journey began when I started to go to Mass with my wife,” Blair said. “Then we decided to baptize our children in the Catholic faith. It was a journey that lasted 25 years, or perhaps more. In time, emotionally, intellectually and rationally it seemed to me that the Catholic home was the right one for me. When I left political office, and I no longer had all the context connected with being prime minister, it was something I really wanted to do.”

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The article was originally published at Zenit on 15 Sep 2009

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Youths Unite in the One Love of Christ: KAYD09

2 09 2009

KUCHING – The Kuching Archdiocesan Youth Day (KAYD) 2009 was held on 28 – 30 August at Christian Ecumenical Worship Centre (CEWC), Jalan Stampin. Gathering about 500 youths from both rural and urban parishes and even a few from Kuala Lumpur, this event was organised by the all the different youth groups together with the Kuching Archdiocesan Youth and Vocation Commission (KAYVC).KAYD participants praising the Lord!

Jude evangelizing, Vera rehearsing for opening ceremony

The weekend was themed ‘1 Love’ taken from John 13:34-35 “A new commandment I give you, love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.”

Come Holy Spirit!

The opening mass was celebrated by Archbishop John Ha, together with Fr Simon Poh and Fr Felix Au, Chaplain for KAYVC. A simple opening ceremony followed with each parish and youth group representative reading a Bible verse while the KAYD candles distributed during the launching of The Heart of KAYD in May, were brought up to the stage as a symbol of uniting back after the long months of preparation.

Participants in their workshop group

An invited guest speaker, Jude Antoine, a full time lay missionary under the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR) movement in Malaysia was present with his wife, Veronica and their two daughters Lavinia and Alicia. There were sessions and workshops held where participants were grouped into different age groups for sharing and discussion.

Jude Antoine

During the event, each participant and servant was given five red ribbons with a mission to spread God’s love through affirmation phrases or Bible verses written on the ribbons. Those ribbons were then given to five other youth whom they do not know, and for the next seven days they were to pray for them.

Ribbons of love

The weekend was filled with the Holy Spirit during talks, praise and worship sessions and every other fellowship time. A concert-rally was also held on the second night which drew a crowd of over 1000 youths and adults.

Contributed by Claudia Law

Testimonies:

KAYD09 was AWESOME! The praise and worship was excellent, the songs were great, and the sessions were good. I am amazed at the humility of the youths here, so modest and there is no superiority in their service! This is certainly one of the best events and we will bring more people to come for KAYD11!

Ivy Philip, 18, Kuala Lumpur

Sebagai koordinator KAYD09, I boleh katakan KAYD pada kali ini hebat sekali! Tiada perkataan lain yang boleh mengatakan betapa hebatnya Tuhan kita bergerak sepanjang aktiviti ini. Sebenarnya saya amat ‘blur’ apabila dipanggil untuk menjadi koordinator, tetapi dengan Ben Lo membantu di sisi, saya telah mempelajari banyak sekali. KAYD09 ialah pengalaman yang terhebat bagi saya!

Brian Leonusia, 20, St Ann’s Parish, Kota Padawan

It was a blessing to see youths from different parishes and youth groups unify just for this One God. The exchange of experience on how each encounters God in their own lives was powerful witnessing and testimony. I believe only love can unify us, so as to make us in communion with Christ – I now love God more than before.

Nomiday Dajie, 26, Kuching Campus Ministry

Saya telah merasai cinta kasih Tuhan Yesus yang begitu mendalam melalui KAYD ini. Dia telah mengubati segala kesakitan dan luka pada hati saya. KAYD09 merupakan acara yang pertama dan terbaik yang telah saya sertai!!

Henrietta Joanne, 15, St Theresa’s Parish, Serian

It was really AWESOME!!! I believe a lot of people would agree that the music, sessions, workshops, and the hospitality just to name a few, were what made KAYD09 such a success… Yes, but I also have to agree that KAYD09 could not have been such a HUGE success if it weren’t for our HUGE God!!! BOOYAHHHHH!!! When two or three are gathered in His name… God WILL be there…

Emmanuel Foong, 17, St Joseph’s Cathedral Parish, Kuching

One word to sum it all up – AWESOME! I was serving as a facilitator and we had participants coming from all parishes; Serian, Bau, Sri Aman etc. There were so many people that it was absolutely mesmerizing; I don’t know why but seeing buses and buses of people from different places just flowing into the hall almost non-stop. WOW! A little piece of advice for all the Christian youths out there: If there’s any youth conference whatsoever going on, JOIN IT. It’s worth it! The Spirit of God literally came down and touched people. Certainly a breath-taking sight; makes me want to praise Him more!!
Christopher Ngu, 16, Kuching Young Christian Students (KYCS)

KAYD participants preparing for a conference

Holy Communion at KAYD09

Participants from St Ignatius, KL

Hospitality team preparing packed food for distribution

Make-up before KAYD09 concert

Evangelical drama by youth from St Ann

Music ministry leading KAYD Praise & Worship

Participants from campuses enjoying each others' company

KAYD09 puji dan sembah!

Peace be with you

'Lord, let your name be lifted high!'

Jude asks, 'Is Christ the cornerstone of your life?'

KAYD servants praying for the participants

KAYD participants praying for the KAYD servants