Monday, January 1, 2018

Wishing you a blessed new year!!! - Centenary thanksgiving dinner.

Looking back at 2017 there were many things to be thankful about. It feels like a year has gone and past in a blink of an eye while nostalgia smiles in remembrance of the journey we had to take to complete this span of our lives.

This calls for a time of simple reflection. A free pass to relive the bubbling emotion we had secured in the vault of our hearts. How has the bitter sweet road touched us?

It has almost been a month since I sat on table number 15; tenderly lavished with sweet flower petals and a peacock flaming tea light candle.

The helium gassed balloons floating all above me were particularly ingenious as it provoked an uncontrollable childlike desire, almost instinctively, to grasp its tail end, as many as possible for a dashing picture.

 Then there was our very own in house band, rocking some music with solid drums and fiery guitars burning their way through the hall.

And Fr Gregory calling on the Choice members to join the Holy Orders the dance floor.

We came to celebrate CHOICE KL which has successfully journeyed through 100 weekends, facilitated by many priests, sisters, married couples and single adults who have gone through the program and then came back to serve.

His grace the Archbishop of Kuching, most Rev Simon Poh, who played a significant role of bringing CHOICE to Malaysia, graced us with his presence and celebrated mass with us and the parishioners of St Ignatius, PJ.

But most importantly, thank you to all the CHOICE members from near and far. With an exciting variety of CHOICE t'shirts, you came all the way, literally from the whole Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia to celebrate with us. We made many new friends and rekindled old friendships.

And then there were the CHOICEES from wayyyy back, during the earlier days where it all began. They came with their families.

Let me introduce the person from Choice #1

She won the lucky draw!!!

There was something peculiar about this photo-booth....

It made us go crazy for pictures!!! (the full photobooth album is stored in Choice Kuala Lumpur facebook page!!) but for a sneak peak...

Alvin M. our elegant MC for the night who has a features of a priest 😝almost singlehandedly became an archbishop in waiting when he almost did the closing prayer!!!

We thank the organising committee for a job well done and pray that in 2018, God will shower us with countless blessing, love, peace and joy. From the Choice KL team, a happy and a blessed new year to you all!!!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

A Christmas Carol with C99

Joy to the world the Lord had come. Let earth receive her king !

We Wish you all a Merry Christmas and to all a Happy New Year
 As the year draws to a close and we rejoice for the birth of our Lord savior Jesus Christ, the participants from C99 got together to give thanks for the great blessings of friendships that we received following our CHOICE weekend. And what better way to do it than to spread that joy by singing carols in some of our fellow C99 houses. We were also lucky enough to be joined by two participants from C100 and a special guest from Singapore.

Quick rehearsal outside the parish of Assumption. Shhhh, sing softly or we might awake the bay-bee. 
First on our list was the beautiful home of Ivy Pat. We were warmly greeted by Ivy's mum who was quick to offer us some of her homemade cookies (some of which Ivy claimed to have made herself).


Ivy's mom's warm presence and humble nature had us all glowing in delight.

As finished singing our hearts out and were about to take leave, we were presented by a very special surprise. Ivy donned her pretty white gloves, turned on the music and captivated us with a near flawless pantomime. It was presented as a gesture of thanks for all her comrades in C99 which had us truly humbled.
 Ivy can pull some pretty mean moves and we at C99 have the videos to prove it. 
Next up was a home of another C99er, Rachel. We were instantly greeted by her mom and wonderful niece, little Elisabeth. To our surprise Rachel's friend from Singapore (who happened to be a music teacher) took her seat at the piano and accompanied us beautifully through the carols. And boy did we sound much better after that !

9 out of  9 carolers agreed that we did indeed sound better with music.

Another surprise was in store for us all when Rachel's cute 2 year old niece Elisabeth sprang up and showed us her moves with a rendition of the world wide phenomenon which is Baby Shark.  
Little Elisabeth educated us on how to prevent a future shark attack by quickly identifying the various genus and species by analyzing their teeth and jaw structure.
Our final caroling session of the day was at the home of  Debbie from C99. This time we were welcomed not just by Debbie's mum Mrs.Jean, but also by her furry companion, Angel. Woof woof !

Charlie's  Debbie's Angels

And this time we had Debbie herself play out the carols on the piano, which led us to sing more than just the seven initial songs on our list. (including the famed rendition of C99's 'Kau Ilhamku' which has yet to see it's time on stage).  

Debbie working some magic on the keys.

We were feted with a delicious dinner of roast chicken and mash potatoes. Once our stomachs had settled we moved on to the final activity of the night, Secret Santa !

Dinner time !!
Wedding Silver Bells. Soon it will be............

I'm dreaming of a White Woman Christmas
Grace: Have a Holly Jolly Christmas........  Akka why you squeezing my neck so tight ah ?
'Twas fun it is to ride and sing
Last Christmas you gave me Ang Pow, but the very next day I blew it away. This year to save me from tears, I'll invest it in a diversified investment portfolio or any emerging cryptocurrency. 

We take this opportunity to thank all our wonderful carolers who blessed us not just with their astonishing good looks voice but also with their humble presence and commitment to make this entire day happen. Thank you for your time and effort.

We like to thank our own Ivy Pat from C99, for ensuring we followed through and properly executed this activity. 

Thank you also to our gracious hosts, for opening your homes for us to sing and fellowship.May God bless you and your families.
And most importantly a big thank you to our Lord Jesus, for ensuring us smooth and safe travel between the homes and giving us the joy and blessings from this entire activity.

Thank you everyone. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. 

Monday, December 25, 2017

An open letter to Jesus - Happy birthday!

Dear Jesus,

Happy birthday!

Thank you for coming down to be present among us. Your birth on earth gives us hope. We are a fallen race but today your light has come into this world and into our hearts and thus we are saved. In serving the CHOICE programme, it is our human nature that caused us to fail you and our fellow brothers and sisters. Help us, the CHOICE team to be born again in your grace that we may forgive those who have hurt us. Renew our zeal to serve you. Keep us humble, obedient and kind that we can always follow in your footsteps.  Stir our hearts to love all mankind and to always love you.

All members of CHOICE KL

A blessed Christmas to all!!

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Gospel Alive #3 - The joy of the Lord is my strength

John said, 'I am, as Isaiah prophesied: A voice of one that cries in the desert: Prepare a way for the Lord. Make his paths straight!' - Gospel, John 1:23

Many people today search for pleasures in life to make them happy, but find that it does not bring them joy. Some do not even know why they are unhappy or disconnected. When God is not at the centre, we lose our purpose in life. We lose this Joy!

For St John the baptist, his conviction to prepare the way derives from God: "The Joy of the Lord is my strength"

Joy is a commitment. In our family/marriage/relationship/ministry, to have joy in each other requires effort on our part to communicate with each other.

If our houses are like war-zones breeding with strive and conflict, how can we have joy. Then we come to church, and it is difficult to maintain this joyful facade even if we try.

We need to forgive one another at home, to be committed and persistent in communicating and talking to one another.  We need to put our differences aside, come before God together and pray as a family. - Excerpts from Fr Gregory's Homily - 16/12/17

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

CEKL99 M.A.D Project 2017

 It is our vocation to set people’s hearts ablaze, to do what the Son of God did, who came to light a fire on earth in order to set it ablaze with His love. - Frédéric Ozanam


Rachel from C99 really got the kids going with some super fun games

On November 26  we set out together once again to share the mad love of Jesus Christ. This M.A.D project was initiated by the batch of C99 in collaboration with the Bethel Community Centre in PJ. Together we had the opportunity to spend some quality time with the kids at Rumah Ozanam and also contribute some daily essentials. 

Assembly point at the wonderful Bethel Community Centre

 Funds and supplies were already collected beforehand and were promptly loaded up into the van to be delivered.

Joseph from C99 putting Fr. Edwin through a vigorous weight lifting routine.

 The initial group photo taken proved to be the most awkward group photo ever produced in recent Choice history.

A quick emergency tutorial by Joseph on the basics of safe and effective group photo taking methodologies.

The result was certainly a much better overall pic. Well, if you excuse the ice-cream bike of course.

Finally ! We get to see the beautiful kids at the Rumah.

We started things out with a simple prayer by one of the leaders from Bethel followed by a short inspirational talk by Fr.Edwin. Pizza was served for lunch followed by some fun time, playing games and interacting with the children.

Fr.Edwin delivering an inspirational talk

Our lovely brothers and sisters from the Bethel Community Centre. We love you guys!
Kishya's valiant attempt to kidnap recruit two of the kids to be made her personal minions had Rachel furiously scratching her head in disbelief.
Fr.Edwin was an instant hit among the kids
Kids were all smiles that day. So were we !!

We would like to thank everyone who came together to support our cause both by your humble presence and financial contributions. We would also like to extend our sincere gratitude to everyone from the Bethel Community Centre who assisted us very much with this project. We look forward to maintain our close ties and possibly collaborate together once again in the near future.

Also a very big thank you to the management of Rumah Ozanam and the wonderful children that make up this blessed home. We look forward to continue to visit and support you and your family for many more occasions to come. May God bless you all.

We also offer up praise and thanks to our Lord for allowing us to carry out our activities both safely and smoothly and we look forward for his guidance and blessings for more M.A.D projects to come.

Peace of heart Рwithout it, no good can make us happy. With it, every trial, even the approach of death, can be borne. - Fr̩d̩ric Ozanam