So that all may have Life
Ross Belle Balatbat
The Pastoral Care for Filipino Migrants of the Diocese of Macau, in conjunction with Human Life International (HLI) has organized a series of conferences from February 28 – March 05. Human Life International promotes the culture of life all over the world.
Fr. Shenan Boquet, president of HLI; Dr Brian Clowes, Director of Research and Education and Dr Ligaya Acosta, the Head of HLI Asia-Oceana Region came to Macau to help the Pastoral Care for Migrants in its Program on Family and Life Ministry. Likewise, they are now in the city to equip and inform the Community of their roles in promoting human life. Aside from these, Fr Jay, SOLT emphasized that “this is also our way of supporting and being part of the HLI mission in the battle against the culture of death.”
The HLI-ABC (Acosta-Boquet-Clowes) team, received a very warm reception from the Community of both migrants and locals. Around 180 persons participated in the Seminar on the Promotion of Human Life. It was held at the Chapel of St Joseph Seminary last March 01, from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. During the seminar Dr Acosta shared a very inspiring and motivating talk on “Marriage and the Family: Bedrock of Civilization” where she pointed out the importance of marriage, what marriage is in the Church and the role of the husband, wife and children in family life.
Dr Brian Clowes’ research-based presentation was entitled “The Wisdom of God’s Plan for Our Lives.” He said that the mission of the Church is not to control people’s lives but to help them along the road to Heaven. The Commandments, the precepts and other guidance of the Church are like guardrails that save us from falling off the cliff of temptation into the swamp of sin. In his sharing, he mentioned about a popular saying among American Catholics that goes: “It is hard to live as a Catholic, but it is easy to die as a Catholic.” But the reality is that it is much easier to both live and die as a Catholic.
Fr Shenan Boquet nailed the audience attention with his spirit-filled exposition on “Building a Culture of Life and a Civilization of Love.” He emphasized that “the culture of life means respect for nature and protection of God’s work of creation. In a special way, it means respect for human life from the first moment of conception until its natural end.”
Separate meetings have also been set to target the Youth, the Migrant Ministers of the Pastoral Center, the Catholic Advisory Council of Macau, Family-Oriented Groups and the Religious Priests and Sisters.
The HLI-ABC team also had the opportunity to visit Churches and impart some words of inspiration to the Sunday congregations.
The team made an unplanned stopover at the Center of the Missionary Sisters. There they met the sisters and had the chance to be with the children there.
The team concluded their initial mission with a meeting with Bishop José Lai, to whom they presented their assessment and recommendations. In addition, the wrap-up meeting with the SOLT Priests and the Migrant Ministry set the way for a new program and activities of the HLI in Macau.