MACAU GOVERNMENT CONFERS AWARDS FOR 2015
Pedro Daniel Oliveira
Bishop José Lai, Sister Judith Alice Yuen, teacher Kuok Ut Kam, Ms Hellen Sou and the Macau Catholic Schools Association are a true example of how important the work of Catholics in the territory is.
The Government of Macau awarded last Monday at the Cultural Center 63 individuals and groups in recognition of their contributions to the Region’s development, including four figures and one institution under the umbrella of the Catholic Church.
D. José Lai, Bishop of Macau, was awarded the Silver Lotus, while Sister Alice Yuen, teacher Kuok Ut Kam, the Macau Catholic Schools Association represented by Father Joseph Chow were given the medals of merit in the education field, while the Director of St Francis Xavier Asylum Hellen Sou was a recipient of the medal in the community services field.
“It is a joy and also a thank you, an appreciation of the Government to the work developed by the Catholic Church in Macau, especially in Education and Social Affairs,” said Bishop D. José Lai to O CLARIM. “This award may be seen as an encouragement for the Church’s mission locally, because we are always working on it.”
To Sister Judith Alice Yuen of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, also a former Santa Rosa de Lima College Principal (English Secondary School), her medal “is a recognition from the Government” about her “service in Education”, that’s why she “will continue to support the Education in Macau whenever needed and also to make learning for the students better and more creative.”
In her opinion, the Government of Macau is doing its best to bring Education to a higher levels: “They are trying. I think there are more opportunities now for the students to go to higher education, as there are more choices for them to study.”
As for Father Joseph Chow, Macau Catholic Schools Association Chairman, “this honor shows that Catholic Education in Macau is confirmed by the Government and also by the Macau citizens.” In other words, “this is an honor for all the Catholic schools in Macau.”
A total of four previous senior officials from the Government of Macau were awarded the Golden Lotus: namely, Ms Florinda Chan, Mr Francis Tam Pak Yuen, Mr Cheong Kuoc Vá and Mr José Proença Branco.
“I am delighted (by) this Thanksgiving (and) feel that it’s worth fighting and working with full commitment. Despite the difficulties and sacrifices faced it is worth fighting for a better Macau. I am thankful from the bottom of my heart, specially to the workers and the colleagues, with a strong desire for a great Christmas and a good Holy Year of Mercy,” mentioned the former Secretary for Administration and Justice Florinda Chan to O CLARIM.
One of the guests invited by the Bishop understood the awards given to the four figures and one institution under the umbrella of the local Catholic Church as “a very positive” sign. “First of all it’s a recognition of their work in the social and the education level and also, for the religious people, on the religious level. I think this is also an encouragement for the Church to continue in the same fields, to encourage more contributions to society by its Catholic citizens.”