Experiencing ALPHA – The Catholic Context

ALPHA participants engaging in small group discussions. (Photo: Audrey Yu)

KUCHING — As part of the Extraordinary Year for Mission (EYM) programme to focus on Mission in the Archdiocese of Kuching, the Archdiocesan Commission for Mission and Human Development, in collaboration with ALPHA Malaysia, organised “Experiencing ALPHA – The Catholic Context” for trainers and new guests.

Their aim was to give an overview of ALPHA as well as to provide basic training on how to run ALPHA. The various parishes in the Archdiocese sent two hundred and fifteen (215) participants to attend the workshop at the Grand Hall, ACCPC on 16 March 2019.

The session was mainly for parishes that have never run ALPHA before, but are eager to explore in detail what it actually is and how it can be run, especially in the Family Bloc Rosary (FBR), or as an evangelisation and re-evangelisation tool.

The programme was in 3 languages; English, Bahasa Malaysia & Mandarin, running concurrently.

Archbishop Simon Poh, at the Eucharistic celebration, reminded that Jesus establishes relationships with his followers and disciples by often gathering for meals with them.

In Mass we gather round the altar of sacrifice. Through the Alpha experience, we are invited for a meal to build relationships in the little groups with our Lord as Master, coming together as a family of God.

The hosts are like the head of the family and the helpers are like the children in the family, helping to entertain guests. We are called to be perfect just like the Heavenly Father is perfect. We are called to maturity. Though we are not perfect, we can do small things with great love.

In his welcoming speech after Mass, Fr. Galvin Richard Ngumbang, Chairman of the Archdiocesan Commission for Mission and Human Development, thanked the team from ALPHA Malaysia for bringing this programme to Kuching, aptly in this Extraordinary Year for Mission.

He hoped that after this, many will take up the challenge to be “missionary disciples” after having experienced Christ in their lives, and share with others.

Ms. Wini Heron, the National Director for ALPHA Malaysia, Ms. Elizabeth Lopez, the Regional Development Director (Catholic Context) for ALPHA Asia Pacific and 9 facilitators from Kuala Lumpur and Sabah conducted the programme in English, Bahasa Malaysia and Chinese respectively.

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction. (Photo: Audrey Yu)

ALPHA graduates from the parishes in the Archdiocese also facilitated in the one-day programme which ended with the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction.

Grateful testimonies from participants:

Thankful to all for the guidance and we are ready to plan and execute the programme for our OLSS Bintawa Community.

The training course provides guidelines for us to organise our own Alpha programme. Useful and informative points. The video gave us a better understanding on how to deal with participants.

The programme is new to me but it is interesting and I have learned quite a lot about Alpha today.

It was a wonderful experience. Good for leadership training. Only, for the group discussion, we did not have enough time. But overall, it was very good.

It was an amazing experience. I am sure the Alpha programme can be organised at our Chapel soon, based on all the information provided.

Before joining Alpha, I only go to church on Sunday. After joining Alpha, praise the Lord, I have been an Alpha Administrator for three times. I also help in the church as presenter, warden and willing to help in whatever the Priest requests. I have recommended Alpha to my friends. Now St Stephen has a big crowd of Alpha participants.


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