JERUSALEM — The Bau Bidayuh community can claim 29 November 2019 as a historical day for them. The “Sama koih” (Our Father) prayer plaque in the Bau Bidayuh dialect, engraved on the wall of the Pater Noster Church in Jerusalem, was unveiled after two years of planning and preparation.
Located on the Mount of Olives, the Pater Noster Church holds a great significance to our faith as it was the site where our Lord Jesus Christ had taught his disciples the “Our Father” prayer in Luke 11: 1-4.
89 Bidayuh pilgrims from the Bau parish of St Stephen’s, together with some pilgrims from Kuching, came on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land to unveil the prayer of the “Sama koih”. They were led by Kuching Archbishop Simon Poh, accompanied by Fr Bernard Jim Bujang from St Stephen’s Parish Bau, and Fr Patrick Heng from Holy Trinity Church, Kuching.
Archbishop Simon officially unveiled and blessed the “Sama koih” plaque in a simple ceremony. In his address, the prelate pointed out that the plaque is a blessing for the whole Archdiocese of Kuching.
With this unveiling and blessing, the “Sama koih” plaque is for all future Bidayuh pilgrims to come and pay homage at the Holy Land and see the prayer in their own language engraved at the same site where Jesus once stood among his disciples, and taught them the Our Father prayer.
Anne Marian Joseph