By Ivy Chai
KUCHING — Hundreds of parishioners were at the Saturday Sunset Mass at Blessed Sacrament Church (BSC) on 22 February to witness the installation of its new rector, and to welcome him.
Fr Patrick Heng was installed as the third rector of BSC, taking over from Fr Felix Au, who will be going overseas on study leave. Fr Lawrence Chua became the first rector in 2003.
Kuching Archbishop Simon Poh presided at the Mass, and at the installation ceremony presented the Parish Pastoral Council to Fr Patrick, reminding him to “always be a loving father, a gentle shepherd and a wise teacher of your people so that you may lead them to Christ, who will strengthen all that you do.”
After reading his pledge of fidelity, Fr Patrick was presented to the parishioners as their new shepherd.
Archbishop Simon also thanked Simon and Marion Au for the gift of their sons, Fr Felix and his brother Fr David Au. He asked for prayers for more vocations to the priesthood.
In his short farewell speech, Fr Felix thanked the Archbishop for celebrating Mass, and the community for all their support. He acknowledged he had “grown a lot” in the three years at BSC and that he is now a “changed person” through his journey of faith, as the leaders of the parish had served with joy and generosity, which had inspired him to grow to be a better pastor. He requested that the community extend their support to Fr Patrick in order for him to do God’s work.
Fr Felix then handed over the duty and responsibility of a rector to Fr Patrick after he had signed the document of profession.
Fr Patrick in accepting his office as rector of Blessed Sacrament Church, thanked Archbishop Simon for his trust and confidence in him, and also Fr Felix and Fr Lawrence Chua for building BSC to be what it is today. He invited the community to help him build the parish together, and to pray with him.
Fr Patrick Heng was the rector of Holy Trinity Church for seven years prior to his transfer to Blessed Sacrament Church.