Category Archives: Special events

Turning My Complaints Into Positive

A very good afternoon to our chairman, honourable judges, teachers and my fellow friends. Allow me to share with you this afternoon with my speech entitled ‘Turning my complaints into positive’.

Ladies and gentlemen,

I dislike getting up early in the morning to go to school. It is not that I hate school. I dislike having a drag myself out of bed when it is still dark outside and when my eyes refuse to open. If only school would not have to get up early, I would not have to wait my turn to use the bathroom. However the moment I hit the morning air on my way to school, my whole outlook changes. Ah, the cool air is refreshing. School is wonderful with all my friends and surroundings.

Ladies and gentlemen,

As I said before, school is wonderful. However its wonderfulness is often reduced by the hardworking teachers who load me with homework. So when I reach home in the afternoon I have to slog for hours before I get through all the homework. Who can blame me for not doing them well? As the saying goes “all works and no play make Jack a dull boy”, the teachers should consider that I have other more enjoyable things to do. Life should not revolve around homework only.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Come weekends, it is lovely to sleep late without worrying about getting to school on time. The joy of lying in bed listening to the activities of living things going about their business is particular pleasant. I just close my eyes and do nothing. Sooner or later my mother would make me get up. It is time for the weekly house-cleaning. I would have to wash the front porch and do other chores. I wonder why I repeat the same chores every week. How much difference will a little neglect make? Precious little, I suppose. Nevertheless, kids do not have power and we have to listen to the grown-ups. So, much as I dislike these weekly chores, I have to do them.

Ladies and gentlemen,

There are other distasteful things that I would share with you, but I want to make a choice to stop all my complaints at this moment. This is because I want to be happy and I believe that you and I are designed for happiness. Well then, can we be happy? Absolutely. We will be happy if we see happiness as a choice and a state in life. It is a choice because we choose our thoughts. The way we think and look at life determines the way we feel. When we remember something wonderful, we are happy. When we think of something terrible, we become sad. We have both, positive and negative experiences in our lives. What we look at gets bigger and bigger in our minds. It is a state and not a passing emotion. A happy person is more than just having happy feelings. It is unrealistic to say that we are a happy person only when we are on an emotional high. Happy people live happy ways such as there are lots of smiles, optimistic, willing to help, just to name a few. Normally, others are glad to be around them.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Life comes with unpleasant experiences for everyone but a happy person will always find a way back to happiness. We have all that we need today to be happy. We do not need to wait until we are the best. Happiness is truly an inside job. It depends on what you look at, what you believe in and your lifestyle. What will you choose? Thank you.

Keeping Fit

Praise the Lord! This was my greatest achievement in 2014 as an English teacher. My pupil, Rosasyidah had become the winner for Zon Pedalaman, and as you watch on video was recorded in Tawau, Sabah as she competed in English public speaking state-level.

A very good morning to our chairman, honourable judges, teachers and friends. The title of my speech today is, ‘Keeping Fit’.

Ladies and gentlemen,

In this day and age, most of us know the benefits of keeping fit. Modern society has come to the point that we need to keep fit to stay alive. Our work normally does not involve hard physical labour. So, many of us lack exercises. The consequence of not getting enough exercise is frightening. On the mildest scale we may simply grow fat. On a more ominous scale, we may develop all sorts of ailments that can kill us before we grow old. So we exercise for our lives.

There are various means by which we can get the exercise we need. If we live in the city and can afford it, there are fitness clubs and gymnasiums that can cater to our needs. They offer aerobic dancing, jazz dancing, weight training and other sorts of body torture guaranteed to make us sweat. For the poorer ones there are other cheaper alternatives for keeping fit.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Games like badminton, squash and tennis are popular with many who like a bit of competition in their exercise. Others play hockey, soccer and similar field games. Others engage in mild games of snooker or bowling. While the intensity of physical exertion differs in each game, they all give certain amounts of exercise to the participants. Who can say how much exercise a person needs? It all depends on his physical condition and his willingness to participate.

By far the most popular form of keeping fit is jogging. It is also relatively cheap. All a jogger needs is a good pair of running shoes, some decent and comfortable clothes, a track to run on and a desire to do something beneficial for his body.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Thus, we can see joggers in the parks, fields and roads early in the morning and also in the evening. These people are of various shapes, sizes and ages. They dress in all sorts of outfits ranging from simple drab ones to flashes of colour enough to distract other joggers. Nevertheless, all of them huff and puff their way along their chosen paths. Some jog rather quickly while others look like they are out more for a stroll than a run. Some fitter ones jog easily and smoothly while some obviously not-so-fit ones drag their tired feet one after another along the track. By merely looking at the face of a runner, one can tell if he is feeling all right or feeling tortured.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Come organised runs like marathons and half-marathons, we see virtually thousands of people running and walking along the route for prizes that most will not get. The point is not to win anything except the satisfaction of knowing one has completed the distance. This is an achievement in itself. Twenty six miles by car is a long enough journey. The same distance by foot is far longer and infinitely more tiring, if one can make it at all.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Whatever means we emply to keep fit is up to us. In fact we have the choice whether we want to keep fit or leave our bodies alone. The benefits of keeping fit are many provided we do not do it to extremes. There are cases of people over-exercising themselves to death. That defeats the whole purpose of keeping fit. Performed moderately, exercise does keep us fit and healthy. Let me end my speech by asking all of you, ‘Would you like to keep fit?’ It is your body, you decide!

Thank you.

The Characteristic of becoming Jesuit

(taken from the book, 34th General Congregation of the Society of Jesus)

200th anniversary of the Restoration of the Society of Jesus

1. Deep Personal Love for Jesus Christ

Here it will be to ask for an intimate knowledge of our Lord, who has become human for me, that I may love him more and follow him more closely.

2. Contemplative in Action

I shall not fail to recall that grace which he had in all circumstances, while at work or in conversation, of feeling the presence of God and of fasting spiritual things, of being contemplative even in the midst of action; he used to interpret this as seeking God in all things.

3. An Apostolic Body in the church

Finally we decided in the affirmative; namely that… we should not break this divinely constituted oneness and fellowship, but rather strengthen and consolidate it ever more, forming ourselves into one body.

4. In Solidarity with those most in need

And what they should especially seek to accomplish for God’s greater glory is to preach, hear confessions, lecture, instruct children, give good example, visit the poor in the hospitals, exhort the neighbour according to the amount of talent which each is conscious of possessing, so as to move as many as possible to prayer and devotion.

5. Partnership with Others

For that same reason too, preference ought to be shown to the aid which is given to the great nations, such as the Indies, or to important cities, or to universities, which are generally attended by numerous persons who by being aided themselves can become labourers for the help of others.

6. Called to Learned Ministry

After the pilgrim realized that it was not God’s will that he remain in Jerusalem, he continually pondered within himself what he ought to do. At last he inclined more to study for some time so he would be able to help souls, and he decided to go to Barcelona.

7. Men Sent, Always Available for new Missions

If they were not given permission to remain in Jerusalem, they would return to Rome and present themselves to the vicar of Christ, so that he could make use of them wherever he thought it would be to the greater glory of God and the service of souls.

8. Ever Searching for the Magis

Those who wish to give greater proof of their love, and to distinguish themselves in whatever concerns the service of the Eternal King and the Lord of all, will not only offer themselves entirely for the work but make offerings of greater value and of more importance.

Conclusion

Our way of proceeding is a way of challenge. But this way of proceeding is the reason why every son of the Society will always act and react in a consistently Jesuit and Ignatian way, even in the most unforeseen circumstances.

May we ever love more faithfully this way of Christ modelled for us by Saint Ignatius. For this we pray in a prayer of Father Pedro Arrupe:

‘Lord, meditating on our way of proceeding,’ I have discovered that the ideal of our way of acting is your way of acting.

Give me that sensus Christi that I may feel with your feelings, with the sentiments of your heart, which basically are love for your Father and love for all men and women.

Teach me how to be compassionate to the suffering, to the poor, the blind, lame and the lepers.

Teach us your way so that it becomes our way today, so that we may come closer the great ideal of Saint Ignatius: to be companions of Jesus, collaborators in the work of redemption.

p.s: Today 27 Sept, Pope Francis will celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Restoration of the Society of Jesus with vespers at the Church of the Gesù in Rome.

Finding God in 10k Marathon!

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Aced it!

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. So I do not run aimlessly; I do not box as one beating the air. But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:24-27)

To God be the Glory! Amen.

Off to Bible Knowledge Course

Holy Bible

‘Not every bad thing is caused by Him but He will use circumstances in your life, your relationship with your loved ones, your good friends, your family and many other situations and anyone to bring you down. He likes it when you get angry and when you hate somebody.

That is why we must be alert and have good bible knowledge. Words in the bible are Word of God and it is also the weapon for us to fight against the devil and his works. The word of God is the sword and our strong faith is the shield that protects us from the enemy arrows. Then we are able to fight against our enemy’

The extract above I taken from this book entitled, ‘Transformation journey with God’ by Penny Chok could be Holy Spirit is telling my conscience that my decision to take one week Bible Knowledge course starting this evening is wise. Do human beings have bad conscience as well? With that, I am off virtually for a week. It would be a great idea to disconnect from internet in order to avoid info-overload syndrome whatever you call it. Anyways, I need to put more trust in Almighty God as I felt doubtful at some points of my thinking. In the darkest moment, I believe He is here to hold my hands as I don’t know my own strength.

I would like to do one more thing before I off, which is to send an email to this ‘guardian angel’ to ask for his weekly blogs address as He has written a piece of great article, ‘On photographs and movies’. I end this entry by quoting his ‘phrases of wisdom’.

‘Photographs give a chance to pause, ponder or ‘taste’ various aspects of our Faith so that we may live them more fully. They can confuse as well as reveal. To answer that, you need a movie, not just photography.’

Life Camp 2011–Called, Chosen, Commissioned (PART 2)

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    Blessed Sunday everyone who are reading this ‘rusty’ space of mine. Life is beautiful since I have graduated yet have high hopes to be posted to the place whereby my abilities will be justified. Ave Maria! My previous post was written on July. It would not complete without this second part. However, it’s hard for me to reflect as my brain is getting rusty as well. As I am writing this, I just thought on reading the entire Oxford dictionary day by day brushing up my language proficiency, and eventually come out with a book something to do with my spiritual journey.

   Not to go far from this entry, the below are some messages left by friends from Making A Difference (M.A.D) camp which turned out to be spirit-filled and inspiring. The camp was long-held from 8th to 10th July 2011 but the memory will be framed into my heart forever. And the camp speaker, Martin Jalleh was very comical with his usual trademark, ‘unlaughable’ joke!

I praise God for your heart that always so open to know more about Him. As you get to know Him, it’s also take time to know more about yourself. And thanking him for you’re His masterpiece! Continue to venture in His kingdom! – from Sis Yvonne

Make a difference. May God bless you- from Laura Voo

Be a Good English Teacher! Use your gift of God that’s your talent to God lead all your life to whom unknown language of English. Read Bible words: Matthew 7 – from Ah Sen

Hi, I praise God because you had answered His call by joining this camp. I pray for God’s blessing upon your career. Amen! – from Alister

‘He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength.’

(Isaiah 40:29) – from Chris&Con

Nice to know you. May God bless you in teaching. Smile always. – from Natasa Johnny

Nice meeting, prince of God! ^_^ 1Pet 2:9 You’re CHOSEN! – from Debbie Ros

Thank you – from Petra

Glad to meet you again! It was very nice chatting with you. Hope you get a good posting! And no matter what remember that God is your strength always! Amen! – from Joanne Wee

As the Marion Month is coming to an end, I would like to end this entry by praying Hail Mary, a prayer for the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus Christ.

Young Catholic - coutesy of Crisis Magazine Website

Hail Mary,

Full of Grace,

The Lord is with thee.

Blessed art thou among women,

and blessed is the fruit

of thy womb, Jesus.

Holy Mary,

Mother of God,

pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of death.

Amen.

P.S. I thought the picture of young woman holding a rosary beads was a brilliant addition to help men to see the beauty of women in a new light.

Life Camp 2011–Discipleship Together (PART 1)

 

This year around, the annual SFX Life Camp was held at the Good Shepherd Seminary Malacca. It was indeed an honour to have Rev. Deacon Sherman Kuek as the camp facilitator to speak to us on the theme of the camp, ‘Discipleship Together’. How do you feel about the camp? What messages have you brought back from it? These two questions seemed to be the common ones asked by friends who had missed it, yet it’s hard to give short answers as experience is indeed the best teacher in life.

Let me tell you that I reminisced about these questions in a very quiet ambience with only the sound of insects orchestrating the symphony of nature. The quiet moment reminded me of the 4th session during the camp: Discipleship & Spirituality where Deacon Sherman mentioned that ‘The discipline of silence will bring you deeper into the rhythm of God’. This for me was gentle admonition for the times I had been too caught up with the noise of the world and failed to listen to His words. He mentioned that ‘Prayer is not like a shopping list’. That totally contradicted with my prayer life and I am now learning to listen more instead of demanding. It sure makes sense why we have been given two ears and one mouth.

‘When you are touched by perfection, your sense of beauty will change’. This was a phrase that touched me during the camp. Allow me to give you my own analogy to explain the phrase. It is like when you encounter sacred and beautiful music like the Gregorian chant, Justin Bieber songs would mean nothing to you. Anyway, I am not a fan of Justin Bieber though I admit I was initially trapped in his ‘worldly’ rhythm. Moving on to the ‘cost’ of discipleship, I think all of the participants would agree with me that the price to pay for it is high. However, Love Peace and Joy are guaranteed for each and everyone who is willing to follow Jesus.

 

In this journey of discipleship, we often want to make sure that everything goes well according to our plans. We ensure that we carry all that is necessary to make it comfortable and safe. In spite of our meticulous calculations and safety measures, the journey may not go the way we want it to go. The reason being that we do not take that which is essential: Jesus. The absence of Jesus causes winds and storms in our lives. Without Him, there is no proper direction for life. I believe that the presence of Jesus may not remove the winds and storms of life, but we can meet them with courage and optimism. The accompaniment of Jesus gives us the strength of an invisible helper.

At the end of the session, Deacon Sherman reassured the participants, about 50 plus college students and young adults, to not be afraid as the journey of discipleship is indeed a rewarding one. Hence, let us ask ourselves: ‘Do I want to follow Him?’ †

Today is called Motivating Monday

Today is the day! Today is my first day of School Experience Programme. What day is today? Today is Monday! How do you perceive this day? DJ JJ and Rudy from 92.90hertz (If only you were living in the Hell of K) would say Monday Blue? Dear my friends, let’s change our mindset and called it MOTIVATING Monday? For the first day, my ‘girlfriends’ and I just went suck the humid air of the friendly-environment school. Examination was going on. Anyone who farted could even be heard by mosquitoes. What we were doing then? Chit-chatting meaningfully, girls were gossiping and keep mourning the word: boring, disturbing and honing my national language with other teacher in the staffroom, reading like a geek, shopping at the school. Task A left 80% and we just have to ask, smile, and communicate! Today is quite tiring. We signed off at 4.30pm because we took part in in-service Training. I could see vividly how the course Personal Leadership and School Management applied for the first day. In-service Training is one of the ways to enhance teachers’ professionalism. Scroll down a bit then you can read some details that I managed to jot down during the in-service Training……

Name of the Programme: Peranan Guru Sebagai Pendidik
(Kecemerlangan diri and organisasi)
Date: 25.5. 2009
Time: 2pm-4pm ( best time for taking my siesta)
Venue: Makmal Bestari

Random notes that I managed to jot down:

“Only Dead fishes swim with the flow of water.” How about living fishes? What does it mean? Can anyone of you tell me? Then he talked about self-actualization. Self actualization is the process of striving to actualize one’s potential capacity, abilities, and talents. One must do what he or she can do. How to reach this higher level of Maslow’s theory? Firstly, we need to vary our lifestyles. My own example would be dancing while jogging? Secondly, we need to have goal! Without a goal is like a hunter holding a gun and no idea where to shoot the flying bird. Great people are really ordinary people who commit themselves to extraordinary goals. Then he talked about some criterions of workers that needed in the job market in the future based on research done by Harvard University. The criterions are high cognitive thinking skills, critical thinking, good communication skills, good problem solving skills, espirit de corps, eager to learn new things, and possess high intrinsic motivation. Open your hearts, open your mind, you would not easily open your clothes! Then come to conclusion which is the best part I like! Study from University of Massachusetts has shown that people say, ‘I love my work’ would hardly get heart diseases. Instantly after that I said it to myself, ‘I love my work!’ (1000 times). Yeah, I won’t get heart diseases anymore. Do you enjoy your work? If not then find a way to quit or else say it insincerely ‘I love my work?’ Overall I enjoyed 2 hours free motivation talk. With his cool sense of humour, he managed to talk 2 hours without saying to us, ‘okay ladies and gentlemen, now you can take 5!’ because today is called motivating Monday!