Celebration of the Lunar New Year Mass
The Sacred Heart Cathedral celebrated the annual Lunar New Year (LNY) Mass last Saturday, January 28. In his homily, Archbishop John Wong urged everybody to be alert and lead a life according to their calling. He also talked about salvation history in relation to the LNY celebration theme. Sticky rice cakes and kuazi were among those brought to the altar during the presentation of gifts. Some boxes and baskets of mandarin oranges to be distributed to the faithful were blessed by Archbishop Wong after the Communion Prayer. The clergy and the people made the Chinese rite of bowing to the altar, the clergy and to each other prior to the final blessing and dismissal.
In appreciation to the celebration of the Lunar New Year , the Chinese gave ang pows to the clergy and to those who attended the Mass.
There were Chinese celebrations before and after the Mass. It was the drum display performance tradition that enlivened up the evening. Patrick Lee brought three drummers with him, aged 11 to 13, who displayed their skills before the celebration of the Eucharist. Lee said these drummers started training since March to learn the 14 steps of the drum performance, including the body movements.
In 1987, the Chinese drum (with Lee playing) was first used with the musical ensemble accompanying the choir in the Lunar New Year Mass. In 2000, it had a separate performance before the Mass and after Communion Prayer. Through the years, a number of boys and girls have undergone training with Lee to perform the Chinese drum.
After the Mass, there was the distribution of the oranges and everybody, including the clergy, gathered in front of the parish to watch the dragon, lion and unicorn dance performed by the You Yi Troupe.