Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Year of Faith Activities

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

As the Year of Faith ends, Mary Help of Christian Church would like to invite you on the following activities:

1. October 23, 2013 – Pilgrimage of the Zone 2 Churches
        The Pilgrims will go to St. Joseph Church at Baan Han, Korat where "blessed Nicolas" used to serve as a parish priest before he was persecuted. The participants are advised to wear an orange T-shirt which is available on the church for 200 baht only. The bus will leave at Mary Help of Christians Church at 5:30 a.m.

2    2. November 23, 2013 – Closing of the Year of Faith for Bangkok Diocese
    This will be held at St. Joseph Church in Ayutthaya, one of the oldest churches. The participants are advised to wear an orange T-shirt which is available on the church for 200 baht only

3. Mass / Daily Rosary 
    Thai Mass (Monday - Saturday at Salesian Provincial House,3rd floor, 6:30 a.m.)
    Thai Rosary (Monday - Friday at Church, starts at 7:00 p.m.)
    Tagalog Mass (Every Sunday at 5:30 p.m.)
     Rosary (Every Sunday at 5:00 p.m.)

For more details please contact Fr. Aaron Alcoseba, SDB.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Cover Letter : Nominations Now Open - 2013 San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila Award

9 September 2013

Subject:  Nominations Now Open - 2013 San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila Award

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Nominations are now open for the 2013 San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila Award! We encourage you to nominate outstanding Filipinos in Thailand who have made a significant difference in the lives of others.  Some nominees are well known, but most are just ordinary people making a difference. The best nominees are often the people who wouldn’t dream of putting themselves forward, which is why we need you to do it for them!
The San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila Award was established in 2009 as a project of the Salesians of Don Bosco (SDB) and the Associations of Filipinos in Thailand, in cooperation with the Philippine Embassy.  Today, the Pastoral Council of the Filipino Community of the Mary Help of Christians (MHoC) Parish in Bangkok is taking the lead in searching for the next awardee. Previous awardees included two individuals and two couples (see http://misangtagalogsabangkok.blogspot.com for more information).
Submit nominations using the attached nomination form – for on-line nomination click here (PDF) or contact Fr. Aaron Alcoseba SDB, Pastor of MHoC, Tel. 0818136077 or E-mail aaronsdb31@gmail.com with copy to SLRdMsaBKK@gmailgroups.com. Also attached are the Awards background and criteria. You may nominate as an individual or group. Nominations will be accepted until 29 September 2013 and will be presented to the selection committee who will select the recipient.  The awarding ceremony will be held during the 5:30 pm Holy Mass at MHoC on 1 December 2013.
Yours in Christ,

Fr. Aaron Alcoseba SDB


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

MisangTagalog SaBangkok

MisangTagalog SaBangkok

You are cordially invited to join the Filipino Community celebrate the San Lorenzo Ruiz Award 2012 on Sunday, 30 September 2012.  The awarding ceremony will start with the Filipino mass at 5pm at the Mary Help of Christians Church,
32 Krungthep Kritha Road, Huamark, Bangkok, 10240, Thailand.

The annual Award was instituted in 2009 by the Salesians of Don Bosco and the Associations of Filipinos in Thailand in cooperation with the Philippine Embassy and is given to outstanding migrant Filipino workers in Thailand who have made a significant difference in the lives of others.
A reception dinner will follow at the Church’s open space.
In Christ,

Fr. John Tamayo, SDB

Monday, September 26, 2011

Misang Tagalog sa Bangkok Flyer #1

*Grab a copy at Mary Help of Christians Church! See you there every Sunday at 5 pm!

Praise You In The Storm

Mr. & Mrs. Nilo Rafols
San Lorenzo Ruiz Awardees 2011

Nilo and Nimfa’s life in Thailand is very touching and fruitful. They experienced both success and failure, both joy and pain, which gave them a deeper knowledge of our God Almighty. Where there were trials, their faith grew.

They came to Thailand thirty seven years ago as Catholic lay missionaries. They taught at the Intermediate Seminary and school. Their trip was arranged by Rev. Mother Miriam Kitjaroen SPC (now the Mother Superior of the Sisters of Saint Paul de Chartres and resides in Italy). At first, they were assigned at Sta. Cruz Convent, with part time work at the Intermediate Seminary in Sampran (St. Joseph Uphatam School), where Rev. Fr. Sangwal was the Father Rector (ordained as Bishop of Chiangmai in 1974-1975).

A few years later, the Council of the Bishop Conference of Thailand decided to transfer the Intermediate Seminary to the Diocese of Nakhon Ratchasima. Luckily, Nilo was assigned at Marie Vithaya School where he helped Rev. Fr. Marius Louise Bray and played electone in the church. As they preferred a quiet life outside of the city, they decided to settle in Korat while working at Marie Vithaya School.

Then in 1978, Rev. Fr. Surin Prasomphol, the first rector of the Holy Family Intermediate Seminary, asked Nimfa to continue her teaching job at the Intermediate Seminary. She agreed and stayed until 2006. Almost all of her former students are now successful in their vocation in life.

Nilo started to work at the seminary when Rev. Fr. Kriangsak Kovitwanit was the rector of the Holy Family Intermediate Seminary, with his assistant Rev. Fr. Chaiyo. During that time, they taught almost 50 seminarians. Both of them stayed for a long time, together with Rev. Fr. Kriangsak, who is now the Archbishop of Bangkok after his appointment as Bishop of Nakhon Sawan Diocese. He taught them how to pray silently in their hearts, which also led to their motto: “In every fervent prayer, there’s always an answer.”

Many people know them, not only in Thailand, but in different countries as well. They are considered as “Padrinos” to some Filipinos, because they are always willing to help. They are also peacemakers to some. They also helped some students who needed to take an examination by teaching them for free. Some of their students, Fr. Chaio, Rector of Intermediate Seminary and Bishop of Nakhon Ratchasima, Rev. Fr. Vera, Bishop of Chiangmai, Fr. Visano, Thailand Ambassador abroad, and many more, are already successful. They also helped some sisters who are reviewing for their doctorate degree. They have offered countless services, which is why a lot of people love and trust them. They have earned people’s respect, and they have made a difference in the lives of the people they have helped.

Recognitions and awards for their great service were given to them by the ministry of education and Cambridge University, where Nimfa Rafols is currently the secretary and examiner of KET, PET, YLE, TKT and FCE, and where Nilo Rafols is an oral examiner, secretary, translator and an evaluator of Mid-term and final test of the students at Saint Mary’s College.

Their willingness to help people in need is a good example to us. They are a kind-hearted couple, that’s why they are also blessed with two sons, and good people around them.

On April 14, 2003, their son, Joseph, was in a terrible car accident. Joseph, who was in Bangkok at that time, had to undergo 3 successive brain surgeries. Nilo and Nimfa thought they have lost him, but God Almighty had been so kind to them, He spared Joseph’s life. Their fervent prayers were answered by His great love and mercy.

While Joseph was confined at Phyathai 1 Hospital in Bangkok, Nilo spent his free time going to all big churches in Bangkok. He went to Ruamrudee Church where he expressed devotion to Our Lady of Perpetual Help by walking on his knees from the entrance to the altar. We did the same at the Assumption Church in Bangrak and the Convent of the Carmelites Sister. His knees became so painful that he consulted with Dr. Parit in Phayathai hospital and got a knee X-ray. He was informed that his knees were weak and swollen, and was advised not to kneel down for a month. He never told the doctor what had happened to him.

They had to temporarily stop serving at the seminary because they had to look after Joseph at the hospital. But they have promised themselves that as soon as Joseph recovers, they would continue serving at the seminary.

Through all those difficult times, they found love and help. They are very grateful to the late Bishop Monsignor Joacquim Phayao Manisab, and to all the priests of the Diocese of Nakhon Ratchasima, especially Rev. Fr. Prayoon Namwong. They would also like to thank: former Sister Superior Rev. Sr. Kanchana Sudprasert; the Religious Sisters of the Assumption Order from the Philippines who stood beside them in time of pain and sorrow; former Philippine Ambassador Antonio Rodriguez and his wife Madame Janet and Philippine embassy personnel; Philippine Ambassador Linglingay Lacanlale and her husband; Ms. Aurora Wongwiwatana and Edith; and, the family of Mrs. Minerva Tipjariyaudom – for all their help, prayers and financial assistance. Most of all, to Rev. Fr. Peter Surin Prasomphol, their former director of Marie Vithaya School, who was always on their side, giving them strength, fervent prayers and financial support, too.

It is truly unimaginable how Nilo and Nimfa survived the Calvary that they had gone through. It was an amazing miracle that happened to them, and to Joseph. They survived, and will continue their mission for God’s glory.
Joseph is currently at home with his nurse. Nilo and Nimfa are also back at the seminary and school, serving with all their heart, mind and strength. Praise the Lord! Indeed, “God will make a way.”

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

San Lorenzo Ruiz Award 2011

(A project of the Salesians of Don Bosco (SDB) and the Association of Filipinos in Thailand (AFT, UFT, CFC, etc) in cooperation with the Philippine Embassy)

Awarding will be held at the 5pm mass on September 25, 2011 (Sunday), Feast of San Lorenzo Ruiz de Manila.

Selection Criteria, Process and Scoring

The annual award is given to outstanding migrant Filipino workers in Thailand in recognition of their:

  1. outstanding professional and personal achievements that give honor to the Filipino people and country; 
  2. unstinting dedication and commitment in service of humanity, especially the less privileged and marginalized segments of Thai society; 
  3. distinguished contributions in fostering closer relationship between Filipino and Thai individuals, groups and societies at large; and 
  4. exemplary life integrating their faith with their personal life, profession and service according to Gospel truths. In essence, these are  outstanding individuals who have made a significant difference in the lives of others.
Instituted in 2009, the first recipient was Dr. Dominica P. Garcia who distinguished herself in helping the poor, refugees, prisoners and other less privileged people in Thailand, Cambodia and Laos through her medical profession and altruistic service.

Read more from the Selection Criteria, Process and Scoring booklet (downloadable PDF file).

Download the Nomination Form and send to:

Fr. John Tamayo, Parish Priest
Mary Help of Christians Church
32 Krungthep Kritha Road, Hua Mark, Bangkok
Tel: 02-731-7100 to 11
Fax: 02-731-7120
Email: jtamayosdb@hotmail.com

The Philippine Embassy
c/o The Office of the Ambassador
760 Sukhumvit Road, Bangkok
Tel: 02-259-0139 to 40

Or any leaders of the many associations of Filipinos in Thailand, i.e.:
  • AFT, Association of Filipinos in Thailand
  • UFT, United Filipinos in Thailand
  • CFC, Couples For Christ in Thailand

Monday, August 22, 2011

Misang Tagalog sa Bangkok goes to... PHUKET!

Matapos ang ilang linggong preparasyon at imbitasyon…
Natuloy din ang byaheng natapat sa bakasyon!

Sa Mary Help of Christians Church sa Surat Thani
Kami’y sinalubong ng mainit na pagbati
Nakipagmisa sa mga taga-roon na kababayan
At pinagsaluhan masarap na umagahan

Sa St. Martin Church sa Pangga nadatnan
Pinaghandaang masarap na tanghalian
May masayang kwentuhan at masiglang awitan
At kami’y namangha sa ganda ng simbahan

Pagdating sa Surin, kami’y napa-WOW!
Sa sunod-sunod na biyaya na tila ba’y nag-uumapaw
Mapinong buhangin, kaaya-ayang karagatan
Sariwang hangin, maginhawang tulugan

Pagsapit ng gabi, gutom ay nakalimutan
Sa dami ba naman ng palarong sinalihan?!?
At matapos kumain ng masarap na hapunan
Aming sinimulan ang palatuntunan

Kanya-kanyang pakulo’t pasikat
Mula sa Bangkok, Phuket at Korat
At sa pagnood ng bawat palabas
Pakiramdam namin kami’y nasa Pilipinas

Paggising sa umaga, lahat ay abala
Sabik na sabik sa pinakahihintay na misa
Napukaw ang puso ng bawat isa
Nang marinig ang Mabuting Balita Niya

Mahirap mang isipin, kailangang tanggapin
Mga kababayan nami’y kailangang lisanin
Nawa’y maghari sa ating isip at damdamin...
Mahal tayo ng Diyos, buhay Siya sa puso natin!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Arrival of the Relics of Saint John Bosco

The Parish of Mary Help of Christians' Schedule of Activities on November 27, 2010:

10:30am - Arrival at Suvarnabhumi Airport
12:00nn - Welcome at Mary Help of Christians Parish, Krungthep Kritha
1:00pm - Enshrinement of the relics in the church; public veneration
6:00pm - Program in honor of Don Bosco
7:00pm - Holy mass

Note: Dinner for all after the holy mass!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Called to Make a Difference

Myrna Magno-Akaraskul, San Lorenzo Ruiz Awardee 2010

God calls each of His children to carry out His purpose every day. To possess a humble heart that chooses to respond to His calls willingly and unconditionally is indeed a precious gift. And such is the heart of a woman named Myrna Magno-Akaraskul.

Myrna was born on October 1, 1951 in Caloocan City, Manila, Philippines. She graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Chemistry from the College of the Holy Spirit, Mendiola, Manila in 1973. After graduation, she was hired as a chemist at the Research Development Center of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. Then, she got married to a Thai national and moved to Thailand in 1976.

Her new life in Thailand led her to a series of services. In 1988 to 1996, she assisted Bishop Duhart, a Redemptorist, and now a retired bishop, at the Holy Redeemer Church in Ruamrudee, Bangkok. In 1996 to 2004, she became active in the Two Hearts Enthronement project, visiting different places in Thailand for the daily house-to-house prayer as well as encouraging people to join.

These made Myrna realize that she was indeed called for service, and was being prepared by God for a special mission. So in March of 2004, she submitted herself in the pursuit of her calling by visiting the Vicar General of the Diocese of Ratchburi. She was then advised to go to Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Huay Klum, Suanpueng where she met out-of-school children who were eager to learn but lacked financial resources.

The children belong to the Karen tribe, and are called “Karens” (Karueang). They live within the borders of Burma and Thailand after escaping the military regime in Burma. They found their way to Thailand, hoping for new hope and new beginning. Priests working in and around the area gathered the Karens to build a village to be identified as members of the Suanpueng community. This provided the Karens not only a sense of identity, but also a sense of belongingness and security.

Unfortunately, the legalization of their stay in Thailand is a very slow process. Their mobility is restricted and specified, resulting to their very limited source of income. Most Karens have menial jobs and are underpaid. The money they earn is just enough for food, and therefore have no means to afford proper education for their kids.

After learning about the Karens’ history and present conditions, Myrna believed she needed to help these poor people by sending Karen kids to school. In September of 2004, she traveled to Chonbueng, Ratchaburi to find a place she could rent for some Karen kids to live in. While roaming around the area, one of the catechists told her that life was not easy there due to lack of water supply. But that did not stop her. She went on until she finally found a perfect place near the school, market and the church. She called the place Ban Prabida, which means “a religious contemplative community dedicated to God the Father, father of all mankind”.

Myrna had Ban Prabida blessed on September 8, 2004. She was eager and motivated to help and send the Karens to school. She came up with the following objectives:
  • To give glory to God by loving thy neighbor
  • To provide an opportunity to the orphans and impoverished for a better future through quality life and education, which would eventually diminish poverty and ignorance
  • To share values, skills and proper behavior acceptable to the society to create peaceful and harmonious life and dignified future
  • To create a chain of love by creating awareness and responding to each other’s needs, especially for the poor, the hungry and the lonely
  • To provide a living family to both young and old
  • To provide solace to the abandoned and needy
  • To invigorate the helpless, especially the aged, and give hope and security
  • To feed the hungry and clothe the unclothed

Myrna’s act of goodwill started with two kids. Two girls approached her and asked for shelter, and she took them in. 65 kids later, she was blessed with help and support from charity groups and individuals and was able to send these kids to school. The AIC (Association of International Charities) sponsored nine children by paying their tuition fees and providing lunch money. Mr. Chris Hui, the owner of Taipen Hotel, also sponsored food for five kids for one whole year. Although these aides ended unexpectedly due to economic crises, Myrna did not stop helping the kids. With God’s love and guidance, she carried on and became their second mother. Currently, 30 of the 65 kids are staying with her in Ban Prabida.

Myrna Magno-Akaraskul truly believes that this is God’s mission for her. Her faith grows stronger every day, in spite of trials and obstacles. She is not rich, but she chooses to help and love unconditionally. Myrna has created something valuable, worth remembering and sharing, and continues to share her life for the glory of God.