CFC North Bangkok welcomes 23 new members
The entire CFC North Bangkok chapter assembled at the Church of Our Lady Mother of God in Rangsit on Sunday, 3 September 2017 to welcome 23 new members (1 CFC couple, 16 SFCs, 2 HOLD, 3 SOLD) to the community at the Christian Life Programme (CLP) dedication ceremony. The service team composed members of the households of Francis/Espie, Vic/Em and Alvin/Kristine and conducted the CLP for 8 Sundays since 16 July. Jimmy Lozare, Fulltime Worker, gave the concluding talk on Transformation in Christ and prayed over the new graduates. Representatives from the graduating group gave powerful testimonies about their personal experiences leading to their attendance to the CLP and how the Lord has touched and called them to renew their faith and life Christians through the programme. CFC North Bangkok conducts annual CLP at the Church in Rangsit.
Women's Conference - My Heart in Your Hands
Some 100 women members from the Handmaid of the Lord (HOLD), Couples for Christ (CFC) and Singles for Christ (SFC) in Bangkok gathered at the Aimphan Education Center, Nonthaburi on 20 August 2017 to rediscover and grow in faith through the annual CFC Women Conference. Sis. Edythe Avendano, HOLD International Coordinator and Sis. Nina Caunga HOLD Sector Coordination from Manila facilitated five sessions leading participants to reflect on their coming to and journey of faith, their struggles and challenges, standing firm in the firm, resolve to be courageous and strong and acts of love. Some local members enriched the reflection with the sharing of real life experiences. As in any other CFC events, the conference opened with the celebration of the Eurachist by Father Mauro from the Franciscan retreat center in Lamlukha. Sis Jhozine Damaso, CFC-HOLD Coordination, CFC Thailand led the organization with support from the Family Ministry Coordinators Sonny and Marites Montalbo. Other HOLD and CFC members also provided active support in organizing and facilitating the successful event.
CFC Chiang Mai Outreach Activity in Mae Win, Chiang Mai
On 8 July 2017, the CFC/SFC/HOLD Chiang Mai organized an outreach activity in a Karen village in Mae Wang district with 40 Karen families under the Diocese of Chiang Mai and pastored by Fr. Vinai. The 13-member group traveled 2 hours from Chiang Mai in 3 vehicles through very rough and narrow forest road. The 3rd vehicle was not able to reach the village and got stuck along the road, needing some 10 people to dislodge it and return back to lowland. The group arrived at around 11.00am and met 20-30 children waiting. The SFCs organized fun games and then activities moved to a classroom because of rain. The rain dragged on to damp the place and made the return to Chiangmai difficult. Some village Karen mothers came and observed the activities. The group had lunch together with the some children’s mom. After lunch, they continued the activities in the classroom with games and dance presentation. They distributed goodies for children and gave donated things to the teachers. A used computer was donated and installed in the school. After taking group pictures with the children and villagers, the group started to return back to Chiangmai through another longer route but was immediately got stuck. The villagers came to help pull the vehicles out. With prayers and travel for 2 ½hours, they arrived Chiang Mai at 5:30pm.
CFC Theme Conference "Strong and Faithful", Grand Lord Hotel, Bangkok, 27 May 2017
CFC Thailand was exhorted to mature in the work of evangelization and become powerful witness of God's love by standing firm in the faith, being courageous and strong and acting everything out of love. This was the key message of this year's CFC theme conference held at Grand Lord Hotel in Srinakarin Road (http://www.grandlordhotel.com) on Saturday, 27 May 2017. Over 200 members of CFC Thailand listened and reflected on the five talks of the conference given by a mission team from CFC Manila comprising: Bombee/Beth Tiongson, Jun/Marla Rances, Junel/Cecile Ama, Farley/Ariola, Raymond/Arlene Azul and Norman/Gemma Robles. The conference was well attended by members from all chapters in Bangkok (North Bangkok, Central Bangkok, South and East Bangkok and Nonthaburi). A good number of participants came from communities in Phuket, Krabi and Korat. The event culminated with the Sacrament of the Eucharist celebrated by H.E. Bishop Silvio Siripong Charatsri, Prelate of Chantaburi Diocese and CBCT chairman for the Apostolate Commission for the Laity, Family and Youth. H.E. Bishop stayed on to join a special dinner hosted by the CFC Council together with the mission team from CFC Manila. The owner of Grand Lord Hotel, an active parishioner of Mary Help of Christian Church, Ms. Panadda Nilkumhaeng, participated in the mass and dinner.
Youth for Christ International Conference 2017
Yet again, another Conference for YFC was conducted in the Philippines. This time, it was held from 7 to 8 April 2017 in Laoag City, Ilocos Norte. The event was joined by more than 7,000-strong YFC members from all over the Philippines and around the world. In addition, the event was a momentous occasion as it was the first time that more than 200 foreign delegates joined the event. It was considered the largest, so far.
Thailand was blessed to have the opportunity to join the said event this year. The YFC Thailand delegation consisted of 8 YFC members from North, Central, and South-East Bangkok chapters - escorted by their 4 couple-coordinators.
The Mariano Marcos Stadium overflowed as the event filled the air with music and praising songs lead by the powerful worship leaders, Music Ministries (graced by the appearance of the LiveLoud band), and from the uplifting and inspiring testimonials from our fellow brothers and sisters from YFC, SFC, HOLD, SOLD, and CFC couples as they share their lives in the service for God.
Day 2 sent the delegations to the different parishes where they immersed in the culture and historic edifices of the city. The visits also gave them the opportunity form house holds and fellowships to they learn more about each other. The 3 day event ended with Palm-Sunday mass lead by the Bishops of Ilocos and a series of talks and closing presentations from the service teams. It is truly a energy and spirit filled event and the Thailand delegations is looking forward to the next YFC ICon that is planned to be held in Manila, Philippines. God Bless and Stand Firm on Solid Ground! (Contributed by Vince Marqueses)
Medical mission for refugees in Ratchaburi
SFC members conducted its second medical mission of the year at the Thailand-Myanmar border in Ratchaburi on Saturday, 20 May 2017, together with Dr. Chat/Mary Anne from the Thai household and Edgar/Moonyeen from the Council. The mission team brought goodies for about 50 children and offered medical services to the sick. Children were also given ice cream whom they cherished with gusto. An SFC singing dou entertained the children with modern and Christian songs and led them to sing along with actions. The team from Bangkok arrived in the village at about 10:30 am and provided medical services until 1:30 pm to over 30 patients. Medicines and vitamins were also given free of charge. CFC has provided financial support to the mission to purchase the goodies and medical supplies. The SFC team has been conducting this mission in the border regularly once every three months for several years. There are over 20 villages occupied by Karen refugees who have benefited from this mission. Father Prasit, a Thai priest from Ratchaburi, has facilitated these missions and provided assistants to the team for translation and logistical support in travelling to the remote villages. He encouraged CFC to do more mission work as long as they are done with sincerity and love. Click to view more photos of the mission.
CFC Ubon Ratchatani 23th Anniversary Celebration
Some 120 Thai members of CFC Ubon Ratchatani gathered at the Fatima Church in Ubon on 13 May 2017 to celebrate 23 years of the local community. The event started with a community worship and a mini-talk from Ajarm Arom followed by the celebration of the Eucharist presided by Bishop Banchong together with 8 local priests. A 6-course Chinese laureat lunch and fellowship was organized in a nearby resort hotel for fund-raising to support CFC-Ubon activities. Six members from CFC Bangkok joined the celebration: Ajarm Arom, Prakan and Prasri Oudomugsorn, Jimmy Lozare, Sim Caluyong and EDante. After the celebration, the group visited the cemetery where late Fr. Bernard Guilleman was laid to rest. Fr. Guilleman, MEP, was the former spiritual director of CFC Ubon for ten years (1995-2004). They also visited the newly built Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Ubon before heading back to the airport to return to Bangkok. Click to view more photos of the celebration.
Mission to Vientiane, 13-14 May
Pats and Carla Gonzales from CFC North Bangkok volunteered to serve in CFC Laos on the 2nd week of their 2-weekend Strategic CLP on 13-14 May 2017. Pats gave CLP Talk No. 9 Receiving the power of the Holy Spirit on 13 May afternoon. Pray-over was done on the same day and the mini-talk on vocal praising was held thereafter. After the Sunday Mass on 14 May, Carla gave Talk No. 10 Growing in the Spirit. Four participants from Cameroon and the Philippines graduated on the same day. They were welcomed to the community after Talks 11 and 12 given by Bro. Manny Panagsagan, CFC Vientiane Country Coordinator. Pats and Carla praise God for the opportunity to be in Vientiane and serve CFC Laos again after many years!
Mission to Laguna, Phuket
Members of CFC Laguna and Phuket Town assembled at the St Joseph Catholic Church in Cherntalay for its monthly general assembly on Sunday, 14 May 2017. The assembly was held following two English masses at St Joseph where CFC members and their families have been serving in the choir. The assembly began with an exhortation from Ariel Campos and followed with a community worship. Edgar from CFC Bangkok gave a talk on "How to get closer to God?" The talk emphasized that God wants intimacy with us and that our desire to seek and know God is a response to God's love. After the talk, some members gave a very inspiring sharing about the difficulties and challenges in living a Christian life and the call to be united with God.
CLP in Vientiane (Lao)
CFC Vientiane launched the first weekend of two-weekend CLP programme on 6-7 May 2017 at the city's Catholic church compound. Both participants and members of the community listened to six CLP talks and testimonies. Edgar and Moonyeen joined the local service team to give the orientation, Who is Jesus Christ, Repentance and Faith and Loving thy neighbor talks. They traveled to Vientiane via Udon Thani and crossed the border by bus.
Thai Mission to Huahin
A Thai Team from CFC Bangkok composed of Ambassador Precha and Kung, Prakan and Praisri, Jimmy, Gail and Roel (SOLD-CB) met with members of CFC Hua hin community on 29-30 April. They also met with parish priest Fr. Dheparat who was scheduled to move to the Salesian Mission House on Krungthep Kreeta to take up his new position as Chapter Provincial (country head) of Salesians in Thailand. Fourteen CFC members and participants in previous activities plus four guests from the parish Legion of Mary group, attended the Thai General Assembly.
Fr. John Tamayo, SDB, national spiritual director of CFC-Thailand, has been assigned to be new parish priest for St. Theresa Church in Hua Hin starting in May 2017, from being assistant pastor of St. Joseph Church in Ban Pong, Ratchaburi.
He takes over from Fr. Dheparat Pitisant, SDB, who becomes Provincial Head of Salesians Thailand. Fr. Dheparat moves to the Salesian Mission House behind MHoC church in Krungthep Kreeta, off Srinakarind Road. It is expected that Fr. Tamayo will moved to Hua Hin next week on May 5th.
Similarly, the OMI congregation has designated Fr. Doroteo Reyes, OMI, to be the new parish priest for the St. Michael the Archangel parish church in Saphan Mai (Paholyothin Soi 69/4, opposite Big C) in the Archdiocese of Bangkok starting in May next month. He replaces Fr. Dominico, OMI, who becomes the parish priest of the Holy Family parish church in Baan Man Khao, Amphur Dan Chai, in the cool north mountainous region of Loei province,
diocese of Chiangmai.
Mission to Vientiane
Twelve members (2 couples, 8 SFCs) participated in the CLP Training held at the Sacred Heart Church in Vientiane, Lao PDR on 8 April 2017. The mission team from CFC Thailand were composed of Bro. Mac and Sis Gigi Velayo, CFC GMA Missions Coordinator and Sis. Marlou Badiola, SFC Unit Head (SFC NBKK). The activity was held from 12 noon and concluded by 6pm. A simple fellowship dinner was held at the residence of Sis. Nova Ramos where the mission team got a taste of excellent CFC Laos hospitality. The CLP is planned to be conducted in two weekends on 6-7 and 13-14 May 2017 respectively. The Community in Laos is counting on the support from CFC Thailand through a team of speakers and sharers for the CLP.
CFC Nonthaburi Chapter - Financial stewardship
Edgar, with support from Moonyeen, gave a talk on “Financial Stewardship” to the CFC-Nonthaburi Chapter during its regular weekly meeting on 2 April 2017 at the Our Lady of Mercy Church campus. Members of the chapter expressed their commitment to support the evangelization work of CFC-Thailand through their regular tithe contribution. Father Daniel participated in the meeting and provided further teaching on the subject matter.
SFC All Out for Christ 2017
Marlou Badiola, SFC Bangkok, represented Thailand to the SFC International Conference held at the Western Visayas State University, Iloilo, the Philippines from 17 to 19 February 2017. More than 5,000 SFCs from the Philippines and 23 countries participated in the annual gathering of SFCs. Workshops were held from 8-4pm on Saturday, 18 February 2017 in 5 different locations around Iloilo City. The anchor verse for the conference was taken from 1 Corinthians 16:13-14, “Be on guard, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. Your every act should be done with love.”
The conference called SFCs to be vigilant and watchful for anything, both from within and from outside, that could threaten their relationship with Jesus from flourishing. It reminded the delegates to deepen their “appreciation” (knowledge and understanding) of being Catholic and to exercise faithfulness in the ordinary, and emphasized the importance of having the light of Christ’s love in our life to illuminate the shadows still present in our lives.
The conference concluded by encouraging and challenging the SFCs to respond to the call for purity which is much more than moral behavior. Purity is first and foremost a matter of the heart. To be pure is to be single-minded for the Lord. Every SFC is called to holiness and this calling involves honoring what is true, good and beautiful.
CFC Christian Life Programmes
Basic healing and growth seminar and consultations, 10-18 June 2017
A series of seminar on basic healing and growth was organized from 10 to 19 June in different chapters of CFC Thailand. It is a special 3-hour session presented by Sister Melba Serafico, Founder of the Most Holy Name of Jesus Missionaries. The missionary group has been officially accepted by Archbishop Jose Palma, Diocese of Cebu, Philippines who also served as their bishop protector. Their charism is healing and deliverance. Sister Melba has traveled in many parts of the world, including Asia, Europe, Oceania, United States, Costa Rica, Iceland and Mexico, to give seminars on healing of hurts, traumas and family tree, and reparation. Schedule of seminars and consultations are as follows:
Please contact Edgar/Moonyeen for further information.
Farewell to Steve and Agnes Ward
The fraternal household gathered at the residence of Steve and Agnes at Rama III on 13 June 2017 to bid farewell to the couple and their two daughters who were preparing to leave Bangkok for good to Windsor London. Steve and Agnes have been active members of CFC for over 9 years and at one time had served as members of the Council and chapter leaders for CFC Central Bangkok. They also led several missions to Huahin to conduct Christian Life Programmes and sustained a monthly visit to the school at the Fatima Centre of the Good Shepherd Sisters of Thailand to conduct special lessons and games for students. Steve expected to join a government school in Windsor and integrate themselves in a local CFC community. Our prayers and wishes for safe travel and smooth transition go to the couple!
At 35, Couples for Christ has new old missions
Archbishop Francis Xavier meets with CFC Thailand Leaders
Archbishop of Bangkok Francis Xavier Kriengsak Kovitvanit received a courtesy call from the elders of CFC Thailand at his residence near the Assumption Cathedral in Bangkok on Friday, 31 August 2013. Father John Tamayo, National Spiritual Director, CFC Thailand led the CFC delegation comprising Prakan/Praisri Oudomugsorn, Arom/ Supatra Poolpokol, Jimmy Lozare, Arnold/Letty Itao, EDante and Arturo Roa. The CFC delegation expressed its gratitude to the Archbishop of Bangkok for his continued strong support to CFC Thailand and its family-based ministry and briefed him of the evangelization work of CFC in Bangkok as well as in upcountry areas. The Archbishop said he recognized the importance of family movements like CFC to support the work of building parish-based communities and thanked CFC for its excellent service to the Church.
28 years with CFC Thailand
Edgar and Moonyeen joined the Thai household prayer meeting held at the Mary Help of Christians Church in Srinakarin road on Sunday, 5 February 2017. Four founding members of CFC Thailand were present in the meeting: Prakan/Praisri, Eddie/Emily, Jimmy/Naty and Boy/Delia Contreras. It was a wonderful get together with members of who have been active in the community for at most 28 years and have remained faithful to the household prayer meetings. Also present was Ajarm Arom, who led many upcountry missions in the past, but had been out of the community activities lately due to illness. He said he is recovering well and hope to join missions to Surat Thai on 8-9 April and the 23th Anniversary celebration in Ubon on 29 April. Dr Chat/Mary Anne also joined the household as regular members.
CFC leaders to represent Thailand in FABC Conference on Family in 2016
Fr. Joseph Chalerm Kitmongkol, secretary-general of the CBCT Commission on the Lay Apostolate, announced on Monday, 21 December 2015, that retired Ambassador Precha and Sirikul Pitisant, CFC-Thailand national council elders, will be a part of the six-person official delegation of Thailand to the FABC Conference on the Family to be held at the Salesian Retreat Center in Hua Hin on May 16th-20th, 2016.
The Conference is co-sponsored by the FABC Office of Clergy, under Bishop Vianney Fernando (bishop of Kandy, Sri Lanka), and the FABC Office of Laity and Family, under Archbishop Patrick D’Rozario (archbishop of Dhaka, Bangladesh). The Theme of the Conference is “SHEPHERDING FAMILIES IN ASIA – Contemporary Challenges and Responses for Bishops, Priests and Lay leaders” in direct relation to the Extraordinary Synod and the Synod on the Family held at the Vatican in October 2014 and October 2015, respectively.
The Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC) has invited 15 Asian countries, each to be represented by the bishop in-charge of the country’s Family Apostolate, a priest and two lay couples for a total of 60 delegates to the Conference.
The Thai delegation is composed of Bishop Silvio Siripong Charatsri, chairman of the CBCT Commission on the Lay Apostolate covering the Laity, Family and Youth Desks, Fr. Chalerm, Amb. Precha/Sirikul Pitisant of CFC, and Pornpisut/Watana Sangkarat of Sor-Cho-Kor (Family Renewal national movement).
As hosts, Fr. Chalerm has requested the FABC Secretariat for more Thai “Observers” in the Conference and has submitted the names of Fr. John Tamayo, SDB, national spiritual director of CFC, Thaworn Wongsavirateppibal and Chanvit Taratipyakul of Focolare, and Noppadol/Elma Muangkrut of the Christian Family Movement (CFM).
CFC Thailand celebrates 25th anniversary
25 October 2014: CFC Thailand celebrated its 25th anniversary at Baan Phu Wan Pastoral Centre on 25-26 October 2014. Nearly 500 members from CFC communities in Bangkok, Ubon, Tharae, Surat Thani, Panom, Phuket and Chiangmai gathered in unity to offer praise to God and share their joys and talents. Under the theme "We love because He first loved us" (1 John 4:19), the event represented a significant milestone in the 25 years history of the community in Thailand. Fr. Joseph Chalerm Kitmongkhol, Secretary-General of the CBCT Commission on Family Apostolate informed the gathering on the challenges of Christian family life in the context of the discussions at the recent Synod on Family and H.E. Bishop Prathan Sridarunslip recalled his inspiring experiences with the CFC communities. The events highlighted the achievements of the past 25 years, inspiring testimonies of CFC members and variety of talents that exist in the community.
The anniversary celebration exceeded everybody's expectation. It was truly awesome and Spirit-filled from all counts: large turnout, inspiring testimonies, breathtaking presentations, solemn masses, powerful worships and lovely ball. Two key messages came out from the event. The first calls us to remain faithful to our covenant as expressed in Hebrews 10:25 “Let us not give up meeting together... but let us encourage one another”. The second reminds us that God’s work is not over yet; therefore we need to persevere as long as we live just as the words from Philippians 1:3-7 “…the one who began a good work in you will continue to complete it until the day of Christ Jesus” tell us. These are important messages to reflect upon as we resume doing the work that the Lord has given us. Link to photos of the event
New Area Governance Team in Ubon Ratchanthani Diocese
Twenty-one CFC leaders from various parts of the Ubon Ratchathani Diocese met at the St.. Theresa Gardens Retreat Center on 25 February 2016, led by Diocese
Head Samnieng Thanara of CFC-Zong Ye (Yasothon province), for their first Leaders' Assembly of the year 2016. A new Area Governance Team (AGT) to replace to existing Mission Area Council was elected by open vote with Samnieng remaining as the Diocese Head.
Selected by unanimous open vote were the following --
 Samnieng / Khamnai Thanara (CFC-Zong Ye, Yasothon)
 Prathueng / Utama Nongsawad (CFC-Chanuman, Amnaj Charoen)
 Yod (Iead) / Nukal Thongngam (CFC-Ban Lao [Nongkhu Noi], Yasothon)
 Bootsri / Khamyat Chinmuang (CFC-Nongkham, Sri Saket)
 Rawee / Bang-or Art-asa (CFC-Buata, Ubon)
 Thonguan / Tawee Deemuangsai (CFC-Nongkham, Sri Saket)
 Boonluea Srirayos (SOLD-Sritham, Sri Saket)
 Sanga Thonguan (HOLD-Ubon) Treasurer
French missionary Fr. Robert Coste, MEP, prayed over them before he blessed the whole Leaders Assembly prior to our departure. The assembly opened with a Mass in the morning celebrated by Fr. Coste and followed by an exhortation on the Year of Mercy. After lunch, there was a presentation on the CFC Thai Mission with emphasis on Ubon Diocese and how to
remain united and working together in the power and grace of the Holy Spirit.