(Clockwise from top) Group photo. Fr Paul Lo blessing the statue of St Francis of Assisi. St Francis of Assisi statue. Fr Paul Lo blessing the statue of Our Lady of Lourdes. Our Lady of Lourdes statue.

By Aloysia Sang

June 11 2022

A simple blessing ceremony took place this morning (Jun 9) to bless the newly installed statue of Our Lady of Lourdes at the St Francis Primary School’s Grotto, as well as to relocate the statue of St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of the School.

The blessing ceremony was performed by Sacred Heart Cathedral parish priest Fr Paul Lo, who is also adviser of the Board of Governors for St Francis Convent Primary School.

A number of the school board of governors, teachers and friends attended the small yet meaningful ceremony. 

Before each blessing, Fr Paul read the Gospel and shared two short reflections on Our Lady of Lourdes and St Francis of Assisi.

Fr Paul’s first reflection was to constantly give thanks to the Lord for having a Mother in heaven to pray for us, particularly praying for our children and our school.

He added that we are to learn from her to give praise and thanks to God for all the blessings that the Lord continues to shower on each one of us, especially to the school.

He assured that Our Lady will constantly intercede for us that our school will be protected from all evil.

In his second reflection before blessing the statue of St Francis of Assisi, Fr Paul reflected on the saint’s life. St Francis came from a very rich family but he gave up everything to set up the Religious order of the Franciscans. He is a father of nature, one who talks to the animals and plants. For this, he is also named the Patron Saint of Ecology.

The statue of Our Lady of Lourdes is donated by the Alumni of St Francis Convent Schools Sabah, and is placed at the newly refurbished grotto by the main entrance of the school.

The statue of St Francis of Assisi after restoration was relocated to the entrance of St Claire’s Hall. This statue has been with the school since the school was still at Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, next to Sacred Heart Cathedral.  From reliable sources, the statue has been around since the early 50s.