Archbishop John Wong speaks at the Women’s Dinner

By​ Linda Edward
March 7, 2020

KOTA KINABALU – The local Church chooses the theme Women: Heart of the Family for this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD). Archbishop John Wong said by choosing this theme, the people are challenged to find ways to strengthen and support family life, which nowadays is facing tremendous pressures from all sides, especially the young families.

“Family life in today’s world is being attacked from all sides. You need God to help you keep the family intact. You also need support groups to help you mentally and spiritually as you reach out to others,” he said.

The Archbishop said everyone can reach out to strengthen values in the family life, and not put the responsibility to certain ministries only.

“Though we have Family Life Ministry in parishes, you do not have to be in the Ministry in order to promote good family life. It is our common mission as Church,” he emphasized.

“What can you do when there are dysfunctional families because mothers or wives are the cause of the problems? What do you do when you know women who spend more time outside rather than taking care of their family?
“When you know women, who are not playing their role as ‘heart’ of the family, what must you do?” said the Archbishop posing a challenge.

He said this at the annual International Women’s Day Celebration of the Sacred Heart Cathedral and Church of Mary Immaculate at New Wong Kwok Restaurant, Luyang on Mar 7 where close to 200 people, mostly women, attended. Earlier in the evening, he presided the IWD Mass at 6.00 pm at the Cathedral.

The Archbishop said there are more global actions being taken, to place women on equal status with men and he acknowledged, “We should support such actions…God created man and woman in equal status…to together build a civilization of love.”

He emphasized that civilization of love is born and nurtured in the family setting and we cannot run away from the role of women.

Meanwhile at the global scene, women, girl leaders, gender activists with women’s rights advocates and visionaries came together to observe the IWD at the United Nations Secretariat in New York with the theme: I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights.

Its aim was to mobilize global action to achieve gender equality and human rights for all women and girls.