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December 2021
Issue No. 309

HKSKH Welfare Council celebrates 55th anniversary

(© 教聲/ ECHO) 

The Hong Kong Sheng Kung Hui (HKSKH) Welfare Council celebrated its fifty-fifth anniversary with a thanksgiving service on 21 November, the Feast of Christ the King. The Most Revd Andrew Chan, Archbishop and Primate of HKSKH, was the officiant and the preacher at the service, and the HKSKH Collegium Musicum Sacrum and a choir formed by some staff members of the council sang hymns. In his sermon, Archbishop Chan stressed repeatedly that social welfare was not only a form of service, but a vocation to fulfill lives. It was also an important part in the building of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth.

Reviewing the development history of the Welfare Council, Archbishop Chan thanked God for guiding the council in the past fifty-five years to become one of the largest social service organizations in Hong Kong. In line with the council’s service philosophy “personalized service, holistic care”, the council’s staff worked to cater for both the physical needs and the spiritual needs of their clients. Archbishop Chan also praised the council for embracing the ethos of the “builders of the Kingdom of Heaven” and actualizing its expansion on earth.

In his sermon, Archbishop Chan used the miracle of five loaves and two fish from the Gospel of John to encourage the council’s staff. Apart from providing practical and relevant nourishment for the physical needs of human beings, Archbishop Chan said, the meaning behind the miracle done by Jesus Christ was to realize the value of heaven by providing comprehensive care for people’s lives. Archbishop Chan reminded the council’s staff that although they might be facing many challenges in promoting social welfare, they must not underestimate their individual strength.

Archbishop Chan said, “The effort and contribution of every individual, when joined together, can collectively change the world!”

He also said that when everyone was willing to contribute one’s seemingly negligible strength to God’s work, God would empower each person to complete bigger projects for His sake.

Archbishop Chan emphasized that as long as colleagues at the council firmly believed in the divine power of Christ the King, they would have sufficient strength to fulfill their mission to build the kingdom of Christ on earth.

In his speech, Dr Donald Li, chairman of the council’s board of directors, said that the council had achieved fruitful developments in the past five years since the celebration of its fiftieth anniversary. Some of its new projects included appointing resident social workers to and providing special education services for sixty kindergartens run by HKSKH and other organizations; providing rehabilitation support services to 190 private nursing homes in Kowloon; and introducing the Kowloon City Themed Walking Trail. Meanwhile, some projects were still in progress, including the United Court Transitional Housing Project at Tung Tau, Yuen Long, and the Wong Tai Sin District Health Centre. He stressed that the council’s many development projects were not only to expand the outreach of the council, but also to respond to the needs of the society.

Dr Li also mentioned that Hong Kong had experienced some severe social problems in the past few years because of the social movement in 2019 and the Covid-19 pandemic. Thanks to the members of the council’s executive committee and all the staff, he said, many people suffering from poverty and isolation were loved and cared for.

After Dr Li’s speech, Archbishop Chan asked the members of the governing body and staff of the council if they would dedicate themselves to the mission entrusted to them by God with all their hearts, souls, mind, and strength; support the church’s social service mission and ministries with incessant prayers; and jointly serve the community in the blessings bestowed by the Holy Spirit. The congregation replied, “With the help of God, we will!”

Archbishop Chan then prayed for God’s accepting the commitment of the council’s staff and to guide their steps, strengthen their belief so that everything they do would glorify God.

One of the hymns the council’s choristers sung was “With Your Vision”. The verses of the hymn fully described the commitment of the council to dedicate itself to God’s ideals despite the obstacles they might face and to use the gifts they were given to fulfil their work as well as to use love to break down walls. The verses also described the council’s mission to follow in the footsteps of Christ; put benevolence and justice into practice; provide pertinent services, so that lives might be transformed to allow everyone to live in a manner appropriate to human dignity and mission.


(© 教聲/ ECHO) 

<The above article was published in "Echo" Issue No. 309. Please click here>


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