JUNE 3, 2022: It was a Sunday morning and Rev Fr VA Michael was travelling by car with his team to celebrate mass, about 20 minutes away from his parish St Paul the Apostle Church in Kuala Kubu Bharu. [Video]
The tarred road got narrower and then turned to a rough gravel path that tormented the suspension of the car they were in.
It was the interiors of Hulu Selangor and a Catholic community was waiting for him eagerly in a small hall close to their small wooden houses. Green vegetation surrounded the hall and the houses, and there were goats and dogs running around.
In the hall, everything was laid out for the celebrant. The makeshift altar had a crisp white cloth. There was a wooden rostrum on the right, made by the community. And the Easter candle standing proud on a wooden stand also made by the community.
Fr Michael celebrated mass and once the blessing was said, the whole place was transformed into a temporary medical clinic on May 29.
The altar was put away, and chairs and tables were rearranged. Shortly after, the medical team and volunteers arrived.
There were three doctors and volunteers from ACTS – A Call to Serve, the Catholic Doctors Association of Malaysia, the Catholic Nurses Guild of Malaysia, and volunteers from the St Paul the Apostle Church. CREST Malaysia also lent support by offering the use of their vehicle which came with an ultrasound machine.
Within minutes, the three doctors stationed themselves at three different spots, a pharmacy was laid out with boxes of medicines for dispensation, volunteers started registering the community members who needed medical attention, and there was traffic control to ensure smooth movement of people. The medical camp was in full swing.
A continuous stream of people came. Mothers with their chuckling toddlers, men who look like hard manual work is all they have ever known, and many others. This was their chance for free medical attention without having to travel far out of their village.
The whole team worked for four straight and almost 90 people were attended to that day.
This is an initiative by the Archdiocese Office for Human Development with the backing of the St Paul the Apostle Church’s Parish Medical Mission Ministry.
“I would like to thank everyone who made this possible, especially the AOHD for making all this possible,” said Fr Michael.
“The medical camp turned out to be a huge success and so we are planning to organise the next camp in two months’ time. On July 31.
“We hope more doctors, medical personnel and others will volunteer their services for the next camp as we are expecting a bigger turnout. These people live in far-flung areas where such medical attention is either too costly for them or is inaccessible,” he added.
“Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” – Matthew 25:40
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.” – Matthew 25: 35-36
Those who want to be part of the next medical camp on July 31, please contact Fr VA Michael at 012-304-8502. Your prayers and support for the work for the Parish Medical Mission Ministry and the future medical camps would be greatly appreciated.