Monday, December 02, 2013

Pilgrimage to St Anne's Church in Bukit Mertajam and other Catholic Churches

My darling hero, John and I love joining local pilgrimages to Catholic churches in Peninsula Malaysia. And, the spiritual Tourist Guide and organizer is none other than our beloved George Yeow who always prepares a well-balanced itinerary that offers much to engage us spiritually, including great food to whet our appetite and site-seeing, as well as shopping to keep us happy and gay.

The 5days/4nights pilgrimage to St Anne's Church from 25-29 July, 2013 covered Bukit Mertajam, Penang, Pangkor Island, Setiawan and Teluk Intan and cost each pilgrim just RM600/-. The primary purpose though, was to attend the celebration Feast of St Anne which fell on July 26th and coincidentally, it was also the 125th anniversary of the Church of St Anne.

St Anne's Church and its grounds, in Bukit Mertajam

Thursday, July 25 (KL > Bukit Mertajam > Penang)
  • 8.00 to 10.00 am: Traveled by bus to pick up pilgrims from Cheras and Church of St Francis Xavier in Petaling Jaya. Hmm... some late comers and a massive traffic jam in P.J. delayed us further. One busload of us then proceeded to Tambun in Perak for seafood lunch. Of course there were a few stops in between for breakfast and the usual calls of nature.
  • 4.30 pm onwards: Reached Church of St Anne in Bukit Mertajam. After freshened up, we grouped together to pray the Way Of The Cross, following the 14 stations behind the old Church which is now known as the Shrine of St Anne.

    St Anne's Shrine, Statue of St Anne and young Mary, Jesus' crucifixion in Bukit Mertajam

    We had ample time before the Eucharistic Celebration at 7.00 pm. The main celebrant was Father Gregory Chan and concelebrated with other priests.

    Eucharistic Mass at St Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam

  • From 9.00 pm: Left Bukit Mertajam and onwards to Hotel Sentral Georgetown in Penang for a night's stay. Checked into Hotel a little after 10 pm, had dinner nearby at MacAlister Road, showered and hit the sack almost by midnight. Exhausting... slept like a log!

Friday, July 26 (Penang > Bukit Mertajam and back to Penang)
  • 7.00 to 9.00 am: Buffet breakfast in Hotel Sentral Georgetown.
  • 9.15 am onwards: Some sight-seeing before visiting the Church of Holy Name of Jesus in Balik Pulau, Penang. For lunch, we had fruits-eating session (durians, duku, mangoesteen, etc.) and assam laksa. Then, back to hotel to relax.

    Church of Holy Name of Jesus in Balik Pulau, Penang

  • 4.00 pm onwards: Departed for St. Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam for the actual Feast Day with Mass at 7.00 pm, and followed with candlelight procession. Bishop Sebastian Francis was the main celebrant.

    Eucharistic Mass and procession at St Anne's Church, Bukit Mertajam

    Then, dinner on our own expense at eateries across the road. Traveled back to Penang and as usual, bedtime was around midnight.

Saturday, July 27 (Penang > Sitiawan > Lumut)
  • 7.00 to 9.00 am: Buffet breakfast in Hotel Sentral Georgetown. Optional - morning prayer and rosary at Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, Penang at 8.30 am, a 5-minute-walk from hotel.
  • 9.15 am onwards: Checked-out. Did some shopping at Penang Road, enjoyed assam laksa, rojak and cendol for lunch at own expense, before leaving for Lumut.
  • 4.00 pm onwards: Arrived at Blue Bay Resort, Lumut for a night's stay. Rested well and proceeded to a seafood restoran in Sitiawan for dinner. A little shopping before returning to hotel for the night.

Sunday, 28 July (Lumut > Sitiawan > Pangkor Island)
  • 7.00 to 8.00 am: Breakfast at Blue Bay Resort. Then departed to Church of St Francis de Sales in Sitiawan for Sunday Mass at 9.30 am.

    Sunday Eucharistic Mass at Church of St Francis de Sales, Sitiawan

    Then, a leisure tour to some interesting places for shopping, lunch and enjoyed a bowl of the famous James cendol before leaving for Pangkor Island.

  • 2.00 pm onwards: Took the 25-minute ferry to cross over to Pangkor Island. Joined a 3-hour island tour by mini buses, which included some shopping of mostly seafood products.

    Lumut Jetty and popular sites in Pangkor Island

    Checked-in almost around 6.00 pm for overnight stay at Coral Bay Resort, Pangkor Island. Shortly, we adjourned next door to a Chinese restaurant for a sumptuous seafood dinner.

    Coral Bay Resort and Chinese Seafood Restaurant, Pangkor Island

    Then, walked back to hotel for a good night's sleep.

Monday, 29 July (Pangkor Island > Teluk Intan > Kuala Lumpur)
  • 7.00 am -11.00 am: Breakfast at Coral Bay Resort. Checked out at 9.00 am, headed to jetty by minibuses, to be ferried back to Lumut. Some of the pilgrims even continued shopping at Lumut. Hehee... a never-ending hobby for some people!

    Ferry back to Lumut from Pangkor Island

  • 11.00 am onwards: Traveled to Teluk Intan to visit St Anthony’s Church.

    St Anthony's Church in Teluk Intan

    Then, had lunch in town, and made a beeline to the famous Leaning Tower of Teluk Intan and some shopping. The biscuits there were superb!

    The famous Leaning Tower of Teluk Intan, Perak

    Subsequently, proceeded to Restoran Hawaii at Jalan Sekolah for their famous and fabulously refreshing desserts.

    The famous desserts at Restoran Hawaii, Teluk Intan

    Contentedly stuffed and happy, we finally headed back to Kuala Lumpur around 3.30 pm. Reached home sweet home around 10 pm if I recalled correctly.
Though extremely tired out, my beloved John and I thoroughly enjoyed ourselves during the whole trip. Spiritually enriched, together with visits to other Catholic Churches never been before, meeting old and new friends, great food, sight-seeing/shopping and immersed with nature (the hills, beaches, sea, etc.)... what more can we ask? A perfect short getaway from the normal daily routine to recharge us spiritually, bodily and mentally!

Feeling really blessed... praise and thank The Lord Almighty for His never-ending goodness!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Custom Search