Regular classes in the new Academic Year 2020-2021 at the USJ Faculty of Religious Studies resumed on the 7th of September. Following the Covid-19 regulations (wearing of masks, social distancing, etc.), classes are face-to-face. However, they also cater simultaneously to some 15 enrolled students who, caught abroad (Hong Kong, Taiwan, Philippines, Spain, Italy) without the possibility of traveling to Macau by now, can follow the classes online. Among them are six of our Dominican newly professed brothers who are in Hong Kong.

Two particular activities have taken place during the past days in this regard. One was the Convocation of Students and Faculty members on the morning of September 14th. The program followed online by our students in Hong Kong, including an address by the Rector of the University; some information by the Dean of the Faculty (Fr Franz Gassner), by the Director of Students Affairs’ Office (Ms. Teresa Loong), and by the President of Faculty Student Council (Simon Sherman Luk); and a Lecture by Prof. Tyler McNabb entitled “Faith and Philosophy” with some corollaries applied to the current pandemic situation created by the covid19.

The other was the Opening Mass of USJ in the Holy Cross chapel celebrated by the Chancellor of our University, Bishop Stephen Lee. Very well attended by the Faculty’s professors (some of them concelebrant priests), administrative staff, and, of course, the students, who had beforehand been tasked to assist at the liturgical celebration as servers, lectors, prayer leaders, and with the music. They did a very good job. The bishop’s inspiring words in his homily, related to the solemnity of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, were words of confirmation in our faith in the risen Lord, and of encouragement in the face of challenges

By Fr. Javier Gonzalez Izquierdo OP.