Monday, February 28, 2011


When I was 11 years old, ( I was in Primary 5) I used to walk to school everyday and I normally take the short cut route, which is going up to St. Michael Church and then took the long stairs down till I reached the convent,  and walked a few more kilometres to St. Joseph's Primary School. It's actually nice to be able to go to school without the use of  any transportation like school bus. At least it can save my parents a few more $$$ instead of using it to pay for the bus driver right? Plus, the best thing to have a school near to your house is that you don't need to wake up as early as 5am!

Anyway, back to when I was 11. So every morning at 6am, there's usually a morning mass in St. Michael's Church and to tell you the truth, I've only been to a few early morning masses before heh. Maybe I should try going again when I go back to Penampang. I will usually start my journey to school right after the morning mass has ended. On one of the days, I met a priest who was serving at the church at that time. He was white, about 70 years of age and had a 'friendly' feature. He stopped and greeted me good morning and told me that my face reminded me of my aunts, Philippa and Patricia. I was pretty surprised and wondered how on earth can this man knew I was related to them (my aunts), plus could even remember their names. When I met him again for the second time, he said the exact same thing but this time, he even mentioned my surname. I told my parents right after that and they too were pretty amused by it :)

It's pretty remarkable how this priest could remember names and faces plus even know who you're related with. I face A LOT of students every single day, sometime when I saw some of them in the mall or any other places besides college, I couldn't even remember who they are -__- Guess my memory storage is pretty bad these days. But if you were to ask me what is the memorable thing that I could remember about this priest, then this would be my side of story. I think, if I did made an effort to get to know him personally, I bet he would've told me a lot of stories and also some useful wise words.

He might not be around anymore, but I'm sure he is up there looking after all of the people who loved and respected him over the years. So, I guess this post is for you, Rev. Father Joseph Dapoz. I might not know you personally but I'm sure you're awesome! May your soul rest in peace. Amen.

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s last foreign missionary priest, Father Joseph Dapoz (pic) has died at the Holy Family Senior Citizens Residence in Kg Purak, Papar, at the age of 91.
A nun at the residence, Sister Clara Orou, said Dapoz had been complaining about having diarrhoea since Sunday.
He died at about 7am on Monday.
“Despite his discomfort, he seemed his normal self and had even finished a bowl of porridge.
“But he had told me he wouldn’t be able to perform mass at the residence on Tuesday,’’ said Orou.
Dapoz will lie at the St Michael’s Church in Penampang until the funeral mass at Sacred Heart Cathedral at 8.30am on Saturday.
He will be buried at the Catholic cemetery at Mile 4.5 Penampang Road here.
Dapoz was well-known among both Catholics and non-Catholics especially for his ability to remember names and faces.
He was born in a mountain village in Tyrol, Austria, in 1920 and arrived in Sabah in 1948.
Dapoz was posted to various parishes over the decades and was fluent in Kadazandusun.
After retiring from active ministry, he took up residence at the Holy Family Residence in Kg Purak.
“However, he continued to perform religious duties until he became wheelchair-bound about six years ago,” said Orou.
Dapoz is the last in a long line of Catholic foreign missionary priests who were posted to Sabah in the last 100 years.
In a book titled Portrait of the Last Dinosaur about Dapoz, he told co-authors Rita Lasimbang and Leonard Alanza that all his life had been devoted to answering God’s call, and that he was looking forward to God’s final call to him.
“When the phone rings, I’ll pick it up.
“He (God) has my number,” the authors wrote.
And that call came on Monday morning.

1 comment:

Santafire said...

Back when I was filming a story about a kid, part of the script had him walking to/from sch... which my friends think was absurd; no kids should walk to sch. Ever.

I guess ppl born in the 90s never had the experience walking to sch. Meh.

Must be a real joyful day in heaven when the rev answered His last call. RIP.