Text written by Simon Chan, IT professional working in our office in Macao.
I am Simon Chan, a semi-retired IT professional from Hong Kong working part-time for Casa Ricci in Macau. Though still young at heart, most people would think that I am in the 40+ but I am in fact over 50. Father of two sons, my elder son has graduated and now studying graduate school. My wife and I are volunteers in the Catholic Marriage Advisory Council, organizing Pre-Marriage Courses for those going to get married in the Church. We are also proud to practice and teach Natural Family Planning method in parishes.
My encounters with the Jesuits went back to my secondary school days studying in Wah Yan College HK. The courageous and ground-breaking deeds of Jesuits Fathers led me to enter the Catholic Church and opened the long term relationship with the Jesuits.
The first time I heard about Fr. Luis Ruiz was in 2006 during a trip to the ShuangChuen Island in south of GuangDong province in celebration of St. Francis Xavier’s 500th year of birth. St. Francis died on that island while waiting to go into mainland China to spread the good news of the gospel. The Wan Yan community in Hong Kong helped to renovate the chapel (or otherwise known as graveyard) and found that Fr. Ruiz was there before us to renovate the mentioned chapel.
I met Fr. Fernando Azpiroz in a Family Movement cell group gathering when he was practicing social service work in Hong Kong. Several years later, after hearing about the love & care work in China started by Fr. Ruiz, I shared the same passion immediately. How Fr. Ruiz could start the leprosy caring work at the age of 73 without any money or people, but still provide such great service to the poor people in need, was truly an amazing miracle. With common interest in the Apple technology, Fr. Fernando and I started chatting on the modernization of Casaricci back-office and communication work. With God’s will, I am able to work part-time now in the Casa Ricci Macau office, having started in mid-2010.
My work in Casaricci falls under two main categories:
- Information Technology support. This can be anything from selecting a printer, PC/Mac support, setting up email accounts, Internet access, to designing and operating a photo management system and a database system; and
- Communication with Benefactors, friends and public. Besides preparing the Casaricci Newsletter “Encounter”, I also set up the Casaricci website (www.casaricci.org), a new pamphlet to introduce Casaricci, and email communication with some selected benefactors.
Through modern technology, we hope to provide more details of our charity work in China. While there are limits as to how much detail we can provide, people can generally appreciate the type of hard works and the challenging environment that we and our partners are facing. Recently we received a number of feedback from emails and letters that they can now understand more of our works through the newsletter, website, blogs etc. These are in fact great encouragement to our work. We also pray that our Lord can reward our front-line workers and partners for their health and happiness either on earth or in heaven.