Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Merry Christmas from LCCC! (with a reflection on the ice storm that hit the GTA)

Hi everyone. Hope you're all having a warm and cozy Christmas :) This card is just a little something we put together for you guys! 

This past weekend, most of us GTAers were struck by an ice storm that left many Torontonians without power for hours on end. Some were lucky enough to avoid the blackout; some got their power back after just a few hours; but most had outages for almost 70 hours. Indeed, there are quite a few families that are still without power. Many were left wondering if the White Christmas outdoors would come at the expense of a Black Christmas indoors. 

Amazingly, a large number of us watched a Christmas miracle unfold, as Toronto Hydro, along with help from its Manitoban and American neighbours, worked their butts off to restore power back to Canada's largest city, only minutes after the 25th of December had set. There are, of course, quite a few parts of the metropolis that are still without power, and we pray that all the juice will be restored soon.

With this ice storm comes a few interesting things to reflect upon. Yes, we were forced to go through the trouble of (literally) breaking the ice on our driveways and sidewalks. Yes, many of us drove to nearby Home Depots and Canadian Tires, only to discover that all the salt had been sold out. But it's interesting to think about just how much our lives are dependent on electricity nowadays. Not even 5 years ago, it would have been a little far-fetched for cell phones and tablets to make the 'Survival Kit List', and yet here we are, at the end of 2013, running to malls and coffee shops for warmth and company—and outlets to charge our laptops and phones.

One way to look at this is that this is simply the current state of affairs, like it or not. And to an extent, this is true. Our communication these days is 99.99% done through data networks, not Canada Post. Relying so heavily on electricity can be a good thing, and it can be a bad thing, and that's just how it is. I personally cannot dispute that viewpoint. But what this weekend afforded me was some time to think about getting away from all of those distractions. While my own household was fortunate enough to avoid being struck by downed power lines and fallen trees, I heard quite a few stories of how family members found company not on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, but amongst themselves. Cousins and siblings took refuge in each other's houses, and instead of picking up a tablet, they played music and board games. Neighbours helped out neighbours by smashing ice and lending salt. The true spirit of Christmas came out amongst this time that many perceived as (literally and metaphorically) "dark"—the spirit of generosity, charity, and family.

Considering this, I think the trial of the ice storm was not a time of peril, but a blessing in disguise. Laura Story knows what she's singing about—our Lord's blessings do come through raindrops, and this particular trial in our lives very well could have been one of His mercies in disguise. And let's not forget that while we went three days without good food, warmth, water, and electricity, there are thousands out there that go through this on a daily basis.

This December 25th, spend some time trying to live out the true spirit of Christmas. Don't wish people a boring "Happy Holidays"; give them a cheery "Merry Christmas"! Enjoy the gifts, enjoy the rediscovery of warmth and food, but don't forget that Jesus Christ is the reason for our season! (And the reason why we have two weeks off from school.)

Have a great Christmas with your family and friends! :)

- Jason, on behalf of the LCCC exec.

Monday, 2 December 2013

An LCCC Christmas

Our annual LCCC Christmas socials are always loads of fun, and this year, the tradition continued. At 5 PM, LCCCers trickled into Jason's apartment for what would be a night filled with food, fun, and fgames (trying for alliteration there).
This was the most decor Jason's apartment had ever had. Ever.

The execs prepared the main dishes for the potluck, with food ranging from lasagna and fried udon to salad and Jason's exquisite, hard-to-prepare white rice. General members chipped in by bringing drinks and cookies. To top it off, we ordered in some barbecue chicken!

Halfway through dinner, we were joined by special guests Sherman and Belle, the latter of which is from QCCC! LCCC was extremely honoured that Belle chose to come to LCCC's Christmas Social instead of QCCC's ;) It was a cozy scene, with guests arriving fashionably late, lights decorating the otherwise bland apartment, and a faux fireplace set up on Jason's monitor.

After dinner, the group sat down to have some present-filled fun! Led by Alana, we played an intense game of unwrapping presents as quickly as we could while wearing gloves and a Santa hat. The goal of the game was to unwrap the many layers while the other players rolled dice to try and get a specific combination, in order to get their own chance at tearing apart the layers. The presents ended up being hand cream, used Catholic playing cards, Sorry! Revenge, cute reindeer slippers, and a brand new Airzooka! Shouts and laughter filled the apartment as players attacked the wrapping paper with teeth and ferocity (and consequently kept Jason's roommate from giving in to itis).

We also played another game, dubbed the "Windsor CCC Game", which is a combination of Taboo, Charades, and describing something with one word. The group was split into two teams and they competed against each other in a test of memory and describing. In the end, Team Sherman beat out Team Belle 61-53.

The night was capped off by a visit to London's Lighting of the Lights Festival. The group wasn't able to make countdown, but the lit trees were still beautiful and colourful as always.

[Insert Light of Lights pictures here if Sherman ever decides to upload them.]

The night could not have been more perfect. Visitors, fireplaces, presents, food, games, snow. We're all looking forward to our next party at Chinese New Year (when we expect alumna Viatrix and honourary LCCC member Chris)! Good luck with exams, and Merry Christmas! :)

Merry Christmas from LCCC!

Monday, 25 November 2013

JU: LCCC at the Loo!

What a day! LCCC joined UTCCC, MCCC, and QCCC as we all ventured to the land of Waterwaterwaterloolooloo for another great JU Local Visit. 

For those who don't know, JU (Joint University) Local Visit is a time for the CCCs of Ontario to gather at a host university for a day-long program of fun activities, faith sharing, speaker talks, and Singspiration. Every year is unique in its own way as the CCCs rotate venues, giving CCCs a chance to visit various campuses in Ontario. Waterloo CCC was up for the task, as they were fantastic hosts on a beautiful, sunny day.

LCCC started the day bright and early (or perhaps dark and early might make more sense)—they had to catch a 6:45AM Greyhound to Kitchener! The 8 members (a new high for us, yay!) arrived at the bus terminal via taxi, bleary eyed and sleepy. Thankfully, most of us were able to fall asleep on the bus :) When we arrived at Kitchener, we were graciously picked up by our friends at QCCC, who drove us to Waterloo campus. [Thanks QCCC :)]

Local Visit started with a couple icebreakers from UTCCC, who had developed a solid reputation for icebreaking at JU Retreat 2013 (they'd brought in foam noodle things to help us whack each other!). They didn't disappoint, as laughter and shouting filled the room.
Alana having her ice broken... by her cousin -.- (defeats the purpose of the game!!!)
Two LCCCers breaking their ice with each other... (DEFEATS THE PURPOSE OF THE GAME!!!)
That's more like it.... WAIT NO I SEE TWO LCCCers TOGETHER!!! (AHHHH!!!!)
Next up was Waterloo, who gave us a detailed and adventurous campus tour, taking us from one building to the next. No offence, but we all personally think Western's campus is a lot nicer ;)
Team Tu-Tu ...
Lunch followed the campus tour, which was perfect since this blogger was pooped and hungry after the lengthy walk. Platters of subs from SubwayEATFRESH were ordered in. After lunch was an activity led by QCCC. We were divided up into four teams as we played Family Feud, with a twist! We attempted to solve questions about things like the most common names in the Bible and what Noah would have been described as. Team Tu-Tu won by a landslide, so now we should all memorize the faces in the above photo and shun them forever. Kidding, I'm just a sore loser.

A talk by our speaker, Fr. O'Mahony, followed. He gave an enlightening talk about the little things about Pope Francis that a lot of us didn't know. The next time you check your phone, it could be a call from Pope Francis himself! MCCC followed up with a great faith sharing activity, using a passage from the book The Imitation of Christ. We were all invited to participate in an Examen, basically a time to visit with Christ in a personal reflection and meditation. 

Finally, it was LCCC's turn to show their stuff! With the help of LCCC alumna Viatrix and honourary member Chris, we sang our hearts out for our Lord as we led Singspiration. With hearts of worship, we sang of ten thousand reasons to crown Him, the beautiful one; why He is mighty to save; and why we should exalt him with songs of hosanna. (BAM!) 

The day ended with—what else?—mass at St. Michael's Parish, just a few minutes away. Fr. O'Mahony celebrated the mass, a fitting way to end Local Visit 2013. LCCC was driven back to the Kitchener St. Charles bus terminal by QCCC again (obrigado!), and we boarded our 7:15 PM Greyhound back to London. We got back around 9 PM and then had dinner at Prince Albert's Diner to conclude the long (but fun) day :)

LCCC @ JU Local Visit! (minus Ms. Janet Tsoi, who was in the washroom :( )
JU Local Visit was a total blast, so hope you're all hyped for JU Retreat coming up in February! That's going to be an unforgettable weekend :) 

Photo credits for this blog post also go to QCCC's Colin Cheng and Terence Wong. :)

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

LCCC: On Prayer and Singing!

      After an extended three week holiday, LCCC finally met once again for our weekly general meeting. The meeting offered members the opportunity to take a much-needed break from the constant flow of midterms and assignments. This week’s theme was “How to Pray” and emphasized the process of communicating with God. All of us shared our thoughts on prayer. Before we began our set of activities, we once again asked members to share their weekly happenings with the rest of the group. Certain weekly highlights mentioned include: An unfortunate bump on the head from a falling parking gate, an eventful dart-throwing excursion, and a memorable trip to see a significant other in Kingston.
To set our members into the mood, Gary and Cheryl created their very own LCCC Vending Machine, with a wide selection of goodies ranging from chips to various Asian snacks. Later, members were offered one item they wished to have from the machine. However, many were surprised to find that the listed item they selected did not always correspond to the one dispensed from the machine. To explain, one request for an eraser actually resulted in the dispensing of pencils, but another request for an Asian snack actually led to an Asian snack.

Confused, members were told that the activity was created to compare vending purchases and prayer. It is often known that when people ask for things from God, they may not always receive what they ask for. Thus, this same concept was demonstrated in the form of unpredictable vending purchases.

A stimulating discussion followed as members shared their insights on what prayer means to them. Certain ideas that were shared include: Prayer as a means that find a significant other, to lose a significant other, to thank God for sandals and to thank God for the nature that surrounds us.
To wrap up the meeting, LCCC had its first Singspiration, to the delight of its members. As St. Augustine said, “He who sings prays twice”. Classics were sung, including Open the Eyes of my Heart Lord, Mighty to Save, and Amazing Love (You are my King). Each member’s beautiful singing voice was showcased and a few even harmonized with the others throughout parts of the songs. The “Prodigal Son” story from the Gospel of St. Luke was then read and was used as a leeway in between the songs. And that’s a wrap J

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

LCCC Conclave

Friday, October 18th was a big meeting for LCCC as we gathered to learn lots about the Pope! We started with a fun game of Pope Jeopardy, which had a lot of difficult questions! But that's okay, that just meant it was more of an opportunity to learn :) 
Pope Trivia!
Congrats to our winner, Seline (1550 pts). George was in a close 2nd place with 1250 pts... Jason was last because he's dumdum

We followed up the Jeopardy with a fun animated video summarizing how to become a Pope:

Then Jason went on a long-winded spiel to share about his World Youth Day experience in Rio de Janeiro over the summer. It truly sounded like an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime experience that all Catholic youths should try to go to at least once. 

His spiel was long-winded for a reason, though, because just as he finished, their special guests from Toronto arrived! Viatrix, LCCC alumnus, and honourary LCCC member Chris made it in time for the last part of the cell, which was the best part - the LCCC Conclave! 

We did our best to mimic the papal election process, using boxes and plates and saying the proper lines. 
"I call as my witness Christ the Lord who will be my judge, that my vote is given to the one who before God I think should be elected."
Our ballots, which say "I elect as Supreme Pontiff..."
After six rounds of ballots, Jason was finally elected as LCCC Pope. Unfortunately, we weren't able to burn the ballots inside Middlesex College, so we played a video of white smoke instead! Jason arbitrarily chose the name of Pope Stephen, although "Pope Urban" came in a close second. 
A hand for Pope Stephen, everybody.
And thus concluded one of the best cells of the year so far :) Afterwards, LCCC went out to dinner at Congee Chan with their special guests and then hung out at Janet and Sharon's apartment, playing Mafia and Telestrations, having a blast. 

We'll be gone for a couple weeks as we take a break for exams and Fall Study Break, but hope to see you the first week of November!

Saturday, 19 October 2013

LCCC Cells (Collage and God's will)

On September 27, LCCC members were given 2 questions ahead of time:

Because who doesn't love arts and crafts?! 

Members had to either bring in a picture/object/quote, and discuss in small groups how it relates to these 2 questions. We generated a lot of great discussion. Thank you everyone for sharing! Afterwards, we all gathered for a fun collage-making time!

The meaning behind this activity is that the church is like a collage—we're God's collage. Ephesians 2:10 "For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do". We all come from different walks of life, and with the help of Christ, we're able to make create a work of art altogether.

We were all able to channel our inner creativity :)
Final product of the night:

So is the last time you'll see this collage? Guess you'll have to wait and see.....


For our cell on October 4th, we discussed God's will. We started off with a couple of ice-breakers (Spiritual Telestrations). We also played an activity where LCCC members were given scenarios and had to choose between two options that would lead them to different areas in the UCC (along the way, snacks were provided). We gathered to discuss what our opinions of God's will, what does His will mean for me, how do I follow His will etc. It was a great night filled with lots of food, fun and good discussion.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

LCCC: Kicking Off the 2013-14 Year!

It was a light atmosphere on Friday as LCCC officially began the year in an obscure room in the basement of UCC. The evening was filled with laughter as ice was broken, surely a sign of the fun that is to come!

"Big wind blows for those whose names start with a "sh" sound!!"

Find your pair!!!!
Two of our newest froshies, Daphne and Chris ;D
Wonder who's on the front...
Y'all be FLINCHIN'

Stack those cups!

See everyone on Friday! :)

Saturday, 14 September 2013

LCCC Pre-Year Social

On Friday the 13th, for the first time ever, LCCC gathered before Clubs Week to have some fun before we were all simultaneously attacked by homework and notes and textbook readings and exams and whatnot. What started out as a LCCC 2012-13 reunion quickly turned into a newcomers' gathering anyway, as almost half our number consisted of visitors from outside London and first-time LCCCers.

The evening began at Jason's apartment, our new off-campus gathering venue that will quickly become familiar to this year's LCCC members. The off-campus venue used to be within walking distance from campus, but then Viatrix decided to grow up and graduate, so it's her fault that everyone has to take the bus now.

Anyway, the plan was to have the members help with our new presentation board for Clubs' Week, but we ended up being distracted by funstuffs like socializing and air-shooting bazookas.

Attempting to put together our board...
... nah, let's shoot each other instead.

Our big event for the night was at Fleetway, where all current/old/honourary LCCC members were promptly owned in bowling by our newest frosh, Chris.
Current LCCC members were redeemed when Cheryl, or "Mama Chan", bowled a nifty 116 in the next game. Phew. 
It was an especially fun night, as we were not only joined by familiar visitors from Waterloo, Guelph, and UTM (CCCs are ERRYWHERE), but we also had two completely new members of LCCC, Nicholas and bowling sensation Chris. Nothing makes us more excited than having new members. Hope that wasn't creepy.

If nothing else, the night is sure to be a glimpse into the 2013-14 year for LCCC... lots is in store, and Clubs Week hasn't even arrived yet.

Monday, 26 August 2013

LCCC Summer Social 2013: We are JUMPing in the light of God...

It was mid-August, which meant a couple things:

  • School was only two weeks away
  • Only two weeks of summer were left 
  • Everyone in the GTA was confused why the weather was below 20ÂșC
Like a boss

dat flick doe

The day started off with a trip to the lovely Erindale Park in Gary's hometown, Mississauga. Frisbees were tossed and board games were played as LCCC enjoyed a day of beautiful weather! The marquee board game of the day was Things In A Box, where we all discovered that certain LCCC members don't like sharing their Holy Communion >:(  

(Okay, maybe all of us.) 

Our merry party of eleven then headed to mass at [name of parish has been deleted to preserve said parish's reputation because {you'll find out in 5 seconds}]. To all the mass-goers out there - have you ever been to a mass where:
       a) There's no music?
       b) It ends in 40 minutes because of a)?
If your answer to the above question is "no", then jump in a time machine and go to the mass we attended, BECAUSE IT WAS THE LEAST MUSICAL AND SHORTEST MASS THAT MOST IF NOT ALL OF US HAVE EVER BEEN TO! 

Granted, I'm sure the choir had some reason for not being present, but some of us were seriously considering breaking out into an acapella "Receive the Power" for communion. 

Anyway, after mass, we all headed to the main event of the day - SkyZone Trampoline Park! Despite having an extra 20 minutes to work with because mass ended so early, we somehow managed to be late anyway, mostly because we made a pitstop at Micky D's and Nofrills to stock up on water. Luckily the staff were feeling generous and gave us an extra 10 minutes. We chucked dodgeballs at each other (accidentally hitting innocent little kids in the face... hehe...) and performed Olympic-worthy flips (into the foam pit, anyway). 

The day concluded with dinner at Bayview Garden Chinese Cuisine, an hour of karaoke, and... a SURPRISE BIRTHDAY CAKE FOR GARY! , whose birthday had passed a week before. 

sang yut fai lok ah~!~!~!~111

It was a superb day for LCCCers who had been missing each other's company for three and a half months. We look forward to seeing you this upcoming year as we continue to celebrate our faith as a Chinese Catholic Community in Western - but first.... GT in a few days! God Bless!

P.S. Thank you to our wonderful chauffeurs for the day, alumnus Viatrix and honourary guest/accompanier-of-alumnus-Viatrix, Chris (: 
P.P.S. Another thank you to our other honourary guests, Ms. Lam from UTM and Mr. Tam from McMaster. We hope you had a good time!