Pastor Peter de Jong officiating the Old Year’s Mass at the Roman Catholic Church of St. Eustatius.
ST. EUSTATIUS–Many persons attended church services of their choice on Old Year’s Night, December 31, 2017, in St. Eustatius.
Church services started at 5:00pm at the Seventh-Day Adventist, Methodist, Anglican, Big Stone Fellowship, Spanish, Bible Baptist and many other churches on New Year’s Eve.
At the Roman Catholic Church pastor Peter de Jong officiated the Old Year’s Mass, assisted by Judith Gibbs-Thomasia, who welcomed parishioners and visitors alike. The last Holy Mass of the year 2017 started at 10:30pm and concluded at 11:55pm.
The priest reflected on the calendar, which he stated would shift from a seven into an eight. He then asked God to grant everyone the energy to continue their journey, fantasy, dreams and ideas with joy.
He admonished everyone to keep all good things in their heart, as everything is a gift from God. “Leave the past behind and go forward. The past is over and forgotten, and we are no longer slaves to sin, but sons and daughters of God being able to face all the issues of life,” De Jong said.
During the service there were readings and songs to bring in the New Year. One of the highlights of the service was little seven-year-old Makela van Zanten, who volunteered to recite a message in the form of a poem. She was very concise and fluent in getting her point across. The attendees showed their appreciation by bestowing loud applause on her.
The service was well attended. Besides adults, there were many children in attendance.
The service was closed with attendees singing “Thank You Lord for One More Year.”
At the close of the service, the emergency vehicles which were all lined up outside the church, took to the streets and drove around the island with their sirens blasting to ring in the New Year.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/72348-old-year-s-night-mass-rings-in-2018-on-statia