I was at the College early in the morning to help out in putting the final touches to the liturgy. Me and several of our servers were selected to help backstage in getting everything set up.
The chalices and ciboria were filled with hosts and wine and covered with purificators. These were for the communion of the priests. During the offertory, I helped to remove the purificators from the chalices for the consecration.
Here's the view of the Hall from the Bishop's chair.
Here's what the Apostolic Delegate will be seeing.
The altar and backdrop.
Early on, I was there breaking the unconsecrated large hosts and putting them in the main ciborium for the use of the concelebrating Arch/Bishops and the Apostolic Delegate. The hosts were not broken over the ciborium in order to prevent the crumbs from falling in.
The chalice used is a gift from Pope Benedict XVI for this occasion. It came in a special case and was supposed to be presented to the College after the Mass but it was decided to use the chalice for the Mass itself. You can just make out the inscription here. Pardon the non-macro mode and my shaky hands.
It says 200th Anniversary of the establishment of College General - Penang 2.10.2008. Pope Benedict's coat of arms can be seen in the centre.
Outside the Hall, chairs were set up under tents to accommodate those who could not find a place inside. A vocation booth was also set up.
Many pilgrims came from far off places in Malaysia, Singapore and even from Thailand and Vietnam. Here are some Vietnamese pilgrims before the statue of the martyrs St. Phillip Minh and Companions who were former students of the seminary and canonized saints of the Church.
Nuns from various orders turned up as well.
The hall began to fill up and the people waited in expectation for the Mass to start.
Further off, the bishops and priests were vesting and mingling.
The seminarians too, from Malaysia and Singapore (and Brother Ross who studied English here for a while, from Cambodia), turned up in full force.
Seminarians from College General joined in the choir from the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit led by Andre Ong.
Ok, more soon on the Mass itself.