Cardinal von Galen Award – Winter 2010: Bishop Anthony Lee Kok Hin

Bishop Anthony Lee Kok Hin has led the Diocese of Miri, Malaysia for over 30 years now. These have been exceptionally active years in the proclamation of the Gospel of Life. HLI was fortunate to have His Excellency attend our 1994 world conference. He attended all the talks, and a direct fruit of that pro-life experience was his decision to found the Human Life Service in 1995.

The Human Life Service in Miri is the kind of pro-life and pro-family outreach that should exist in every Catholic diocese. It is in charge of a marriage preparation course that clearly spells out Catholic teaching on respect for life, marriage and the family that all couples wishing to marry in the Church in Miri are required to attend. Engaged couples are also taught the Billings Ovulation Method of Natural Family Planning in separate training sessions. The Human Life Service carries out many different educational programs and assists mothers facing crisis pregnancies.

A beautiful example of Bishop Lee’s compassion for those wounded by abortion is the way he personally assists all women who wish to be reconciled with God after committing the sin of taking the lives of their preborn children. He also extended his loving embrace to a repentant abortionist. He took the beautiful step of writing all the doctors in Miri, regardless of their creeds, asking them to refer all those seeking or at risk of having an abortion to the Human Life Service for compassionate pro-life counseling and support.

HLI held its 16th annual Asia Pacific Congress for pro-life leaders from the entire region on November 19-22, 2009 in Miri, Malaysia. The Human Life Service’s leadership and HLI’s regional coordinator for Asia, Dr. Ligaya Acosta, organized this wonderful event.

There can be no doubt that Bishop Lee understands the prime responsibility of a shepherd, which is to defend his flock. His eloquent and frequent sermons and writings denouncing the culture of death and encouraging the faithful to cherish God’s supreme gift of life are a model to be followed. Like his great exemplar, the Good Shepherd, Bishop Lee has sought out the lost sheep and is well known for his ministry of praying over all those who seek him out for spiritual aid.

Bishop Lee is an exceptionally worthy recipient of HLI’s Cardinal von Galen Award. By his actions and guidance, he has transformed his diocese and his part of the world into a pro-life bastion. HLI prays that the Lord of Life will continue to bless Bishop Lee and give him many more years of fruitful leadership in the Church.

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