2 September 2019
Dear Parents and Students,
Facing the challenges of today's society, the changes in the current situation, the exploration of the truth, the impact of core values and the breakdown of relationships between people can really make us both heartbroken and worried. I am constantly thinking of how we can overcome these difficulties. One night when I couldn’t sleep I picked up a book called “80th Anniversary of Pooi To”. I saw an article from Mr. Wan Yiu-bun, our former principal, who shared his experiences from World War II. Principal Wan led the Pooi To Girls from place to place during the war, amidst much violence and destruction. In the face of such difficulties, he, together with the teachers and students, despite the situation they were in, kept faith in God. Principal Wan built up a relationship of trust and honesty among them, and they worked together to overcome the challenges. Their situation may not have immediately changed for the better, but in that period the Pooi To Family was a strong unit, without individualism or favouritism, relying only on God’s peace and love. “Praise be to the Lord.” he quoted from Apostle Paul. "Everything comes to me, nothing more than to believe in the Lord." Tears were running from my eyes as I prayed and thanked our Almighty God for leading us to pass through times of hardship and challenges. We have to humble ourselves to listen to His words and to serve him, in order to help Hong Kong through these turbulent times.
In the midst of the war, Principal Wan used a simple poem to explain the school motto "Love, Integrity, Purity and Perseverance". Reading it once again reminded and encouraged me to find the correct path that the Pooi To Family should take in this current situation.
“Love” : means “loving God, country and people wholeheartedly”
“Integrity” : means “honesty, truthfulness and sincerity”
“Purity” : means “faithfulness, fidelity and goals”
“Perseverance” : means “persistence and determination”
The Pooi To Family has always attached an importance to love and care, encouraging students to pursue knowledge, to explore the truth, to learn from multiple perspectives, and to respect others and be considerate. I hope that the Pooi To Family can follow the exemplary examples of former educators in Pooi To to respect and support each other, and to be together and united in building a positive team spirit that can play its part in helping Hong Kong through these times of uncertainty. We shoulder the mission: "you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." (1 Peter 2:9). We, will diligently help Hong Kong and the Pooi To Family to show:
"Love" : Regarding "love" to resolve the contradictions and anger between people, the Bible says: "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8) In addition, we must also pay attention to Matthew 5:44 in order to live our lives in good testimony to God: "love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
“Integrity”: Upholding “Integrity” to solve any problem and conflict with a sincere and truthful heart. We do not make false witness, instead we build communication channels and organise events legally, rationally and reasonably to seek consensus.
“Purity” : Our clear goal is to work together to resume the norm of Hong Kong under the truth and righteousness of God. "The one whose walk is blameless is kept safe, but the one whose ways are perverse will fall into the pit." (Proverbs 28:18) We should approach each situation with fairness and justice, and maintain rational discussion without any bias.
“Perseverance” : Our determination is to help Hong Kong restore harmony and repair its wounds. Let us remember that “The Lord sits enthroned over the flood; the Lord is enthroned as King forever.” (Psalm 29:10)
During the summer holiday, teachers were prepared for preventive measures regarding the coming strike at the beginning of the school year according to the EBD guidelines. I thanked the whole teaching staff on 26th August for their full support in approving the relevant policy, the direction of student guidance and the content of the parents' letter issued on 26th August. Our determination to ensure that the teaching and learning arrangements at Pooi To will be as USUAL, and school days will continue as NORMAL is firm.
As the new school year begins, Pooi To continues to treat the students' learning, physical health and mental health with the upmost importance in our education premise. At the same time, we respect the freedom of speech under school regulation. We hope that students can respect each other and listen to each other. No one can impose their personal political opinions on others. Moreover, each of our teachers will stick to their duties and try their best to ensure that students can continue with normal learning arrangements in a safe and orderly learning environment. Therefore, the teaching and learning arrangements at Pooi To will be as USUAL, and school days will continue as NORMAL. In addition, we will strengthen the counseling work in the opening school days and provide a channel for students to share their feelings and emotions. For those students who need extra support, we will also provide professional assistance with prompt follow-ups.
While the wind is swaying, I hope that we can face each other positively and look after one another. Looking back our Pooi To history, we have worked very hard to build generations of Pooi To Girls who can serve the community. In the face of social conflict, we hope those who wear the white cheongsam uniform will see things from all angles. Please respect the fact that everyone's views are different, but also that every student is still a part of the Pooi To Family. Let our God to be the host of the family, follow His will, not our own “so that you may become blameless and pure, ‘children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” (Philippians 2:15). The Pooi To Family has always attached an importance in fostering the doctrines. We have to learn to rely more on God in such a chaotic world.
The Bible says: “Brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:1-2) I encourage all Pooi To Girls to thrive on and experience the grace and love of God when encountering difficulties in such times of adversity.
I recall the following lyrics from a song that touched my heart. "Because Hong Kong is my home, how can I leave it. I am very reluctant to immigrate to foreign countries to serve others. I hold the knot tightly, and pour out my heart. I hope that through these words, let's express our feeling. I hope that in the future, under the Lion Rock, everyone will be united and never differentiate." I hope this song can encourage everyone to support each other.
May God bless Hong Kong and the Pooi To Family.