Catholic mission work began in the southern part of East Kalimantan, Mahakam river area . The first third of the missionaries who started at the Capuchin order Laham stations in June 1907. They are Libertus Cluts Capuchin Father , Father Camillus and Brother Ivo Buil Capuchin Capuchin . At first the missionaries would begin mission work in other villages , for example Mamahak Large or Long Iram , but eventually the village Laham chosen because the population at that time 96 people . The arrival of the missionaries were welcomed with a rousing reception but instead they received as a stranger . Villagers even be ” JUST WAIT ” until it becomes clear what the intent was approached three Dutchmen their village . Even so the people in the village Laham help the missionaries to build a simple rectory and a small chapel . But no one ever came Dayaks to one Pastor and told him that he would become a Christian . No one Dayak who thinks about it . But they began to appreciate the missionaries as people who “VERY KIND ” , which is always ready to help with drug or saline , which sometimes does not exist .

After three years the missionaries began to establish schools as simple as building a rectory . The school was to be filled with students . That is the difficulty . Kampongs community schools do not need to look at ; person does not need to learn in school to become a diligent farmer or a mother who gave birth to a healthy child . Father sometimes have to wear a subtle coercion , as well as ” hard hand ” of an employee of the Dutch Government . There are employees who agree with the pastor , but there also agree with the anti- school Dayaks . But pastors move on , not to be outdone ; education of the Dayak must dinomorsatukan . Many villages around Laham visited the pastor to find the child , the prospective student ‘s first Catholic elementary school in the area . At school is called the name of Jesus , His Gospel , and His death discussed , but no one who lured children to enter the Catholic Church . The first missionaries were very careful about baptism school children . New January 6, 1913-6 years after the missionaries arrived in Laham – 4 boys high school students baptized . In 1924 there were 6 of the first Catholic marriage blessed . Mission forward , but only “step by step ” , not ” in the march tempo ” . Laham washing in water does not flow like a rushing river ; washing water just dripped .

Outside the mission work in the area Laham , Capuchin Order also work in West Kalimantan and attention to the work of missions around the island of Sumatra . All these tasks deemed too heavy for the Capuchin Order . On August 13, 1924 in the Superior Province of the Order of Capuchin Nederland sent a letter requesting the assistance of the Congregation of the MSF mission in the Grave . On January 12, 1925 putter General MSF wrote back and told , that MSF is willing to take over the majority of the Apostolic Vicariate of Pontianak . In the tempo soon became clear that MSF later to take over the region of East Kalimantan and South Kalimantan ( at that time belonged to the South Kalimantan Central Kalimantan ) . All members of the Congregation MSF , especially in the Netherlands , cheering . Although there is no a general board member who knew nothing about foreclosed Kalimantan , but it was not considered important ; important area has its own mission .

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Finally, important decisions are taken . 2 putter and 1 brother sent a pioneer in the mission area of Borneo . On January 1, 1926 Pastor Fr . MSF Groot , Pastor J. Van de Linden MSF and Br . Egidius Stoffels taking a ship from Amsterdam and got Laham on February 27, 1926 . They do not have the experience of a mission , but their heart is a missionary heart .

Third missionaries begin the mission with MSF to continue the work of the Capuchin missionaries ( including schools ) . But in the not too distant future it is clear , that the village Laham less well regarded as a mission base . Tering village opened in 1928 as a station centrum Mission . Before World War II broke out in Indonesia (1941-1945) , some stations have been opened : Balikpapan , Samarinda , Tarakan , Tiong Ohang , Pahangai Long , Long Pakaq , Barong Tongkok and Banjarmasin ( South Kalimantan ) .

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Since 1926, the priests , brothers and sisters betul2 diligently develop their mission area . But this does not get a positive response from the General Council of MSF in the Grave . The board members are very disappointed about the outcome of the MSF mission in the area , they thought that many Dayaks in 1926 that are waiting to be baptized , when in fact none of the Dayaks are to be baptized . Instead many priests and brothers were sent from the Netherlands ; many workers reaper , but in the opinion of the Board of MSF harvest too less . Especially P. Trampe – Superior General MSF – very disappointed .

In 1929, MSF has sent Father Fr General Kouwenhoven , Missie Procurator , as his deputy ” TO LOOK ON THE SPOT ” . Incidentally his time in Java, there was held a meeting of the bishops in Girisonta ; putter Kouwenhoven was invited to attend the meeting . In this meeting P. Kouwenhoven opportunity to continue their disappointment to the meeting and bold preaching , that the General Council think of the closing work of the MSF mission in the interior of Borneo . All participants of the meeting protesting , do not agree with the General Council of MSF . The meeting participants advising MSF to move forward with faith , hope and love . God will give the growth . Every beginning is always difficult . Thanks to advice from experienced missionaries , MSF General Council finally bury negative thoughts about missions in Borneo .

By the time World War II broke out , all the priests and brothers of MSF , plus 4 sisters of the Congregation Servant Francis who served in stations tering Laham and captured by the Japanese . They are Pastor Fr . Arts, Fr Th . Van Diepen , Pastor J.v.d. Linden, A. Gielens Pastor , Fr Th . Jansen , Pastor J. Romeijn , G. Slot Father , Father J. Ogier , Pastor J. Hagens , Pastor M. Schellekens , Pastor HVD Salm , M. Schoots Father , Father W. Leeferink , Br . Damiaan Leune , Br . Egidius Stoffels , Br . Felix Botman , Br . Longinus Siebers , Sr. . Liguoria M. de Wert , Sr. . Rogeria Vissers , Sr. . Agnella v.d Hoogen and Sr . Veridiana Verhagen .

3 MSF priest , Father A. Janmaat , Pastor CVD Hoogte and Father Fr.v.d. Linden Japanese soldiers killed in early 1942 in Aberdeen and one brother MSF is Brother Egidius Stoffels died in Samarinda as prisoners ; others liberated by Australian troops in September 1945 . After the war ended , the sisters of the Congregation Servant Francis did not return to East Kalimantan , while most of the missionaries MSF will not go on holiday to the Netherlands , but they want to come back as soon as possible to the stations , which had been abandoned since 1942.

For approximately 3.5 years of Catholics living in the mission area without a shepherd , they can not receive the sacraments , and they feel themselves as a people forgotten by . Missionaries at the detention camp worried about the fate of their young people his faith . They alleged that some of them have returned to the old custom . But it turns out the other at all . Everywhere Catholics remain loyal , even in the pit of a cascade of Mahakam thousands of religious study . All missionaries welcome. ” THANKSGIVING TO GOD ” .

In connection with the above events , I would like to quote the post Mgr . M. Coomans MSF : ” MOST IMPORTANT EVENTS DURING JAPANESE OCCUPATION OF EVENTS THAT ARE IN THE UPSTREAM cascade ” . Event is meant that a group of people suddenly broke away from indigenous traditions simultaneously . That drives them is Nyurai , a villager in the tribal areas of Long Cihang Penihing ( upstream cascade ) . In 1943 the public are invited to leave customs . He assured the local people that the spirits that have been seen people inhabit caves in the mountain valley behind the village does not exist anymore . At first the people of Long Cihang not so ignore what people are almost blind . But he tirelessly continued to urge them to believe in the spiel . And to further convince the public that the spirits do not exist , he himself entered into the caves . When Bo ‘ Nyurai out of the caves , he remains in good health . From there then more and more people pay attention and believe in Bo ‘ are seen to act as a prophet . He often invited to other villages to share his experience . He himself did not enter the Catholic and never advocated the Catholic convert . Bo ‘ Nyurai died soon after the war , so the idea of ​​mind can not be investigated further . Obviously he recommends that people leave customs . Indigenous considered not binding anymore , because the spirits have left the area of the Dayak .

After World War II, the missionaries continue to work diligently ; mustard seed that had been planted before the war had grown into large that the birds nesting in its branches ( cf. Mat13 : 31 ) . Because of this in 1952 , Mgr . J. Groen MSF , Vicar Apostolic of Banjarmasin , send a request to Pope Pius XII that East Kalimantan separated from the Apostolic Vicariate Apostolic Vicariate used Banjarmasin and Samarinda . This request was denied by a smooth time Mgr . J. Groen died MSF and MSF Demarteau Father W. was appointed Vicar Apostolic of Banjarmasin . But the new vicar does not agree with the decision of Rome and repeated the same request before ordination as a bishop . To resolve this problem , Mgr . W. Demarteau summoned to Rome . Finally, in September 1954 Rome approved and on February 21, 1955 established the Apostolic Vicariate of Samarinda . The first Vicar Apostolic is Mgr . J. Romeijn MSF which was later replaced by Mgr . Chr . van Weegberg MSF ( years 1955-1976 ) , and Mgr . Coomans MSF ( years 1977-1992 ) and Mgr . Sului Florentinus MSF ( 1993 – present ) .

With the completion of this little history of the Diocese of Samarinda where sentenial feast is celebrated .

W.J. MSF Demarteau


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