Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Festival - Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009

Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Source: Stanlee Lau


Sarikei folks that are overseas tend to choose between going back to Sarikei during Chinese New Year or during the Qing Ming festival 清明節 to pay respect to their deceased family members and ancestors. This is because of the cost of bringing back the whole family and the hassle of getting leave off work.


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Source: Stanlee Lau



With more frequency and wider choice of flights including budget airlines flying into Kuching and Sibu, now more people go back during both festivals. After all, both festivals have different significance to the Chinese culture.


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Source: Stanlee Lau



Can anyone provide the name and location of the cemetery of these first 3 pictures? Is this the Bulat Cantonese cemetery? (Stanlee, please advise if you read this)


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Foochow Association cemetery
Graveyard near the swimming pool, 3.5 mile Repok Rd
Source: Stanlee Lau



Each race and even dialect groups of Sarikei have their own cemetery. The Malay cemetery is behind Ngiu Kee department store. Before that, there was a Malay cemetery on a small hill (now part of Repok Road) opposite the Methodist church.


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Foochow Association cemetery
Graveyard near the swimming pool, 3.5 mile Repok Rd
Source: Stanlee Lau



The above 2 and next 2 pictures show the Foochow cemetery at 3.5 Mile Repok Road (near the swimming pool). It can be identified by its position on a hill. Does anyone know the history of the Foochow Association cemetery?


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Foochow Association cemetery
Graveyard near the swimming pool, 3.5 mile Repok Rd
Source: Stanlee Lau



Qing Ming festival falls on 104th day after the winter solstice (or the 15th day from the Spring Equinox), usually around 5th April of the Gregorian calendar. For every leap year, Qing Ming will fall on April 4.


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Foochow Association cemetery
Graveyard near the swimming pool, 3.5 mile Repok Rd
Source: Stanlee Lau



Chinese families show their respect to ancestors & loved ones by visiting their graves to clear away weeds, touch up gravestone inscriptions, burn incense and make food & wine offerings. The burning of imitation paper money & other paper goodies is for the deceased to use in the afterlife.


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Cantonese-Hokkien Association Cemetery
2.5 Mile Repok Road, before Sekolah Tinggi
Source: Stanlee Lau



Khoo Peng Loong 邱炳浓 (the Cantonese kapitan after Chan Wei) initiated a donation drive of $50 each to reach a sum of $1000 to purchase a piece of land at 2.5 mile Repok Road from 鐘海松, a Hakka.

Chan Wei 陳偉, the Cantonese kapitan then, and the Hokkien kapitan then, Ling Zhao Bian 林昭邊, (of Chop Lim Heng Teck 林恒德, No. 4 Wharf Road) applied to the government to get approval for this to be designated as the Cantonese and Hokkien cemetery of Sarikei in the 1930s. (Source: 1)


Sarikei Qing Ming Festival 2009
Memorial for Chan Wei and Lin Zhao Bian

Cantonese-Hokkien Association Cemetery
2.5 Mile Repok Road, before Sekolah Tinggi
Source: Stanlee Lau



The land title of this piece of land is still registered under the names of Chan Wei and Lin Zhao Bian. This cemetery is under the care of a trustee of committee members. The committee members built a memorial monument at the cemetery to commemorate the contribution of these two pioneers to the Chinese society.

So you see, it's not easy to be community leaders especially during the pioneering days. Each community has to take care of its people from cradle to casket.


Sources:
1) Article: Interview with 張武祥 who came to Sarikei in 1927

3 comments:

长竹 said...

福州的华人义山应该是四哩半而不是3.5哩!因为那时我的娘家所在地。其中一张相片还拍到了我先父母的墓。

Daniel Yiek said...

Long Bamboo,
Thanks for the correction on the Foochow cemetery.

Daniel Yiek said...

Borneo Post has sent me the article featuring the ABC blog post. I have scanned the article and pasted at the ABC post if you like to see what it looks like.

http://sarikei-time-capsule.blogspot.com/2009/03/food-sarikei-abc-iced-dessert.html

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