Msgr. Nicholas Ong
Born 59 years ago into a rather wealthy family in Sandakan, young Nicholas had his primary and secondary education at St Mary’s School Sandakan. He remembers fondly that the present Fr. Mulder’s Catechetical Centre at St Mary’s Cathedral Parish compound is where he used to have his primary school education.
After his Senior Cambridge (form five) in 1971, when the Catholic Church in Sabah was under persecution with all the foreign priests expelled, Nicholas set his mind to become a missionary of Christ.
He enrolled into the Singapore Seminary for 2 years followed by 5 years of study at the St Francis Xavier Seminary, Penang. He was ordained priest on 3rd October 1978 at St Mary’s Church, now the Cathedral. He was the third local to be ordained after the late Bishop Simon Fung and Fr Mewo.
His first priestly assignment was at St Michael’s Church Penampang, then St Paul Dontozidon, where he was secretary to the late Bishop Simon Fung, in addition to teaching duties at the Diocesan Centre. He later became rector of Stella Maris Church Tanjung Aru.
From 1987, Fr. Ong spent 2 years studying at the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley California where he obtained his Master of Theology.
Upon his return, he taught at St Peter’s College Kuching till 1996. His later assignments saw him serving at the Catholic Diocesan Centre (CDC) Kota Kinabalu, Blessed Sacrament Church Labuan, Sacred Heart’s Cathedral and St Dominic’s Church Ladah Datu.
With the erection of the new Diocese of Sandakan in 2007, Fr Ong was appointed Monsignor and became rector of Hoy Trinity Church Tawau on April 2008.