MARILAO, Bulacan, Nov. 2, 2016 – Speaking at the 9th annual “Toldang Tipanan” held at the National Shrine and Parish of the Divine Mercy in Sta. Rosa 1 in this town, Oct. 29, Saturday, a bishop tells the faithful that God can be seen most clearly in people united in love.
“The absolute picture of God is reflected [in] people who are united in love,” Novaliches Bishop Emeritus Teodoro Bacani Jr. told Basic Ecclesial Community delegates from 10 vicariates under the Diocese of Malolos.
“Our being Christians can be seen on our unity and love,” stressed the prelate. “We gather as members of BECs to share God’s grace and mercy to each and everyone.”
The retired bishop briefly explained that it is love that unites the three divine persons of God, thus, love should also be the uniting factor in each BEC cell group. “May all of us become channels of God’s grace and mercy.”
Small Christian communities
Bacani also revealed some of the benefits of creating BECs in parishes. According to him, these include the “renewal” of people’s devotion in studying the Word of God, their openness in sharing their personal anxieties and fears in the group, their intense commitment to serve, and their being united in prayer.
Through BECs, the faithful strive to follow Jesus Christ’s teachings, said the prelate, and to serve Him and His people as they inspire their peers to do the same.
The prelate also reminded the attendees about the letter of St. Paul to the Ephesians, which talked about some principles in building communities.
Meanwhile, Fr. Federico Trinidad, Assistant Director of BEC in the diocese, shared his thoughts on the important role of the priests in establishing BECs in their respective parishes. “After the 2nd Synod of Malolos, BEC is now being taught in our seminary,” he said. “Supporting BEC has also been included in the appointment of parish priests.”
On the other hand, Fr. Anacleto Ignacio shared his experiences as a long-time advocate of the BEC. “I have learned so much from these BECs, even more than what I learned from the seminary,” he said.
‘Year of the Parish’
To highlight the event, Msgr. Bartolome Santos, Vicar General of the diocese, concelebrated a Mass with Diocesan BEC Director Msgr. Adalberto Vergara, Fr. Roger Cruz, Fr. Rodel Ponce, Fr. Rolando de Leon, Fr. Ignacio, and Fr. Trinidad. In his homily, Santos explained the virtue of humility and how the faithful should deal with the less fortunate. “Always give priority to our needy brothers and sisters,” he said.
At the end of the mass, Santos also announced the formal launching of 2017 as the Year of the Parish, carrying the theme “Communion of Communities”. (Myraine Carluen-Policarpio / CBCP News)