‘Family prayer time best preps for papal visit’ – priest

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JARO, Iloilo City, August 26, 2014 — The best way Filipinos can prepare for the papal visit next year is to bring back the family prayer time, says a priest.

Program Director of the Katesismo sa Kahanginan Apostolate (KSKA) Fr. Elmo Cary Montaño re-echoed the Philippine bishops invitation to “prepare to see the Pope by reviving personal and family prayer” during a message given on the occasion of the group’s 18th foundation anniversary on August 22.

The Katesismo sa Kahanginan’s 18th anniversary celebration was held on August 22, 2014 at La Isabelita Hall of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Candles in Jaro, Iloilo City. (Photo: Fr. Mickey Cardenas)

Bringing back devotions

Commenting further on the state of the domestic church in the Philippines, the tri-media program director lamented the fact that in many house blessings he has administered recently, he observed that fewer homes display traditional Christian images: “I enter the house, but do not find the family altar or the images of the Crucifix, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Our Lady, St. Joseph or the Saints. Instead, you see a poster of Vice Ganda!”

In relating these experiences, Montaño challenged the laity involved in the tri-media apostolate to help transform Christian homes through family prayer and bring back traditional Christian devotions.

The priest also challenged the attendees to be conscious of how media distracts the faithful from what is essential in life.

“If we have a problem, do we seek God, or do we just log on to Facebook?…If we need inspiration or consolation do we turn to God, or do we turn to the telenovela?” Montaño asked his listeners.

Value of prayer

He also shared with KSKA covenant partners, media practitioners, and members of lay organizations, notably the Daughters of Mary Immaculate, his reaction to a talk on prayer given earlier by guest speaker Fr. Dan Fauste, OCD, various lessons on the primacy of prayer if both priests and lay faithful are to be “salt and light to society”.

“If you don’t know how to drive, you can still be a priest. If you don’t know computer, you can still be a priest. But if you do not pray, you can never be a priest!” Montaño said, recalling something he heard often during his seminary days.
Katesismo sa Kahanginan Apostolate was started by Msgr. Jose ‘Pepe’ Buenaflor who pioneered the use of the mass media in the service of evangelization.

Msgr. Buenaflor founded a tri-media apostolate in Iloilo with the daily radio program “Katesismo sa Kahanginan” in 1997, a newsletter “Ang Katekista” in 1998 and a cable television program, Manugsab-og” in 1999.

Katesismo sa Kahanginan’s 18th anniversary celebration was held at La Isabelita Hall of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Candles in Jaro, Iloilo City. (Fr. Mickey Cardenas)

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