Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle urged clergy in Metro Manila to seek further unity in order to bring dioceses together in mission.
“The effects of reclamation, poverty, and violence– they cross boundaries so we are really one in mission and service,” Tagle said.
“Let us together understand the phenomena around us, let us study and listen together to the spirit of and to the Word of God,” he said. “And let us work together to be able to respond as pastors.”
The cardinal made the statement on Thursday during a Mass for the first ever reunion of the clergy of greater Archdiocese of Manila, ten years after it was divided into several dioceses.
Dubbed as the “First Gathering of the Clergy of the Metropolitan See of Manila”, the reunion was held at the Rockwell Tent in Makati City.
Tagle said the occasion was an opportunity for the priests to unite once again “in a more formal and structured way”.
“Even though we belong to different dioceses now, there is still one Church with one mission and one Holy Spirit,” he said.
It was in 2003 when the archdiocese was divided into five dioceses: Parañaque, Novaliches, Cubao, Kalookan, and Pasig. The former districts of Manila now comprise the archdiocese.
Before the archdiocese was divided, it had 272 parishes, 402 diocesan priests, and almost 11 million Catholics under its care.
The division was initiated by the late Jaime Cardinal Sin for pastoral reasons. To date, the Metropolitan See of Manila has 631 diocesan and religious priests. (CBCPNews)