Prelate calls for ‘unity’ among lay groups

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DAVAO City, Oct. 31, 2014— Like a band of different musical instruments playing in harmony. In a similar way, lay organizations, are called to unity and mutual support, says a prelate.

“This convention is important not to show off that we are better than the other. We need one another. We need to encourage one another,” said Archbishop of Davao Romulo G. Valles.

This year, the Church in the Philippines celebrates the Year of the Laity. (Photo: John Frances Fuentes))

Mutual support

Prior to the closing Mass of the 4th ACLAIM Convention at the St. Francis Xavier Regional Major Seminary in Catalunan Grande on Oct. 18, the prelate asked representatives of some 50 lay movements and groups in Davao to “be friends and support one another.”

Archdiocesan Council of Lay Apostolate and Integrated Movements (ACLAIM) vice president Eduardo Pacana noted how lay groups are “likened to a band of different instruments.”

“The archbishop is our conductor. We can only play good music harmoniously if we will follow the direction of the archbishop,” he added.

Valles also praised the laity in Davao for being “active in their faith, living their faith, trying to be holy.”

Archbishop of Davao Romulo G. Valles (Photo: John Frances Fuentes)

‘Blessing to the archdiocese’

ACLAIM spiritual director Msgr. Paul Cuison seconded this sentiment by saying, “…The laity is a blessing to the Archdiocese of Davao.”

Pacana added that ACLAIM existed because of the collaboration of the different lay organizations and movements in Davao, saying they share the “common purpose” of supporting the archdiocese in collaboration with the clergy.

Long before the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) declared the Year of the Laity, ACLAIM, which has gathered yearly for four years, existed as an organized council of the laity.

Archbishop Valles said Year of the Laity is just a passing year, but the convention of ACLAIM will be a yearly gathering that “everyone will look forward to.”

According to Pacana ACLAIM aimed to create a “solemn and festive” atmosphere for the convention as part of the celebration of the Year of the Laity. (John Frances C. Fuentes)

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