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50th Anniversary of Apostolicam Actuositatem

Posted on Aug 02 , 2014 in Archdiocese of Manila News

50th Anniversary of Apostolicam Actuositatem

The Don Bosco Center of Studies under the auspices of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) and the Espicopal Commission on Lay Apostolate (ECLA) has invited Parish Priests and Lay Leaders to a theological-pastoral symposium on August 21, Thursday, 8:00 am to 6:00 pm at the PhilSports Arena (formerly ULTRA), Pasig City.  The symposium, entitled Saints and Heroes, aims to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Apostolicam Actuositatem, the first and only Conciliar document on lay involvement in the Church promulgated on November 1965. It will also give a singular chance to study and reflect on the importance of Catholic Laity.

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CBCP Chief Endorses “Year of the Laity” Highlight

Posted on Jul 31 , 2014 in Archdiocese of Manila News

CBCP Chief Endorses “Year of the Laity” Highlight
Seeing it as a very important highlight capping this “Year of the Laity”, the head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) invites the faithful to a symposium organized by the Don Bosco Center of Studies called “Saints and Heroes No Less” on August 21, Thursday, at the PhilSports Arena (formerly ULTRA) in Pasig City.
 
In a circular he released endorsing the theological-pastoral symposium, CBCP chief Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas stressed the event will [also] be the Church’s “ecclesial participation for the fiftieth anniversary of the Second Vatican Council’s Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity, “Apostolicam Actuositatem”, on November 2015”.
 
As the Philippine Church looks forward to the five hundredth anniversary of the first mass and first baptism in the country, the Lingayen-Dagupan prelate expresses hope that the symposium will “raise even more the consciousness and commitment of the Filipino laity to participate in the life and mission of the Church”, especially among diocesan lay leaders, pastoral workers, youth ministers, and catechists.
 
2014 being a year especially dedicated to the faithful, Villegas urges all Catholic Filipinos to reflect on the challenging message of Pope Francis in his “Evangelii Gaudium” (EG).
 
In paragraph 102 of the apostolic exhortation, the pontiff says: “Lay people are, put simply, the vast majority of the people of God. The minority—ordained ministers—are at their service. There has been a growing awareness of the identity and mission of the laity in the Church. We can count on many lay persons, although still not nearly enough, who have a deeply-rooted sense of community and great fidelity to the tasks of charity, catechesis and the celebration of the faith. At the same time, a clear awareness of this responsibility of the laity, grounded in their baptism and confirmation, does not appear in the same way in all places. In some cases, it is because lay persons have not been given the formation needed to take on important responsibilities.”
 
The “Saints and Heroes No Less” symposium, Villegas believes, will take on the challenge posed by the Holy Father in giving extensive formation to the Filipino Catholic laity.
 
The event is open to the public.
 
For Inquiries contact Event Secretariat: Tonette Pangan (02) 718-2213 /(02)726-7989. (Raymond A. Sebastián)
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Pope Sets PH Trip Jan. 15-19

Posted on Jul 29 , 2014 in Archdiocese of Manila News

Pope Sets PH Trip Jan. 15-19

Papal nuncio Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto claps as Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle announces the date of Pope Francis’ visit to the Philippines set on January 15 to 19, 2015 during a media briefing in Manila on Tuesday. (Cbcpnews.com)

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‘Your Faith Will Be Tested’

Posted on Jul 20 , 2014 in Archdiocese of Manila News

‘Your Faith Will Be Tested’
A bishop tells young people July 19 their faith will “be tested” in a message given during the CFC – Singles for Christ Metro Manila Regional Conference (MM Recon) that appeared to be part prophecy, part social commentary.
 
“A day will come when you will be tested..How much Christ is life for you? Will you remain faithful to Him amid persecutions, slander, discrimination?” Auxiliary Bishop of Antipolo Francisco De Leon asked 2,850 singles attending the MM Recon yesterday at the Ynares Center, Antipolo City.
 
De Leon, who celebrated the holy mass on the second day of the conference, challenged the participants of the 3-day event to think about whether they will be faithful only when “life is easy and problem-free”, turning away from Jesus when “storms in the Christian life” come.
 
He cited Pope Francis’ observation that “Christians are most persecuted nowadays,” not just in predominantly Muslim areas, but even in countries with rich Christian heritage because they have “forgotten Christ.”
 
According to De Leon, concretely, the steady rise of “secular values” is seen through the breakdown of traditional marriage, the denial of the sanctity of human life and the shift in focus to material wealth.
 
“The only value is wealth. So much so that the others do not matter. Even if someone is rich, he will still be corrupt, that’s greediness,” he said, making an indirect commentary on the country’s current events.
 
The MM Recon, themed “Choose Christ: For life is Christ and death is gain” (Philippians 1:21)”, gathers SFC leaders and members from all over Metro Manila every year. (Cbcpnews.com)
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CBCP Chief: ‘Be humble, respect democracy’

Posted on Jul 15 , 2014 in Archdiocese of Manila News

CBCP Chief: ‘Be humble, respect democracy’
Reacting to the televised address of President Aquino on Monday, the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) urged government leaders to practice humility and respect democratic principles so as not to compromise the common good.
 
“The CBCP prays that our nation will tread the path of peace, and that our national leaders may truly be humble and respectful of our democratic institutions so that our most sacred freedoms and liberties are always upheld,” Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas said in a statement issued hours after the president’s televised speech on the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) .
 
Villegas called on Filipinos to “hold fast to the basic tenets of the democratic way of life enshrined in our Constitution” and to be always reminded of the Judiciary’s mandate “to interpret the law with definitiveness in the process of resolving justiciable issues.”
 
He also stressed the need to respect the third branch of government, the Judiciary, saying if indeed the Supreme Court had erred in its ruling on the DAP, there must be “humble admission and immediate rectification.”
 
In defending the DAP against critics, Aquino reiterated Section 39 of the 1987 Administrative Code as the legal basis for its creation:
 
“Except as otherwise provided in the General Appropriations Act, any savings in the regular appropriations authorized in the General Appropriations Act for programs and projects of any department, office or agency, may, with the approval of
the President, be used to cover a deficit in any other item of the regular appropriations….”
 
Amid controversies surrounding the DAP, Villegas called on the public to respect President Aquino’s opinion on the matter.
 
“The President has expressed himself on the Supreme Court’s decision in respect to DAP. The President’s views are important and his right to express himself must be respected,” he said.
 
With a vote of 13-1-0, the Supreme Court declared parts of the DAP as unconstitutional on July 1.
 
The high court noted that the DAP violated the constitution by withdrawing unobligated allotments and declaring them—together with unreleased appropriations—as savings; allowing cross-border transfers of the savings of the Executive department to other offices; and funding projects, activities, and programs that were not covered by the GAA.
 
The CBCP president reminded the public that the rule of law must always be safeguarded for it is a “fundamental requirement” and an “objective condition” of the common good.
 
“That the Rule of Law is at all times safeguarded is therefore a moral concern. When the Rule of Law is compromised, the common good becomes its victim,” Villegas said. (cbcpnews.com)