“Yes, Lord here I am”, a New Year’s Day Reflection

Jan 1, 2018 | [post_view] Views

It is most appropriate to begin the New Year with the Feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God. The first day of New Year reminds us of the beginning of things, the beginning of the world and of mankind. On this first day of 2018, I look forward to the future with hope and expectation for new events, challenges and opportunities. A key point adjustment is for me to start with the determination to find God in all things. As always I am relying to the grace of God. That no matter what happens, may it good or bad, I can enter into the experience where God's hand is at work. Indeed, He brings blessings in pain or in joy or in varied forms to say, as long as the heart sees rightly. That is why I pray that gratitude may always prevail in my life that I may not fail to thank him especially in this Year of the Clergy and Consecrated Persons, as much as I, myself a consecrated person. On this Marian Feast, it is Mary above all others who can teach me what it means to live by faith, learning her attitude: she keeps and ponders everything in her heart (Lk 2, 19). For it is the way to keep my “Yes” to God. I cannot but connect my own vocation to Mary’s Fiat. Every time I pray the Lord’s Pray: "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven" echoes Mary's Fiat: "Be it done unto me according to your word." Personally, each time we commit ourselves to embracing God's call and accepting His will, we mark a new point on the path of our relationship with Him. For the rest of her life, Mary pondered her extraordinary encounter with God, turning the weight of the angel's message over and over again. From the manger to the cross, Mary's life was radically changed - her relationship with God profoundly deepened - the moment she said "Yes." And this comes to me as a challenge because each day I desire to be closer to God. Mary’s faithfulness to God is evident upon the events in her life which I believe the fruit of a deep prayer life. She is always attune with God that makes her sheer obedience possible even if in the midst of uncertainty. Because of Mary’s faithfulness to God, she was able to receive the gift of God’s Son and accept her role in God’s plan for salvation. By doing so, she is now our model to the path of discipleship. She is the Mother of the disciples and the Mother of the Church. She is our mother. Our call to discipleship also includes our prayer and reflection on the events of our lives that we might see God’s presence at…

My Christmas Joy

Dec 25, 2017 | [post_view] Views

“Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger” (Lk.2:10-12). I am fascinated always with the picture of the nativity (the Belen) every Christmas season. And my attention is always centered on the infant Jesus lying in a manger. This is so because I oftentimes ask how difficult it is for a mother to deliver her son in just a manger and also for an infant to survive in a cold place prepared for animals. It is for me an unusual situation. However, what I find amazing about it is that the nativity scene keeps on drawing people. I observe that people are coming to pray seriously in front of it. They later touch and kiss the baby Jesus. And they will pose for a picture with it and go. And then here comes another group with the same purpose of venerating the Belen. And it seems to me that the Belen has the power that invites the people. Then later in my seminary years it dawned on me the implication of the simplicity of the person of Jesus as well as of his family. Jesus’ birth in a manger is very meaningful especially in his being the Savior of the world. He has a lot to tell us in his simple birth. And these messages are at all times applicable for us his people. And if these messages are given the chance to penetrate into the hearts of all then they will produce joy that nothing compares. And one of the many messages that I learn and love most from the birth of Jesus is the message of simplicity. He is communicating simplicity in his birth reminding the people that life is not complicated. Life is meant to be simple. His birth in a manger reminds the people to live a life away from the many dangerous ambitions. This is very striking for all for oftentimes there is the tendency for the humanity to dream for a life beyond reach. Jesus only has his swaddling clothes we also have contented on simple things we have. Jesus in a manger is destined to save the humanity. This message is giving me so much joy that in spite of my limitations I have my Savior who holds me and keeps me in his care. He is giving me hope especially in my trying moments. He serves as my light in the midst of my darkness in life. And he invites me to give hope also to those who find life meaningless. I…

Advent Reflection: God Became Human

Dec 13, 2017 | [post_view] Views

As Catholics, we profess our belief in the Incarnation in the Nicene Creed: Jesus Christ “came down from heaven, and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man.” The Incarnation is a unique and singular event. Its truth informs the way we view God and ourselves. For by his incarnation the Son of God has united himself in some fashion with every person. He worked with human hands, he thought with a human mind, acted by human choice and loved with a human heart. Born of the Virgin Mary, he has truly been made one of us, like us in all things except sin. (Gaudium et Spes, 22) God Became Human. Advent offers only four weeks to reflect upon the meaning of those three words, how they changed the course of human history, and how they impacted upon the lives of those who believe in Jesus Christ. They can radically change the course of our personal history over these next weeks if we will welcome these words to fill the emptiness in our souls and allow them to create in us a deep sense of awe and reverence. God came to be with us as a little child! Born like us into a world in need of love. Three words, "God became human," deserve a space in our heart as a start to this Advent season. God wants to "hang out with us," and Advent is a time of grace and blessing to integrate the meaning for us personally of "God became human." Our spirituality consists essentially in the profound and intimate relationship with Christ. This season calls us to enhance this relationship as a preparation for celebrating Christmas. Advent has four weeks. In the first week, we are encouraged to be on guard; stay awake to the miracle of the Incarnation daily; for Advent is a season of special revelation. So this week look for and expect to see and experience traces of God's presence. During the second week, we turn to the title of Jesus that most perfectly captures the idea of Incarnation: Immanuel, "God with us." Where do you look for God? We Catholics look for God's presence especially in the Eucharist. In week three, we are invited to examine the testimony of John the Baptist, and do something in response to what we hear. That something is "repent and believe the Good News." Get personally involved with the Word made flesh, the Christ, the Son of the Living God. We can do this by taking inventory of our motivation, mode, goal and perspective in living out our daily lives. And in week four, we are challenged to walk with Mary, and "Do not be afraid" for Jesus is near. Some Saints would say: “He is closer to us than the air we breathe!” To fruitfully enter…

Prayer for Persecuted Christians

Nov 22, 2017 | [post_view] Views

Make a Stand for Faith and Freedom! Let us pause for a moment of prayer for all the Persecuted Christians. #RedWednesday #Faith #Freedom

Santuario Joins Red Wednesday Campaign 2017

Nov 22, 2017 | [post_view] Views

In response to the invitation of the Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) Philippines, Santuario Eucaristico makes a Stand for Faith and Freedom by joining the "Red Wednesday" by wearing red clothing and illuminating our parish with red lights in remembrance of the blood of the faithful who have been killed because of the Christian faith. WHAT IS RED WEDNESDAY? Numerous studies have consistently shown that Christians are the most persecuted faith group in the world. A study by Open Doors, a Christian advocacy group, reveals that the global persecution of Christians has risen for the past four consecutive years. Another study by the Center for New Religions published findings that over 90,000 Christians were murdered in 2016. That is equivalent to one Christian being murdered for the faith every six minutes. Furthermore, the study reveals that half a billion Christians are unable to freely express their faith. These findings affirm the declaration of Pope Francis that there are more Christians suffering today than there were in the early years of Christianity. Given that our country is predominantly Christian, Filipinos find it difficult to grasp a reality where Christians can be persecuted. Many are not even aware of how difficult it is to practice the Christian faith in some areas of Muslim Mindanao. Since Christianity has been deeply ingrained in the fabric of Philippine society, we seem to have developed a blind spot regarding the nature and scale of Christian persecution in the world today. For this reason, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), the Pontifical charity organization dedicated to serving the needs of persecuted Christian communities worldwide, is launching a Red Wednesday campaign to create awareness among Filipino Christians about the severity of Christian persecution. Red is the color of martyrdom in the Christian faith. The Red Wednesday campaign will shine a light on religious persecution and will honor all Christians who have suffered and died for Christ. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) has endorsed the Red Wednesday campaign by inviting all cathedrals, minor basilicas and national & diocesan shrines to illuminate their façade in red. Furthermore, several Catholic universities in Manila have also expressed interest to join the campaign. On November 22, after the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, a program will be held to discuss the significance of the illumination of the said structures which will then be followed by a communal prayer for persecuted Christians. In solidarity with Christians who suffer for their faith, ACN invites everyone to make a visible statement by wearing red and, if resources allow, light their own parishes or respective buildings or local monuments in red. Let Red Wednesday be the start for Filipinos to lend their voice to the global call to uphold religious freedom and advocate for inter-faith harmony. As one global Christian family, may our experssion of solidarity…

St. Jerome Vicariate Celebrates National Catechetical Month 2017

Oct 19, 2017 | [post_view] Views

Catechetical Month is a delightful time to reflect the role and life of a Catechist to the ministry of the Church in handing on the faith and being a witness to the Gospel. As we truly embrace the contribution of catechists in the life of our parish with this month's theme CATECHISTS: AGENTS OF RENEWAL IN THE PARISH, St. Jerome Vicariate lead up to National Catechetical Month Culmination last September 28, 2017, at Country Village Hotel, Carmen Cagayan de Oro City. The culminating activity started with a Celebration of the Holy Eucharist presided by Rev. Msgr. Eutiquiano Legitimas, PC, SSJV together with the concelebrating priests of the Vicariate. After the mass, Mr. Joseph Uy, the Vicariate Catechist Coordinator gave a warm welcome address followed by a meaningful deepening and understanding of the National Catechetical Month’s theme to all the catechists present. Part of the program was the giving of Service Award to all catechists who reached more than five (5) years of service. Everyone shared a bountiful lunch as a community. In the afternoon, a showcase of talents was presented by each parish in the vicariate. They had a singing contest, raffle draw and series of games which made the activity more fun. The last part was the highlight- a Zumba for all!. There were about 217 catechists who attended the culminating activity. It was successfully done and ended with a blessing from Rev. Fr. Jojo Joel Oga, SSJV. It was indeed a memorable time. "Everything begins with Jesus and ends with Jesus". Becoming an agent for His Church is a call coming from the Lord, and, answering and sharing this vocation is a way of gratitude to be given unto him. Let us always pray for all Catechists to grow in love for the Lord and further the evangelizing mission of his Church. May the Triune God be praised and adored now and forever! Written by: Jen Bacurnay of Santuario Eucaristico Catechetical Ministry

Parish Garage Sale for a Cause

Oct 4, 2017 | [post_view] Views

With the ongoing renovation of the Parish Formation Center, Santuario Eucaristico aims to intensify fund raising and had its Parish Garage Sale for a Cause, a Fund Raising Event for our Formation Center Renovation Project last September 30 – October 1. As part of the formation program and in order to continue our Eucharistic mission, not only for the parish but for the whole of the Archdiocese. The renovation of the formation center building started last July 17. Pledges and envelopes are distributed throughout the parish for fund raising. By the end of September, a new project was created for the benefit of the renovation. A Parish Garage Sale for a Cause where all items sold were donated by our generous parishioners. We had clothing, kitchen utensils, books, shoes and bags, devices and more. Each purchase was a donation and all proceeds go to our renovation fund. May we all continue our devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and let us journey together towards another milestone in building this Formation Center for the realization of our Eucharistic Mission and Evangelization. On behalf of the Parish Pastoral, Finance, and Coordinating Councils, thank you for your support and generosity. #SantuarioEucaristico #GarageSale4aCause

3rd Blood-Letting Activity for 2017

Aug 30, 2017 | [post_view] Views

In partnership with Northern Mindanao Medical Center volunteer doctors and nurses, we had a successful 3rd Blood-Letting activity at the parish last August 30,2017. This time, we gathered 14 blood bags. One blood donation could save three lives, and with the 14 blood bags we gathered, we could amazingly save almost 42 lives!