BAGUIO CITY--Thirty-nine seminarians (28 neophytes and 11 oldphytes) arrived at Casiciaco Recoletos Seminary last July 8, two full weeks ahead of the scheduled arrival of the rest of the community, to begin an enhancement program in their academic formation.

Eucharistic celebrations highlight Mt. Carmel Parish Fiesta Activities (Part II)

(July 16, 2017)

Mt. Carmel Parish, Cebu City—A pontifical mass presided over by the Most Rev. Dennis C. Villarojo, D.D., marked the culmination of the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Concelebrants were twelve Recollect priests and three diocesan clergies. 

In his homily, Most Rev. Villarojo commented on the Gospel reading about the parable of the seed. He invited the congregation to ask where they are: “Are you the seed that fell along the path? The seed that fell on the rocky ground? The seed that got choked by the thistles, the weeds? Or are you the seed that fell on the good ground where it can take root, grow, change you and then enable you to help others change? “

He suggested three steps in order to overcome the obstacles that hinder the seed’s growth: 1). Set parameters or boundaries—seeds that fell along the path could easily be trampled upon by passersby and so growth is prevented. Protect the seeds by setting boundaries. 2) Dig out the rocks and clear the ground for the seed to grow—identify the rocks that hinder growth in your spiritual life and push them away—sinfulness, hatred, unforgiveness, etc. 3) Carefully separate and full out the thistles in your life—attachments to the things of this world and the like, Facebook addiction included.

The homily was beautifully presented and was welcomed by spontaneous applause from the congregation.

Flower offerings to the Lady of Mount Carmel followed right after the final prayer then a  number of parishioners publicly expressed gratitude to: the presiding Bishop, Most Rev. Dennis Villarojo, D.D., Fr. Vicente Ramon, OAR, Prior of USJ-R community; Fr. Joseph Granada, OAR, Parish Priest; the OAR community of Cebu, visiting OAR priests; diocesan clergy; sponsors, donors, pilgrims, choirs, florists, friends and devotees who have extended their support in making this year’s celebration a success.

To all the wider parishioners, devotees we say: Viva la Virgen del Carmen!


Eucharistic celebrations highlight Mt. Carmel Parish Fiesta Activities

 (July 15, 2017)

(Part I)

Mt. Carmel Parish, Cebu City—On the eve of the feast , a packed Mt. Carmel Parish Church solemnly enjoyed the celebration of the Feast of Mt. Carmel. Most Rev. Jose Palma, Archbishop of Cebu, was the main celebrant for the occasion, and he gave an excellent homily and said as always a beautiful Mass. We were also very pleased to have very solemn music provided by both the choir from University of San Jose and the parish choir.  

The Mass gave thanks for 46 years of existence as a parish and to everyone involved in the life and spirit of the parish community.

In his homily, Archbishop Palma said: “Jesus gave his mother to us to be our own mother, too.  And so we have a good reason to pause and give thanks for this great gift and for many other things, particularly those gifts of mercy offered, shared and received through our Mother’s intercession.”

Archbishop Palma emphasized on the mercy that underpins Mary’s work and reminded attendees and devotees that each of us is "more than the worst thing we’ve ever done". Yet, in our Mother’s heart and eyes (so with every human mother’s eye and heart) it does not matter if by nature we are weak and so full of flaws since it is Jesus living in our soul that enables the person to love God in a most beautiful fashion and to love others. 

 (As supplement to his sharing, he mentioned that the original devotion to Mount Carmel was brought to the Philippines by the Recollect friars).

The Mass was followed by a convivial dinner at the Recoletos convent where the Recollect friars welcomed the visitors, mostly active workers of the parish, with simple foodstuffs. Dining with the Archbishop and parishioners provided the friars much opportunity for learning, sharing and, importantly, building community.

Pontifical Mass will be presided by Most Rev. Dennis C. Villarojo, D.D. on the feast day itself at 9:30 A.M., July 16.

onz, oar


PROVINCIALATE—Last July 7, 2017, Most Rev. Nereo Odchimar, D.D. of the Diocese of Tandag and Fray Dionisio Selma OAR representing the Recollect Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno signed a Memorandum of Agreement for a pastoral ministry. This ministry entrusted to the Recoletos covers “the full pastoral charge of the Quasi Parish of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel” in Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur.

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