Quis nos separabit a caritate Christi? An gladius?

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St. Paul Scholasticate Newsletter 
Year 3, No. 10 Christmas 2009

“Agape”
Weeks before Christmas, the community of St. Paul Scholasticate was blessed with a precious gift from God—the gift of vocation. Last December 8, three of our confreres made their solemn profession, a life-long and total commitment of oneself to God in religious life. We are therefore grateful to God for two reasons: first, the solemn profession marks another success for the growth of the Barnabite family in the Philippines. Second, the solemn profession of our three confreres serves as a reminder to strive to live a life of “agape,” a life of love. A life lived in love is a life of imitation of Christ. This means that the way of religious life, the way of discipleship, is to be understood under the context of love—love as it is portrayed in Christ’s relationship to his disciples: friendship (Jn. 15:12). This kind of love, “agape,” demands the total opposite of the world’s concept of “ideal life.” It demands selfemptying and the renunciation of one’s inordinate love of self, the desire for riches and power in order to create space in one’s life for others. Religious life is witnessing to such kind of life. Christmas is the celebration of God’s love, of His agape. Jesus became man, indeed, emptied Himself (kenosis) so that our friendship with God broken by sin may be restored and strengthened. “For God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten Son” (Jn. 3:16). May we always experience and be grateful for this love that brought us new life. May our lives be always grounded on this love. The St. Paul Scholasticate community wish you a Blessed Christmas and a Grace-filled New Year 2010!

From the St. Paul Scholasticate Community:

Buon Natale! Joyeux Noel! Feliz Navidad! Merry Christmas! Feliz Natal! Maligayang Pasko at Mapayapang Bagong Taon!

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Br. John Paul Osip, CRSP

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Solemn Profession of Three Barnabite Confreres

The new solemn professed confreres (left to right) Br. Clyd Autentico, Br. Thomas Federick Tabada and Br. Jonathan Ramoso pose with the priest-concelebrants.

Last December 8, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, three Barnabite confreres namely Br. Jonathan Galope Ramoso, Br. Thomas Federick Salvador Tabada and Br. Clyd Sumayo Autentico, made their Solemn Profession of Vows at St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Parish in Silangan, San Mateo, Rizal. The Solemn Profession of the Vows of Chastity, Poverty and Obedience is the “final and public act of consecration of the religious to God and the Church in our Congregation” (cf. The Constitutions, 162). It is preceded by a three-year period of temporary vows and a special period of preparation (cf. Ibid., nos. 165 and 162). The rite of Solemn Profession was held within the Eucharistic celebration presided by the Very Reverend Fr. Joselito Ortega, Superior of the Barnabite Philippine Delegation and

concelebrated by the Barnabite Fathers presently assigned in the Philippines. Fr. Ortega, being delegated by the Superior General, the Most Rev. Fr. Giovanni Villa, also received the Profession of the confreres. Five confreres in temporal vows and four members of the “Lingkod ng Dambana” assisted at the Mass while the music and songs were provided by the angelic voices of St. Paul Scholasticate Choir, St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Seminary Choir and some novices of St. Alexander Sauli Novitiate. Br. Jonathan is from Kinoguitan, Misamis Oriental, Mindanao island. Born on the 25th of June 1983, he is the second son of Mr. and Mrs. Jeanito Ramoso. Br. Thomas is the youngest son of Avelino Tabada and Enriquita Salvador. He was born on October 19, 1983 in Cebu City but his family is now based in Poblacion, Trinidad, Bohol province

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Auguri cari confratelli!

Lastly, Br. Clyd Autentico hails from Talibon, Bohol. He is the sixth child of Mr. and Mrs. Ernesto Autentico. All three confreres are enrolled at the Divine Word Seminary, Tagaytay and are taking the third year of theological studies. The parents and family members, relatives, friends and benefactors of the professandi were all present at the two-hour ceremonies. Present also were the novices, seminarians and the Filipino affiliates of the congregation. The Angelic Sisters of St. Paul, the Sisters of the Little Workers of the Sacred Heart, the Merciful Sisters and sisters from different religious congregations in Marikina also took part in the occasion. Some parishioners of St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Parish were also present. After the distribution of communion, Br. Jonathan delivered a speech thanking those who supported them in their formation and those who came to witness their solemn profession. After the Mass, reception followed at St. Anthony Ma. Zaccaria Seminary in Marikina Heights to celebrate

the confreres’ special day. The celebration was made special thanks to generous persons who lent their hand in the preparation of the church and the liturgy. The altar was beautified with poinsettia flowers provided by the scholasticate community and arranged by Fr. Ortega. The liturgy committee prepared the captions for the celebration’s theme: “Here I am the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word“ (Lk. 1:38). The sacristan mayor and the members of the Mother Butler’s Guild of St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Parish assisted in the preparation of the church and the altar. The St. Paul Scholasticate is also grateful for the generosity of the parish priest, Fr. Richard Genetiano, CRSP and the fathers of the Parish community. Indeed, the occasion was simple yet a solemn one thanks to all those who made it possible and who extended a helping hand. To the new solemn professed brothers: Tantissimi Auguri! May you remain resolute in following Jesus in the religious life. We pray for your perseverance especially now as you prepare yourselves for your diaconal ordination on 13 February 2010.

Indescribable joy! What a smile!

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Celebrating the 20th Foundation Anniversary of the Barnabite Fathers in the Philippines

MEMORIES
Rev. Fr. Aldo M. Rizzi, CRSP

Twenty years are a very short time for “I follow the growth of our delegation history but not so short for a person. We are still dealing with yesterday events. However, those with my prayers so that all my who passed through these last twenty years are astonished at what happened, at how things confreres might see obstacles and happened and at the results. I do not want to difficulties as stepping-stones to narrate the beginnings of our foundation. Others growth and as God’s presence know better. I just want to fix some impressions I kept in my mind in a selective way. Memory is and power.” a tricky mental device: it is always selective. Knowing this, I try to remember some events. My arrival in August 3, 1990 was an event for me. I was accustomed to going abroad so I did not expect particular difficulties though it was the first time in Asia. As a matter of fact, I felt myself at home as soon as I got out of the airport. I was immediately impressed by the smiling and laughing attitude of people along the streets of Manila. I did not know what was waiting for me though I was accustomed to surprises as always it happens in a foreign country. I found two fathers and some young people in a small house but there was no place for me. I had to sleep in a room of the school of the Angelic Sisters. The following day, a father went back to Italy and I took my lodgings in that house which would be our Formation Center for two years or so. That house in Ordoñez Street (but at that time called Molave Street) became our birth place. It was an act of hope. We never doubted that the little seed could grow and yield fruits. But the waiting has been very long and tiring. Life inside the house was busy. The few seminarians went to school, we helped the parishes and sisters around us. All the chapels and the main churches of St. Paul of the Cross and Holy Family Parishes saw us for a long time. The number of seminarians was growing and the house was too small. So the Major Superiors built a new house in Apitong Street. When we transferred there, things went smoothly though the number and the faces of the seminarians changed every year. The seminary was like a revolving door. People were coming and going for many reasons, known by those who have to deal with seminaries. Joys and pains were equally distributed along the long years of formation. For many years, only two formators had to face all kinds of problems. They had to do everything: administration, spiritual formation, intellectual formation, not least psychological adjustment in a new environment. Almost every day we had to face problems of any kind and at the same time we had to keep the rhythm of a normal life: three Masses every day to satisfy requests from the many places and at the same time trying to live with the seminarians in their daily routine so that our absence could not spoil the discipline. All this was an art that we learned. While I am writing from a distance, many faces of young people come to my mind. I cannot remember the number of those who spent some time in the Seminary during the twenty years of its existence. Somewhere in the archives one can find out one day. However, I remember their faces very well even if I could not stick to it a name; they were so many to mention. Time was going on as usual but too quickly for us. We had to face a new challenge. The first Novitiate in 1994 added work and challenges to the existent ones and we were still only two formators. We added and divided but we could not multiply. God has been good to us. Since then, there has been a novice, without a break every year. The building of a new Novitiate house sprang up nearby the seminary and the two groups, the seminarians and the novices could follow their own style of life. I do not want you to waste your time by following the joys and the sorrows of the following years. You can imagine. When you thought that a seminarian could be a good religious and a future priest, suddenly he decided to leave. Others, who

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seemed apparently unfit, asked to continue their formation. Others who were decided could become pillars for the doubtful. Behind these rather obscure words you can imagine joys and tragedies and tears and smiles. From 1995 till now, simple professions followed simple professions and later on solemn professions as well. But the first great day was the first Priestly Ordination in 1998, followed by others, almost regularly, each year. God blessed us and we thank Him for all His gifts. We could not follow the adventures and the formation challenges of those who went to Rome for their theological studies. They came back as deacons and more matured with new visions and a larger perspective, though fewer in number. Because of problems in Rome, the Superiors decided that the whole of the formation be done in the Philippines. Thus, the Scholasticate of Tagaytay was born. But when it was founded, a place was not yet there. Just to begin, a provisional rented house became shelter for the first scholastics. That was the heroic times of the beginnings. Meanwhile a new scholasticate was being built and after two years, with joy, the scholastics took possession of their own “kingdom” not far from the Divine Word Seminary. We could not stop there. Barnabite Priests became numerous and a pastoral work had to be founded to let the new priests free to spend their energies in pastoral work. We asked Bishop Gungon of Antipolo a parish. After some time we established the parish dedicated to Saint Anthony Mary Zaccaria. It was a new parish, created for us. But at that time, there was no Parish Church, no Convento, nothing, not even the canonical books for the Sacraments. The two who were sent there, especially the young parish priest, had to invent ways and means everyday. The good people of the Parish helped and now you see, (or you cannot see because you did not experience the beginnings), how far the Parish went. We needed some apostolic work, qualifying the charism of the Congregation. A school is envisaged, if everything goes well. Meanwhile, life was going on in the three houses, the Seminary for the aspirants and the Novitiate, the Scholasticate and the Parish. Each community has its own problems and its own history. I could not share the history of the Scholasticate, except from afar. However, I was part, a small part, of the history of the other two houses since the beginning. It was an amazing experience. But a new step was necessary in order that the Congregation could become well implanted in the Philippines. Those who sowed the seeds had to let others harvest. And it was with great joy that Filipino Barnabites could take over the responsibility to lead the Delegation towards the future. Superiors, Father Masters, Administrators and even the Delegate now are from the land. It was for this moment that the confreres who came from abroad worked. We know that all this was God’s work. We could not arrive at this moment by ourselves. We knew St. Paul’s words: “I planted, Apollo watered, but God caused the growth” (1 Cor. 3:6). I do not know how to figure out who, among us, could be Apollo (perhaps the Curia in Rome that watered money for the buildings!) but certainly God did everything. We should thank Him with a deep feeling of gratitude. These are “some” of my memories from a formator’s point of view (I could write a full book!). It would be interesting to know the memories from the formandi’s points of view, those formandi who travelled with us since the beginning and who are now formators on their own. Let me end this article with my personal gratitude to God who gave me this long experience with young Filipinos with whom I shared my life, my thoughts, and my aspirations. I am grateful to them also because, being a foreigner, they accepted me as one of them. Everybody knows that Filipinos are kind people. I shared everything I had with them and they shared everything with me, in spite of the difference of age (lolo, grandfather). Again, my life in the Philippines is a wonderful experience that I cherish so much. Now, from a distance, I follow the growth of our delegation, with my prayers so that all my confreres might see obstacles and difficulties as stepping-stones to growth and as God’s presence and power. What I liked so much was the laughter and the joy among tears. May God help our confreres to be resilient and faithful sons of St. Anthony M. Zaccaria in the Philippines. (Fr. Aldo Rizzi is currently the superior of the Barnabite religious community of San Luca in Cremona, Italy. He spent almost eighteen years of pastoral ministry as novice master and formator at St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Seminary and parochial vicar of St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Parish. He is, indeed, one of the foundations of the Barnabite presence in the Philippines.)

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Rev. Fr. Michael M. Sandalo, CRSP

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“I am a little pencil in the hand of the writing God.”
It never crossed my mind that someday I shall be entrusted with the responsibility of accompanying our professed seminarians in their formation to religious life and to the priesthood. As a young priest ordained two years ago, I thought that I shall remain a simple member of the congregation—someone who will be put in charge of simple things. But Divine Providence has other plans for me. It was the last month of my licentiate studies in Rome when one of the assistants general informed me that Father General nominated me as rector of St. Paul Scholasticate in Tagaytay and father Master (“father Master” or “Padre Maestro” is the title given to the formator of confreres/students in simple vows, cf. Constitutions, 160-161) of twenty-two (22) young professed Filipino religious. “Are you kidding me?” were the first words I uttered in surprise. But because the urge of Divine Providence could never be repelled, I accepted the nomination in obedience but also “in fear and trembling.” I arrived in Tagaytay on the 27th of June, a week after I earned my licentiate degree and I formally started my new ministry on the 1st of July. I started to handle things in St. Paul Scholasticate with a mixture of fear and uncertainty. I considered myself incapable and inexperienced for such a demanding task. I faced our professed seminarians with uneasiness during the first community meeting I presided. I found out that some of them were older than me, some were at my age, and still some were my former companions in our seminary in Marikina! But since “age does not matter” I confidently took the post. I could not hide my fears and preoccupations before I accepted this responsibility. So I asked the guidance of some fathers who, in the past, also worked as a father master. Their wise counsel gave me an assurance that, despite the burdens of such ministry, God would never fail and leave me. Fr. Giuseppe Cagni, in his simplicity, urged me to remember just one thing: love your seminarians. Fr. Francisco Silva, one of the assistants general once told me, “be not just a father formator … but also be their brother and friend.” Fr. Giuseppe Ciliberti, a former maestro of the defunct Studentato Romano in Rome, exhorted me: “Sii prudente e sii entusiasta sempre, anche quando verranno momenti difficili. E certo non mancheranno, Sei giovane e con i giovani ti trovi bene; … Sii autorevole, ma non autoritario. Ogni volta che apri bocca cerca di dire cose sagge …” (Be prudent and be always enthusiastic even when difficult moments come. You are young and you deal well with young people. Be an authority but do not be authoritarian. Every time you speak, say only wise things.) My former father master in Rome, Fr. Mario Gadda and Fr. Enrico Sironi both encouraged me to be strong. And of course, I have my “coaches” in the persons of Fr. Giovanni Scalese and my former novice master Fr. Aldo Rizzi who have been always “coaching” me through their wisdom and counsel. And I still have the vice deans (who were also my former professors and now my good friends!) of the Angelicum who always assure me of their prayers. And of course, I have my Filipino confreres who also help me in many and varied ways. Indeed, I am surrounded and supported by these confreres and friends who live exemplary lives, and rich in both pastoral and religious experience. Their wise counsel and prayers have helped me prepare myself for my new ministry. My task is only to become each seminarian’s companion, a “co-journeyer” in realizing God’s Will in his life. Thus, I know my ministry would not be always easy. It will often be challenging and demanding, difficult and heart-breaking. And before I embarked on this new ministry I made promises to myself and to God: that I will try my best to love, guide and serve our professed seminarians. I promised that I will not only be a father formator but also a friend and a brother to them whom they can always trust. Indeed, I need to be someone who

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Christmas Meditation

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Rediscovering the Real Meaning of Christmas
Rev. Deacon Arvin Dagalea
Hey its Christmas time! The cold wind of December has begun to blow. We can already hear Christmas carols in shopping malls and houses. Christmas lights are all lit and fill the surroundings with beauty and color. Beautiful Christmas decorations especially the Nativity scenes are all over town. People rush and are busy buying and wrapping gifts for their loved ones. Some are also busy preparing special delicacies for the traditional Christmas eve meal “noche buena”. The Filipino queso de bola and hamon (ham) will always be a part of every family’s table this Christmas time. We are so busy preparing for Christmas. But wait. Are our preparations the right ones? Do we know why we celebrate Christmas? Do we focus on the most important things in celebrating Christmas? We have the tendency to forget the most essential reason why we celebrate and commemorate the birth of Christ. For this reason, it is good if we look back to rediscover the real meaning of Christmas. Let us pause and reflect … Two thousand years ago, Jesus was born in a lowly manger for one reason: to bring us sinners back into God’s bosom. Yes, we have lost sight of God because of our sins. That is why, out of great love He sent His only Son to show us the right way to Him. This is the apex of Christmas celebration: the birth of Jesus, the Christ. But what has this to do with the present? It is true that Jesus, our Savior was born more than two thousand years ago. But is He present in your life? Do you allow Him to be born in your heart? If not, then maybe He is knocking at the door of your heart. Let Him enter and welcome Him. But how? To welcome Him is to say “yes” to His invitation to follow Him. We refuse Him to enter our hearts when we refuse His invitation, which happens when we become self-centered. Sometimes we are too busy or preoccupied with worldly things and we do not give time to listen, to meditate and live His Word. This Christmas season, let our preparation be a real one. Let God be the center of our lives by becoming more open to Him. Let us cease spending time for unimportant things but to spend our time with God through our families, friends and those who are in need of our love and care. Let us be grateful for God’s gift, His Son. As God gave His Son for us, let us be a gift to others as well. Give life, happiness, love and hope to those who are in most need. Luxurious gifts are not necessary. Reaching out and touching other’s life is itself a great gift this Christmas.

Father Master (with red stripes) smiles with his confreres.

is always ready to listen, to empathize with and to share life with them. I will be firm but kind, strict but gentle, resolved but open. I promised to be compassionate, to engage them in mutual dialogue and to teach them to live each day in love and service. May God help me to fulfill these promises. Five months after I started this work, I have learnt and realized quite a lot of things already. I have also experienced to be placed in “fire” quite a number of times as a test of my perseverance and faith. But one thing has been always in my mind—that in these experiences, in the formation and in the lives of these young men, God must increase and I must decrease. As their companion and co-journeyer, it is God Himself Who is their Real Formator and I am His mere instrument in their formation: “I am a little pencil in the hand of the writing God …” (Blessed Mo. Teresa of Calcutta). This for me is a grace—God knows who I am and what I am but He sustains me each day in order to fulfill worthily this ministry. I have nothing to offer to my young confreres due to my lack of experience and spiritual wealth. My love and service are the things I could only give them. And the rest … I leave it to Divine Providence. As I continue to fulfill this ministry, I believe that God, Who has chosen me to this work, will Himself sustain me with His grace. I hope and pray that my young confreres would also strengthen me so that I may give myself undividedly to their service. May they always keep their eyes fixed on Jesus Who has called them and to give me their hands and hearts to be their companion in their vocation journey.

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Mary Mother of God: A Meditation

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by Fr. Michael M. Mancusi, CRSP

INTO DEEPER WATERS
The first day of January is probably the oldest feast of Mary in the western calendar. Its origin is very likely connected with the dedication of the Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome around 350 A.D. There is also the proclamation of the Council of Ephesus in 431 A.D. that Mary was Theotokos, the Mother of God. That feast was celebrated on October 11th but after Vatican II it was moved to January 1st. But to be realistic it became a day of obligation because it is the beginning of a new year. The Church would like us to consecrate the year to the Lord by celebrating together at Mass. On the shores of the Sea of Galilee, Jesus challenged His first disciples to a new way of life, “put out into the deep” for a catch of fish. (Luke 5:6). On the shore of an unknown future for humanity, Jesus calls every baptized Christian, in you and me, to launch out into a deeper spiritual life. As we begin this new year, let us look into a four-fold action priority plan as we cast out into deeper waters of spirituality and evangelization. 1) HOLINESS. This high standard of ordinary Christian living is the radical command of the Sermon on the Mount. “Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Matt. 5:48). We are called to be holy, to be good, to be loving, and to be merciful. We are called to live out the Beatitudes. 2) PRAYER. Each day we must learn anew to have a deep personal and communal prayer life – a conversation with God making us His intimate friends. It is the very substance and soul of the Christian life. The Spirit within opens us through and in Christ to contemplate the Father’s face. Prayer is a genuine dialogue of love enabling us to be wholly possessed by the Divine Beloved, vibrating at the Spirit’s touch, resting as a son or daughter within the Father’s heart. Prayer opens our hearts to the love of God and neighbor and makes us capable of shaping history according to God’s will.

3) SUNDAY EUCHARIST. Sharing the Eucharist should be at the heart for every baptized Catholic Christian, especially on Sunday. This is the special day of faith, of the Lord’s resurrection and the coming of the Holy Spirit. The resurrection is the original fact of Christian faith at the center of the mystery of time, anticipating the last day when Christ will come in glory. Our sharing together in worship and in communion is a witness to that fact. 4) SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION. There is a great crisis in acknowledging sin. In this sacrament, God shows us His compassionate heart and reconciles us fully with Himself – and thus with the Church of Christ. It reveals the mystery of Divine Mercy and is the ordinary way of obtaining forgiveness and remission of serious sins committed after baptism. When we partake of this Sacrament of Reconciliation we continue in the spirit of St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria of “reforming one’s own self.” Let us make these four ways our stepping stones into the deeper waters of the Kingdom of God throughout this new year.

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Br. John Koten, CRSP

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In following Christ, there are so many crosses that we must take; so many trials that we must face. But we must remember that the mind of God is different from the thoughts of men. In following him, we discover that we lose in order to gain; we surrender in order to win; we die in order to live; we give in order to receive; we serve in order to reign; we scatter in order to reap; in weakness, we are made strong; in humility, we are lifted up; in emptiness, we are made full. God wills that we do these things so that we may know and serve Him with an undivided heart. We should always remember to keep going whatever crossroads life offer us to take. Good days give us happiness, bad days give us experiences. They are compatible in our lives. Happiness keeps us sweet, trials make us strong, sorrows keep us human, failures make us humble, success keep us glowing. God allows something to happen in our lives, even the greatest error and deepest hurt in order to mold us into a person of worth and value. It happens because of the love of God to us in the person of Jesus Christ. In all these situations, we may ask, “What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword?” (Romans 8: 35). Or, “will trials, pain, death, brokenness, emptiness, sorrows, failures, hurt, and the strength of an enemy? No. In all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). Therefore, let us walk with God because it is the best adventure; let us find Him because finding Him is the best achievement; let us have Him as our companion because He is the best source of our happiness. Let us live in the love of God. Furthermore, let Jesus’ presence be our constant companion, Jesus’ love as our constant protection and Jesus’ power as our strength in whatever life may bring. In doing these, nothing will harm us; nothing will separate us from the love of God, love of Christ. For Jesus will be our constant guide in every step of our journey. Thus, we must set our hearts on Him alone even in the midst of trials and difficulties. He will stay by our side all the days of our lives. Once I asked God, “how do I get the best out of life?” He answered, “face your past without regret, handle your present with confidence and prepare for

the future without fear.” He added, “keep the faith and drop your fear. Do not believe your doubts and never doubt your belief. Life is wonderful if you know how to live.” To me, it means: nothing will separate us from the love of God, love of Christ. Everything that happens in our life has its purpose. Therefore, we must always make our future greater than our past, our contribution greater than our reward, our performance greater than our preparation, our gratitude greater than our success. Consequently, let us not think too much about the problems that we encounter in our lives. Remember that they are just “test papers” given by God to see how much we learn in his subject called “life.” If we think we will fail, we should not worry. He is always ready to give us remedial classes. So we should review well through prayers so that we may have a perfect score of happiness. We should keep on going; enjoy the road of life with God! We should believe that the best will of God happens everyday in our life. Let us be aware that even trials are gifts from God to make us strong enough to face life. Nothing can separate us from the love of God. We need to have faith that we will be saved. We need to live always in the love of God. St. Anthony M. Zaccaria, in one of his sermons, wrote: “who could go through so many dangers, difficulties, troubles, afflictions, without being sustained by love? No one!” (Sermon IV). Do you know why? It is because “without the love of God we can do nothing; everything relies on this love”. For this reason, we must always live in the love of God. Because only in Him, we find life and happiness. “In this way, they cannot be separated from his joy, not by the sword, not by the fire, not by depth, not by any creature”. It shows us that nothing can separate us from the love of God. May God inspire us when we feel down, encourage us when we feel like quitting and guide us when all things become confusing. Stay happy because it is what God wants us to be. Moreover, let us continue to touch other people’s heart and live an inspiring life. Be a good person and become a source of God’s love. And in our journey towards Him, let His Word be our map, the Holy Spirit be our compass; when we face battles, let His Word be our sword and His love our armor. Let us live always in the love of God because “without the love of God we can do nothing; everything relies on this love.”

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NEWS, EVENTS AT IBA PA ...
Peter and John in the Philippines!
Last October 2009, the Philippine Delegation was blessed with the visits of Peter and John! No, not the apostles but Fr. Peter M. Calabrese from the Barnabite North American Province and Fr. Giovanni M. Scalese, former superior and father master of St. Paul Scholasticate. Fr. Peter was the first to arrive in St. Paul Scholasticate on October 19. He is currently one of the provincial consultors, vocation director and the superior of the religious community in Lewiston, New York. His visit was an opportunity for him to take part in the delegation meeting of the Filipino Barnabites. In his weeklong stay, he first visited the houses of the congregation in the Philippines namely St. Anthony Zaccaria Seminary and St. Alexander Sauli Novitiate in Marikina and St. Anthony Zaccaria Parish in San Mateo, Rizal. Accompanied by Frs. Joselito Ortega and Jimmy Anastacio and Deacon Jose, Fr. Peter also toured to some historical places in downtown Manila such as Intramuros and the Manila Cathedral. Moreover, being himself an adventurer and nature-lover, he crossed Taal Lake by boat and enthusiastically trekked Taal volcano together with Frs. Cirilo and Michael and some scholastics. At the slopes of the volcano, they took pleasure in the overwhelming beauty of the island and lake, took some pictures and enjoyed a refreshing coconut juice. But the adventures did not end there. The next day, they went to Maryland Beach Resort in Batangas for a day of excursion and swimming. Fr. Peter left for the U.S. on October 26. On the 22nd of October, Fr. Giovanni (fondly called by the confreres “Fr. John”) Scalese arrived in St. Paul Scholasticate returning from his six-month mission in Bangalore, India. He is considered as one of the pillars of the scholasticate being its founder and first father master/rector. His visit served as a vacation and a preparation for his new assignment in Italy (he is presently assigned in Collegio San Luigi, Bologna). On November 1st, the confreres honored him with a simple thanksgiving dinner. He left the following day for Italy bringing his treasured experiences in his five-year stay in the Philippines. (Br. Mark Anthony Pondoc)

Fr. Peter (standing, 6th from left) with the confreres enjoy the majestic beauty of Taal volcano.

St. Paul Scholasticate hosts Delegation Meeting
The general assembly of the solemn professed members of the Barnabite Philippine Delegation was held in St. Paul Scholasticate last October 20, 2009. The participants came from the three religious communities in the Philippines namely St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Parish, San Mateo, Rizal, St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Seminary, Marikina and St. Paul Scholasticate, Tagaytay. Seventeen (17) confreres attended the assembly: fifteen (15) priests including Fr. Peter Calabrese from the Barnabite American Province, and two deacons. While thirteen (13) temporary professed brothers and twelve (12) novices were invited in the first part of the meeting. The event commenced with the Eucharistic celebration presided by the delegate superior Fr. Joselito Ortega. A sumptuous lunch followed. The assembly started at around 1:00 o’clock in the afternoon. Fr. Joselito presided the meeting with the delegation consultors Fr. Frank Papa, superior of the Marikina community and Fr. Richard Genetiano, superior of the parish community. Among the many things discussed at the meeting were the expansion of the congregation to other parts of the Philippines, the establishment of a school and the prospect of further cooperation between the North American Province and the Philippine delegation. (Br. Rey Carmelo Ausejo)

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Barnabite scholastics receive the Minor Orders

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In the afternoon of the 10th of October, ten (10) scholastics were installed to the ministry of Lector and four (4) were installed to the ministry of Acolyte at the Sacred Heart Chapel in St. Paul Scholasticate, Tagaytay. The Acolytate and Lectorate are minor orders conferred on candidates to the priesthood (cf. Motu proprio Ministeria Quaedam). The rites of institution to the ministries were held within the Eucharistic celebration presided by Fr. Joselito M. Ortega and concelebrated by Fr. Michael M. Sandalo, Fr. Cirilo M. Coniendo and Fr. Michael M. Mancusi, the fathers of the Tagaytay community. The newly installed lectors are all from the first year class: Cunan Adaro, Rey Carmelo Ausejo, Gerard Sala, Alfredo Dolog, Jr., Alvin Libay, Benedict Insigne, Glenn Gaabucayan, Rolly Cascajo, John Paul Osip and Mark Anthony Pondoc. The new acolytes are Albino Vecina, Henry Pabualan, Isagani Gabisan and Rosauro Valmores. The duty of an instituted lector is “to proclaim the readings from Sacred Scripture, with the exception of the Gospel. He may also announce the intentions for the Prayer of the Faithful and, in the absence of a psalmist, proclaim the Psalm between the readings.” While the acolyte is “to serve at the altar and to assist the priest and deacon. In particular, it is his responsibility to prepare the altar and the sacred vessels and, if it is necessary, as an extraordinary minister, to distribute the Eucharist to the faithful”(cf. General Instruction of the Roman Missal, 49.). Thus, the institution to these two ministries is a preparation for the professed students in their priestly formation that involves a commitment to proclaim the Word and to serve the people of God in the Eucharist. CONGRATULATIONS! (Br. Thomas Federick Tabada)

The first year class with Prof. Ed Roa (fifth from left).

Improving English Skills, Strengthening the Bond of Brotherhood
The first year scholastics attended a tutorial course on English during the semestral vacation from October 12 to November 9 under the guidance of professors Ed and Alma Roa. The classes were held daily from 8.30 to 11.00 o’clock in the morning in the Sala Zaccaria of St. Paul Scholasticate. The tutorial program was designed to help the aforementioned scholastics develop and improve their oral and written skills in English. It included lessons on pronunciation and enunciation, grammar and composition. Thus, the scholastics spent a lot of time reading and pronouncing tongue twisting words and sentences, reviewing the rules of English grammar and learning the proper techniques of public reading and speaking. One of their classes was also held in Roa residence, just ten metres away from the seminary. Mrs. Roa prepared for the scholastics a delicious snack of chocolate cookies and a glass of soda drinks. The tutorial program was also instrumental in boosting the self-confidence of the first year scholastics. Through the activities and exercises provided by the professors, they became more enthusiastic in communicating and expressing themselves in English. Moreover, the program was not only helpful in the scholastics’ academic pursuit but it also provided an opportunity to strengthen their brotherhood by learning things together. Indeed, the tutorial program was helpful both in the academic and community aspects of their formation. It was also an enjoyable and memorable experience for the scholastics and their professors as well. (Br. Gerard Sala)

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Scholastics in action: Vocation Promotions

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Y’Asia Fiesta! 2009
 

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This year, the fathers of the Barnabite Philippine delegation decided to make vocation promotion a joint activity of the scholastics of St. Paul Scholasticate, Tagaytay and the collegeseminarians of St. Anthony Mary Zaccaria Seminary, Marikina. This is the first time that the professed brothers were given roles to promote vocations for the congregation. Thus, ten (10) scholastics were assigned to various provinces where vocation promotion is held annually. Some of them left as early as the 12th of October while others started their work the following week after their first semester final examinations. They were divided into various groups, each had at least 2 to 3 collegians and a scholastic. The scholastics, however, were not assigned to their home provinces since the activity was mainly for vocation, not vacation! Br. John Koten went to Bukidnon, Br. Joseph Bernales was sent to Butuan City, Br. Albino Vecina was tasked to promote vocations in Ozamis City, Br. Thomas Tabada was assigned in General Santos City and Isfridus Syukur in Misamis Oriental province. All these places are located in Mindanao island, south of the Philippines. Among those assigned in the Visayas provinces, central Philippines were: Br. Rosauro Valmores in Palo, Leyte; Brs. Isagani Gabisan and Henry Pabualan worked in Southern Leyte. They were accommodated hospitably in the parish rectory by the parish priest of Maasin. And lastly, Brs. Pat Golis and Jonathan Ramoso were assigned in Bohol: the former in Tagbilaran City and the latter in the towns of Talibon and Dagohoy. The scholastics narrated that this experience was a challenging one. The schools were far and extremely difficult to locate and some, due to costly land transportation, experienced budget shortage. For others, it was an adventure since the areas assigned to them were also known as tourist spots. Minor accidents also happened to some. After a weeklong work and “mission”, the confreres returned home safe and sound on October 24. The general impression was positive: most of the schools were visited, many young men expressed their interest and a number of them took the admission examinations. The scholastics look forward for the next year’s vocation promotion. (Br. Jonathan Ramoso)

The 5th ASIAN YOUTH DAY was held in the Diocese of Imus, Cavite with the theme “Young Asians: Come Together, Share the Word, Live the Eucharist”. Also known as “Yasia Fiesta!” the Asian Youth Day was a weeklong gathering of young people from Asia. Organized by the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences (FABC), its goal was to help Asian youth in their spiritual lives and to foster among them the spirit of interreligious dialogue, ecumenism and mission. The celebrations took place from November 20-27 at the Rogationist College, Silang. On the 23rd of November, the opening ceremonies were celebrated in the Cathedral of Imus led by the Most Reverend Luis Antonio Tagle, Bishop of Imus together with a number of bishops and priests from different countries in Asia. The first year Barnabite scholastics and Deacon Jose Gabato, CRSP, together with the seminarians from St. Augustine Major Seminary (SASMA) and Tahanan ng Mabuting Pastol (TMP), took part in the occasion as liturgical animators. The second year scholastics and Deacon Arvin Dagalea likewise participated as members of the documentation committee. During the “day two” celebration, the first year class assisted at the liturgical functions and as animators in group sharing or workshops and talks. Moreover, their task was not simply liturgical as they were also involved in the distribution of materials and meals and in the preparation of the facilities for the delegates throughout the whole week. While the second year scholastics were busy documenting the events from “day two” up to “day four.” (continued to next page)

The Barnabite scholastics with fellow volunteers during the 2009 Asian Youth Day.

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make the Christmas party livelier, the TMNPS administration organized “parlor games” and surprises for the winners. Aside from the prizes given for the games, each family also received gifts of various grocery items. Though not so abundant and costly, the gift was enough to bring happiness to the families and to make their “Noche Buena” meal special on Christmas eve. (Rev. Jose Nazareno Gabato)

Pasko Kasi … Karoling!
It has been the tradition of the Barnabite scholastics to visit their friends and benefactors some days before Christmas and serenade them with Christmas carols. The angelic voices of the Barnabite scholastics filled the houses of these special persons for three evenings from December 12 to 14. At least thirty-five (35) families were visited in Tagaytay and Buho, Amadeo. The scholastics hit the road at 6 o’clock in the evening and finished around 11 o’clock. They sang modern and traditional Christmas carols either in English or Pilipino. Many of their listeners were indeed inspired by their songs and some even danced to their tunes. Some families also prepared snacks because they considered the visit of the scholastics a blessing. The proceeds of the caroling were turned over to the Tahanang Mapag-aruga ni Padre Semeria (a seminary-based centre for preschool education) in order to help finance the needs of its pupils and its operations. (Br. Rey Carmelo Ausejo)

Barnabite scholastics with delegates from China and Japan.

Being called “volunteers,” the Barnabite scholastics enjoyed in carrying out the assigned tasks because they worked with joy and enthusiasm. Seeing the happy faces of the delegates from other nations and discovering each others’ culture was also an enriching experience. They realized that they can be one if Christ is always at the center of their lives as it always happens in the EUCHARIST. (Br. Cunan Adaro)

Blessings this December at the Tahanan
The Tahanang Mapag-aruga ni Padre Semeria (TMNPS) has received abundant blessings this yearend. The Mother Goose School in Marikina, owned and administered by the niece of Mrs. Alma Roa, donated books for the pre-schoolers of TMNPS (the Roa family is one of TMNPS’ generous benefactors who supports the nursery and preparatory pupils by providing them with school materials). Likewise, Fr. Rene Lagaya, SDB, the parish administrator of Don Bosco Parish, Makati, donated hundreds of books in different subject matter. These donations are very helpful for the teachers and pupils of TMNPS. The books provide guidelines for the confreres/teachers to improve their teaching methods and many books will help pupils to learn skills in writing and reading comprehension. For this reason, the administration and the children of TMNPS express their heartfelt gratitude to the aforementioned benefactors. Last December 22, the annual Christmas party was held at the TMNPS. The children and their parents were all present including Fr. Joselito Ortega, the director of TMNPS. Some children sang traditional Christmas songs while others showed off their talents through modern dances. And to

Joy was indescribable in the faces of TMNPS pupils when they received the new books given to them.

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Newsbits!
Pagninilay … Buhay Pari at Bokasyon!
After the first semester, the scholastics had a two-day recollection last October 26 led by Fr. Michael M. Sandalo, rector of St. Paul Scholasticate. The said recollection centered on various themes on the priesthood since the year 2009-2010 has been dedicated as the “Year for Priests”. Last December 11-12, the scholastics had the Advent recollection at the CB Sisters Retreat House with Fr. Crisendo dela Rosa, CRSP as facilitator. The meditations were all focused on recognizing and developing one’s personal values.

Saint Paul Scholasticate Newsletter

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Saint Paul Scholasticate

THE CLERICS REGULAR OF SAINT PAUL — BARNABITES — Purok 163, San Jose Tagaytay City, Cavite, the Philippines Mailing Address: P. O. Box 32, 4120 Tagaytay City, Philippines Tel. & Fax: +63 46 413-2837 Email: saintpaulscholasticate@gmail.com Director: Fr. Michael Sandalo, CRSP Editor: Br. John Paul Osip, CRSP Associate Editor: Br. Mark Anthony Pondoc, CRSP Staff Writers: Br. Jonathan Ramoso, CRSP, Br. Thomas Federick Tabada, CRSP, Br. Gerard Sala, CRSP, Br. Rey Carmelo Ausejo, CRSP Contributors: Fr. Aldo Rizzi, CRSP, Fr. Michael Francis Mancusi, CRSP, Rev. Deacon Jose Nazareno Gabato, CRSP, Rev. Deacon Arvin Dagalea, CRSP, Br. John Koten, CRSP, Br. Cunan Adaro, CRSP Typeset in the Philippines by the Saint Paul Scholasticate, December 2009
Cover picture: The Nativity scene displayed in the Sacred Heart Chapel of St. Paul Scholasticate designed by Fr. Joselito Ortega.

St. Paul Scholasticate celebrates Fatima apparitions
The St. Paul Scholasticate community celebrated the Fatima apparitions as part of its devotion to the Madonna of Fatima. From May, the scholastics and the people of Brgy. San Jose gathered together every 13th of the month to meditate on the message of Fatima. The fathers of the community and the deacons led the meditations. The culminating activities were held on October 13 with a solemn Mass presided by Fr. Joselito Ortega. The installation of six new members of the “Lingkod ng Dambana” (altar servers) was also part of the celebration. After the Mass, a procession was held in the seminary compound. It was made livelier thanks to the performance of the caracol dancers. Refreshments and light snacks were also served afterwards. The celebrations were spearheaded by Br. Joseph Bernales with the help of the confreres.

Buon viaggio confratelli!
Bros. Rosauro Valmores, Joseph Bernales and Pat Golis left the country for Rome, Italy last November 2nd to take part in the three-month period of preparation for Solemn Profession. They are presently staying at the Studentato Romano with confreres from Brazil, Chile and Congo. Br. John Koten will also leave for Rome on December 29 to participate in the same formation period. The said special preparation period will officially begin in January 2010 with Fr. Francisco da Silva, one of the assistants general, as the master of the professed. Buon viaggio Br. John and auguri to all of you!

Quis nos separabit a caritate Christi? An gladius?