22 July 2011

Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary in Manaoag and Saint Mary Major in Rome: A Special Bond of Spiritual Affinity

Manaoag, Pangasinan – 22 July 2011. In solemn rites attended by thousands of Marian devotees, the “Special Bond of Spiritual Affinity” between the Papal Basilica of Saint Mary Major in Rome and the Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary in Manaoag was formally proclaimed.

manaoag1The formal proclamation was read during the Holy Mass presided by the Most Rev. Socrates B. Villegas, DD, the Archbishop of Lingayen-Dagupan, with the Most Rev. Renato P. Mayugba, DD, Auxiliary of Lingayen-Dagupan and Most Rev. Marlo M. Peralta, Bishop of Alaminos. The two Vatican Decrees were first read in Latin and then in English. The two documents were separately signed by  Fortunatus S. R. E. Cardinal Baldelli, Paenitentiarius Maior and Bernard Francis Cardinal Law, Papalis Basilicae Liberianae Archipresbyter on 20 April 2011 and 21 April 2011, respectively.

The marker commemorating the event was blessed before the solemn Eucharistic Celebration.

“Today, you have every reason to be proud children of the Virgin of Manaoag. This shrine of our Lady is the first, and until now, the only church in the Philippines to be given the title ‘affiliate’ on one of the four papal basilicas”, Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas said in his homily. (Please read Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas’ homily “The Greatness of Manaoag” by following this link).

“The spiritual benefits that you can gain by visiting the papal basilicas, you can also receive by visiting the Shrine of Manaoag. … The Holy Father assures all the pilgrims who come to this revered sanctuary his apostolic blessings and the spiritual graces of the Church”

The Indulgencesmanaoag2

By virtue of the Spiritual Bond of Affinity on 20 April 2011, the Apostolic Penitentiary granted in perpetuity that Plenary Indulgence may be obtained from the Shrine of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary in Manaoag, provided that in addition to living a virtuous Christian life, they comply with the conditions required, namely: sacramental confession, Eucharistic Communion and prayer for the intention of the Pope with the rite having been completed by the truly repentant faithful in the Sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Most Holy Rosary.

Those who wish to receive the plenary indulgence must participate in the following:

1. On the Feast day of the titular Liberian Basilica, namely on 5 August;

2. On the Feast day of the titular church itself, (1st Sunday of October and 3rd Wednesday during Easter Season);

3. On all the Solemnities of the Virgin Mary, Mother of God;

4. In the same year, on the day freely chosen by each of the faithful;

5. As often as a group of pilgrims go there for reason of devotion.

Indulgences remit temporal punishment due to sin which is already forgiven. An indulgence, according to Can. 992, of the Code of Canon Law, is “the remission before God of temporal punishment for sins whose guilt is already forgiven, which a properly disposed member of the Christian faithful gains under certain and defined conditions by the assistance of the Church which as minister of redemption dispenses and applies authoritatively the treasury of the satisfactions of the Christ and the saints”.

Indulgences do not forgive sin, but remit punishment due to already forgiven sin. The indulgences do not eliminate the need for or substitute for Confession, but rather presuppose that one has already received sacramental absolution in Confession (for those who were in a state of moral sin). Hence, one must be in the state of grace to receive indulgences.

Plenary and Partial Indulgence

A plenary indulgence is a complete remission of all temporal punishment due to sin. A partial indulgence frees a person from some of the temporal punishment due to sin. 

Indulgences do not eliminate the requirement of restitution, but should be obtained in addition to making restitution. For example, if someone were to steal an item from another, he should go to Confession ( and receive sacramental absolution), restore the item (or otherwise make full restitution), and obtain indulgences.

17 July 2011

Thousands join "Run for Life"

by Dionisia E. Embuido

16 July 2011 – Dagupan City. An estimated 4,500 people from all walks of life joined the “Run for Life” organized by the Ministry of Social Action (MISA) and the Family and Life Apostolate (FLA) of the run for life4Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan. Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas, Archbishop of Lingayen-Dagupan, led the runners in church’s defense, protection and promotion of life.

“Run for Your Life”

Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas with the clergy of the Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan celebrated mass before the actual run. In his homily, Archbishop Villegas recalled the July 16, 1990 earthquake. He said that when the earthquake struck Dagupan and several towns of Pangasinan, it was a “run for your life”. People were running for safety, running for their lives. “Some chose to leave Dagupan City; but many chose to stay to rebuild what was destroyed by the earthquake”, he further said. “We are commemorating today the heroism of Pangasinenses and the people of Dagupan!”

The 1990 Earthquake

On  July 16, 1990, Monday, at 4:26 PM local time, the densely populated island of Luzon was struck by an earthquake with a 7.8 magnitude at the Richter scale. About 90 buildings in Dagupan City  were damaged, and about 20 collapsed. Some structures sustained damage because liquefaction caused buildings to sink as much as 1 meter (39 inches). The earthquake caused a decrease in the elevation of the city and several areas were flooded. There were 17 deaths recorded in Dagupan City in that earthquake.
21 years later: A New Earthquake

Archbishop Socrates B. Villegas said that a new earthquake is among us today, 21 years after the earthquake of 1990. “We are praying that there will be no more earthquakes. But there is another earthquake that is slowly destroying us, eating us up.”  Archbishop Villegas called this new earthquake: moral degradation.

Speaking in front of the young who composed the majority of those who celebrated the mass, he said that when he was young the words “abortion”, “divorce”, “euthanasia”, “Same sex marriage”  were not yet in his vocabulary. “These words have now become part of your vocabulary today. These are destroying you!”

“Boiling a Frog”

A frog when put in a boiling water will jump out of the container. He said that when you put a frog in a cold water, it will stay and swim leisurely. If the water is slowly heated up, the frog will not notice the change of temperature. It will not jump. It will stay until we will have a boiled frog! Archbishop Villegas likened the moral degradation that is killing our soul and society to the frog who did not notice the gradual boiling of water leading run for life6to its death. He challenged the youth not to be eaten up by these “bad words” in the society today but instead to stand up for life, defend life, promote life.

Participants from all walks of life

The more than 4,500 participants came from the different parishes and schools of the Archdiocese of Lingayen-Dagupan, students from the different colleges and universities in Dagupan City, non-government organizations as well as the members of the Couples for Christ. Governor Amado T. Espino, Governor of Pangasinan, former Speaker Jose de Venecia and Congresswoman Gina de Venecia and Congresswoman Kimi Cojuangco and several government officials joined the advocacy for life.

The run has 1K, 3K, 5K and 10K distances. The finishers were given ID cards telling that they have completed the run. They also put their thumb marks in a huge “Run for Life” board.

The Catholic Church has always been teaching the value and dignity of human life. Blessed Pope John Paul II in his Evangelium Vitae: "Precisely in an age when the inviolable rights of the person are solemnly proclaimed and the value of life is public affirmed, the very right to life is being denied or trampled upon, especially at the more significant moments of existence: the moment of birth and the moment of death." (Evangelium Vitae no. 18, John Paul II)
The Church has the duty and the obligation to defend life from the many attempts to demean and even to destroy it, where a life is preferred over material and economic gains or over the quality of life of another: the sick over the healthy, the poor and the underprivileged over the wealthy and the powerful, the young over the old.

Abortion and Contraception

It has been noted that couples who unintentionally conceive a child while using contraception are far more likely to resort to abortion than others. Tragically, our society is being bombarded by the mentality that views children as a burden and invites many to consider abortion as a "backup" to contraceptive failure. The Church warns that with the acceptance and use of contraception, so will come the  acceptance and use of abortion.  An end to abortion will not come from contraceptive campaigns but from a deeper understanding of  human sexuality, and of human life, as sacred gifts deserving careful stewardship.

Mother Teresa’s quotation on life

Printed on the tarpaulin for the thumb marks of the run-finishers are the words of Blessed Mother Teresa: “Life is beautiful, admire it; life is costly, care for it; life is wealth, keep it; life is a promise, fulfill it; life is too precious, do not destroy it; life is life, fight for it”.

run for life5
run for life3
(Pictures courtesy of Fr. Manuel delos Santos, from his Facebook account)
Ms. Dionisia E. Embuido is at present a Grade 4 teacher at the East Central Elementary School (San Fabian))

11 July 2011

Catechists hold Two-Day Workshop-Seminar

by Dado Gerard C.  Vallejos

10 July 2010 – San Fabian, Pangasinan. The volunteer catechists of the Parish of St. Fabian, Pope and Martyr, held a two-day Orientation-Seminar to prepare them for their catechetical ministry. They will formally start their catechetical classes in the different public elementary schools by the end of July 2011.
The two-day orientation-seminar was held last 9-10 July 2011

Workshop on the Making of Teaching Aids

The first day of the workshop-seminar was devoted to the making of various teaching aids and materials to be used in teaching catechism. catechists' workshop 9 july 2011The facilitators provided sample teaching aids to the catechists for them to base their own teaching materials which they made in a series of workshop sessions.

At the end of the day, the catechists were able to make and produce several teaching materials for their catechetical classes based on the catechetical books/modules provided for them by the Archdiocesan Catechetical Ministry.

Sis. Ma. Rowena A. Nicer, Elizabeth Terte, Shirley Tersol, Roberta Somintac, Dado Gerard Vallejos and Michelle Vallejos facilitated the first day workshop.

Creative Use of Scriptures for Catechism

The second day of the workshop seminar was spent on learning the types inafamily 060of the intelligences of man. The workshop provided the catechists with the know-how as well as the many creative approaches in bringing the catechism to the children. (See blog on “Creative Use of Sacred Scriptures in Catechism'”). 

The Archdiocesan Biblical Apostolate facilitated the second day of the seminar-workshop. The seminar was given twice already to the catechists of the parish since 2008.

Sis. Silvana de Vera, Susan Aoanan, Belma Ibasan, Bros Rudy and Friedy composed the Biblical Apostolate Team.

inafamily 061
catechists workshop
catechists workshop

catechists workshop 

10 July 2011

Mission: 143+44 launched!

by Elizabeth Terte

10 July 2011 – San Fabian, Pangasinan. “We all have something. There is no amount so big that it cannot be shared; and no amount so small that it cannot be accepted. Give, because it is a JOY to do so!”  Fr. Oliver E. Mendoza. the Parish Priest of San Fabian,  spoke about “Mission: 143+44”, in all the masses today. Using a Powerpoint presentation, he explained its meaning and significance in the parish.

A Fund Raising Campaign

Main retablo“Mission: 143+44” is a fund raising campaign of the parish which will raise Phil. Pesos Three Million in four months to finance primarily the repair and the enhancement of the retablo of the church, support the parish feeding program and the various catechetical and adult formation programs.

Non-conventional Approach

There are two reasons why the Parish of St. Fabian, Pope and Martyr, will go into fundraising. One, to raise the needed resources to support a project and or activities/programs of the parish. Two, to provide the parishioners the opportunity to participate in the various programs and activities of the parish.
Mission:143+44 is not the usual conventional fundraising activity of the parish.
Conventional fundraising strategies such as concerts, dinners and selling of souvenirs and/or printing of programs are usually high effort-high expense-low yield ventures.

Mission 143-44 is a daring parish venture to raise a huge amount, at a given time-frame, at low cost, on strategic volunteer effort, using strategies that would strengthen community spirit.

A Direct Donation Approach
It is a direct solicitation approach: no product to sell or market, neither is there a major event as concert, dinners, etc. It simply relies on private appeals by individuals and smaller groups to their circles of potential donors, accompanied by brochures, banners and posters and other activities to promote the campaign.

Giver-Friendly Scheme
It will raise a big amount in a short time: Php. Three Million in four months offering a giver-friendly scheme of fulfilling the pledge. For a Php 1 thousand pledge to be fulfilled in 4 months, it would only become Php 250.oo a month or Php62.50 a week, and Php 8.95 a day! The shared amount  among groups becomes smaller due to the number of members of the group and the longer time the pledge would be fulfilled. 

It will cultivate generosity among the parishioners.

Direct donation approach encourages a habit of giving - the kind that asks for nothing in return, except the satisfaction of helping a worthy cause.

Mission 143-44 is rooted in the belief that there is a generous giver in everyone, and the challenge for the parish (and the fundraiser) is to create an environment where the giver in each one is joyfully drawn out.
It also stems from the belief that giving to a good church cause is not a burden to endure, but an opportunity to be mined: an opportunity to do something good, an opportunity to be part of a significant endeavor for God.

The number “44” will remind the parishioners when to give their donation: every 4th week for 4 months. The campaign begins on 10 July and will end on 10 October 2011.

dots board“DOTS” Monitoring Board
A huge 10 feet by 15 feet tarpauline has been set up outside the church to monitor the progress of the campaign. The tarpauline has as a backdrop the design of the new retablo with 1 thousand dots covering  it. Every dot represents a 1 thousand donation. Whenever a Php 1 thousand pledge has been fulfilled, the dot will be shaded red and the initials or the name of the donor will be written in the DOT or DOTS depending upon the number of DOTS donated for the project.

Fr. Mendoza said, “We belong to each other. We belong to the parish of St. Fabian, Pope and Martyr. We are many, and we are one -- in our mission. When we pool our resources, there is nothing we cannot do. Everything is possible. Everyone can. With God’s grace and mercy! “

As a clincher, he asked the congregation: “K ka na ba?” referring to the community commitment: Kaiba ka. Kasama ka. Kadua ka.