Saturday, April 15, 2017

Bishop Tobias' EASTER SUNDAY 2017 Homily




INTRODUCTION: People love to visit the graves and tombs of famous people like Magellan in San Agustin Church and the recent Archbishops of Manila, Rufino J. Card. Santos and Jaime L. Card. Sin, in the Crypt of the Manila Cathedral in Intramuros. There is a sense of peace and finality around graves. That is why we quietly pray and ponder at graves of famous persons. The least thing you expect in a grave is action and novelty as in the grave of Jesus! 
Let us focus on this grave!
(1) Three women came to the tomb of Jesus that early Sunday dawn. They had oil with them to anoint Jesus and were planning to sit quietly beside the grave to revisit their memories of him. This grave was no ordinary grave! First, they noticed the cover stone has been rolled away. Though initially it looked like a grave robbery to desecrate the dead, it dawned on them that this is not a case of someone breaking in but more of breaking out. Instead, they saw a man in white robe who tells them that the Jesus they seek is not there but has been raised to life and went ahead of them to Galilee. Their shock is reported in Mk. 16: 8: “Then they went out and fled from the tomb, seized with trembling and bewilderment. They said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.” The point the Gospel wants to make is that this grave is not the source of peace and rest and calm, thoughtful meditation but source of terror and upheaval. This grave is one of novelty so shocking that it frightens people out of their wits. To get that is to understand Christianity.
(2) From this grave of Jesus, we learn to our shock that everything we thought before about life, the world, and death is in fact not the case. The supposed laws of nature are in fact not laws after all. The Empty Tomb reminds us that God is the enemy of death and he has shown us his power over death in an unambiguous way. Then we ought not to fear death or be downhearted by the power of death. Some people think that to understand better the Resurrection, it is to be allegorized into the cause of Jesus. If that is so, his grave would be an ordinary grave. Note that historically no cult on Jesus’ Tomb ever developed in Christianity. They did not go there just to sit and mure on what life meant. Rather, they were surprised and tormented upside down.
(3) Just a word about the two men in white garment (sindone in Greek) at the grave of Jesus. To whom do they refer? To us Christians in our Baptismal Robe, announcing to the whole world from the Empty Tomb the good news of the Resurrection whereas the young man in white garment who was caught and fled leaving behind his garment also refers to us Christians in baptismal garb who leave behind his baptismal robe at the moment of truth and upheaval. The former refers to the call of every Baptized to Evangelization while the latter refers to the Christian who had left his faith at the moment of test!
CONCLUSION: Fellow Christians, spend a little time at the Empty Tomb of the Lord this Easter Week and listen to what that Tomb evokes in you! Happy Easter!
Most Rev. Antonio R. Tobias, DD
Bishop of Novaliches

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Gospel Reflection - FIrst Sunday of Lent



Matthew 4:1-11

Friends, our Gospel for the first Sunday of Lent is the story of the temptation in the desert. At every point in the Gospels, we are meant to identify with Jesus.

Jesus has just been baptized; he has just learned his deepest identity and mission. And now he confronts—as we all must—the great temptations. What precisely is entailed in being the beloved Son of God?

First, the tempter urges him to use his divine power to satisfy his bodily desires, which Jesus dismisses with a word. Having failed at his first attempt, the devil plays a subtler game—the temptation faced by Adam and Eve in the garden, to pretend to be God.

And then, last and perhaps greatest of the temptations, power. Power is extremely seductive.  Many would gladly eschew material things or attention or fame in order to get it. But Jesus’ great answer in Matthew’s account is, “Get away Satan!” To seek power is to serve Satan—that’s the blunt point of Jesus’ response.

Bishop Robert Barron
Word on Fire Ministries

Saturday, February 4, 2017

PPC Holds 1-Day 2017 Planning Session


Last February 4, the PPC, led by its new parish priest, Fr. Aloisio Back, his two assistant priests, and the PPC EXECOM, held its 2017 planning session in a one-day activity at the Dehon House Formation Center in Tierra Verde 2. It began with the Liturgy of the Hours and then followed by a short inspirational talk by Fr. Al.

Kuya Peter, PPC Head, formally opening the session
The planning session proper was formally opened by Kuya Peter Tamayo, current PPC Chairperson. He gave the council an overview of the activities to be undertaken during the session and the objectives of the participants for this year's parochial plans, in the light of the 30th Founding of the Parish, and at the same time, the 30th Year of Canonization of San Lorenzo Ruiz, the patron saint of the parish.

The morning was dedicated mostly to the presentations of the 2016 accomplishments and 2017 plans of the various ministries and organizations. Ate Josie Cruz presented the consolidated acivities of the Worship Ministries, namely the LECOM, EMHC, MBG and Music Ministry. Kuya Al Yap then presented those for the Grow in Faith ministries, namely the CatMin, Religious, Legion of Mary, Parish Youth Ministry and the Mass Media Ministry.

For the Social Action group, Ate Heidi and Kuya Boy Temporal presented those for SSDM and the BEC. Kuya Cesar Tiongson, on the other hand, made the presentation for the Parish Finance Council.

For other ministries and organizations, Ate Lou Sarmiento presented for the AP and Ate Mary Macalino for the CFC.

A key emphasis of the various presentations were the identification of the issues, concerns and challenges that the various ministries are facing.

The rest of the morning and most of the afternoon were spent in small group discussions with the participants separated into three: Group 1 - Worship, Group 2 - Grow in Faith and Group 3 - all the others). Main emphasis on the small group discussions were defining the top issues, concerns and challenges facing their group and coming up with recommendations and possible solutions to address them. During the afternoon presentations by the three groups, there ensued a lively and free-flowing discussion, debates and exchange of ideas with the aim of identifying the root problems that need to be addressed.

Towards the latter part of the afternoon, Fr. Al presented his views on the need to look back at the parish vision and mission statements and see if these are still valid ideals for the parish as it turns thirty years this year. He also expounded on the Christian virtues and values (prudence, temperance, courage, justice, faith, hope and love) and determine which of these should form the core values of the parish.

The group in one of the bonding activities
In the end, there were a lot to take home  from this activity in terms of ideas, thoughts, discussions, values formation that Fr. Al and the council need to think through prayerfully and discern. In his parting words, Fr. Al enjoined everyone to give themselves a month to internalize all the discussions and action items, discern and pray for guidance that indeed the decisions arrived at are the right ones for the parish, and in conscience, all can come to agree on.

The planning ended with the Holy Mass, a few bonding games care of Ate Josie, before a sumptuous buffet dinner.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Pilgrimage to Nagasaki - October 9-13, 2017


The parish of San Lorenzo Ruiz, Tandang Sora, is organizing a pilgrimage to Nagasaki, Japan. This pilgrimage will be from October 9-13, 2017 in commemoration of the 30th Founding Anniversary of SLRP this year which is also the 30th year of the Canonization of our patron saint.

Pilgrimage Tour Group size is limited to the first 40 applicants who will confirm on a FIRST-COME-FIRST-SERVE basis with the SLRP Parish Office. SO FAR 24 PEOPLE HAVE SIGNED UP. 

Deadline for REGISTRATION and payment of Reservation fee of $250 is on February 26, 2017 at the SLRP Parish Office.

Here is Nagasaki Pilgrimage - Itinerary. For those who are interested to join, please sign up using the Registration Form provided in this link.

For more details, please contact our Parish Office at the numbers provided below.



Monday, January 9, 2017

2017 is ‘year of the parish’ in Philippines: emphasis on Fatima message

January 09, 2017

The Church in the Philippines is celebrating 2017 as the “year of the parish” as part of a novena of years in preparation for the 500th anniversary of the Gospel’s arrival.
Archbishop Socrates Villegas, the president of the bishops’ conference, said that the heart of the observance is heeding the Blessed Mother’s message of prayer and penance at Fatima during the centenary of her apparitions there.
“The message of Fatima still rings clearly and strongly for us,” he wrote in a pastoral exhortation opening the year. “If we dream of Church renewal, let us return to prayer, let us receive her Son in Holy Communion and let us offer reparation for our sin.”
In a January 1 letter, Archbishop Villegas also spoke of the importance of Eucharistic adoration, confession, orthodoxy, and a simple priestly lifestyle.
“It is mystics not the activists who will renew the parish,” he wrote, adding:
We have a long history of Catholic orthodoxy. Stay in line; stay in the communio of faith. Our people want to hear the logic of the Gospel. Our people need to hear Christ again and again. Entertainment is not our business. Partisan politics is not our arena. Our expertise must be the faith of the apostles.
The nation of 102.6 million is 83% Catholic and 5% Muslim.

Lifted from the Catholic Culture. org http://www.catholicculture.org/news/headlines/index.cfm?storyid=30393

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Have a Merry Christmas Everyone!


Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Christmas Prayers For The Family


Christmas Prayers for the Family – Some Ideas

Encourage your family to focus on love during the Christmas season because God sent Jesus in love for all people (
John 3:16). Pray and look for opportunities for the family to extend themselves to people they come across. Allow every handshake, touch on the arm, or hug to be a chance to point others towards God. These simple, ordinary gestures at any time of the year can transform lives and initiate faith.
  • Our prayers can focus not only on Christ’s past birth, but also on present world events and personal concerns. When you remember those lowly shepherds and Christ’s impoverished birth, think of the forgotten poor of our world. [1]
  • Commit the coming year to God. Ask Him to watch over your family and protect them from harm.
  • Thank God for sending His son Jesus to earth to provide an eternal home in heaven for those who accept His gift.
  • The Christ Child, Joseph, and Mary remind our broken society of the importance of family. The unified family can grow spiritually together before God. Christmas is a perfect time for family members to bond. The season introduces us to the rich traditions of people throughout the world, reminding us of the unity of all Christians as children of God. 
Sample Prayer

Father and Mother: “God of kindness, Jesus your Son came to make his home among us, through his birth, you have brought humanity close to you. Through his life for others, you have revealed your will. Through his death and resurrection, you have transformed us into a new people.

Merciful God, remembering Jesus’ way of love, we give you our lives: our concerns, our work, our loves. Receive our offering; when it is lacking,


inspire us to recall once again the open heart of your Son and to fulfill his desires in all that we do.

May we daily open a place in our hearts to welcome the coming of Jesus, so that our faith will live in flesh and, when he returns in glory, we will be one with you, our loving God.

Amen.”

Sons and Daughters : “Jesus, to touch our hearts you put aside your divine glory and became a child. To repair a broken world, you embraced our poverty. To bring us the friendship of God, you offered yourself to your Father and emptied yourself on our behalf.

Jesus, as we remember the day of your birth, we want to respond to the love you have shown us. Come and live in our hearts today. Help us build a world where people make their own the thoughts of God’s heart: letting the oppressed go free and breaking every yoke. May your love reign in human hearts everywhere.

Amen.”

 All:      Glory be to the Father…


Christmas Song
O Holy Night (by Adolphe Adam)

Oh Holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of the dear Savior’s birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
Till he appeared and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.
Fall on your knees! Oh, hear the angel voices!
Oh night divine. Oh night when Christ was born;
Oh night divine, Oh night divine.




[1]  Reference : AllAboutPrayer.org 

San Lorenzo Ruiz Parish Christmas 2016

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Triple Treat Celebrations



In a short span of a little over a month, the parish had a triple treat celebration. The three Dehonian priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, each celebrated a milestone in their lives as they complete their first semester as pastoral caretakers of SLRP.

The first event was our parish priest, Father Al's 64th birthday which was last October 31. According to Father Al he feels something new as he jokingly avers that vthis is the first time he's celebrating his 64th natal day!

This was followed two weeks later with Fr. Candi's 2nd year Sacerdotal anniversary to the priesthood. As a trivia, Fr. Candi was ordained  here in the parish two years previous.

Last was Fr. Rechie, who celebrated his birthday last December 4, a Sunday. For his birthday, he thanked his well wishers who attended the masses he celebrated last weekend. He had a simple wish for his birthday for a simple guitar for use by the religious sisters who attend daily masses. His wish was quickly granted. On behalf of the parishioners of SLRP, the PPC Chairperson Kuya Peter Tamayo read a prayer of felicitation and intercession for Fr. Rechie's continued growth in his vocation and that he be granted good health of mind and body. Fr. Rechie, on the other hand, asked the parishioners pray for them (priests) and the parish so that both may grow in their relationship with each other and with God.

Each was treated in a simple repast.