On September 4, 2013, Fr. JB Abellana conducted his first catechism for the parish workers and parishioners of San Lorenzo Ruiz. It was fitting that this first major parish activity to be conducted in the Formation Center was one that was spiritual in nature. Explaining on the topic, Servanthood, FJB has perhaps set the tone and direction of his administration while with us.
In his one hour talk, he stressed that servanthood is service with humility. He aptly used the acronym S-L-R-P-H to drive home succintly the values of leadership which Jesus espoused and which every church worker should have. These are:
S – Service God has bestowed upon and entrusted to us the gifts of our talent, material resources and time. As parish leaders and workers, we are expected to use these wisely and productively to serve the common good in the same way Jesus served His flock. While “Jesus was God, he did not deem equality with God something to be grasped at…He emptied himself and took the form of a slave” as he humbly obeyed the will of the Father. This is the same level of service expected of us.
L – Love FJB explained that serving others without expecting anything in return is very difficult and requires great sacrifice, and so sustaining one’s commitment in the service of others can only be accomplished if we have genuine love for our fellowmen, looking out for their interests more than our own.
R – Reliability One must totally give one’s full attention to the task of serving. One must be focused. One cannot waver if one wishes to follow Christ. One can only look straight ahead and not always look back.
P – Passionate Availability and Obedience Servanthood the Jesus way demands that we are available all the time to serve our fellowmen. If one is really passionate to serve the Lord, one would be obedient to Him and be available for Him. We therefore need to be open-minded to discover what the plan of God is.
H - Humility Humility, in the context of Servanthood, can be summed up in one word - AMEN. We serve the Lord because we acknowledge that we owe everything we are and have to Him, and not because of personal interests. Just as Lorenzo Ruiz chose to offer himself for the sake of his faith, so should we be willing to offer ourselves in the service of others and for the salvation of all.
The talk ended with Ate Cristy Vianzon, Head of the Education Ministry, giving her comments and thanking the participants.