Monday, January 12, 2009

KAPLICZKI (October 06, 2008)

There are Running Priests like Fr. Robert Reyes who launched Philippine On-line Chronicles-hosted Parokya sa Web to fill the gap made by his exile to China and Hong Kong among his former parishioners and those marginalized who have sought solace under him.
There are Rallying Priests like Fr. Ed Panlilio -- the 23rd Pampanga governor – who has been fighting for a "listening, transparent and accountable" government in last month's Mabuting Pamamahala at Etikal na Pamiminuno forum with other role models like Isabela Gov. Grace Padaca, Ifugao Gov. Teddy Baguilat, Naga Mayor Jesse Robredo, and San Isidro Mayor Sonia Lorenzo!

The are Returning Priests like Fr. Roland de la Rosa – the former main man at the Main Building of University of Santo Tomas (1990-1998) – who was reappointed by no less than Pope Benedict XVI as the 95th Rector in time for the 400th anniversary in 2011 of the only Royal, Pontifical, and Catholic University in the country.

There are Writing Priests like Msgr. Leandro Castro who just launched his fourth book Lapat sa Buhay: Homiliya sa Araw ng Linggo (Taon A, B, at K) at sa mga Tanging Araw sa Buong Taon at the Maryhill College in Lucena City.

There are Reading Priests like Fr. Leo Nilo Mangunsad whose music for our dream projects Cofradia de San Jose and Gomburza: The Musical never gets in the ways of his Holy Job as Director of Mary Queen of Peace Shrine along Edsa.

There are Rhyming Priests like Fr. Arnel Vitor who was solemnly installed in his new home at the San Isidro Labrador Parish in Antipolo where he could finish his 11th book Salin sa Filipino ng Here and Now ni Henri Nouwen in between his DWIZ show called Si Father at si Remy, Barangay Simbahayan and his Muse .

There are Reminding Priests like Fr. Nicanor Lalog of the Diocese of Malolos, Bulacan who tirelessly sends us not his Varsitarian articles before his GMA 7 days but his weekly homily for Karen Galarpe's

And there are Roadshrining Priests like Fr. Ramil Marcos who conceived as soon as he arrived in 2005 at the Holy Family Parish in Pasig the idea of coming up with kapliczki!

This plural form of kapliczka, or “little chapel” in Polish, could be a religious figure or statue or miniature building or structure or wooden cross or wall niche or tower or grotto or "Bathtub Mary" or "Mary-In-the-Half-Shell."
In Europe and Mexico, and in certain areas of the United States and Canada, some Catholics would build, say, a St. Agatha shrine to invoke volcanic eruptions or a St. Barbara to drive away storms!
Fr. Ramil learned about it when he stayed in Rome for two years studying Dogmatic Theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University – before he served as the formator/vocation director/spiritual director/professor/director of the theology department at San Carlos seminary as well as the head of the office for ecumenical and inter-religious office at the Archdiocese of Manila.
When the opportunity knocked in December 2006, he grabbed the chance to build his first shrine -- the one at the main intersection from the main gate of Kapitolyo.
Later in 2007 and 2008, people, in and out of Pasig, were more ready to accept the concept of having saints in every street.
Ever since they had shown much support not only there where the church stands but also in other barangays within the parish like Barangays Pineda, Oranbo, and San Antonio.
The local officials were always there to help from the start.
In fact the Barangay Captain Noel Pajara is a fixture in every blessing.
When they'd identified a spot to erect the shrine, they'd inform him and they'd get his ready approval.
The kagawads could be mistaken for apostles in supporting the Jesus in Fr. Ramil!
Of course, the Parish Pastoral Council officers and members did their best to motivate these few good men and women to act on the proposal of the parish.
Sis. Cita Quilala, their president, was a dynamic force in encouraging clusters of living and sharing their faith.
Sis. Mel Pagkalinawan, our Basic Ecclesiastical Communities coordinator, tirelessly explained the rationale for such a project and she met with other leaders and parishioners and organized them into bonded neighbors working for a cause.
One of their first donors was the Revilla family who financed the more than lifesize Holy Family image at the intersection of East-West Capitol Drive.
Another one was the Sarmiento family who donated the smaller Holy Family shrine in front of the parish's Adoration chapel -- an interesting depiction of the blessed Virgin Mary and St. Joseph teaching the baby Jesus how to walk -- and they called it The First Steps of Jesus.
There were those who think Fr. Ramil's move was so backwards -- that the money should be used for projects for the poor instead.
Some feared that the view of their homes or their parking space would be blocked.
Others found it weird to have saints in every street.
However, every concern was answered reasonably and people soon showed openness to kapliczki.
Fr. Ramil has this ready reply: “These are monuments of faith. People need reminders, people need symbols of what they believe in. Catholic teaching holds the saints as models in following the Lord, models of virtue, models of service. Saints are not replacements to the central role of Jesus or God; rather, they point us to God. They remind us that it is possible to follow God in every age and in every circumstance. all around us are countless images of food and clothes, jewelry, cars and other commodities. the soul, too, needs its visual food, to be nourished. The early Christians, made icons, paintings and sculptures to depict elements of faith, to be constant reminders of their life in Christ.”
Kapliczki, indeed, are nothing but windows through which our minds and hearts are drawn to the living God!
FROM TEDDY CO: In Moonrise Festival it was Oscar Nava's Hupa that won the Best Musical Scoring, Best Editing, Best Story, Best Production Design, and the highest the Grand Charlie Award. Not Nanette Matilac's Sayaw sa Alon.

Dear Lord, give me work till my life ends. And give me life till my work is done. Amen.

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