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Love as the Foundation of Marriage and Family

Atty. Aurora A. Santiago
Duc in altum

 

Atty. Aurora A. SantiagoThe 3rd Family Eucharistic Congress sponsored by the Family and Life Ministry of the Diocese of Kalookan was a huge success. The Family and Life Ministry from every parishes in the Dioceses participated in the day-long program. Most Rev. Pablo Virgilio S. David, Bishop of Kalookan, and Most Rev. Gilbert Garcera, Bishop of Daet, were the guest speakers. Highlight of the event was the Holy Mass presided by Bishop David together with the clergy of Kalookan.

Bishop David talked about Amoris Laetitia or the Joy of Love of Pope Francis. He stated that Amoris Laetitia is a Post Synodal Exhortation, the product of the 3rd Extraordinary Synod of Bishops in October 2014 and the 14th Ordinary Synod of Bishops in October 2015.

Bishop David focused his talk on Chapters 4 and 5 of the book, which are the actual contributions of Pope Francis in the book, the rest are discussions and interventions during the two Synods. Chapter 4 is about Love in Marriage (On Love as the Foundation of Marriage and Family) while Chapter 5 is about Love Made Fruitful (On the Fruitfulness of Love in Marriage and Family), It is composed of 108 paragraphs and 83 pages.

Pope Francis said “we cannot encourage a path of fidelity and mutual self giving without encouraging the growth, strengthening and deepening of conjugal and family love… the grace of the sacrament of marriage is intended… to perfect the couple’s love.”

Bishop David quoted St. Paul on the 14 criteria to determine if a person is growing in love; he also explained what these criteria meant: (1) Patient—is not about letting ourselves be constantly mistreated; it is about recognizing that other people also have a right to live in this world, just as they are or accepting others as part of this world, even when he or she acts differently than one would like. (2) Kind—is at the service of others, ready to be of assistance; to give and not count the cost. (3) Not jealous—being happy for the blessings of others, thankful for his own blessings. (4) Not Boastful—refrain from speaking too much about themselves, silent about his own achievements. (5) Not inflated—Bishop David said that Pope Francis missed this in Amoris Laetitia. It means not being arrogant, able to forgive, and laugh at own mistake; approachable and not looking down at others. (6) Not rude—means gentle and thoughtful, not conceited, genuinely concerned about others. (7) Generous—means does not seek its own interest nor seek what is its own. It is seeking the interest of others. (8) Not irritable or resentful—not easily provoked, not quick-tempered, responding and not just reacting to situations, (9) Forgiving—not resentful, not fault finder, capable of forgetting negative memories; (10) Rejoices with others—not gloating, not rejoicing in the misfortunes of others, not seeking revenge. (11) Bears all things—love cares, always ready to defend the weak and disadvantaged; able to sympathize and put oneself in the other’s position; (12) Believes all things—love trusts, not paranoid or suspicious, presumes good will and sincerity even when others might be wrong. (13) Hope all things—love hopes, holds on even in bad times, draws courage from faith; believes in happy endings; (14) Endures all things—perseverance, ready for sacrifice, does not give up easily, lives in constancy and consistency.

Bishop Ambo concluded that love is eternal, it is founded on God’s unconditional and unfailing love, it defies death and sin, and it is ready to “face hell” for the sake of the beloved.

***

The Diocese of Kalookan held its Diocesan Strategic Planning at SACOP-Ephata Development Center in San Fernando, Pampanga. The three Diocesan Commissions—Commission on Worship and Liturgy (COWL), Commission on Education and Lay Formation (CELF) and the Commission on Social Service and Development (CSSD) – together with the Curia, Commission on Clergy, Council of the Laity and KADSA (Kalookan Diocese School Association) were aptly represented by both the clergy and their lay counterparts. Each Commission set their respective 5-year goals, activities and objectives with the corresponding budget. Its target Diocesan Pastoral Assembly is January 21, 2017.

***

The Council of the Laity of Kalookan, headed by Atty. Aurora Santiago, sponsors LaYKo si Pads, Level Up (Habag at Awa) Concert—to finance the Rehabilitation Program of the Diocese for drug dependents who are surrenderers – on November 18, 2016, Friday, 7pm at PICC Plenary Hall, Pasay City. The Kalookan Clergy will perform together with guest celebrities Ms. Ai-ai Delas Alas, Mr, Gerald Santos, Mr. Michael Angelo Lobrin and Mr. Dingdong Avanzado. Tickets may be obtained from the respective Parish Pastoral Councils in the Diocese or may contact Au 288-0935; Gigi-287-3693.

The different commissions with their priests and lay leaders, the Council of the Laity, local governments, the DILG, the police department, barangay officials of the three cities comprising the Diocese and others are invited to discuss and finalize the Rehabilitation Program for Drug Dependents on October 18 from 1pm to 4pm at St. John XXIII Hall, San Bartolome Parish Compund, Rizal Avenue Extension, Malabon City. The target launching date of the Rehabilitation Program is on October 25, 2016.

***

Please include in your prayers the eternal repose of the soul of Malolos Bishop Emeritus Most Rev. Cirilo Almario. May he rest in peace.

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