I came back from Manila last night. I was supposed to fly black to Davao immediately after giving the retreat to the clergy of Infanta but I had to stay on for two more days since I was asked to attend the meeting with the bishops who comprise the board of the CBCP-BEC national office - this is the office that assists the dioceses in the promotion and formation of Basic Ecclesial Communities in the Philippines.
The meeting was held last Friday afternoon at the Pius XII center where the CBCP will be holding their general assembly the next few days. The meeting was attended by Archbishop Orlando Quevedo (chairman), Archbishop Romulo Valles, Bishop Socrates Villegas, Msgr. Elmer Abacahin (executive secretary), Dr. Estela Padilla and yours truly. Estela and I are the consultants. (There are two other consultants who could not attend: Msgr. Manny Gabriel who is in France and Msgr. Joemari Delgado who could not come due to the flood in his place.)
We went through the report that will be presented to the CBCP general assembly, the financial report and the plans for the forthcoming BEC national assembly in November. We finalized the date and place: November 10-14 in Cagayan de Oro. There will be four delegates from each diocese: the bishop, the diocesan BEC program/commission coordinator, a lay pastoral worker, and a BEC leader. The theme of the assembly is: "BEC and Rural Development."
The executive secretary and the consultants will meet in Davao City at the end of this month to go through the recommendations of the National Rural Congress which will be held in Manila tomorrow and the following day. We will also finalize the plans for the assembly.