Friday, February 06, 2009

A Day in the Life of a Priest: A Typical Friday

It was still dark when the alarm woke me up at 5:30. After going to the toilet and washing up I started meditation. I sat on the easy chair beside my bed and gazed at the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on my improvised altar.
At 6:45 I came down to join my confreres for community morning prayer. Afterward, everyone proceeded to the refectory for breakfast, except me. Every Friday is a day of fasting for me. No food, except some liquid (water, green tea & coffee).
I went outside and did the tai-chi under the acacia tree. I could feel the flow of chi (energy) in my body as I performed the slowly the ancient oriental martial arts dance. It was over in less than 30 minutes and I immediately went mountain-biking along the hills overlooking the winding Davao river, while listening to my favorite music (the phantom of the opera) on my MP3 player. I came back after more than an hour, just in time to wash up and prepare for class.
The class on "Ministry and Orders" started at 9:00 am, attended by the fourth year theology students. The first part of the class was spent in discussion. The topic for today was "the priestly ministry as a prophetic ministry." During the second part of the class, after the break, I gave a powerpoint presentation on the topic emphasizing the role of the priest as prophet - who announces the Good News (of salvation, liberation, justice and peace) and who denounces evil in society - including the culture of death, the injustices, corruption, idolatry, etc. Preaching, evangelizing and witnessing are part of this prophetic ministry. I also spoke about the priest's role of enabling the Christian community (the parish and the Basic Ecclesial Communities) to function as prophetic communities. I reminded my students that when a priest exercises his prophetic function, he must be ready for rejection, persecution and even martyrdom. The class was over by 11:45.
Instead of taking my lunch - I spent my time in prayer and meditation. I prayed for peace in our land. I also prayed for the poor who don't have enough to eat and who go hungry.
The class on "Philippine Church History" for the 2nd year students started at 2:30 pm. The first part of the class was spent in discussion. The topic was the "Evangelization and Missionary Expansion" of the early Spanish missionaries in the Philippines. After the break, I gave a powerpoint presentation. Classes ended by 5:00 pm.
After half an hour, I went down to the parish church and concelebrated at the 5:30 pm mass. This was followed by the holy hour and the benediction. Afterwards, the confreres proceeded to the refectory for dinner, except me.
At 8:15, the senior members of the community had our meeting which lasted until 10 pm. Afterwards, I went up to my room to check my e-mail and write my blog. My day ends with another meditation in front of my improvised altar and then to bed. I am hungry but I will have to wait for tomorrow to break my fast.

1 comment:

Patrick James said...

it reminds me that lent is fast approaching already.i can do again my ritual of fasting every fridays of lent till easter. it is my ritual also for peace and i really offer it for the sick....PADAYON......