Thursday, June 09, 2011

The Continuing Journey: Starting a New Stage in my Life's Journey

Well, here I am starting my new assignment as Executive Secretary of the Committee on Basic Ecclesial Communities (BEC) of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP). It is known as the CBCP-BEC Committee. My office is in the 3rd floor of the CBCP building in Intramuros, Manila. The various CBCP commissions and committees are also located in this building.

The CBCP-BEC committee is composed of Bishop George Rimando (chairman) and 8 other bishops who head their respective commissions: Bishop Broderick Pabillo (Social Action), Bishop Pablo David (Biblical Apostolate), Archbishop Romulo Valles (liturgy), Archbishop Socrates Villegas (Catholic Education and Catechetics), Bishop Paciano Aniceto (Family & Life), Bishop Joel Baylon (Youth), Bishop Antonieto Cabajog (Canon Law),  and Bishop Jesse Mercado (Laity). There are three consultants: Dr. Estela Padilla, Ph.D., Msgr. Manny Gabriel and Msgr. Jomari Delgado.

We will work closely as a team with Bishop George Rimando and the three consultants. We will also be tapping the service of the staff of Bukal ng Tipan especially when organizing BEC national and regional assemblies. I will also be interacting with the Executive Secretaries of the various CBCP commissions.

I started my work last week, June 1, just three days after finishing my Run/Walk Pilgrimage for Life and Peace across the Philippines. The first day of my work was spent in Bukal ng Tipan (Taytay) with Bishop George and the three consultants (Estela, Msgrs. Manny and Jomari) and Epee. We had an assessment and planning session. The following day I immediately reported to my office.

It is 8 km from Baclaran and I just run/walk to the office and back every day (Monday-Friday) - which means 16 km on foot daily/ 80 km a week. With another long run on Sundays, I should be able to average over 100 km a week - a good training for the marathon.

However, it is not entirely office work. That would be boring. I will also be travelling to other dioceses in various parts of the  country to give talks, conduct seminars and retreats, hold regional and national gatherings of BEC promoters and organizers, conduct case studies and documentation, etc. This weekend I will be in Surigao for the BEC day/ Pentecost gathering. Then the last week of June, I will be in Davao to conduct a Missiology seminar.

I already asked Msgr. Pepe Quitorio of the CBCP Communications Development Foundation to help me build a website/internet forum for the CBCP-BEC office. We will be meeting next week when I come back from Surigao to conceptualize the project. I hope we will be able to launch it during the CBCP assembly in July.