As far as I can remember, my family went to church religiously; all of us were really committed believers.  But we didn’t go to church primarily to meet people with whom you could connect; anyway, it didn’t hurt to go, and it made us feel good.

Somehow, I had wished I became involved in the church where youth leaders challenged us to help make a difference in the world.  This appealed to me.  As a teen I could become active in helping touch lives for God; however, I discovered that most people in that church were against a variety of things – drinking, dating, watching movies, and, of course having sex outside of marriage.  I was with somewhat of a troubled conscience that my sisters and I would occasionally go to a Saturday matinee at the Gaiety Theater in Ermita to watch James Dean or Elvis Presley movies.  The romantic films, however, were considered “worldly,” which we steered clear of.

Then television came to Manila where I grew up  in (yes, I realize that for me to admit that I was born before you had hundreds of channels available on TV dates me), and our family bought a small black and white Sharp TV with rabbit-ears antenna.  I also sensed that the standard of accepted behavior was challenged!  If you watched something on TV at home, it was OK; however, if you watched the same thing in a theater, it was disdained!  This made no sense to me.  What defines wholesome?  It is not where you watched something but what you watch that determines whether or not it is simply entertaining, uplifting, and builds you up, or it crosses the line and stirs impure thoughts.

What were the redlines of fortress style of parenting, then, they generally did?  First and foremost, members of family must participate in all events.  They strictly forbid the use of alcohol and other questionable substances; prohibited dating, drinking or excessive use of social media.  They monitor the kind of movies their children are allowed to watch.  Children were encouraged respect for authority and elders.  Most of all, everybody have to practice honesty and dignity and go to church together as a family.

Today, every parent who loves his child(ren) should set redlines clearly designated what is acceptable and what is unacceptable.  However, when a parent’s concept of right and wrong is not based on an understanding of God’s purpose and will, redlines become defined by our culture rather than God’s will.  What makes the different comes from the Scripture.

Parents ought to be convinced that God’s Word is as relevant to our lives today as it was when holy men of God wrote the Scriptures centuries ago.  This style of parenting is defined more by the atmosphere at home.

Parents, listen to your children, evaluate what they say and provide a forum of discussion, striving to help your children see the cause and effect of every discussion that is made.

Knowing what the boundaries are – whether they are yours or God’s – brings security.  Kids know when they are within the framework of acceptable behavior and when they have gone beyond what is acceptable.

Wise is the parent who loves enough and cares enough and strong enough to say, “I love you too much to let you do anything just because you want to,” and quietly draws a line saying, “This is as far as you can go!”

Eventually your child will grow up and say, “Thanks, Mom.  Thanks, Dad.  I’m glad you cared enough to draw a line.”

 

 

A joyful feast day, every 8th of September we commemorate the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary, a descendant of Abraham, born of the tribe of Juddha and of David’s seed.

 

The Catholic Church has been celebrating the birth of Mary since the sixth century. This year,in like fashion, the Family Rosary Crusade  Chapter of the St. Andrew the Apostle Parish (SAAP) successfully organized the celebration of this blessed day, the birth of Mary, the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ.

In her honor,  a three-day Triduum Novena was held on September 5-8 2015. On her feast day itself, a Tuesday, a dawn(5:30am) procession of Mama Mary on a beautiful carosa was held around the sub-parishes of SAAP.

Her entrance to the church after the procession was very touching and festive amid the continuous singing of “Ave Ave Ave Maria” and Happy Birthday Mama Mary just before the 6:30am mass presided by Fr. Allan Dichoso.

Our Pastor Msgr. Dennis Odiver scheduled masses at 6:30am,11am, 12:15pm, 5pm and 6:30pm to give all parishoners the  chance to attend mass in Mary’s honor. The FRC distributed assorted cup cakes and pastries after every mass to all the mass goers.

Mary is indeed a great woman, the greatest of all women. Her birthday gives us the oppurtunity to reflect on the greatness of her faith. As we rejoice on Mary's humility and obedience, we also rejoice to be made sharers in the gift of bringing forth the life of Jesus Christ in the world. Even as we imitate her humble and obedient faith, we see in Mary the fullness of grace. She embodies all that God taught the human race.  She is the CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH ---

Your birth,oh Virgin Mother of God,  proclaims joy to the whole world. For from you arose the glorious Sun of Justice, Christ our God.  He freed us from the age-old curse and filled us with holiness; He destroyed death and gave us eternal life.GOD BLESS YOU, MAMA MARY LOVES YOU!

On August 25, Rev. Fr. Allan Dichoso celebrated his 55th birthday which coincided with the blessing of the new Sacristy.

As our parochial vicar, Fr. Allan has found fulfillment in his priestly ministry, being able to attract people with his homilies and nice singing voice.  Aware of the tremendous significance of the Eucharistic celebration, he shudders at the thought that at all time he had to have adequate preparation to preside at the celebration and make it truly meaningful.  Monsignor Dennis said during the 12 noon mass on Sundays, the church is growing up in attendance and we receive bigger collection because it’s Fr. Allan who is the presiding priest.

The disposition of the Body of Christ is a concern of Fr. Allan.  He believes that the majority of church goers go to Mass with the desire to really be nourished by the Word of God and the Body of Christ.

He can sense this, for example, as they attentively listen and react to his homilies.  It must be inspiring for him to see squirm or heads nod as he drives a point or lips break into a smile or even laughter as he tells a joke or narrate a funny anecdote to help a message be remembered.

The life and ministry of the priest is what is aptly traced by Fr. Allan, an udefatigable priest in St. Andrew the Apostle Church.

We congratulate Fr. Allan for his apostolic work.  May it continue to challenge him and us to strive harder to make our lives a great pilgrimage headed to the Father’s house.

 

 

 

The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines in its November pastoral letter said:  “Jesus hanging from the cross, stripped of his dignity, his strength, his possessions, his power,  is the image of the poor.’’

The Church celebrates 2015 as the Year of the Poor.    The image of Jesus hanging on the cross is the face of the poor. He is fully one with the poor, the powerless, the unwashed, the miserable, the hungry, the outcasts, the homeless, the street children, the poorest of the poor.

Bishop Broderick Pabillo in his speech during the “Summit for Change’’  is calling for a system change in the country. He is calling for a righteous  government that will guarantee the rights of the poor and protect the people from corrupt officials in the government.’’

He said: “Can  there be a constitution that can punish government officials who do not execute the laws? There is presently a culture of impunity for government officials , from the President of the Republic down to the Barangay Chairman, who do not do what the laws require them to do.

“The big question is : who can protect the people from the government which disobeys the laws they are supposed to implement.’’

The Bishop said that there is a need for a system change wherein the government can regulate the market and the big businesses from exploiting the people. The Church is calling for a just government that will be strong enough to make the playing field for the poor and the small entrepreneurs to thrive, He said that presently, it is the  big business and multinationals  who makes the government penetrate and capture the market at the expense of the small entrepreneurs and the poor.

When we ask the poor what they want, we get simple answers. “We want decent meals everyday; we want regular jobs; we want decent housing; we want good education for our children; we want medical care when we get sick.’’ Food, shelter, job , education,health care. They just want basic services. But are these  basic services being given to the people by the government? These basic services are being sold to private business entities under the Public –Private Partnership (PPP Program).’’

The government, according to Bishop Pabillo,  is passing on its obligations to business entities who will do those basic services at a profit and at a high cost which the poor can not afford.

The Bishop laments that in Metro Manila, water , electricity, the MRT and LRT have been privatized. Even  the highways  have been  privatized. These services are monopolized by the big corporations who belong to the 40 richest families in the country.

“They are privatized and they do not even offer decent services.They even want to  privatize our public hospitals, like the Philippine Orthopoedic Hospital and even our state universities.’’

The Bishop is calling for the government to provide free tertiary or college education to our youth and even subsidize privately-owned educational institutions to provide good education for the Filipinos to make them competitive in the global market.

“ There is no such thing as  housing for the poor. NHA (National Housing Authority) charge the poor in an exorbitant way by making them pay for 25 years (a house) which is so substandard that it can stand only for five years.

“Public services should not be privatized,’’ the Bishop stressed.

The issue of labor only contractualization and security of tenure was also pointed out by the Bishop which he said caused uncertainly and insecurity among the labor force. It will be recalled that labor contractualization was enforced and made into a law during the time of the late President Corazon Aquino.

He said job security is not only an issue of  peace and order but also an issue of stability. He said  rampant casualization (end-of-labor contract after five -six months) is being done by big business. These big corporations care only about the company’s profitability but hardly no serious consideration for their workers who actually create the profit for them.

He also discussed the issue of land grabbing by big businessmen who contrived ways mostly by legal means to deprive the farmers  and the indigenous people of their rights to the land.

Let us pray that in the coming 2016 national elections the people will vote for the righteous leaders and that the sovereignty of the ballot will be honored and protected by the Commission on Elections.

 

 

 

 

Sunday Mass Schedule Effective March 2011

6:30am - Filipino
8:00am - English
9:30am - English
11:00am - English

12:15n.n - English

3:30pm - Filipino
5:00pm - English
6:30pm - English
8:00pm - English

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