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Clergy & Laity: Collaborating to Renew the Face of the Earth
Saturday, June 28, 2014
“The laity needs to have a clearer consciousness of not only belonging to the Church, but being the Church.” This quotation from Pope Pius XII opened the second day of the Lay-Clergy Congress, in the overview presented by Church Integration Office Head Rouquel Ponte.

Day 2 of the Congress happened on June 19, 2014 at the PICC Forum Tent, Pasay City. This opening statement aimed to emphasize the lay faithful's role in God's vineyard—of not being merely a laborer, but as part of the vineyard. This is illustrated by the the biblical image in John 15: 1,4, the laity, together with other members of the Church, are branches engrafted to Christ, the true vine, from whom all derive their life and fruitfulness.

“Each member of the Church has a unique identity, that is placed for the growth of the ecclesial community,” Ponte emphasized.

Having clearly established this role of the laity, and the forms of participation that the laity has as individuals and as a group, a panel of Bishops—Archbishop John Barwa, SVD, Diocese of India; Bishop Titus Mdoe, Diocese of Tanzania; Bishop Pedro Arigo, Apostolic Vicariate of Puerto Princesa; Bishop Paul Hinder, Vicariate of Southern Arabia; Bishop Emmanuel Trane, Diocese of Catarman; Archbishop antonio Ledesma, Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro, and Bishop Prudencio Andaya Jr. CICM, D.D., Apostolic Vicariate of Tabuk—discussed about the Clergy and Laity being called to be saints, of being equal in dignity and action. Fr. Francis Lucas, President of the Catholic Media Network, facilitated the panel discussion.

In the afternoon session, CFC Pastoral Formation Office Director Jun Uriarte handled Session 2, “Call of the Laity: Prophet, Priest, and King”. Session 3 followed soon after, with the Most Reverend Pablo Virgilio David, Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of San Fernando in Pampanga, speaking on “Sent Forth As Heroes: Laity as Co-Responsible with the Clergy in Evangelization”.

The participants were divided into three workshops that focused on Christianizing the Secular World through Clergy – Lay Collaboration.

After the workshops, CFC Executive George Campos led the participants into a commitment excercise.

Br. Jun-G Bargayo SJ, a former missionary who is now on his 8th year in the Seminary, led the praisefest.

In his exhortation, Br. Jun-G honored the CFC community for being a seedbed of vocations, for having opened the live of young people like him to the missionary life, thus planting the seed of religious vocations in his heart. (CFC Docu Team)



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