Sunday, May 22, 2011

Silver Profession Anniversary of Rev. Fr. Roberto 'Boy' Luanzon, OP

Ang 2011 ay ang taon ng pagdiriwang ng Silver Jubilee of Religious Profession ni Rev. Fr. Roberto "Boy" Luanzon, Jr., OP. Noong May 13, 1986, kapistahan ng Mahal na Birhen ng Fatima, anim na Dominican novices ang nag-profess sa Sto.Domingo Church sa Quezon City. Sa anim na ito, tatlo lamang ang naging paring Dominikano: Fr. Ferdinand Bautista, OP, Fr. Ramon Salibay, OP at Fr. Roberto Luanzon, OP. 

Ano po ba ang religious profession? 
Ayon sa 1983 Code of Canon Law:

"By religious profession members make a public vow to observe the three evangelical counsels. Through the ministry of the Church they are consecrated to God, and are incorporated into the institute, with the rights and duties defined by law." (CIC 654)

Nagkaroon po kami ng simpleng Q&A ni Fr. Boy:

Q: Anu-ano na po ang mga naging assignments ninyo bilang isang Dominikano sa loob ng 25 taong iyon?

A: Ang umpisa nang aking 25 years ay ginugol sa initial formation, sa pag-aaral ng Philosophy at Theology. Na-assign ako after my ordination bilang assistant treasurer sa Letran Calamba at sa Convent of St. Albert the Great. Pinagkatiwalaan din ako sa formation bilang Pastoral Director at Vice Rector ng UST Central Seminary; at Master of Students ng Dominican Studentate. Sa academe naman, naging professor ako sa Liturgy sa UST at San Beda; at naging regent of the UST Faculty of Civil Law.  Binigyan din ako ng pagkakataong mag-aral ng Licentiate at Doctorate in Liturgy sa San Anselmo sa Roma.


Q: Paano ninyo ipinagdiwang ang inyong silver jubilee?

A: Tahimik kong ipinagdiwang sa mataimtim na panalangin at pagninilay ang aking 25th anniversary. Hindi ko nga ito ipinaalam pa sa iba. Umattend ako ng aming conventual mass at 7:15 AM and I spent the day as usual. Hindi na rin ako kumain pa sa labas. 

Nang sumunod na linggo naman ay nagmisa ako sa Apostles Filipino Catholic Community sa Roma kung saan binigyan ako ng solemn blessing ni Fr. Tacky, OFM, Spiritual Director ng AFCC, kasama ng mga ibang concelebrants na sina Fr. Louie Coronel, OP at Fr. Emman Giva, OFMConv. 

May kainan talaga noon sa Chinese Restaurant dahil First Communion ni Yhurifei Esporlas kaya nakisama na lamang ako sa handaan he he he.


Q: Sa loob ng 25 taon, pumasok na din po ba sa isipan ninyo ang lumabas?

A: Oo subalit napaglabanan. Sa awa ng Diyos ay nanatili at nakaabot pa ng 25 years.


Q: Ano po ang nag-sustain na inyong bokasyon?
A: Panalangin.


Q: Ano po ang naging papel na ginampanan ng AFCC sa inyong buhay dito sa Roma?

A: Bilang isang pamayanan ng Diyos, napakalaking suporta ang naibigay sa akin ng AFCC sa maraming aspeto ng aking buhay. Nagbigay ito ng pagkakataong makapaglingkod ako sa Panginoon sa pamamagitan ng isang community. Pastoral exposure din ito sapagkat mahirap naman kung puro aral at hindi balanse ang ating buhay. Salamat AFCC.


Q: Ano ang pinakamahirap na stage na inyong pinagdaanan?

A: Novitiate. Ito ay 'yung panahong huhubugin ka at masusubukan ang determination mong maglingkod bilang relihiyoso sa pamamagitan ng intense formation. Si Fr. Edmund Nantes, OP ang aming naging tagapaghubog.


Q: Nagkaranas na po ba kayo ng panahon na nagsawa na kayong magdasal?
A: [walang kurap] Wala. Hindi ako nakaranas ng ganoon. Salamat sa Diyos.


Mabuhay ka Fr. Boy. Let us continue to inspire and pray for one another.

Happy 25th Anniversary!

interviewed by FLC

Saturday, May 21, 2011

SAINTLY ANECDOTE: My Father’s house

When St. John Chrysostom was summoned before the Roman emperor Arcadius and threatened with banishment, he replied, “You cannot banish me, for the world is my Father’s house.” 

“Then I will kill you,” exclaimed the emperor angrily. “No, you cannot,” retorted Chrysostom, “because my life is hidden with Christ in God.” “Your treasures shall be confiscated,” the emperor replied grimly. “Sir, you can’t do that because my treasures are in heaven as my heart is there.” 

“I will drive you from your people and you shall have no friends left,” threatened the emperor. “That you cannot do either, Sir, for I have a Friend in heaven who has said, ‘I will never leave you or forsake you.’” 

In the fifth Sunday of Easter, Jesus, the Way, the Truth and the Life, gives us the same assurance. “In my Father's house there are many dwelling places. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be.”

A Stingy Old Lawyer

A stingy old lawyer who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness was determined to prove wrong the saying, "You can't take it with you." After much thought and consideration, the old ambulance-chaser finally figured out how to take at least some of his money with him when he died. He instructed his wife to go to the bank and withdraw enough paper currency to fill two pillowcases. He then directed her to take the bags of money to the attic and leave them directly above his bed. His plan was that when he passed away, he would reach out and grab the bags on his way to heaven. 

Several weeks after the funeral, the deceased lawyer's wife, while cleaning the attic, came upon the two forgotten pillowcases stuffed with currency. "Oh, that old man," she exclaimed. "I knew he should have had me put the money in the basement so that he could take it on his way down to hell."

source: unknown

GO, FIGHT WIN: Birds sing after a storm

At age ninety-three, Rose Kennedy was being interviewed by a magazine reporter. By this time, four of her nine children had died violently. Another daughter, Rosemary, severely retarded all her life, would soon be gone. Mrs. Kennedy had outlived her husband long enough to have seen his rather profligate and unscrupulous life told and retold in the press. She was an old lady, hit by tragedies again and again. The reporter asked about all this and Rose Kennedy answered, slowly: "I have always believed that God never gives a cross to bear larger than we can carry. And I have always believed that, no matter what, God wants us to be happy. He doesn’t want us to be sad. Birds sing after a storm," she said, "Why shouldn’t we?" *


Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. - pilot killed in war

John F. Kennedy - became president, assassinated

Rosemary Kennedy - not born mentally challenged but a brain operation she was left mentally incapacitated because doctors used it to try and control her mood swings. They destroyed her mind.

Kathleen Cavendish, Marchioness of Hartington

Eunice Kennedy Shriver - husband Ambassador to France, mother to First Lady of California Maria Shriver

Patricia Kennedy Lawford - married actor Peter Lawford

Robert F. Kennedy - Attorney General, assassinated

Jean Kennedy Smith - American diplomat, former United States Ambassador to Ireland, founder of Very Special Arts - the international organization on art and disabilities

Edward M. Kennedy - Senator of Massachusetts who spent career fighting for economically disadvantaged, civil rights and the promotion of the middle class


Source: Kent Crockett, Making The Day Count For Eternity, pp. 27-28.

The phone rang at 1:00am in the home of Leo Winters, a brilliant Chicago surgeon. It was the hospital telling him that a young boy had been tragically mangled in a car accident. Dr. Winter's hands were probably the only ones in the city skilled enough to save that boy's life. He got on his clothes, jumped into his car and decided the quickest route to the hospital would be to drive through a dangerous neighborhood, but since time was critical, he decided to take the risk.

He came to a stoplight and when he did, a man in a gray hat and a dirty flannel shirt, opened the door, pulled him out of his seat and screamed, "Give me your car!" The doctor tried to explain that he was on an emergency call, but the thief refused to listen. He threw the doctor out of the car, jumped in and sped off. This doctor wandered for more than 45 minutes looking for a phone so he could call a taxi. When he finally got to the hospital, more than an hour had passed. He ran through the hospital doors, up the stairs, to the nurse's station. The nurse on duty looked at him and shook her head and said, "Doctor I am sorry, but you are too late. The boy died about 30 minutes ago. His father is in the chapel if you want to see him. He is awfully upset, because he couldn't understand why you didn't come to help."

Doctor Winters walked hurriedly down the hallway and entered into that chapel. Weeping at the altar was a man dressed in a dirty flannel shirt and gray hat, whose eyes were blinded by tears. The boy's father looked up at the doctor in horror and realized his tragic mistake. He had foolishly pushed away the only man in that city who could have saved his son.

There is only one Person that can save us. If we intend to go to heaven, we must better be sure that we take the one way, and His name is Jesus Christ, "the Way, the Truth, and the Life".

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Red Ribbons against the Passage of the RH Bill

Roman Catholic Bishops are urging the faithful and pro-life groups to tie red ribbons to show their support to the ongoing campaign to defeat the Reproductive Health Bill pending for debates in the House of Representatives this week.

In a letter, the Bishops stressed that red symbolizes life and reiterated their continued opposition to the House Bill, which would promote both natural and artificial family planning methods as well as allocating funds for the purpose of procuring condoms and pills vehemently opposed by the Roman Catholic Church.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


An article in National Geographic several years ago provided a penetrating picture of God's wings. After a forest fire in Yellowstone National Park, forest rangers began their trek up a mountain to assess the inferno's damage. One ranger found a bird literally petrified in ashes, perched statuesquely on the ground at the base of a tree. Somewhat sickened by the eerie sight, he knocked over the bird with a stick. When he struck it, three tiny chicks scurried from under their mother's wings. The loving mother, keenly aware of impending disaster, had carried her offspring to the base of the tree and gathered them under her wings, instinctively knowing that toxic smoke would rise. She could have flown to safety, but had refused to abandon her babies. When the blaze had arrived and the heat singed her small body, the mother remained steadfast. Because she had been willing to die, those under the cover of her wings continued to live. 

"He shall cover thee with His feathers and under His wings shall thou trust" (Ps 91:4). Learn to experience the warmth and protection of life beneath the wings of the Almighty."

[source: National Geographics]

Hindi Nalilimutan ang Diyos


Homily delivered by Msgr. Jose Clemente Ignacio, Rector of the Shrine of the Black Nazarene (Quiapo Church) during the mass of thanksgiving with Manny Pacquiao on May 14, 2011.

Kagalang galang na Gobernador ng Ilocos Sur, Gov. Luis Chavit Singson, Kagalang galang na Kinatawan ng Mindoro Oriental; Congressman Rogelio Umali; ang Dating Kalihim ng DENR at Dating Alkalde ng Maynila at ang kanyang Maybahay, Lito at Beng Atienza; Kagalang galang na Punong Kalihim ng Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines, Reberendo Monsignor Juanito Figura, at ang Katuwang Niyang Kalihim, Reberendo Msgr. Joselito Asis; mga Kaparian sa Altar, Kapatid kay Kristo, mga tagatangkilik at Kaibigan ng ating Pambansang Kamao, at higit sa lahat, ang Kagalanggalang na Kinatawan ng Saranggani, Congressman Manny Pacquiao at ang Kanyang Maybahay, Gng. Jinky Pacquiao,

Magandang Umaga po at Congratulations, Congressman!

Congressman, mangayo ako ug permiso nga Manny ang akong itawag sa imo samtang ako maghomilya para mas personal kun okey sa imo? (Daghang Salamat Congressman)

Mga kapatid,

Naririto tayo muli upang makiisa sa pagpapasalamat ng ating kapatid na si Manny. Hindi siya nakakalimot sa Diyos! Huwag rin tayong makalimot sa Diyos! 

Sabi ng reporter nung lumuhod si Manny at nagdasal sa kanyang sulok matapos ang labanan kay Shane Mosley, si Manny raw ay may malalim na espiritualidad at hindi niya ito ipinangingiming ipakita o ipahayag. Nang mapanood ko ang laban nlna Manny at Shane, ilang beses kong nakita si Manny suot ang gloves at nagkrukrus. Isa itong tanda na ang Diyos ay kasama, ang Diyos ay hindi nalilimutan.

Ito ang delikado sa mundo natin ngayon - ang kahiligang kalimutan na natin ang Diyos. Napakalakas ang mga pang-aakit ng mundo sa atin. Ang Diyos, sadyang nagkakaloob sa atin ng Kanyang mga biyaya. Sino nga ba ang makakaisip nuong sinaunang panahon na makalilipad ang tao, maaabot niya ang buwan at iba pang mga planeta, makakausap niya ang kapwa kahit nasa malayo silang isla, karagatan o kabundukan. Napakaraming kaloob ang Diyos sa tao! Bakit, sapagkat mahal ng Diyos ang tao. Ito ang mensahe ng Ebabanghelyong ating kababasa lamang! Binabahaginan ng Diyos ang tao ng kapangyarihang makapaglikha ito at maging ka-Manlilikha Niya. Kaya makikita natin, ang maraming imbensyon, teknolohiya, makenarya at iba't iba pang iprastraktura na bagamat gawa ng tao ay nagmula sa mga kaloob ng Diyos sa atin. Pati na ang kayamanan, kapangyarihan at karangalang tinatanggap ng mga indibiduwal o mga bansa, kaloob ito ng Diyos at may pakay at layunin ang Diyos para rito. Pakay para sa ikabubuti ng Kanyang mga anak na hindi niya nalilimutan. Ngunit marami ang nasisilaw sa mga biyayang kanilang tinanggap naiimpluwensyahan ng kapangyarihan ng mundong nais lumimot sa Diyos.

Alam kong alam mo Manny ang mundong ito na mapaglinlang. Alam kong ang mundong ito ay nais bulagin ka sa pagkalimot sa ating Mahal na Poon. Nuong bata kang buksingero, nakilala mo ang sarap ng mapang-akit na mundong ito hanggang sa pamamagitan ng isang sulat ng iyong ina, nakita mo ang karupukan ng mundong itong nais burahin sa iyong isipan ang Dios. Ngunit mahal ka ng ating Mahal na Poong Nazareno. Hindi niya pinabayaang magtagumpay ang mundong ito sa iyong buhay. Kaya ngayon, nakikita na namin ang patuloy mong pag-alaala sa ating Panginoon at hindi mo siya kinakalimutan. At isa pang malaking karangalan ang itinanim niya sa iyong kalooban, ang lumaban para ipagwagi ang mga halaga ng Maykapal.

Nuong nag-usap tayo nuon nabendisyonan ang pinagawa mong MP Towers para sa mga batang buksingero, nabanggit mong nais mong tumakbo sa Kongreso. At ang iyong dahilan ay dahil sa pagmamamhal mo sa iyong mga kababayan. Ang nasabi ko sa iyo nuon, Manny, sige, tumakbo ka sapagkat kailangang kailangan na natin ng mga mambabatas na nagpapahalaga sa Diyos, nagpapahalaga sa kanilang mga kababayan, mga mambabatas na hindi corrupt at sarili lamang ang iniisip. Malakas ang tiwala kong hindi mo kakalimutan ang Diyos at mayroon kang misyon sa buhay na ito na kailangan mong gampanan. Naramdaman kong may pinanggagalingan ang iyong puso na higit pa sa iyo at nagtitiwala akong hindi ka magpapadaig sa mga pang-aakit ng mundong ito. At nang marinig kong mayroon kang inihahandang mga programa sa mga kababayan mong naghihirap sa Sarangani, napatunayan ngang kumikilos sa iyo ang kapangyarihang higit pa sa iyo.

Babalik na po kayo sa Congresso. Matindi ang labanan diyan. Mabibigat ang mga ginagawang pagpapasya riyan na mayroong malaking epekto sa Bayan. Nuong ako'y batang pari sa isang maliit na parokya, marami akong mga parokyanong naghihirap at walang trabaho.Pinagsumikapan naming gumawa ng mga proyekto upang matulungan sila, ngunit sadyang maliit lang ang aming kakayahan. Bagamat ganoon, nagpagod kami, naghirap, nagbuhos ng aming lakas upang mapaasenso man lamang kahit kakaunti, ang aming naghihirap na mga kapatid. Ngunit sa paglipas ng panahon, dala ko ang sakit ng kalooban na kahit mayroon kaming ginagawa, marami pa ring hirap at hindi namin matulungan. 

Dumating ang panahon, ako'y nailagay ng namayapang Cardinal Jaime Sin sa Labor Center ng Simbahan, upang alagaan ang mga pangangailangan ng mga manggagawa sa ating lipunan at tulungan rin siya sa kanyang opisina. Dito, sa mga assignments na ito, ako namulat na ang kahirapan pala sa ating bayan ay maaaring magbuhat sa mga maling pagpapasiya at makasariling pananaw ng mga pinagkatiwalaang mamuno sa ating gobyerno. Dito ko rin nakita na sa mga nasa posisyon, sa mga nasa kapangyarihan, at sa mga may kayamanan, maaari nilang gamitin ang media upang itago ang mali nila at siraan ang mga bumabatikos sa kanila. Dito ko rin nakita na mayroong impluwensya ang mga makapangyarihang bansa upang panatilihin ang kanilang interest sa ating lupain.

Congressman, naririyan na kayo sa boxing ring ng mga namumuno sa ating bayan. Ipagdarasal namin kayo. Maraming pagpapasya ang gagawin ninyo, at maraming panlilinlang ang mundo upang takpan ang katotohanan na mali ang ilang pinagpapasyahan at hinaharap sa inyo. Sa totoo lang, merong mga Bill ngayon na sanhi ng pag-aalala ng mga pastol ng ating simbahan, mga Bill na parang kending may matamis na balot sa labas ngunit sa loob ay lason pala. Kawawa ang mga pamilya, mga bata, mga kabataan, at higit sa lahat, ang mga mahihirap. Alam na ninyo ang problema ngayon ng RH BILL at RP BILL, ang mga panukala para abusuhin pa ang mga natural nating mga yaman, ang mga panukala para palawakin ang GAMBLING sa ating BAYAN. Congressman Manny, umaasa kami na pati sa Congresso, ipaalaala mong huwag nilang kalimutan ang Diyos at ang mga halaga ng Langit. Manindigan kayo sana sa mga halaga ng Diyos sa lahat ng mga batas na inyong pagpapasyahan! Umaasa akong ang pagmamahal niyo unang una sa Diyos at sa inyong mga kababayan, lalo na sa mga mahihirap, ang gagabay sa inyong pagpapasya.

Congressman congratulations muli! Hindi ko sasabihing malayo na ang narating ninyo sapagkat alam kong nananatili ka pa rin kaisa ng sambayanan at hindi ka lumalayo. Pero nais kong sabihin, malayo na ang narating ng pagmamahal ng Dyios sa iyo. Kaya nga dala ninyo ang isang misyon, tulad ni San Matias, naway maipahayag mo ang aral at turo ng ating Pong Nazareno sa mga laban mo pang darating lalong lalo na sa Laban ng Buhay! Salamat po at pagpalain ka ng Mahal na Poong Nazareno!

Monday, May 9, 2011

What Our Lady said at Fatima in May 1917

The First Apparition - May 13, 1917

Our Lady: Do not be afraid; I will not harm you.

Lucia: Where is Your Grace from?

Our Lady: I am from heaven. (Our Lady raised her hand and pointed to the sky.)

Lucia: And what does Your Grace wish of me?

Our Lady: I have come to ask you to come here for six months in succession on the thirteenth day of each month at this same hour. Later I will tell you who I am and what I want. Afterward, I will return here a seventh time.

Lucia: And will I go to heaven, too?

Our Lady: Yes, you will.

Lucia: And Jacinta?

Our Lady: Also.

Lucia: And Francisco?

Our Lady: Also, but he must say many Rosaries.

Lucia: Is Maria das Neves already in heaven?

Our Lady: Yes, she is.

Lucia: And Amélia?

Our Lady: She will be in purgatory until the end of the world. Do you wish to offer yourselves to God to endure all the sufferings that He may be pleased to send you, as both an act of reparation for the sins with which He is offended and an act of supplication for the conversion of sinners?

Lucia: Yes, we do.

Our Lady: Well then, you will have much to suffer. But the grace of God will be your comfort.

"It was upon saying these last words, 'the grace of God...' that for the first time she opened her hands, which emitted a most intense light that penetrated our breasts, reaching the innermost part of our souls and making us see ourselves in God, Who was that light, more clearly than we can see ourselves in the best of mirrors. Then, driven by a deep inspiration, we knelt down and repeated inwardly: 'O Most Holy Trinity, I adore Thee! My God, my God, I love Thee in the Most Blessed Sacrament'.

"A moment later, Our Lady added, 'Pray the Rosary every day to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war.' "She immediately began to rise serenely toward the east until she disappeared far into the distance. The light that surrounded her was, so to speak, opening her way through the starry firmament."

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Harapan: RH Bill, Ipasa or Ibasura?

Personalities in favor and against the controversial Reproductive Health Bill (RH Bill) will go face-to-face this Sunday (May for the “Harapan: RH Bill, Ipasa or Ibasura” live debate on ABS-CBN’s Sunday’s Best.

Multi-awarded news anchors Karen Davila and Julius Babao will moderate the timely event, which will offer a full-blown discussion on the issues surrounding the RH Bill such as morality, overpopulation, poverty, sex education, state intervention, and right to information.

ABS-CBN and the ABS-CBN News Channel (ANC), which iscelebrating its 15th anniversary this year, have put together a group of notable experts, legislators, and civil society leaders for this year’s very first “Harapan” debate.

Standing up against the RH Bill are Rep. Anthony Golez, Rep. Roilo Golez, Dr. Ligaya Acosta of Human Life International, Fr. Melvin Castro of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), Atty. Jo Imbong of CBCP Family and Life and former Laguna Governor Joey Lina.

On the other side, Rep. Janette Garin and Rep. Edcel Lagman, two of the authors of the RH bill, Protestant Bishop Rodrigo Tano, Carlos Celdran, former Department of Health Sec. Esperanza Cabral, Beth Angsioco, and former Akbayan Rep. Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel will rally behind the Pro RH Bill.

Through “Harapan: RH Bill, Ipasa or Ibasura,” ABS-CBN and ANC aim to shed light on this controversial bill so people may be equipped with the right information to make a stand on the issue.

Don’t miss live simulcast of “Harapan: RH Bill, Ipasa or Ibasura” withKaren Davila and Julius Babao on ABS-CBN and ANC SkyCable ch. 27 this Sunday, May 8, 10:30 pm after “Pilipinas Got Talent.” Be heard. Join the online and text polls. You may also catch the HARAPAN vialive streaming on or catch the repeat telecast on ANC this Monday (May 9) at 6am.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Pencil and Eraser

Pencil: I'm sorry

Eraser: For what? You didn't do anything wrong.

Pencil: I'm sorry because you get hurt because of me. Whenever I made a mistake, you're always there to erase it. But as you make my mistakes vanish, you lose a part of yourself. You get smaller and smaller each time.

Eraser: That's true. But I don't really mind. You see, I was made to do this. I was made to help you whenever you do something wrong. Even though one day, I know I'll be gone and you'll replace me with a new one, I'm actually happy with my job. So please, stop worrying. I hate seeing you sad.

Parents are like the eraser whereas their children are the pencil. They're always there for their children, cleaning up their mistakes. Sometimes along the way, they get hurt, and become smaller / older, and eventually pass on. Though their children will eventually find someone new (spouse), but parents are still happy with what they do for their children, and will always hate seeing their precious ones worrying, or sad.

All my life, I've been the pencil. And it pains me to see the eraser that is my parents getting smaller and smaller each day. For I know that one day, all that I'm left with would be eraser shavings and memories of what I used to have.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Parable of the Pencil

The Pencil Maker took the pencil aside, just before putting him into the box. 

"There are 5 things you need to know," he told the pencil, "Before I send you out into the world. Always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best pencil you can be."

"One: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in Someone's hand."

"Two: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, but you'll need it to become a better pencil."

"Three: You will be able to correct any mistakes you might make."

"Four: The most important part of you will always be what's inside."

"And Five: On every surface you are used on, you must leave your mark. No matter what the condition, you must continue to write."

The pencil understood and promised to remember, and went into the box with purpose in its heart.

Now replacing the place of the pencil with you. Always remember them and never forget, and you will become the best person you can be. 

One: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in God's hand. And allow other human beings to access you for the many gifts you possess.

Two: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, by going through various problems in life, but you'll need it to become a stronger person. 

Three: You will be able to correct any mistakes you might make. 

Four: The most important part of you will always be what's on the inside.

And Five: On every surface you walk through, you must leave your mark. No matter what the situation, you must continue to do your duties.

Allow this parable on the pencil to encourage you to know that you are a special person and only you can fulfill the purpose to which you were born to accomplish.

Never allow yourself to get discouraged and think that your life is insignificant and cannot make a change.

Sand and Stone

A story tells that two friends were walking through the desert. During some point of the journey they had an argument, and one friend slapped the other one in the face. The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, wrote in the sand: "TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SLAPPED ME IN THE FACE."

They kept on walking until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath. The one, who had been slapped, got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but the friend saved him. After the friend recovered from the near drowning, he wrote on a stone: "TODAY MY BEST FRIEND SAVED MY LIFE."

The friend who had slapped and saved his best friend asked him, "After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand and now, you write on a stone, why?"

The other friend replied: "When someone hurts us, we should write it down in sand where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But, when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone where no wind can ever erase it."



Paul Cardenas asks the following questions:

1. Ayon dun sa Canon [Canon 1176], nabanggit po ang cremation. Pwede po ba paki-elaborate po ito? Marami na po ang sumasang-ayon sa cremation dahil mas mura po ito kumpara sa libing sa sementeryo lalu na kung walang lupa o burial plans. Payag po ba ang Simbahan dito?

2. At yung ibang nabigyan ng funeral rites sa simbahan, at bago inilibing ay saka nagpa-cremate, me pagkakamali po ba dito?

3. Anu po ba ang talagang maliwanag na turo ng Simbahan tungkol sa cremation?



Q: In the first place, does the church allow cremation?

A: The current law of the Catholic Church permits cremation, provided that the person has not chosen cremation for unacceptable reasons (e.g., as a way of denying belief in the resurrection).

Like a human body, cremated remains must be buried or entombed in some manner.


The Catholic Church teaching on cremation is contained in the Code of Canon Law (#1176). It reads: "The Church earnestly recommends that the pious custom of burying the bodies of the dead be observed; it does not, however, forbid cremation unless it has been chosen for reasons which are contrary to Christian teaching."


There was a long standing tradition in Judaism of never burning the bodies of the dead, and Christianity continued the Jewish practice of burial or entombment of the deceased, following the example of Jesus himself. During the persecutions of the Church in the early centuries, pagans would sometimes attempt to burn the bodies of the martyred Christians in an effort to ridicule Christian belief in the resurrection.

Later, during the rise of materialism in the 19th century, many atheistic groups began to promote cremation, again as a challenge to, and a public denial of, the Christian faith. These instances of using cremation as some kind of public profession of irreligion are examples of what the Church means by 'reasons which are contrary to Christian teaching', and are what led to a specific prohibition on cremation in 1886.

This prohibition was subsequently removed, with conditions, by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith in 1963.


You may take a look at our official blogsite at for the Liturgical Norms on Cremation promulgated by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith.

Is the Funeral Liturgy celebrated before or after cremation? (Q#2 of Paul)

Liturgical Norms no. 418 states that "When the choice has been made to cremate a body, it isrecommended that the cremation take place after the Funeral Liturgy. In this case, the Vigil for the Deceased and related rites and prayers, as well as the Funeral Liturgy are celebrated as they are provided in this ritual."

However, it is also permitted to administer the funeral liturgy after cremation but the provisions in nos. 422-425 must be followed.

Can I keep the remains at home?

The cremated remains must be put into a worthy container and buried in a grave or entombed in a mausoleum. "Scattering cremated remains on the sea, in the air, on the ground or keeping them in the homes of relatives, does not display appropriate reverence." We must respect the body as a Temple of the Holy Spirit, the "body once washed in Baptism, anointed with the oil of salvation, and fed with the Bread of Life."

Further elaboration of Canon 1176 (Q#1 of Paul)

The provision in this canon is presumably rarely actually invoked. A person would only incur such a prohibition if, before death, he or she requested cremation explicitly and publicly motivated by a denial of some aspect of Christian faith regarding life after death. 

Among possible such motivations would be a lack of faith in the survival of the immortal soul and thus requesting cremation to emphasize the definitiveness of death. Another could be the denial of belief in the resurrection of the dead. 

More recently, some nominal Catholics who have dabbled in New Age pantheism or believe in doctrines such as reincarnation or migration of souls might request cremation in order to follow these esoteric doctrines or the customs of some Eastern religions. 

In all such cases the motivation for seeking cremation is contrary to Catholic doctrine and, if this fact is publicly known, performing a Church funeral could cause scandal or imply that holding to Church doctrine is really not that important.

Hope that these explanations suffice.


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Sister Marie Simon-Pierre's Testimony on Her Cure from Parkinson's Disease through the intercession of BJPII (English Translation)

In June 2001, I was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. The disease had affected the whole left side of my body, creating great difficulties for me as I am left-handed. After three years, the initial phase of the disease, slow but progressive, was followed by an aggravation of the symptoms: accentuation of the trembling, rigidity, pain, insomnia.

From April 2, 2005, I began to worsen week by week, I grew worse day by day, I was unable to write (I repeat that I am left-handed), and if I attempted it, what I wrote was unintelligible. I could drive only for short trips because my left leg would stiffen sometimes, and my rigidity would have impeded my driving. Moreover, to do my work in a hospital, it took more time than usual. I was exhausted.

After learning my diagnosis, it was difficult for me to watch John Paul II on television. However, I felt very close to him in prayer and I knew he could understand what I was going through. I also admired his strength and courage, which motivated me not to give in and to love this suffering, because without love none of this made sense. I can say that it was a daily struggle, but my only wish was to live it with faith and in loving adherence to the will of the Father.

At Easter (2005) I wanted to watch our Holy Father on television because I knew, in my deepest self, that it would be the last time. I prepared myself the whole morning for this "meeting" knowing that it would be very difficult for me, as it would make me see how I would be in a few years. It was even harder for me being relatively young. However, an unexpected service impeded my seeing him.

On the afternoon of April 2, the whole community gathered to take part in the Vigil of Prayer in St. Peter's Square, broadcasted live by the French television of the Diocese of Paris (KTO) ... All of us together heard the announcement of John Paul II's death. At that moment, the world caved in on me. I had lost the friend who understood me and who gave me the strength to keep going. In the following days, I had the sensation of an enormous void, but also the certainty of his living presence.

On May 13, feast of Our Lady of Fatima, Benedict XVI announced the special dispensation to initiate the cause of beatification of John Paul II. Beginning the following day, the sisters of all the French and African communities began to pray for my cure through the intercession of John Paul II. They prayed incessantly until the news arrived of my cure.

At that time I was on vacation. On May 26, my time of rest being at an end, I returned totally exhausted by the disease. "If you believe, you will see the glory of God": this phrase of St. John's Gospel accompanied me from May 14 onward.

On June 1, I was finished; I struggled to stand and to walk. On June 2 in the afternoon, I went to find my superior to ask her if I could leave my work. She encouraged me to endure a bit longer until my return from Lourdes in August, and she added: "John Paul II has not yet said his last word" (John Paul II was surely there, in that meeting which passed in serenity and peace). Then, Mother Superior gave me a pen and told me to write: "John Paul II." It was 5 o'clock in the afternoon. With effort, I wrote: "John Paul II." We remained in silence before the illegible letters, then the day continued as usual.

At the end of the evening prayer, at 9 o'clock at night, I went to my office before going to my room. I felt the need to pick up the pen and to write, just as if someone within me was saying: "Pick up the pen and write." It was between 9:30 and 9:40 at night. To my great surprise I saw that the writing was clearly legible. Not understanding anything, I went to bed. Two months exactly had gone by since John Paul II's departure to the House of the Father. I woke up at 4:30 a.m., surprised that I was able to sleep and I leapt out of bed: my body was no longer insensitive, rigid, and interiorly I was not the same.

Then, I felt an interior call and the strong impulse to go to pray before the Most Blessed Sacrament. I went down to the Oratory and prayed before the Most Blessed Sacrament. I felt a profound peace and a sensation of well-being; too great an experience, a mystery difficult to explain with words.

Later, before the Most Blessed Sacrament, I meditated on John Paul II's Mysteries of Light. At 6 o'clock in the morning, I went out to meet with the sisters in the chapel for a time of prayer, which was followed by the Eucharistic celebration.

I had to walk some 50 meters and at that very moment I realized that, as I walked, my left arm was moving, it was not immobile next to my body. I also felt a physical lightness and agility that I had not felt for a long time.

During the Eucharistic celebration I was full of joy and peace; it was June 3, feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Coming out from Holy Mass, I was sure of my cure; my hand did not shake any more. I went to write again and at midday I stopped taking my medicines.

On June 7, as planned, I went to my neurologist, my doctor for the past four years. He was also surprised to see the disappearance of all the symptoms of the disease, despite my having interrupted the treatment five days earlier. The next day the Superior General entrusted an act of thanksgiving to all our communities, and the entire congregation began a thanksgiving novena to John Paul II.

Ten months have passed now since I interrupted all types of treatment. I am working normally again, I have no difficulty in writing and I also drive long distances. It feels as if I have been reborn: a new life, because nothing is as it was before.

Today I can say that my friend has left our earth, but is now much closer to my heart. He has made the desire grow in me of adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament and love of the Eucharist, which have a priority place in my daily life.

What the Lord has granted me through the intercession of John Paul II is a great mystery difficult to explain with words -- something very great and profound -- but nothing is impossible for God.

Yes. "If you believe, you will see the glory of God."