Recoletos brand of education revolutionizes school programs in Sierra Leone

Kamalo, SIERRA LEONE – “Transition creates tension” summarized how Fray Jose Prudencio Castillo, OAR, head of the Augustinian Recollect Mission in Sierra Leone and local prior of the Recoletos de Kamalo community, saw the stakeholders’ initial reactions to the educational climate change introduced by the Recoletos friars in their school apostolate here.

As the new school year opened last September, the Recoletos-run St. Paul School (SPS), under the directorship of Fray Jess Marco Sanchez, OAR, proudly displayed and brought into play its new slogan, “One School, One Family, One Heart.”

Fray Castillo said that the slogan intends to reinforce the understanding of the school as a good place not just for learning but also for the sense of belonging.

Starting SY 2018-19, SPS caters already to all school levels of Basic Education, from pre-primary to senior secondary. And its standard, which has always been “top of the line” as Fray Sanchez proudly described it, is continuously raised not just in terms of its physical plant (such as the recent completion of the Pre-School Building, fence, modern toilet system, water facilities, and the school pavilion) but also including other equally important areas of the school operation.

Fray Jess Marco Sanchez, OAR, School Director of St. Paul School in Kamalo, West Africa.

“Now students from all levels can better feel the familial atmosphere. They gather daily as one family for the recitation of prayers, singing of the national anthem, and listening to the announcements,” Fray Castillo noted. “And this is a first in the history of Sanda Loko (a chiefdom in Bombali District where Kamalo belongs), or maybe of the country,” he added.

“However, the numerous developments that had been implemented caused some negative reactions from the parents, teachers, and students,” Fray Castillo recounted, identifying the two highly criticized innovations implemented by the administration, namely, the construction of a more sanitary flush toilet system and the imposition of “time rules” at the school gate.

“These are the things that they have not encountered nor seen before. They are used to the unsanitary pit latrines, and also to doing their daily chores according to the mood of the sun,” Fray Castillo said.

“But, right after the PTA (Parent Teacher Association) meeting, everybody realized that everything was meant for the integral development of their children.” One parent even commented that these, as quoted by Fray Castillo, “are new things that will prepare our children towards a very challenging globalized world.”

Furthermore, the newly-constructed Pre-School Building was blessed just last October 29, 2018 by Fray Castillo.

Fray Jose Prudencio Castillo, OAR, head of the OAR mission in Sierra Leone and prior of Recoletos de Kamalo blessed the newly constructed classrooms of St. Paul School.

“The construction of the school building was made possible through the efforts of the Order of the Augustinian Recollects – Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno, the OFWs (Overseas Filipino Workers) of Sierra Leone, and the local contributors,” he said.

But payment for the so-called “teacher’s incentives” and other related financial needs are met through the consistent contribution of the eponymous St. Paul the Apostle Parish and those of the parents themselves, he also said.

Fray Castillo also pointed out that the pre-school introduced a “heart-set” in their apostolate, an alternative to the cultural “mind-set” of the people that, among others, treats children as the least in the community. The children are the last to eat in a communal gathering, and their daily life normally consists of more work with practically no time for play or leisure. Recoletos Education rides on the current bandwagon of gradually eradicating the dark side of some practices so that the community as a whole can move forward towards a better future.

Some of pre-school pupils of SPS.

“And this made the people realize that the future of Sierra Leone lies in the hands of their children,” Fray Castillo said.

His last updates: “It is very heartwarming to see, on a daily basis, parents sending their small, happy kids to class wearing their clean and complete uniform, with their bags, juice bottles, and lunch packs. It is also notable that majority of the pre-schoolers enrolled at SPS are Catholic.”

The future of Sierra Leone: the young Sierra Leonians.
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Fray Jose Ernil Almayo, OAR

Fray Jose Ernil F. Almayo, OAR, is currently the Provincial Secretary of the St. Ezekiel Moreno Province and Chairman of the Commission on Communications and Publications-Recoletos

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< 2019 >
December
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1
  • All day
    December 1, 2019

    1ST SUNDAY OF ADVENT

    40th INTRAMUROS GRAND MARIAN PROCESSION
    Start of the Procession: 4:00 P.M.
    Carroza #67: Nuestra Sra. de la Salud

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1984-2019)
    Fray Constantino Real

    (2007-2019)
    Fray Excel Saycon
    Fray Allan Rubett Cabatian

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    (2014-2019)
    Fray Cornelio Moral

23
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    December 3, 2019

    ENCOUNTER OF NATIONAL SARF PRESIDENTS
    General Curia, Rome December 3-6, 3019

    SILVER PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1994-2019)
    Fray Rouel Sia
    Fray Joel Villaruel
    Fray Bernabe Dosdos

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    (2011-2019)
    Fray Crisostomo Garnica

4
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    December 4, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray John Paul Tanquis
    Fray Kenneth Caligdong
    Sr. Noemi Manzo, AR

5
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    December 5, 2019

    431ST ANNIVERSARY (1588-2019) OF THE AUGUSTINIAN RECOLLECTION

    28th FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF SEMoNoRe, Antipolo

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1995-2019)
    Fray Reynaldo Jaranilla
    Fray Antonio Zabala, Jr.

    (2003-2019)
    Fray Romeo Ben Potencio, Jr.

    (2009-2019)
    Fray Roy Baluarte
    Fray Dominador Mercado, Jr.
    Fray Renier Alviola
    Fray Christopher Gaspar

    (2018-2019)
    Fray Kenneth Caligdong
    Fray Paul Demillones
    Fray Niel Ryan Jarumay
    Fray Keneth Pahamutang
    Fray Elpedio Sarita, Jr.

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    Sr. Ma. Grace Gicos, OAR (2014-2019)

    ANNIVERSARY (2006-2019) OF ACCEPTANCE AS SISTERS-GENERAL OF THE ORDER (OAR)
    Ms. Brenda Saliendra
    Ms. Nestoria Bad-an

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joseph Granada

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Juana de Sta. Rita

6
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    December 6, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Manuel Lipardo
    Fray Amado Emmanuel Bolilia

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Paciencia Orsolino, AR

7
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    December 7, 2019

    PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    OLCP Church, Miranila, QC / Time: 9:00 AM
    Ordaining Prelate: Most Rev. Roberto Gaa, D.D.
    Ordinandi:
    Fray Jorr S. Rabacal
    Fray Monday Benjamine Edobor
    Fray Ifeanyichukwu Maximillian Omem
    Fray Jovy A. Gallego
    Fray Andrie S. Pugate
    Fray Tomokatsu N. Yamaguchi
    Fray Jessriel L. Marcha

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jaazeal Jakosalem
    Sr. Teodora Gentapa, AR
    Sr. Marlyn Escalante, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Andrea Martinez, AR

8
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    December 8, 2019

    2ND SUNDAY OF ADVENT

    ROME: Act of Veneration to the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary at the Spanish Steps (1600H, Rome Time)

    150th ANNIVERSARY OF THE OPENING OF THE FIRST VATICAN COUNCIL (1869)

    JUBILEE YEAR (Dec. 8, 2019 – Dec. 10, 2020): Marking the 100th anniversary of the declaration of Our Lady of Loreto as the patron saint

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Leo Neil Bullos
    Sr. Concepcion Anadon, AR
    Sr. Concepcion Potoy, AR

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1967-2019)
    Most Rev. Patricio Buzon, SDB, D.D. (Diocese of Bacolod)

    (1972-2019)
    Most Rev. Honesto Ongtioco, D.D. (Diocese of Cubao)

    (2000-2019)
    Fray Jose Alden Alipin
    Fray Don Besana
    Fray James Bumangabang
    Fray Arnel Diaz
    Fray Rommel Rubia
    Fray Edgar Tubio

    (2006-2019)
    Fray Roland Cepe
    Fray Gideon Antolin Lagrimas

    (2015-2019)
    Fray Ken Oliver Lao
    Fray Nimrod Launio
    Fray Leo Neil Bullos
    Fray Mark Ryan Prado
    Fray Enrico Nacorda
    Fray Nelson Plohimon
    Fray John Zachary Haguisan
    Fray Rafael Pecson
    Fray Jerik Troy Siozon
    Fray Lounal Jarumay

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    Sr. Marites Carasig, OAR
    Sr. Lucita Minguito, OAR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION
    Sr. Marites Carasig, OAR
    Sr. Lucita Minguito, OAR

9
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    December 9, 2019

    SOLEMNITY OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

    GENERAL COUNCIL MEETING
    December 9-13, 2019 / Rome

    40TH DEATH ANIIVERSARY (1979-2019) OF ARCHBP. FULTON SHEEN

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Alberta Tabon, AR
    Sr. Ma. Rosalina Fuertes, AR
    Sr. Herminia Limotlimot, AR
    Sr. Myrna Mianagua, AR
    Sr. Bernadette Calzado, AR

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (2002-2019)
    Fray Joel Dequilla
    Fray Jay Parilla
    Fray Niño Cesar Ruiz

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Magdalena de Sta. Maria
    Sr. Potenciana de la Encarnacion

1011
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    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Amada de Ramos, AR

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (2010-2019)
    Fray Persiuz Joseph Decena

12
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    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION ANNIVERSARY
    (2001-2019)
    Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle

    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION OF BISHOP-ELECT JOSE ALLAN DIALOGO (Diocese of Sorsogon)

    SPECIAL BOT MEETING – UNO-R, BACOLOD
    Venue: UNO-R Bacolod / 9:00 AM

    23rd PROVINCIAL COUNCIL MEETING

13
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    December 13, 2019

    GOLDEN PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1969-2019)
    Pope Francis

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Carmen de Sto. Niño, AR

14
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    INSTALLATION OF BISHOP JOSE ALLAN DIALOGO (Diocese of Sorsogon)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Charlito Orobia

15
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    December 15, 2019

    3RD SUNDAY OF ADVENT

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Florinda Gonzales, AR

16
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    December 16, 2019

    MEETING OF THE GENERAL COMMISSION ON COMMUNICATIONS AND PUBLICATIONS December 16-18, 2019 / Rome

    SIMBANG GABI STARTS

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Evangeline Geuncion, AR
    Sr. Paulina Admana, AR
    Sr. Ma. Milgaros Lucero, AR

17
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    December 17, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    POPE FRANCIS (Jorge Mario Bergoglio)
    Fray Nestor Raras

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Generosa Dimapilis, AR

18
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    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Ryan Jimenez, D.D. (Bishop of Chalan Kanoa)

19
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    December 19, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Excel Saycon
    Sr. Modesta San Jose, AR

20
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    December 20, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Albert Pellazar

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Soledad Samonte, AR

21
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    December 21, 2019

    BEATIFICATION OF VEN. FULTON SHEEN (1895-1979)
    10:00 a.m. / Saint Mary’s Cathedral, Peoria, IL., USA

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1965-2019)
    Most Rev. Antonio Tobias, D.D. (Diocese of Novaliches)

22
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    December 22, 2019

    4TH SUNDAY OF ADVENT

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Emma Navea, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1986-2019)
    Fray Agustin Culaton

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION
    (1989-2019)
    Fray Agustin Culaton

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Mercedes Jayme, AR
    Sr. Felicidad Pangilinan, AR

23
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    December 23, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ricky John Austria (simply prof.)

24
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    December 24, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Allan Jacinto
    Most Rev. Natale Paganelli, SX (Diocese of Makeni)

25
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    December 25, 2019

    CHRISTMAS DAY
    Urbi et Orbi / 12:00 NN (Rome Time)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Mary Lou Duhino, AR

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1980-2019)
    Most Rev. Natale Paganelli, SX (Diocese of Makeni)

26
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    December 26, 2019

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Maria Gavino, AR

27
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    December 27, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Editha Escalania, AR
    Sr. Filomena Atun, AR

28
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    December 28, 2019

    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION OF AUXILIARY BISHOP- ELECT DARÍO RUBÉN QUINTANA MUÑIZ, OAR (Diocese of Mar del Plata, Argentina)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joel Naranja
    Fray Niño Cesar Ruiz
    Fray Jessriel Marcha

29
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    December 29, 2019

    FEAST OF THE HOLY FAMILY

    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION OF BISHOP-ELECT JESÚS MARÍA LÓPEZ MAULEÓN, OAR (Territorial Prelature of Alto Xingu-Tucumã, Para, Brazil)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Justa de Jesus, AR

30
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    December 30, 2019

    [Rizal Day: Regular Holiday]

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Maria Viñon, AR

31
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    December 31, 2019

    ROME: Celebration of Vespers and Te Deum in Thanksgiving for the past year (1700H, Rome Time)

    PRIOR GENERAL’S RENEWAL VISIT TO BRAZIL

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Antonio Zabala, Jr.
    Fray Jose Alden Alipin
    Sr. Potenciana Azurin, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Benigna de la Purisima Concepcion, AR

    HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020!

    

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