Journey to St. Augustine: A CSFIP Encounter

What a privilege it is to be in a community where spirituality is being nourished and nurtured! But, learning about one’s spirituality requires willingness to ask, listen and most importantly, surrender.

I was in a reflective mood when I accepted the challenge to be one of the delegates of the Comprehensive Formation and Immersion Program for OAR Schools (CSFIP) at the Recoletos Formation Center (RFC), Mira-Nila Homes, Quezon City last May 14-24, 2019.

The 10-day formation program is a response to Decision #32 of the Life and Mission Project (LAMP) of the Order of Augustinian Recollects in the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno which requires that it “design and implement a comprehensive spiritual formation and immersion program for all religious and lay administrators, teachers, and office staff of all our educational institutions” (cf. LAMP, OAR p12).

During one of the Values and Pedagogy talk sessions with Rev. Fr. Lauro Larlar, OAR, RFC Prior.

Being Recoleto

I have been a Recoleto by heart and mind ever since I can remember. What I have come to know about my spirituality helped me to understand my ideal way of life—the Augustinian way of life. The significant part of my Augustinian spiritual journey is identifying my unique God-given purpose. But I also need tools if I want to continue living with purpose; this is one of my significant realizations.

During the 10-day program, I came to appreciate more than ever the value of friendship in the community, that as a member of the Recoleto family we must spiritually equip ourselves and embrace the OAR charism.

Living the Augustinian Values

Fray Lauro Larlar, OAR, prior and rector of the RFC, talked about Augustinian Values and Pedagogy. Stepping into interiority always connects to truth and freedom— if I am an interior person I live in truth, in consistence with who I am and my commitment.

Being an educator and counselor is quite a big task. I guide students, who are mostly teenagers, as they discover themselves. I lead them to the true knowledge of their own selves. I am an instrument of God for the formation of these youth who are truly the future of our society.

My passion is to develop their potential and to encourage their growth and journey until they become like Christ. This lifework maybe exhilarating but it can also be exhausting. In the process of counselling students, it is so easy to share fondness, enthusiasm and joy with them. Yet, I see to it that I also maintain the proper atmosphere in my class making sure that while fraternity and friendship is promoted, discipline is also observed. No matter how warm these scenes appear to be, I also make sure I take a break from the nonstop demands of being both counsellor and teacher. I recharge myself through silence and rest to make sure I do not exhaust my spirit so that I will always have something to keep on giving to young ones charged to my care.

Imbibing the Communitarian Spirit

Along the way we need tools that will lead us closer to our goal thus, values and pedagogy are part of our journey in achieving the goal to become like Christ. These not only take us to a whole new level but also help us to strive for further growth and learning. The more we grow and learn, the more experiences we can share with others. Through this, the cycle of learning through the OAR charism becomes evident. Then, relating with other members of the Recollect community becomes easier than what we imagined.

However, the great challenge is that all communities should be able to live in unity despite the individual differences of its members.

The delegates immerse in the daily routine of the RFC theologians.

Community was very important to St. Augustine and he believed that personal differences should enrich the members of the community rather than divide it. We may be all different, but we can live in unity, enriching our brothers and sisters with the gifts that we have received from God. It is our goal to complement each other.

Just like the tension of having opposing minds and ideas, choosing one at the expense of the other can be challenging. Once, I had to choose between the brightest idea presented by a colleague and the opposition of a dear friend against that idea. I had to encourage people to work as a team instead of focusing on our differences so that we could understand each view. This way we avoided division in the community. In the end, our values kept us together and prevented issues from breaking our workforce apart.

The climax of our spiritual formation was the Immersion Program. The closest thing that we could practice the communitarian spirit was through the formation life in RFC. That became both a challenge and a grace. We were able to join some of the activities (Holy Mass in the morning, meal times and even recreation time) of the novices. The idea that you have something in common with people you don’t even share a common language with became fascinating to me. We found ways to connect despite the barriers. Life at the formation center had been a pleasant surprise and yet I realized that it is truly a blessed life.

The Legacy of Agustinos Recoletos

Being now spiritually awakened, I gained insight on the importance of knowing about the Agustinian Movement. Fray Emil Quilatan, OAR talked about the history of the presence of the Recoletos in the Philippines and the influence of the Augustinians to the spirituality of every Filipino. Truly, it is commendable how the Agustinos Recoletos helped to evangelize people across the archipelago—from building churches to fulfilling apostolic works, to establishing schools for the education and formation of the Filipino youth.

The historical Bamboo Organ Church in Las Piñas houses the world-famous Bamboo Organ that a Recollect priest, Fr. Diego Cera, invented. This became a national heritage and the famous Recoleto-established Intramuros Museum in Manila is now one of the most sought-after historical landmark.

Fray Emilio Edgardo A. Quilatan, OAR of the Recoletos School of Theology, guides the CSFIP delegates during the tour at the Bamboo Organ Church in Las Piñas.

Each spiritual journey is unique but emulating the journey of enlightened saints could be uplifting. Fray Huberto Decena, OAR talked about Scriptures and the Augustinian Saints. Knowing the biographies of the Augustinian saints and canonical candidates has helped me to embark in my spiritual journey. It may not be important for others to know the Augustinian Saints, but this makes my journey unique because it deepens my understanding about how we can contribute in the revitalization of the Augustinian charismatic identity through the lives of these saints.

United by One Charism

Being one of the seventeen lay delegates of the said spiritual formation has opened my eyes in many ways. Knowing that each one of us is living entirely different lives is in itself beyond amazing. We all come from different backgrounds and yet we were all grateful for the opportunity to study and internalize our being part of this one big Recollect family. We now embark on a journey that is aligned with our own beliefs and faith. We are transforming into a community of purpose-driven people who are living the OAR charism.

Being part of this event made me appreciate even more than before the importance of our Recollect community and how this community helps me to live out my God-given purpose as member of the Recoleto family. Inspiring others, sharing from the heart, inspiring the self and the people around—these are among the beautiful aspects of the Augustinian way of life!

Story and photos by Ma.Nita V. Bolo, CST-R guidance counselor and teacher

(photo below: The 17 delegates of the Comprehensive Formation and Immersion Program for OAR Schools (CSFIP) at the Recoletos Formation Center (RFC), Mira-Nila Homes, Quezon City last May 14-24, 2019.)

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Ma. Nita Bolo

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< 2019 >
August
SMTuWThFS
    1
  • All day
    August 1, 2019

    USJ-R BALAMBAN: LAUNCHING OF BUWAN NG WIKA

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Gideon Antolin Lagrimas

2
  • All day
    August 2, 2019

    CST-R/CSNT-R: LAUNCHING OF BUWAN NG WIKA

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Amada de Ramon, AR

3
  • All day
    August 3, 2019

    SIMPLE PROFESSION OF VOWS / Monteagudo, Spain

    REPORTING OF NEOPHYTES TO CARES BAGUIO RST: START OF ENROLMENT

    PARISH FIESTA (30th FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY) OF OLCP-R, LARAY, TALISAY CITY, CEBU
    Fiesta Mass: 5:00 PM
    Presider: to be communicated later

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jay Parilla
    Sr. Felma Elbanbuena, AR

4
  • All day
    August 4, 2019

    ST. JOHN MARIE VIANNEY SUNDAY

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR OAR VOCATION (cf. LAMP II, 5c)

    ORDER-LEVEL MEETING OF THE SECTION FOR INTIAL FORMATION
    August 4-6 / Spain

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Eduardo Celiz, Jr.
    Fray Jazzy Jeff Montanez (simple. prof.)
    Most Rev. Gerardo Alminaza, D.D. (Diocese of San Carlos)
    Sr. Felisa Costonera, AR
    Sr. Eleuteria Lao, AR
    Sr. Yvette Galabo, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    Most Rev. Gerardo Alminaza, D.D. (Diocese of San Carlos)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY:
    Sr. Zenaida Ty, AR

5
  • All day
    August 5, 2019

    POST-EXPOSURE REPORTING OF DEACONS TO THE PROVINCIAL CURIA

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Mark Ryan Prado

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY (2007-2019)
    Fray Oscar de la Rosa

6
  • All day
    August 6, 2019

    TRANSFIGURATION OF THE LORD

    CHARTER DAY OF CEBU PROVINCE

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Consuelo de San Agustin, AR

7
  • All day
    August 7, 2019

    19th PROVINCIAL COUNCIL MEETING

    ARRIVAL IN CEBU OF ARCORES INT’L VOLUNTEERS FOR MONTHLY IMMERSION IN CASIAN ISLAND

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Concepcion Reston, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Concepcion Balin, AR

8
  • All day
    August 8, 2019

    CoHCH-R ANNUAL EVALUATION & PLANNING
    Inclusive Dates: August 8-9, 2019
    Venue: Bulwagang Recoletos, Miranila, Quezon City

    TURN OVER OF THE SACRED HEART SCHOOL OF CAVITE TO THE RECOLLECTS

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Leonardo Queaño II (simple prof.)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Regina Bianes, AR

9
  • All day
    August 9, 2019

    WORLD DAY OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLES (cf. LAMP 52)

    SSC-R CAVITE: MASS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

10
  • All day
    August 10, 2019

    START OF NOVENA TO ST. EZEKIEL MORENO

    ARRIVAL OF THE CURSO DE PREPACIÓN PARTICIPANTS

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Yolanda Navea, AR
    Sr. Myrna Arcegono, AR

11
  • All day
    August 11, 2019

    PATRONAL FIESTA OF SAN ROQUE PARISH
    Saipan, CNMI
    Time: 4:00 P.M. (Saipan Time)
    Presider: Most Rev. Ryan Jimenez, D.D.

12
  • All day
    August 12, 2019

    2nd FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE QUASI PARISH OF N.S. DEL CARMEN IN HNATUAN, SURIGAO DEL SUR

    RST: MASS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT / CLASSES START

    APAC CONVENTION 2019
    Venue & Date: Ketapang, Indonesia / August 12-14, 2019
    Theme: “Augustinians on Common Mission in Indonesia”

13
  • All day
    August 13, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Casiano Cosmilla

1415
  • All day
    August 15, 2019

    SOLEMNITY OF THE ASSUMPTION OF MARY

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION
    Mo. Ma. del Carmen, OAR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Mamerta de San Agustin, AR

16
  • All day
    August 16, 2019

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION (1980-2019)
    Fray Constantino Real

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Adoracion Bonto, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Tomasa de San Jose, AR
    Sr. Ma. Leonila Pesado, AR

17
  • All day
    August 17, 2019

    ST. CLARE OF MONTEFALCO

    CARES: MASS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS IN HONOR OF ST. EZEKIEL MORENO
    @ St. Ezekiel Moreno Chapel (near Balon-Pari), Inagawan, Puerto Princesa City, Palawan
    Time: 10:00 A.M.
    Presider: Fray Regino Bangcaya

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Mashyll Entac, AR

18
  • All day
    August 18, 2019

    ANTICIPATED FIESTA MASS IN HONOR OF ST. EZEKIEL MORENO
    @ San Roque Parish, Saipan, CNMI
    Time: 6:00 AM (Saipan Time)
    Presider: to be communicated later

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS
    @ St. Ezekiel Moreno Chapel, Fanhua, Zhangzhi township, Pingtung County (Diocese of Kaohsiung), Taiwan
    Time: 10:00 A.M.
    Presider: Fray Nimrod Launio

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION OF A RELIGIOUS BROTHER (2001-2019)
    Fray Raymund Rueann Alcedo

19
  • All day
    August 19, 2019

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE SICK (cf. LAMP II, 5c)

    SOLEMNITY OF ST. EZEKIEL MORENO
    Be reminded of the plenary indulgence we may obtain today!

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS OF THE ST. EZEKIEL MORENO QUASI PARISH, CAIDIOCAN, VALENCIA, NEGROS ORIENTAL
    Time: 10:00 AM
    Presider: to be communicated later

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS @ SEMONORE (Antipolo City)
    Time: 10:00 AM
    Presider: to be communicated later

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS @ SNTP Church (Quezon City)
    Time: 6:00 PM Presider: to be communicated later

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS @ St. Ezekiel Moreno Chapel (Pingkian, OLCP-Miranila, Quezon City)
    Time & Presider: to be communicated later

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS @ St. Ezekiel Moreno Monastery (Bacolod City)
    Time: 8:00 A.M.
    Presider: Most Rev. Vicente Navarra, D.D.

    PATRONAL FIESTA MASS @ St. Ezekiel Moreno Chapel, Mile 14, Kamabai, Sierra Leone
    Time: 10:30 A.M.
    Presider: Fray Mark Ryan Prado

    RENEWAL INPUT SEMINAR ON “MAXIMUM ILLUD”
    Time: 3:00 P.M. Venue: Recoletos de Provincialate

    1st ANNIVERSARY OF THE ESTABLISHMENT OF RECOLETOS DE BALAMBAN COMMUNITY

    START OF THE NOVENA TO ST. AUGUSTINE

    90th ANNIVERSARY OF THE CANONICAL ERECTION OR DIOCESAN APPROVAL OF THE CONGREGATION OF THE AUGUSTINIAN RECOLLECT SISTERS (1929-2019) BY ARCHBP. O’DOHERTY OF MANILA UPON THE RECOMMENDATION OF THEN PRIOR GENERAL, FRAY GERARDO LARRONDO, OAR.

    QUEZON CITY DAY

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2002-2019)
    Fray Louie Gabinete
    Fray Jerome Virtudazo

    (2007-2019)
    Fray Ian Anthony Espartero
    Fray Allan Jacinto

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    Sr. Ma. Quiteria Ragundiaz, OAR

20
  • All day
    August 20, 2019

    27th ASEACCU (Association of Southeast and East Asian Catholic Colleges and Universities) ANNUAL CONFERENCE
    Venue: Sogang University, Seoul, South Korea
    Inclusive dates: August 20-23, 2019
    Theme: “Reconciliation and the Situation in the East Asian Region”

    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION OF BISHOP-ELECT JOSE RAMIREZ RAPADAS III (AS BISHOP OF ILIGAN, Lanao del Norte)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Charlemagne Marin (simple prof.)

21
  • All day
    August 21, 2019

    ST. POPE PIUS X

    NINOY AQUINO DAY

    INSTALLATION OF BP. DENNIS VILLAROJO, D.D. (BISHOP OF MALOLOS, Bulacan)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    Archbp. Jose Palma, D.D. (Archdiocese of Cebu)

22
  • All day
    August 22, 2019

    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION OF BISHOP-ELECT ROBERTO GAA (AS BISHOP OF NOVALICHES)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Leander Barrot
    Fray Paul Demillones

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Fray Lino Agunod (2007-2019)
    Sr. Ma. Fe Luna, AR
    Sr. Matilde del Rosario, AR

23
  • All day
    August 23, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Benecia Olaño, AR
    Sr. Gecel Polestico, AR

24
  • All day
    August 24, 2019

    INSTALLATION OF BISHOP ROBERTO GAA, D.D. (BISHOP OF NOVALICHES)

    USJ-R BALAMBAN: SOLIDARITY ENCAMPMENT
    August 24-25 HARANA KAY MARIA (feat. The Madrigal Singers, Himig Consolacion, & OAR Singing Priests)
    OLCP Miranila / 8:00 PM

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION (1963-2019)
    Fray Emeterio Buñao
    Fray Dunstan Hubert Decena

25
  • All day
    August 25, 2019

    250th ANNIVERSARY (1769-2019) OF THE ARRIVAL OF THE FIRST RECOLETOS MISSIONARIES IN THE MARIANAS

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1991-2019)
    Fray Eduardo Celiz, Jr.
    Fray Carmelo Borces
    Fray Leopoldo Estioko
    Fray Gaudencio Geronimo de Mesa
    Fray Nemesio Tolentin

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Veronica de los Santos, AR
    Sr. Andrea Cabunilas, AR

26
  • All day
    August 26, 2019

    NATIONAL HEROES’ DAY

    PATRONAL FIESTA OF THE ST. AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO QUASI PARISH-RECOLETOS, Inayawan, Cebu City
    10:00AM
    Mass Presider: to be communicated later

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1967-2019)
    Fray Rafael Cabarles

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Afra Medillo, AR

27
  • All day
    August 27, 2019

    FEAST OF ST. MONICA
    Be reminded of the plenary indulgence we may obtain today!

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Genoveva de Asis, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2009-2019)
    Fray Bob Cabanag

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Felicidad de Sto. Niño, AR

28
  • All day
    August 28, 2019

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE OAR MISSION (cf. LAMP II, 5c)

    SOLEMNITY OF ST. AUGUSTINE
    Be reminded of the plenary indulgence we may obtain today!

    CSNT-R/SPA-R: CULMINATION OF BUWAN NG WIKA

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Agustin Culaton

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION
    Sr. Shirley Nonato, OAR
    Sr. Ma. Quiteria Ragundiaz, OAR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1988-2019)
    Fray Raul Buhay

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Mo. Monica de San Joaquin, AR

29
  • All day
    August 29, 2019

    NATIONAL HEROES DAY

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    Mo. Lourdes Eizaguirre, OAR

30
  • All day
    August 30, 2019

    CST-R/USJ-R BALAMBAN: CLOSING OF BUWAN NG WIKA

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION
    Sr. Mo. Lourdes Eizaguirre, OAR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Consuelo Dangan, AR

31

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