SARF de Filipinas presents newly elected National Officers; celebrates online Christmas Party 2020

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by Sis Edelyn Layumas-Celeste, SAR and Sis Herminia Villanueva, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

The Secular Augustinian Recollect Fraternity held its very first Virtual National Christmas Party on December 20, 2020 via Zoom, as a pandemic-friendly alternative to a face-to-face social gathering. The event made history for SARF as, for the very first time, the community was able to hold a National Christmas Party, albeit virtually, attended by all the eighteen strong chapters of the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno.  

The event was ably hosted by our SARF National Secretary Sis. Marwin Oane, SAR, with the competent technical support of Bro. Jocabz Cabanes, SAR, and Bro. Jayzl Villafania Nebrê, SAR.

Sis. Herminia R. Villanueva, SAR, President of SARF de CST-R San Carlos, led the opening prayer, glorifying God as the source of all our blessings, amidst the health crisis that the world is experiencing. 

Fray Dionisio Q. Selma, OAR, Prior Provincial of the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno, in his Christmas message, assured us that we will never be alone and that the birth of Jesus is a message of hope. He further said that Jesus may not come in majesty and splendor, but He comes with compassion, to suffer with us, and to be with us, as a Brother, as a Father, as a companion. The strength of Christianity is in seeing Jesus in others, in bringing Jesus to others … in those who are thirsty, hungry and homeless. “Jesus is more than the pandemic; this is the reason why we continue to celebrate Christmas. Our achievements, investments, money and gifts may disappear, things that we associate with Christmas, but Jesus will remain with us forever,” Fray Selma shared.

Fray Emeterio D. Bunao, OAR, SARF Assistant National Spiritual Adviser, reflected on our charismatic identity as a community of Augustinian Recollects. He acknowledged SARF’s apostolic work especially in the contribution of aid to the poor. As one family, Fray Buñao said that “we anchor our hope and strength on the presence of the Blessed Virgin Mary.” He then extended his Christmas wish that “Mary and Joseph would bring us all together and that we may continue to live our charismatic identity with one heart and one soul; and that the Lord continue to shower us with hope and that we may not give up our communitarian spirit.”

Sister Marwin Oane then presented the newly-elected SARF NATIONAL OFFICERS for the Years 2021-2023, to wit:

PresidentBRO. EDWIN RUIZ, SAR (SARF de Antipolo)
Vice President for LuzonSIS. EVELYN BALINGUIT, SAR (SARF de Antipolo)
Vice President for VisayasSIS. FE VIOLETA TARING, SAR (SARF de Valencia)
Luzon CouncilorsSIS. ZENY LAPUZ, SAR (SARF de Provincialate)
BRO. JOCABZ CABANES, SAR (SARF de Baguio)
Palawan CouncilorSIS. CARMENCITA ONDA, SAR (SARF de Brooke’s Point)
Cebu CouncilorSIS. GLORIA RICARTE, SAR (SARF de Cebu)
Negros CouncilorSIS. CARMENDA LEONORAS, SAR (SARF de Bacolod)

In his message, Bro. Edwin Ruiz, SARF National President, said that on this particular day, the SARF have chosen faith over fear to gather as one united in the purpose of faith, brotherhood and service. He then extended his humble gratitude to all members of the community for the trust and support bestowed on him and said that all credit for all the accomplishments that has been achieved should be given to the whole SARF community.

Bro. Edwin then reminded the community that we must not exist as a separate entity, because we are nothing without our team who unselfishly shared time, talent and treasure and their untiring support for the success of all the initiatives undertaken by SARF. He also acknowledged and thanked the support of all officers and members of the different local chapters. He likewise expressed gratitude for the unwavering support of our Prior Provincial, our National Spiritual Adviser and all local Spiritual Advisers who had been with us every step of the way. Lastly, Bro. Edwin said that all that we do is for the praise and glory of our Almighty God, without whom all this will not be possible.

Fray Samson Silloriquez, OAR, Spiritual Adviser of the newly established SARF de Our Lady of Visitation Parish-Recoletos Chapter in Urbiztondo, Pangasinan, extended his Christmas greetings to all. He conveyed that it is the birth of Jesus that we are celebrating however the situation is. He further conveyed that it is fear that brings us courage… In uncertainty, Jesus is our hope… In sadness, He is our joy… In darkness, He is our Light.  We must put our trust in God. We must rejoice and be glad because God is Emmanuel. God is with us, He is our joy and our hope.

One interesting feature of the event was the “Kumustahan”, wherein a poll was given as to what our brothers and sisters perceived the year 2020 to be. Those who attended the virtual event would select from among the choices of inner thoughts or disposition for the year 2020 that applies to each of the members of the community.  Majority thought that the year has been full of ups and downs, but it also gave them the chance and reason to deepen their faith through prayer.

Virtual games then followed which were so engaging, fun and easy to follow, and which answers were given by a chosen member of each chapter. The Christmas Pictionary and Name that Tune were group games, while the Bring Me Game with a Subsequent Task was an individual game.

The main event and the most awaited part of the virtual program was the presentation number of each chapter to which Sis. Marwin thanked each one for the effort and time spent to come up with their respective presentation which showcased the talent and the cooperation of each member . 

The chapters which would perform their presentations were divided into three groups.

First in line were the SARs of SEMoNoRe Chapter Antipolo who sang and danced to the upbeat music, “Jingle Bell Rock”, all dressed up in flaming red tops.

The sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus High School Chapter, Brooke’s Point, Palawan, donning Filipiniana costumes, entertained the virtual audience with a medley of Tagalog Christmas songs.

All the way from Sierra Leone, Africa, the members of SARF de Kamalo of St. Paul Parish, crooned an animated Christmas song in acapella. The whole community was indeed very happy that they participated in the virtual event, thanks to their Spiritual Adviser Fray Dennis Castillo, OAR.

SARF de Provincialate, Quezon City impressed the virtual viewers with their own distinctive version of “12 Days of Christmas” while members of the newly-established chapter of SARF de Our Lady of the Visitation Parish-Recoletos, Urbiztondo, Pangasinan swayed gracefully to a variety of bouncy English and Tagalog Christmas melodies.

Displaying sheer confidence, grace and creativity, the brothers and sisters of SARF de Bacolod, moved rhythmically to Mariah Carey’s “O Santa”. Indeed, one can see the support and cooperation shown by the chapter’s members and feel the enthusiasm they felt while performing their number.

SARF de Cavite Chapter members delightfully and joyfully sang “Pasko na Naman” and “Christmas in Our Hearts” dressed in their Christmas-colored red outfits while two young members of the Our Lady of Consolation Parish, SARF de Laray gracefully danced  to “Oops” by Little Mix, showing all the exuberance of youth.

Performing to Wham’s “Last Christmas”, a few sisters from SARF de San Carlos exhibited graceful fluidity in spite of the years and endurance beyond their normal powers.

The Our Lady of the Abandoned Parish – SARF de Valencia took center stage with their Cha-cha number to the music  of “Feliz Navidad”.

SARF de Baguio brought the house down with its rendition of “Mi Burrito Sabanero”, a Christmas Song about a donkey who travelled to the manger to see Jesus. The sisters gracefully danced to the lucid vocals of Bro. Jocabz Cabanes, SAR, who sang in solo the title song while joining in the dance himself. Call that multi-tasking!!

Observing safety protocols by wearing masks on their faces and with Santa hats on their heads, the sisters of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish – SARF de Cebu performed ecstatically and buoyantly to “All I Want for Christmas” without any apparent sign of weariness but with all excitement and eagerness.

Showing to all and sundry that Jesus is the reason for the season, the sisters of RFC – Miranila, wearing red face masks, gently swayed to the vocals of Sis. Marlin Regalado, singing the song  “Mama Mary, O Where is Jesus Christ?”, their modified version of the  song, “Mamacita, Donde Esta Santa Claus?”. The lyrics of their song included a line of prayer for mercy and love for the OAR religious of Miranila.

Last but definitely not the least to perform were the sisters from San Nicolasd de Tolentino Parish Chapter, Talisay City who gave a rocking performance to the tune of “Jingle Bell Rock” with the facade of the parish church at the background.

Just before the event drew to a close, a sneak preview of all presentations was given. As minor technical glitches occurred during the supposed voting on the winners of the presentation numbers, it was then agreed that the video of the presentations be sent to the Spiritual Advisers and they then be requested to serve as judges of the competition. 

The announcement of the winners of both the Chapter presentations and the games were made via Zoom on December 28, 2020. Sis. Marwin Oane, SAR informed the National Council Members and the Local Chapter Presidents that, instead of the Spiritual Advisers serving as judges of the competition, they got the service of three persons to be the judges: Fray Rene Paglinawan, OAR, the monks at St. Ezekiel Moreno Monastery and from the lay, a retired public high school teacher.

The winners of the Chapter Presentations were:

First Prize  – SARF de Baguio, with a score of 93.33%, winning P5,000.00.

Second Prize – SARF de Bacolod, with a score of 92.00%, winning P3,000.00.

Third Prize– SARF de Urbiztondo, with a score of 88.67%, winning P2,000.00.

All the non-winning chapters received P1,000.00 each.

The winners of the Christmas Party games were:

First Prize, with 19 correct answers was SARF de Bacolod with a prize of 10 pieces SARF T-Shirts.  Second Prize, with 18 correct answers, was SARF de Antipolo with a prize of 7 SARF T-Shirts. Third Prize, with 15 correct answers, was SARF de Miranila with a prize of 5 SARF T-Shirts.          

The virtual program culminated with a Closing Prayer by Fray Julius James Tinapao, OAR, who intoned a prayer from our Father St. Augustine.

The traditional picture-taking/screenshot followed.

Everybody had a great time and spirits were uplifted amidst this time of tremendous anxiety. We deeply thank the Lord for the wonderful opportunity of this SARF Christmas gathering, albeit virtually.

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< 2021 >
January
SMTuWThFS
     1
  • All day
    January 1, 2021

    SOLEMNITY OF MARY, MOTHER OF GOD

    54th WORLD DAY OF PEACE

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Cristita Cha, AR

2
  • All day
    January 2, 2021

    ATTENTION: Provincial-Level Christmas Party is CANCELLED.

    SIMPLE PROFESSION OF VOWS OF FRAY CHRISLEAN REY PAMILAGA
    SEMONORE, Antipolo City / 10:00 A.M.

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Conrado Flores, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Emma Toro, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Sis. Marcelina Nicolas, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Rizalina Salera, SAR (Cavite Chapter)

3
  • All day
    January 3, 2021

    SOLEMNITY OF THE EPIPHANY

    500th Year of the Excommunication of Martin Luther (1521-2021)

    60th Anniversary of the Establishment of a Catholic Hierarchy in Indonesia

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Bella Mojica, AR
    Sis. Basilisa Espinola, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Carmencita Abis, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Melodina Paragat, SAR (Talisay Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Clemencia Ranin, AR

4
  • All day
    January 4, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Ernil Orbecido, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Sis Mary Grace Susas, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Fran Cheska Marie Andan (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Regina Cadiz, AR
    +Sr. Adelaida Elli, AR

5
  • All day
    January 5, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis Estelita Divinagracia, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Bro. Jose Pepito Gabriel Bonete, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Emiliana Carao, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Leila Barizo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Cleofe Claro, AR
    +Fray Casiano Cosmilla
    [Attention Recoletos de Manila Community: “the community to which he belongs will celebrate… Mass on the first anniversary of his death” (Add. Code 94a)]

6
  • All day
    January 6, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Sylvia Evina, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Grace Aba-a, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Juana de la Merced, AR
    +Bro. Rustico Magdales, SAR (Manila Chapter)

7
  • All day
    January 7, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Eliza Stubbs, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

8
  • All day
    January 8, 2021

    RST: START OF ENROLMENT

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ian Anthony Espartero
    Sr. Leticia Cerdeño, AR

9
  • All day
    January 9, 2021

    FEAST OF THE BLACK NAZARENE
    (The traditional Traslación is canceled due to Covid-19)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Rosario Bianes, AR
    Sis. Marcelina Taguinod, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    |+Sr. Dominga Gargarita, AR

10
  • All day
    January 10, 2021

    FEAST OF THE BAPTISM OF THE LORD

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Luz Asuncion Nitura, AR
    +Sr. Paulina de la Purisima Corazon de Maria, AR

11
  • All day
    January 11, 2021

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Catalina Ruiz, AR
    Sis. Elena Dagdag, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Ian Gabrielle Canlubo (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Zita Lloren, AR
    +Sis. Elena Caballero, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

12
  • All day
    January 12, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Reynaldo Jaranilla
    Sis. Josephine Guinto, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Bro. Hilario Torcedo, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    +Sr. Ma. Fortunata Gayumale Gaspillo, AR

13
  • All day
    January 13, 2021

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    (1998-2021)
    Archbp. Jose Palma, D.D. (Archdiocese of Cebu)

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Jonathan Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Bro. Antonio Sonsona, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Mo. Rosario Rosales, AR

14
  • All day
    January 14, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Emilia Madrigal, AR
    Bro. Jose Valdez, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Luisa Gumiran, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Esterlita Gracia, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

15
  • All day
    January 15, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Sr. Ma. Marcela de la Cruz, AR
    Bro. Maximo Epanto, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Virgin de la Consolacion, AR

16
  • All day
    January 16, 2021

    COMMEMORATION OF THE DEAD RELATIVES OF THE MEMBERS OF THE ORDER

    BIRTHDAY
    Mo. Maria del Carmen, OAR (Bacolod)
    Sr. Zerah Cordero, AR
    Sis. Alice Mojica, SAR (Cavite Chapter)
    Sis. Bernarda Tan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Lucia Degamo, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Amelia Casiño, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

17
  • All day
    January 17, 2021

    FEAST OF THE STO. NINO

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Corvin Maturan
    Sis. Belen Taniagao, SAR (Miranila Chapter / Trial)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Celedonia de la Santissima Trinidad, AR
    +Sr. Cesaria Barbarona, AR

18
  • All day
    January 18, 2021

    WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY
    Inclusive dates: January 18-25, 2021
    Theme: “Abide in my love and you shall bear much fruit” (John 16:1-17)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joseph Dexter Palagtiosa
    Sis. Guia Gonzales, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

19
  • All day
    January 19, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Cleofe Maria Agua, AR
    Sis. Angelica Tejada, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Myrna Amante, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

20
  • All day
    January 20, 2021

    ST. SEBASTIAN (PATRON SAINT OF MANILA & CAVITE COMMUNITIES, DIOCESE OF BACOLOD)

    SSC-R MANILA’s FOUNDATION CELEBRATIONS
    Inclusive dates: January 20-22,2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Adelina Reyes, AR
    Sis. Mercedes Velada, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

21
  • All day
    January 21, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Urbano Galanido
    Fray Jerome Virtudazo
    Sis. Leticia de Silva, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Alice Catulong, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Anecita Paglinawan, SAR (Laray Chapter)

22
  • All day
    January 22, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Victor Bendico, DD (Bishop of Baguio)

23
  • All day
    January 23, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Marciano Cleofas, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Gloria Acosta, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Esterlina Silva, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Rosemarie Gaspar, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Judith Mondejar (RAY-Caidiocan)
    Kathrine Bacalso (RAY-Laray)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Gertrudis del Pilar, AR
    +Sr. Cresencia Vailoces, AR

24
  • All day
    January 24, 2021

    SUNDAY OF THE WORD OF GOD
    [NOTE: Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter, Motu proprio Aperuit illis, published on 30 September 2019, establishes that “the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time is to be devoted to the celebration, study and dissemination of the Word of God”.]

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Paz Bawagan, AR
    Sr. Faith Niña Fuertes, AR
    Sis. Florida San Juan, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Raymunda Co, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Analyn Martinez (RAY-Valencia)

25
  • All day
    January 25, 2021

    SOLEMNITY OF THE CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL

    CSNT-Rs 50th (1971-2021) FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY Inclusive dates: January 25-30, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Erlinda Casaje, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Bro. Rodelio Gasparillo, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Bro. Feddie Junsay, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Joelle Maria Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ma. Lucia Sagmit, AR

26
  • All day
    January 26, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Cristopher Maspara
    Sis. Henrietta Morales, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
    (2005-2021)
    Most Rev. Reynaldo Evangelista, D.D. (Diocese of Imus)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Margarita Zafra, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

27
  • All day
    January 27, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Marilyn Cula, AR
    Sr. Remilyn Leonido, AR
    Sis. Evelyn Balingit, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Murita Jara, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

28
  • All day
    January 28, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Louie Gabinete

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Fernanda del Pilar, AR
    Sr. Ines Garcia, AR

29
  • All day
    January 29, 2021

    LAUNCHING OF HEART SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN 2021 / Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno only

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Francisca Rojas, AR
    Sis. Lourdes Insigne, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Jona Mendoza (RAY-Miranila)

30
  • All day
    January 30, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jonathan Caballero
    Sr. Angelica Fuentes, AR
    Sr. Pascualina Peral, AR
    Sis. Violeta Siozon, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Fedencia dela Criz, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)
    Sis. Minerva Alcarde, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

31
  • All day
    January 31, 2021

    4TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    68th WORLD LEPROSY DAY

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Josephine Ativo, AR
    Sis. Saturnina Antolihao, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Lance Raven Lapinig (RAY-Talisay)

      

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