LECTIO DIVINA: XI Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle B

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Translated by Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena, OAR

MK. 4:26-34 

 A. INVOCATION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT 

WE INVOKE THE HOLY SPIRIT USING THE WORDS OF ST. AUGUSTINE 

Come, Holy Spirit, by whom every devout soul, who believes in Christ, is sanctified to become a citizen of the City of God! (en. Ps. 45:8) Come, Holy Spirit, grant that we receive the motions of God; put in us your flame; enlighten us and raise us up to God (s. 128, 4). Amen. 

 B. LECTIO 

WITH THE HEART WELL DISPOSED, WITH SERENITY, READ SLOWLY THE FOLLOWING WORDS, SAVORING THEM AND ALLOWING YOURSELF TO BE TOUCHED BY THEM. 

He said, “This is how it is with the kingdom of God; it is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land and would sleep and rise night and day and the seed would sprout and grow, he knows not how. Of its own accord the land yields fruit, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And when the grain is ripe, he wields the sickle at once, for the harvest has come.” He said, “To what shall we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable can we use for it? It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth. But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.” With many such parables he spoke the word to them as they were able to understand it. Without parables he did not speak to them, but to his own disciples he explained everything in private.+ 

C. MEDITATIO 

LET US MEDITATE NOW WITH THE COMMENTARY OF ST. AUGUSTINE ON THESE WORDS OF THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ST. MARK. 

This Gospel text brings St. Augustine to think of the Passion of Christ. His moment of greatest humiliation and prostration is of the greatest glory and exaltation. Christ is the grain of mustard seed that dying on the cross as something insignificant, gave way to the big tree of the Church which today is spread throughout the whole world, and gathers in all the peoples. For this St. Augustine says: Sublime grace! It achieved its greatness precisely when the Jews considered it defeated. What greatness, what sublimity of someone who hang from a wood, of one crucified. [The Good Thief] Hung with someone hung from the cross, trusting in what is permanent, knew it was the grain of mustard. He did not yet see the tree, yet he already knew the seed.” (s. 111, 2).

And bound up to the Passion is the Resurrection. Christ is the keeper of the garden of the heart of every believer wherein the seed of faith is cultivated, which is as small as the mustard seed. St. Augustine is inspired in the Gospel text in which Mary Magdalene goes to the sepulcher on the morning of the resurrection, and not finding the body of Jesus, she searches for it, and in her enthusiasm confuses Jesus with the gardener. St. Augustine beautifully comments on this passage to point out that Christ is truly the gardener of the heart of every believer, where the mustard seed of faith must grow. St. Augustine comments thus: But Mary Magdalene thought that the risen Christ was the gardener. And, if you consider that we are his vegetable gardens, Christ is gardener. Is not the gardener the one who sowed the mustard seed, the smallest of grain yet full of vigor? It is the seed that grew, raised itself up and became a tree so big that the birds of the sky rest on its branches?… The mustard seed is insignificant, there is nothing as contemptible to the eyes, and yet nothing has as strong a flavor. Considering all that, what does it all mean but the extraordinary vigor and intimate strength of the faith of the Church?” (s. 246, 3).

St. Augustine also interprets the Gospel text to see in the smallness of the mustard seed and the few number of preachers of the Gospel: despite all this God builds his Church beginning from the smallness and the poverty, as seen in the mustard seed. St. Augustine comments thus: To this also refers what he answered them previously about the mustard seed: that first they must count on the faith necessary for the present life, faith that seems the smallest while we guard this treasure in vessels of clay, but which bustles about vigorously and ends up germinating. Our Lord Jesus Christ, who wants to pasture his flock through the ministry of servants, i.e., who wants to transplant his body to the believers as though they were slaughtered and then eaten, nourishes them here with the word of the faith and with the mystery of his Passion. He did not come to be served but to serve” (qu. eu. 2, 39, 3).

Finally, for St. Augustine, the Church was born from this in significant element of the preaching, and today it is extended like the mustard tree to all the ends of the earth. These are the words of St. Augustine: We have been born and have been gathered into the people of God in this world at the time in which that bush, born of the grain of the mustard seed has extended its branches; and in the time in which that leaven, at first insignificant, let us recognize it symbolized, let us recognize him as already hayng fermented three measures of flour, i.e. the whole orbit of the earth, let us recognize him symbolized in the mustard seed. Let us separate for a while the thought of growing into a bush, and from the extension of its branches, and thus like that glory in which the birds of the sky come and rest, let us put our attention in how the size of the bush which amaze us or from what small origin it came” (en. Ps. 68, 1,1). 

D. ORATIO 

WITH THE TEXT, LET US NOW PRAY FROM THE DEPTHS OF OUR HEART. I SUGGEST THE FOLLOWING PHRASES AND QUESTIONS THAT CAN AWAKEN IN YOU DIALOGUE WITH GOD, AND AT THE SAME TIME CAN GIVE RISE TO AFFECTIONS AND SENTIMENTS IN YOUR DIALOGUE WITH GOD. DO NOT MOVE TO THE NEXT PHRASE OR QUESTION IF YOU CAN STILL CONTINUE DIALOGUING WITH GOD IN ONE OF THEM. IT IS NOT A MATTER OF EXHAUSTING THE LIST, BUT OF HELPING YOU TO PRAY WITH SOME POINTS THAT BETTER FIT YOUR PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. 

a. “The seed germinates and grows, and he knows not how” Mk. 4:27). 

•What are the signs in your life indicating that the seed of the kingdom is growing in you? 
•What can you do to let the seed grow in you? 

b. “Christ is the gardener. Isn’t it the gardener who sowed the mustard seed, that smallest seed but full of vigor?” (s. 246,3) 
•From your own personal experience, why is Christ the gardener of your heart? 
•How can you recognize in your life the vigor and the strength of the small seed of the Word of God and of faith?

E. CONTEMPLATIO 

I PROPOSE TO YOU SOME POINTS FOR AFFECTIVE INTERIOR CONTEMPLATION. ONCE AGAIN, YOU NEED NOT FOLLOW ALL OF IT, RATHER YOU CAN CHOOSE WHAT FITS YOUR PERSONAL EXPERIENCE. 

a. Contemplate how the words of God grows in your heart, Allow it to expand and take roots in your being, removing all that do not pertain to the kingdom of God. 
b. Contemplate Christ as the Gardener working in your heart, and sowing the small seed of faith and his word. Live the moment of prayer with receptiveness and gratitude. 

F. COMMUNICATIO 

THINK OF EVERYTHING THAT YOU CAN SHARE WITH THOSE AROUND YOU ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE YOU HAD WITH GOD, ESPECIALLY CONCERNING THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST AND THE UNIVERSAL JUDGMENT. THE FOLLOWING POINTS CAN HELP YOU AS GUIDE TO SHARE WITH YOUR COMMUNITY THE EXPERIENCE OF THE LECTIO DIVINA ON THIS TEXT. 

• What have I discovered about God and about myself in this moment of prayer? 
• How can I apply this text of Scripture at this moment of my life? What light does it give me? What challenges does it put before me? 
• What concrete commitment does this text of Scripture ask of me in my spiritual life, in my community life? 
• What has been my dominant sentiment during this moment of prayer?

G. FINAL PRAYER OF ST. AUGUSTINE 

Turning towards the Lord: Lord God, Father Almighty, with a pure heart, as far as our littleness permits, allow us to give you our most devoted and sincere thanks, begging with all our strength from your particular goodness, that by your power you may drive away the enemy from all our thoughts and actions; that you may increase our faith, govern our mind, give us spiritual thoughts, and bring us to your happiness, through your Son Jesus Christ, our Lord, who with you lives and reigns, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, forever and ever. Amen (en, Ps. 150:8). 

“We shall be happy if we put into action what we hear and sing. Our listening is our sowing, putting it into action is the fruit of the seed” (s. 23A, 1).

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena, OAR

Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Priest/Religious/Bible Professor of the Order of Augustinian Recollects in the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno.

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< 2021 >
July
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    1
  • All day
    July 1, 2021

    START OF MES DE PREPARACIÓN FOR SOLEMN PROFESSION

    Venue: SEMONORE, Antipolo City
    Fray Ricky John Austria Fray Julius James Tinapao Fray James Erold Gatinao

    Let us pray for them.

     

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Norma Ouano, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Maribel Cayabyab, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Lucena Satorre, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Rakyla Nadine Samuel (RAY-Cavite)

     

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (2017-2021)
    Fray Ricky John Austria
    Fray Ivan Cuison
    Fray Jhyryx Vincent Gamulo
    Fray James Gantinao

     

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Benedicta Marco, AR

2
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    July 2, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray John Arnold Lozada (novice)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    (2014-2021)
    +Fray Delfin Castillo

3
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    July 3, 2021

    ST. THOMAS, APOSTLE

    SIMPLE PROFESSION OF VOWS
    SEMONORE, Antipolo City

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Merriam Capellan, AR
    Bro. John Cabanes, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Filomena Yu, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

4
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    July 4, 2021

    14TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR VOCATIONS (cf. LAMP 5c)

    CELEBRATION OF THE GOLDEN FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF OLMC PARISH, CEBU:
    BULAK SA CARMEL FESTIVAL 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Lolita Cruz, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Teresa Corentin, SAR (ManilaChapter)
    Sis. Josefina Cresidio, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Filomena Mamaril, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Fray Loreto Ceasar Dacanay (2016-2021)
    +Sr. Martina de la Santisima Trinidad, AR
    +Sis. Zenaida Flores, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

5
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    July 5, 2021

    (NOTE: THE RENEWAL VISIT IN PALAWAN COMMUNITIES IS POSTPONED DUE TO TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS IN THE AREA.)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Filomena Castaño, AR
    Sr. Jeraldine Hernandez, AR
    Rica Quiroz (RAY-Provincialate)

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1981-2021 / 40th) Fray Dionisio Selma

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Margarita de la Paz, AR

6
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    July 6, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Allan Rubett Cabatian
    Sr. Ma. Alma Alaras, AR
    Sis. Cecile Castañeda, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Evangeline Cariño, SAR (Valencia Chapter)
    Lalaine Karylle Ramos (RAY-San Carlos)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Vicenta Cutanda, AR

7
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    July 7, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Radni Caparas
    Sis. Sylvia Estacio, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Geraldine Noreen Bulot, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Marissa Adolfo, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Angela Palen (RAY-Provincialate)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Juliet Liagao, SAR (Baguio Chapter)

8
  • All day
    July 8, 2021

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Marcelina Diaz, AR
    Sis. Isabelita Tenorio, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Fanny Rafer, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Mary Ann Nuñez (RAY-Caidiocan)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Juliana Mandia, AR

9
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    July 9, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Cirilo Andan
    Sr. Ma. Alma Limotlimot, AR
    Shiena Mae Quimada (RAY-Laray)

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION (RELIGIOUS BROTHER)
    (2005-2021)
    Fray Teodulo Hayahay

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Lourdes Tinoy, AR

10
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    July 10, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Ferdinand Concepcion, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Sis. Violeta Encarnacion, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION (RELIGIOUS BROTHERS)
    (2004-2021)
    Fray Feliciano Campomanes, Jr.
    Fray Jonathan Jamero

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1982-2021)
    Fray Leonardo Pauligue
    Fray René Paglinawan
    Fray Joseph Philip Trayvilla

11
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    July 11, 2021

    15TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    SEA SUNDAY

    “During this Sea Sunday, we are invited to become aware of the hardships and difficulties that seafarers face daily and of the valuable service provided by the Apostleship of the Sea in being Church who bears witness of the Lord’s mercy and tenderness in order to preach the Gospel in the ports of the whole world.” (Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Gerarda de la Riarte, AR Sr. Anacleta Berino, AR
    Bro. Marcelino Espena, SAR (Manila Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1976-2021)
    Fray Ceferino Roberto Añez
    Fray Federico Gregorio
    Fray Lauro Larlar

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sen. Marcelo Fernan (Brother-General of the Order)
    +Sr. Trinidad de Sgdo. Corazon de Jesus, AR
    +Sis. Vicenta Maranga, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

12
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    July 12, 2021

    RENEWAL VISIT 2021
    RECOLETOS DE BACOLOD / July 12-14

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Lino Sumbillo Jr., SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Luisa Acebedo, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Betty Palatino, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)

13
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    July 13, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Buenaventura Famadico, DD (Diocese of San Pablo)
    Sis. Alma Ngalongalay, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Elyssa Santos (RAY-Cavite)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1975-2021)
    Fray Regino Bangcaya

14
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    July 14, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Griselda Gruba, AR
    Sis. Gladys Fontanos, SAR (Baguio Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1974-2021)
    Fray Dionisio Cachero

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Manuela Ferrer, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

15
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    July 15, 2021

    RENEWAL VISIT 2021
    RECOLETOS DE TALISAY / July 15-16

    CELEBRATION OF THE GOLDEN FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF OLMC PARISH, CEBU: VIGIL MASS
    Time: 5:30 P.M.
    Presider: Most Rev. Jose Palma, D.D.

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Cynthia Dondiego, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1973-2021)
    Fray Hernando Coja

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Tresenia Jo Aguilar, SAR (Baguio Chapter)

16
  • All day
    July 16, 2021

    50TH PATRONAL FIESTA & CELEBRATION OF THE GOLDEN FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish-Recoletos/ Cebu City
    Theme: “One in Faith, Love and Service as a Parish”
    Fiesta Mass: 9:30 A.M.
    Presider: Msgr. Ruben Labajo

    25th FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF SARF-ANTIPOLO CHAPTER

    15TH PATRONAL FIESTA
    Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Parish / Inagawan, Puerto Princesa City
    Fiesta Mass: 10:00 A.M.
    Presider: Most. Rev. Socrates Mesiona, D.D. MSP

    *Special intention for those who perished in the July 16, 1990 earthquake (particularly in Baguio).

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Carmencita Indolos, AR
    Mo. Cecilia Rosa Talangpaz
    Sis. Carmencita Fontanilla, SAR (Manila Chapter) Sis. Evelyn Guirnela, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Carmen Imbo, SAR (Valencia Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1978-2021)
    Fray Enrico Peter Silab

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    Mo. Ma. del Carmen, OAR (Bacolod Monastery)

17
  • All day
    July 17, 2021

    RENEWAL VISIT 2021
    RECOLETOS DE SAN CARLOS / July 17-19

    4 TH PATRONAL FIESTA
    Quasi Parish of Nuestra Señora del Carmen / Hinatuan, Surigao del Sur
    Fiesta Mass: 9:30 A.M.
    Presider: Most Rev. Raul Dael, D.D.

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Kenneth Joseph Onda
    Sr. Ma. Soledad Torres, AR
    Bro. Romeo Mraquez Lincoran, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Angela Jillian del Rosario (RAY-Cavite)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Martina de San Miguel, AR
    +Sr. Martha Llanes, AR
    +Sis. Carmelita Arresgado, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

18
  • All day
    July 18, 2021

    16TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Teresa Bautista, AR
    Sis. Corazon Padua, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1981-2021 / 40th)
    Fray Samson Silloriquez

19
  • All day
    July 19, 2021

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

    RENEWAL VISIT 2021

    RECOLETOS DE TAMBO / July 19-20

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray William Cordero Jr.
    Sis. Liberty Braganza, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)
    Sis. Juliana Rodiño, SAR (Talisay Chapter)

20
  • All day
    July 20, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Gaudencio Geronimo de Mesa
    Sr. Ma. Nita Atencio, AR
    Sr. Geronima Primor, AR
    Sis. Margarita Hicban, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Vicenta de San Agustin, AR

21
  • All day
    July 21, 2021

    RENEWAL VISIT 2021
    RECOLETOS DE CAIDIOCAN / July 21-22

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Ginger Acosta, AR
    Bro. Daniel Delapaz, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Feliciana Vasquez, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Ma. Edwin Ilagan, AR

22
  • All day
    July 22, 2021-July 23, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Cleofe Villarante, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Magdalena Gonzaga, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Bro. Clemente San Gabriel Sr., SAR (Tondo Chapter)

23
  • All day
    July 23, 2021

    RENEWAL VISIT 2021
    RECOLETOS DE VALENCIA / July 23-24

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Francisco Antonio
    Fray Rouel Sia
    Sis. Maria Carmeta Suiza, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Chona Cabiguen, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sis. Gina Quijano, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

24
  • All day
    July 24, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Arian Josef Ocheda
    Fray James Dexter Tanquis
    Sis. Imee Matullano, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)
    Eloisa Manalang (RAY-Miranila)

25
  • All day
    July 25, 2021

    WORLD DAY FOR GRANDPARENTS AND THE ELDERLY

    85th anniversary (1936-2021) of the Martyrdom of Bld. Vicente Soler
    & Companion Martyrs of Motril

    FIL-MISSION SUNDAY

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jose Ernil Almayo
    Fray James Esplanada (simply prof.)
    Sr. Ma. Gorreti Cui, AR
    Sis. Amelia Sison, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Helen Caballes, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

     

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Genoveva del Sgdo. Corazon de Jesus, AR

    +Sis. Wilma Digna Bayona, SAR (Inagawan Chapter)

26
  • All day
    July 26, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joaquin Jamelo
    Sr. Ma. Olympia Bolatete, AR
    Sis. Ma. Wendie Oane, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Lualhati Navo, SAR (Cavite Chapter)
    Sis. Evangeline Gubatao, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Prudencia de la Virgen del Pilar, AR
    +Sis. Delia Vega, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

27
  • All day
    July 27, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jorge Peligro
    Sr. Ma. Eulalia Magquilat, AR
    Sis. Ma. Victoria Abagat, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)

28
  • All day
    July 28, 2021

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE MISSIONS (cf. LAMP 5c)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ma. Irma Castrodes, AR
    Sr. Ma. Ligaya Satur, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Sr. Patrocinio Cabanlet, AR

29
  • All day
    July 29, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Josephine Lapuz, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Mo. Gertrudes del Espiritu Santo, AR
    Sis. Pedro Avedanio, SAR (Baguio Chapter)

30
  • All day
    July 30, 2021

    END OF THE MES DE PREPARACIÓN (Antipolo)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sis. Sunshine Cabiguen, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Reynz Rey Tupaz (RAY-Tambo)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    +Mo. Cecilia Rosa de Jesus Talangpaz
    +Sr. Asuncion de San Jose, AR
    +Sr. Magdalena del Espiritu Santo, AR
    +Sr. Magdalena Sabano, AR
    +Mo. Ma. Nicolasa de San Jose
    +Sr. Vicenta de San Agustin, AR

31
  • All day
    July 31, 2021

    BIRTHDAY
    Bro. Eduardo Tolentino, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)

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