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Pasasalamat Volume 21, Number 3, December 2005
Selected articles only 



In a solemn ceremony within the Eucharistic celebration last December 8, 2005, at Santuario de San Pedro Bautista, Quezon City, friars, families and friends witnessed the ordination to priesthood of three of our brothers and another five to diaconate.


Of those ordained to the priesthood, two are Vietnamese Franciscans who came to the Philippines for studies.  One of them has been assigned with the pioneering group of friars in Myanmar right after his ordination to the diaconate, also here in the Philippines, and came back only to be ordained to the priesthood.


Those ordained to the priesthood were Rev. Rey D. Canonoy, OFM of Tucdao, Kawayan, Biliran, Rev. Francis D. Pho, OFM of Saigon, Vietnam, and Rev. Peter D. Le, OFM of Ba Ria, Vietnam.


Those ordained to the diaconate were Cristino R. Pine, OFM of Tanay, Rizal; Napoly M. Pasion, OFM of Sta. Ana, Pampanga; Dante L. Barcelona, OFM of  New Cebu, Pres. Roxas, N. Cotabato;  Emiliano Q. Ibera, III, OFM of  Sta. Teresita, Cagayan; and Jay I. Saniel, OFM of San Isidro, N. Samar.  They are presently assigned in various friaries around Metro-Manila as they finish their theological studies with the Inter-Congregational Theological Center (ICTC).


The solemn celebration was presided by the Most Rev. Teodoro Buhain, Jr., DD, Auxiliary Bishop-Emeritus of the Archdiocese of Manila.

herson madayag, olas seminarian, plays francis


old, exciting story restaged to evoke glorious mem’ries


Once again the students of Our Lady of the Angels Seminary together with friends restaged episodes from the life of St. Francis of Assisi to ignite new fervor among those who came to see, provided by the telling conversion experience of the man is commonly dubbed as the “alter-Christus”, the other Christ.


The musical play entitled PASAWAY, PERO TOTOO AT TAPAT, produced through the efforts of Fr. Cielo Almazan, OFM was held last November 20, 2005 at the RCBC Plaza, Makati City.



Reflections/Greetings from the Missions



First of all, the Birth of Jesus, our Saviour, sent by the Father urges me to greet you with the traditional "Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!" with the intensity of one whom God has filled with evangelical joy and is willing to share the same with others.


Secondly, please allow me to say "Thank You" - a heartfelt one - to the Director of the Franciscan Missionary Union - Philippines, the Staff and Partners of the Franciscan missionaries for your prayers, sacrifices and financial help.  This, indeed, actualizes the fact that evangelization is the concern of the whole People of God - the clergy, the religious and the laity

The Chinese Language. 

In my first sharing, I mentioned about the necessity of learning the language for missionary evangelization.  In September 2003, I was given my first certificate certifying that I have completed the elementary level of the study of the Chinese language. However, the "signs of the times" have diverted my attention from pursuing my formal education in school.  First, the bulk of my ministry caters to the Filipino Overseas Workers (OFWs) as stated in the letter of invitation.  Secondly, I consider it very expensive for the minimal input I get, I must humbly admit, for geriatric reasons.  Third,  I wanted to have more time with the Lord as I prepare myself for the ministry of His Word - in English.  Kaya, sariling sikap na lang sa Chinese.

My Franciscan Community

I really thank God for sending me among brothers concerned about community life: Community Mass; Liturgy of the Hours; weekly Eucharistic Adoration; monthly House Chapters; House Jobs - a la seminary days; allowance system while all income goes to the Community and weekly common recreation - just for an hour!It is also a blessing that for the past years I was allowed to continue my Nazareth Ministry, a ministry to my own people from my hometown in diaspora and to be with the friars of San Pedro Bautista Province on important occasions like, Annual Retreats, General Assembly and Provincial Chapter.  For me, these are venues for fraternal bonding. 

My Ministry

The Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) get the main focus of my ministry.  All this time, it revolves around the celebration of the Sunday Eucharist at 6:00 P.M. in the Parish of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary in Nankan, Taoyuan, Diocese of Hsinchu; the sacrament of Reconciliation and some Counselling. Twice, I administered the sacrament of baptism of two infants of two Taiwanese-Filipina couples.  The average attendance during Sunday Mass is 150.  The congregation is composed mostly of Filipino factory workers.                                                                                                             

Every Friday, I preside at the English Community Mass.  I also celebrate Mass with the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary (FMM) every Saturday.  Since I arrived in Taiwan, I already helped three FMM Sisters in their study of the English language.  At present, I am helping separately two OFM postulants, a Chinese and a Korean, to improve their proficiency in English.  Once a month, I hear the monthly confessions of some Filipino Sisters. 

Lately, I received a long distance call from a teary-eyed mother in the Philippines asking me to help her look for her loving daughter who came to Taiwan three months ago and never heard  from her since.  With the help of the members of the Legion of Mary of the Parish of Nankan, she was located.  We found out that she has been a victim of contract switching.  The contract she signed in the Philippines was completely changed upon arrival.  Adding injury to an insult, she was not given her full salary for several months.

Cases involving our OFWs are now popping up begging for my attention.  This gives me more encouragement to learn Chinese better so I could communicate well in case problems arise concerning Chinese employers.


Somehow, the Lord is showing me little by little the meaning of my Franciscan presence in Taiwan that, at times, seems to be humanly boring compared to my ministry in the Philippines.  This reminds me of Jesus' parable of the seed growing by itself apart from the sower's attention (Mark 4:26ff).


Amen, for now. 

Al Baldo


















From Bro. Al, ofm, PNG...


Dear Ting,


Pace bene brata.



Million thanks we received the package. Ed brought it here at Franciscan College when he passed by going home to Aitape.


More power to you, your staff, volunteers and the FMUers there.


May new world order of fairness reign. And may the fullness of peace flourish in everyone's heart.


Merry Xtmas and grace filled New Year to all!


Fraternally Yours,


Bro. Al Villanueva, ofm

Franciscan College


P.O. Box 16245

Boroko, NCD, 111

Papua New Guinea

Tel. #: +675 328 1124

Fax #: +675 328 1014


The community of Filipino friars in Sri Lanka with local candidates to the Order.  The picture may not be complete without man's best friends!

We may make past editions of the newsletter available for download.

Mission is Thanksgiving!


You who have so much to thank God for


            ,Won’t you share a little bit more?

Copyright 2006