Catholics hold twin major religious events in Butuan City

October 8, 2014 6:48 am 

By Noel B. Najaro

Butuan City, October 7 (PNA) — The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) National Secretariat for Social Action (NASSA) and the Diocese of Butuan opened on Monday, twin major religious events here.

The 37th National Social Action General Assembly (NASAGA) and the Launching of the “Year of The Poor (YOP) and 40 Years of Alay Kapwa (AK 40)” was held Monday with the theme, “Social Action Network, Fulfilling Its Mission of Becoming Church of the Poor.”

During a press forum held at the Diocesan Shrine, St. Joseph Cathedral on E. Luna St., this city, which was among the highlights of the events, Fr. Edwin Gariguez, the Executive Secretary of the NASSA, said that both events are headed by Archbishop Rolando Tria Tirona, head of the Episcopal Commission On Social Action, Justice and Peace and Butuan Diocese Bishop Juan De Dios Pueblos and attended by about 200 participants from all over the country.

Archbishop Tirona, Bishop De Dios Pueblos together with the Clergy of Butuan led the Eucharistic Celebration during the opening day.

”As we continue our 5th centenary journey to the new evangelization, we are strongly confronted with the challenge of the Church in the Philippines to be a Church of the Poor as demanded by the PCP II, which is even more valid as before,” Archbishop Tirona said.

”The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) officially declared 2015 as the YEAR OF THE POOR, inspired with the theme from the gospel of Luke, “Look at Jesus…and the Lord turned and looked at Peter” (Luke 22,61). Year of the Poor is the 3rd of the nine year era of new evangelization,” Tirona added.

According to Fr. Gariguez, the National Secretariat for Social Action (NASSA), the development arm of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines, was designated to lead the one-year celebration of the Year of the Poor in collaboration with the different CBCP commissions and the 85 Dioceses in the Philippines.

NASSA launched these significant events at the National Social Action General Assembly, where all Diocesan Social Action Centers come together to discuss every 2 years social concerns with their respective diocese,” Gariguez said.

”We also celebrate 40 years of ALAY KAPWA, CBCP’s Lenten evangelization program for the poor responding to the signs of the times as good stewards taking responsibility to care for our neighbors and creation through evangelization and resource mobilization of the local church. It supports NASSA’s disaster emergency and advocacies towards social transformation and resiliency,” Gariguez also said.

Tirona pointed out that forty years as a significant number in the Bible, is a commitment to share love and justice to help the poor and the needy. Among the activities of the program is the “P40 million Fund Raising for the Poor or (40 4D 4).” (PNA)

CTB/NBN/UTB

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