CARMELITE MISSIONARY SECULAR : 12th National Assembly
58 delegates from different CMS chapters nationwide including the CMS Sister- Advisers and Facilitators attended the recent 12th Annual Assembly with the theme “CMS: Journeying with the Anawim of God” held at the Betania Retreat House and Conference Center, Cebu, from May 1-3, 2015. The Cebu Chapter welcomed all the delegates in a prayerful and festive dance of Sinulog. It was indeed a heart-warming greeting of communion and hospitality.
The Assembly was graced by the presence of our very own alumnus, His Excellency Jose Palma, Archbishop of Cebu, who celebrated the Holy Eucharist on Day 1, marking the opening of the gathering. He underlined the life of St. Joseph the Worker, whose feast was celebrated that day. St. Joseph reminds us that work is an expression of love, and in work every person is clothed with dignity. Thus, man becomes a reflection of God in his work of creation. He stressed out further that there is an aspect of work which may not be enjoyable but when one offers it to God then, he/she shares in Jesus’ work of redemption.
Undoubtedly, the enriching homily of Arch. Palma helped disposed the delegates to enter into a day of recollection which was facilitated by Sr. Gina Pios, CM, the Councilor in charge of the CMS. They were brought to a better and deeper understanding of the reality of the world, the Church in particular. The Church who is majority poor, the Anawim of God, the vulnerable, the marginalized, the oppressed, the victims of terrorism and the like.
Day 2’s speaker, Fr. King Gaza, CM, pointed out that to journey with the poor is a call and requires change in perspective based on the framework of seeing, judging and acting. He articulately expressed, “not to be offended when you are mistaken as a servant; it is your way of journeying with the anawim.” Hence, he challenged everyone to be sensitive to the situation of the poor and to listen carefully to their fragmented stories because it is through them that we can experience the true essence of the Gospel values. In the afternoon, the delegates sponsored a feeding activity at Fatima, Duljo where our former community was located. 50 children, more or less, had been animated by cheerful CMS dancers, along with simple games, before they were served with snacks. Then the assembly went on City Tour at San Pedro Calungsod Shrine in SRP (South Road Properties), and also visited the CM community at Quiot, Pardo.
The announcement of the new National Adviser and the election of the National Steering Committee were carried out on the last day. Oath-taking ceremony took place during the Holy Eucharist officiated by Fr. Clive, O’Carm. The following are the newly elected officers:
Coordinator: Luzenda Ledesma (Novaliches Chapter)
Secretary: Joylene Sto. Domingo (Madrinan Chapter)
Treasurer: Rajele Cabaylo (Dingle Chapter)
Board Members: Joy Malbarosa ( Cagayan de Oro Chapter)
Lina Perales (La Paz Chapter)
National Adviser: Sr. Ma. Ascencion C. Trevenio, CM