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Over 1,800 Lay Liturgical Ministers reminded of Spiritual Alzheimer’s at Renewal Course

By Natalie Hazel P. Quimlat, MD


“Can renewal happen in a day?” This was the question the newly appointed Director of the Caceres Commission on Communications and current Rector of the Holy Rosary Minor Seminary Fr. Francis Tordilla asked more than 1,800 Lay Liturgical Ministers (Lectors, Commentators, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, and Collectors) from the Central and Bay Districts at their Renewal Course held last April 20 at the Xavier Hall of the Ateneo de Naga University. According to the talk-giver, renewal is a lifetime journey and is “the mission of the Liturgy [for the] Liturgy is the representation of the sacrifices of our Lord” that invokes participation and devotion to those who take part in the Liturgy.


Caceres Archbishop Emeritus and Apostolic Administrator Rolando Tria Tirona, O.C.D., D.D. presides over the eucharistic celebration that concludes the annual Archdiocesan Renewal Course for Lectors, Lay Ministers and Collectors held last April 20, 2024 at the Xavier Hall of the Ateneo de Naga University. (Natalie Hazel P. Quimlat)


Routine leading to Spiritual Alzheimer’s


In his talk, Tordilla discussed a concept the Holy Father, Pope Francis, once spoke of, i.e., Spiritual Alzheimer’s. According to Tordilla, there are times when at “the height or summit of [one’s pastoral] service”, [one] feels as though everything is just a routine, thereby making [one] feel like a robot. “[We] forget why and for whom we serve,” he said. “[We begin to] serve out of habit.” Hence, “it is important that [we] attend this renewal course [as a source of reflection].”


Blueprint for Renewal


Tordilla shares this quote, “Life does not come with a manual, it comes with a mother.” According to him, a mother teaches what is right. Hence, it is only fitting that during this time of renewal and as the celebration of the 100th year of the Pontifical Coronation of Our Lady of Peñafrancia approaches, one follows the Holy Mother more closely as one’s blueprint for renewal -as she has given herself fully to God. Tordilla also shares that it is good to continuously reflect on the devotion to Our Lady of Peñafrancia, Patroness of the Bicol region, as part of the Bicolanos’ heritage, culture and identity, for it is through this devotion that one gets to know one’s self more, as a people and as a Church.


Being Mission-oriented and Self-giving


Adapting the Two Standards of St. Ignatius, Tordilla then asked his audience, “Are you for the Queen Mother, or are you for the Dragon?” This question invites all attendees to strive to be mission-oriented -not only constantly renewing one’s self but also becoming agents of renewal- and to fully give one’s self to God, in sacrifice and by way of service, just like Christ and the Holy Mother did. “This is the best gift [one] can give to Christ,” Tordilla further exhorted.


Caceres Archbishop Emeritus and Apostolic Administrator Rolando Tria Tirona presided over the eucharistic celebration that capped the half-day event and was concelebrated with Caceres Liturgical Commission Director Fr. Glenn Ruiz and Rector of the Ateneo de Naga University Christ the King Church, Fr. Jose Embile, Jr. The Archdiocesan Renewal Course for Lay Liturgical Ministers is annually organized by the Caceres Liturgical Commission. Lay Liturgical Ministers in the Rinconada and Partido Districts will have their Renewal Courses this May and June, respectively.


Over 1,800 Lectors, Lay Ministers and Collectors attended their annual Archdiocesan Renewal Course organized by the Caceres Liturgical Commission last April 20, 2024 at the Xavier Hall of the Ateneo de Naga University. (Natalie Hazel P. Quimlat)



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