BECs of the Diocese of Catarman

1. Community Description :

  • 152 BECs in the Diocese
  • 75 % active
  • 52 % BECs in Parishes

2. Story :

In 1985 after, a thorough reflection, the Presbyterium of the Diocese of Catarman came up with the idea that the BEC be the thrust of the apostolate of the Diocese. As a result, a BEC Secretariat was immediately formed and was tasked to implement the thrust by initially organizing basic communities in three pilot parishes. The program Director headed a core team of lay staff who started to immerse themselves in the dialogue of llife with these BEC communities. From these beginnings sprouted what is now a thirty –person staff that is involved in the implementation of the programs of the three diocesan commissions in thirteen parishes through integrated community approach to evangelization. A diocesan-wide Multi-purpose Cooperative with its saving and lending divisions, consumers division, and producers division, is likewise in full operation. From nine communities in 1985; from cramped office at the Diocesan Catholic Center (DCC) during its few years of existence, the secretariat now holds its modest office in the Diocesan Socio-Pastoral Center (DSPC) which was constructed in 1989 within the cathedral ground and completed the following year. The Pastoral Workers involved in the program have also grown from the initial three to the current thirteen. In addition to these field workers, the BEC-DSPC program staff is supported by a Finance Unit and Management staff headed by the Program Coordinator.

3. Development and Progress :

  • In the second year of its existence, that is in 1986, the Bishop invited the Religious of the Sacred Heart (RSCJ) to the Diocese of Catarman. From that time on, RSCJ has headed the BEC Secretariat. This continuity of leadership has helped in the effective implementation and the gradual systematization and expansion of the program.
  • From its inception to the present, dedicated as well as trained Pastoral Workers continue to work in the parishes, bearing the spirit of the seventy-two disciple sent by Jesus (Cf. Lk.10:1-11), for without expecting big financial reward and sometimes acceptability they toil more in the spirit of apostolate that as being hired laborers.