From July 22-24, 2013, thirty-eight priests from the diocese of Romblon had their annual retreat in Zamboanga City. The retreat was facilitated by Fr. Amado L. Picardal, CSsR. The retreat enabled the priests to review and reflect on their life and ministry – especially in relation to the Basic Ecclesial Communities. The framework used for the review was based on Vatican II and PCP II ecclesiology and theology of the ordained ministry. If BECs are considered as expressions of the renewed Church and a new way of being Church, then a Church requires a renewed Clergy and a new way of being Church also requires a new way of understanding and exercising the priestly ministry.
The retreat started at 5 pm on July 22 with an opening Mass presided by Mgr. Fetalino – the diocesan administrator. This was followed by the orientation by Fr. Picardal. After dinner, the priests gathered for silent prayerful reflection/review on their life and ministry as priests – from the time they were ordained up to the present (the joyful and sorrowful mysteries). Afterwards, they broke into small groups (by vicariate) for sharing which lasted until ten in the evening.
For the next two days, there were five sessions with the following themes:
1. The Ministry of Pastoral Leadership and Communion vis-a-vis BECs
2. The Prophetic Ministry vis-a-vis BECs
3. The Sacramental/Liturgical Ministry vis-a-vis BECs
4. The Social Ministry vis-a-vis BECs
5. Facing the Dark Side and the Call to Conversion
Each session had three components: (a) a talk by the retreat-facilitator (b) a period of silent reflection/meditation (c) small group sharing (by vicariate).
The retreat culminated on July 24 with the concelebrated Mass at the Cathedral at 6:15 pm, followed by dinner at the rectory hosted by Mgr. Crisologo Manongas – the diocesan administrator.