From August 7 to 9, 2013, over 50 priests of the diocese of Calbayog (Samar) led by their bishop – Most Reverend Isabelo Abarquez- gathered at the Holy Family Retreat House in Cebu City for their annual ongoing clergy formation. The focus of the gathering was to assess the Basic Ecclesial Communities (BECs) in the diocese – as a program and as a way of life. They also assessed their own ministry vis-a-vis BECs. The workshop was facilitated by Bishop George Rimando – the chairman of the CBCP-BEC committee – and assisted by Fr. Amado L. Picardal – who also gave talks on the following topics: (a) framework for assessing BECs (b) BECs and the ordained ministry (c) Forming Sustainable BECs. Besides the assessment, sharing and talks, the priests also discussed the recommendations on what more needs to be done in promoting and revitalizing the BECs in the diocese.
Most of the sessions were held in the morning (after the Mass and breakfast). The afternoons were reserved games (basketball and volleyball tournament by vicariate teams) which were held at the St. Aphonsus’ Seminary Gym. The socials and recreation were held in the evening after supper.