BULACAN, PHILIPPINES- On June 22-July 15,2020 the Scholastics headed by their formators Rev. Fr. Benjie A. Notarte SMM and Rev. Fr. Gener C. Pito, SMM had their 3-week Summer Program at the Montfort House of Prayer and Postulancy House, Purok V, Paradise III, San Jose Del Monte City, Bulacan. This year’s summer program of the scholastics is certainly “one-of-a-kind” since it is a time of the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet it does not hinder them from pursuing pastoral ministry, bearing abundant fruits for the love of God in the community and for the care of the environment.
The first week of the program was intended for a Montfortian Recollection series wherein the Scholastics presented their reflections and works by pair. It was a fruit of the week-long Montfortian Sessions given by Rev. Fr. Benjie A. Notarte, SMM a week prior to their summer program at Bulacan. The recollection themes were inspired from the Four Pillars of Montfortian Mission. The eight scholastics who gave the recollections from July 23- July 26 were: Bro. Armel R. Collantes, SMM and Bro. Lord Ansel Glenn N. Bongcas, SMM for the theme: “Togetherness and Community Life”, Bro. Ronald B. Baruela, SMM and Bro. Harold Anthony T. Montoya, SMM for “Wisdom of the Cross in the Montfortian Way”, Bro. Francois Leonard P. Ancheta, SMM and Bro. Jumamildar S. Sawitan, SMM for “The Montfortian Mission and Evangelization and lastly, Bro. Lester C. Bonete, SMM and Bro. Christopher S. Mejia, SMM for the theme: “Mary and Incarnation in the Montfortian Spirituality”. The scholastics have designed their recollection for SMM Postulants and Novices and also for the Association of Mary Queen of All Hearts.
The remaining weeks were being spent for planting of the at most 100 fruit bearing trees at our vast garden in Bulacan. With the guidance of our confreres at Bulacan Community, Rev. Fr. Ariel E. Aquino, SMM and Bro. Reynaldo Silverio, SMM, the field work was indeed fruitful and enjoyable one. It is very amazing to see that someday at a designated time, all that we have just planted will soon grow and bear fruits and we will reminisce the hard times yet enjoyable moments when we were planting together.
On the night before the scholastics will go back to New Manila, a simple dinner and a Social Night was held as a way to express their gratitude to our confreres in Bulacan, Fr. Ariel and Bro. Rey for the warm welcome and the love and care to the scholastics entrusted to them for the summer program. On the other hand, Fr. Ariel and Bro. Rey also expressed their gratitude to the Scholasticate community for their presence and the service they have shared to the community.
It was indeed a very fruitful though a “quarantine summer program” for the scholastics. On July 15, 2020, during the Eucharistic Celebration at 7:00 AM with the presence of some of our active lay partners, they bid goodbye to them, and then took breakfast, and then headed for New Manila, Quezon City at their Scholasticate House bringing with them all the memorable and grace-filled experiences.
Glory to Jesus in Mary! Glory to Mary in Jesus! Glory to God Alone!