Diocese of Mati: Celebrating 35 years of Renewed Faith Experience
Pursuing a culture of giftedness, perseverance, and sensitivity to the needs of others, the Diocese os Mati successfully celebrated its 35th founding anniversary on February 16, 2019, with the theme “Diocese of Mati in Mission: Gifted, Beloved, Empowered”, a fitting description to the metamorphosis of Mati from its heydays under the Prelature of Tagum and 35 years after.
Fr. Uldarico Toruba, Chairperson of the Diocesan
Commission on Clergy explained the change of the anniversary date.
“Previously, we celebrated our founding anniversay every December 14. That was the time when Bishop Emiritus Bp. Patricio Alo was insalled as the first bishop of Mati. But the record from the Vatican showed that the Diocese was established on February 16, 1984. Hence, it is but only fitting that we have to make the necessary correction,” he explained.
Bp. Abel Apigo, who now continues the helm, is profoundly grateful to the many success stories of the Diocese.
“Needless to say, one success story of the Diocese is that we now have 19 parishes, andc10 educational inatitutions to norture our faith. And from day one to the present, we grow in the number of our priests. We now have 42 priests actively working in their mission. We need our priests to continue with the task of evangelization. Then we also have our growing and strengthened basic ecclessial communities,” he said.
Bp. Apigo is also cognizant of the valuable contributions of Bp. Patricio Alo to the Diocesr that Mati is now today.
“He started it all. We reaped from what he sowed. He has spent the best years of his life taking care of his flock. And niw as i took over the shepherding, i hope that we will have more parishes since we also have a growing populace in the province and this can be done by strentgening our ecclessial communities. We also pray that more men will heed to the call of priestly vocation. So we really have to promote the priestly vocation,” he stressed.
After the Eucharistic celebration at the San Nicolas de Tolentino Cathedral, the anniversary program followed at St. Therese Gym, Clergy House Compound.
Rev. Fr. Edito Bano welcomed the audience from the 19 oarishes, from the Catholic schools, different movements and apistolates of the church.
Rev. Fr. Nestor Morata gave the brief narration with visual presentation of the rich history of the Diocese of Mati.
The Diocese also gave recognition to the church workers as well as those from the Catholic schools who has rendered countless meaningful years in serving the church.
As the Diocese of Mati continues its travails weaponed by the task of evangelization, Bp. Abel Apigo hurled the challenge to keep the faith very alive, walk the faith, and share such acwonderful faith.
By: Ms. Neela Duallo