Priest: If BECs are alive, vocations are alive

Priest: If BECs are alive, vocations are alive

Vocations thrive from living BECs, according to Fr. Danilo Franklin Pilario, CM, rector of the St. Vincent School of Theology. He gave the talk “BEC: Buong Simbahan, Bahagi Sa Pagpapaunlad Ng Bokasyon” during the Diocese of Novaliches Holy Spirit Vicariate BEC Big Day 2nd Anniversary held in the Barangay Holy Spirit Club House in Quezon City, Sept. 8, 2018. MINNIE AGDEPPA

By Minnie Agdeppa

Sept. 24, 2018

QUEZON City

St. Vincent School of Theology (SVST) rector Fr. Danilo Pilario, CM revealed during a talk on Sept. 8, that the vibrancy of Basic Ecclesial Communities (BECs) is linked to the vibrancy of vocations.

“Individuals will enter into the priesthood or religious life only if your BEC is alive,” said the priest in Filipino. “If you want to increase and enliven vocations, increase and enliven your BEC, bukluran, and homes,” he added, during the assembly of BEC members celebrating their 2nd Vicariate BEC Big Day.

“Why do I say this? I myself am a fruit of BEC,” he continued in the local tongue, “My mother was a BEC leader in our barrio. As a child, she would take me with her and I would gladly come along because after the prayers there will be food.”

5-km walk to Church

With his talk entitled, “BEC: Buong Simbahan, Bahagi Sa Pagpapaunlad Ng Bokasyon”, Pilario shared his vocation story. According to him, his mother’s involvement in BECs and his parent’s faithful attendance in Sunday Mass despite the great distance of the church from their home in the mountains played a great role in his decision to say yes to the priesthood.

“That is where my vocation as a priest started. Because I came from a family and a BEC who brought me to Church,” said Pilario.

He said he, his 11 siblings, and his parents would walk 5 kilometers every Sunday to get to church. Since they were a big family, his parents could only afford to pay for themselves in the jeepney ride to the town. So he and his siblings would often be seated in the aisle of the jeep to get to their destination for free. There were only three jeepneys that time in their barrio and their family would often be avoided by the jeepney drivers because of this.

Families in the BEC, wellspring of vocations

Although this was very inconvenient and very frustrating for him, Pilario admits that had his parents not done so every Sunday, instead of bringing him the cockpit as most parents would do back then, he would probably not be a priest today.

“Vocations come from the living faith of BECs and Church, of the family and home,” he stressed.

Pilario said the quality of BEC life will determine the quality of priests and nuns in the future. He then challenged the attendees to bring their BECs to life, so that there will be more future priests and nuns coming from their community.

“Thus, if you do it right now, you can be assured that–20 years from now, 30 years from now–you’ll have honest, holy, and lively priests in the Diocese of Novaliches,” he ended.

The 2nd BEC Big Day of the Vicariate of Holy Spirit under the Diocese of Novaliches coincided with the feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The vicariate comprises the six parishes belonging to Barangay Holy Spirit: Hearts of Jesus and Mary; Holy Spirit; Jesus of Nazareth; Jesus, Lord of Divine Mercy; San Jose, Ang Tagapagtanggol; and St. Benedict.