Priest on parish life: ‘Alone but never lonely’

Priest on parish life: ‘Alone but never lonely’

Fr. Ric Eguia shares about the life of a diocesan priest to attendees of the Year of the Clergy and Consecrated Persons launch at the Virgen del Pilar School, Burgos, Rodriguez, Jan. 19, 2018. OLMHR FACEBOOK PAGE

MONTALBAN, Rizal – In a rare, personal sharing about what it’s like to head a parish, a priest shared that men of cloth are “alone but never lonely” if they learn to love those who serve with them.

“Don’t be surprised, but I live with two families in my parish: my administration family that consists of my [parochial] personnel/staff and my pastoral family that has my pastoral council, the leaders of the parish. How can you be lonely of you have two families?,” asked Fr. Ric Eguia, Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Parish of Montalban parish priest during the Aranzazu vicariate launching of Year of the Clergy and Consecrated Persons on Jan. 19 at the Virgen del Pilar School, Burgos, Rodriguez.

According to the priest, the challenges and blessings of being a diocesan priest revolve around parish life. “The life of a diocesan priest is a parochial life – his works in his parish shapes him and sanctifies him in Christ.”

He highlighted the responsibilities of a diocesan parish priest, emphasizing that the parishioners’ spiritual formation tops the list.

“You are the ‘shepherds’ of your flocks. It is therefore expected from you to strengthen the spiritual formation of your parishioners through the sacraments and to teach them the basic Catholic doctrines through catechesis,” explained Eguia.

According to him, administrative and communication skills are also important if one wishes to organize and coordinate regular parish life.

Eguia also noted the importance of religious priests and how their work complements the work of diocesan priests in realizing God’s kingdom on earth.

“There are two types of priestly vocations – the religious and the diocesan. Do not think that one is better than the other. They are equally important and are, in my experience, equally good looking,” he said. CBCPNews