ComVal pastors, priests converge for unity and peace

Dec. 13, 2009

Davao City—In a show of full support, pastors, priests and religious leaders in Compostela Valley — regardless of religion — convened at the provincial capitol on the feast of the Immaculate Conception to share their valuable messages of unity and peace.

December 8 was declared by Gov. Arturo Uy, through an executive order, as an annual Provincial Thanksgiving Day interfaith assembly. This year’s theme is “Thanks be to God for His unspeakable gift” and was attended by well-respected religious leaders Bishop Wilfredo Manlapaz, Aleem Eliser Banac, Bro. Alejandro Aguspina, and Dr. David Magalong.

“We recognize the significant role of the church and the inter-faiths. They are our partners in promoting spiritual development and moral values towards good governance,” Uy said.

The provincial government recognizes the important and significant role of the church and the inter-faiths in the promotion of spiritual development and moral values towards good governance. As a result, a Provincial Spiritual Development and Moral Recovery Program (PSDMRP) was created and a council formed to draw up support and ensure the implementation of the program.

The activity is also in line with the implementation of Presidential Proclamation No. 62 “Declaring a Moral Recovery Program and Enjoining Active Participation of All Sectors in the Filipino Society.”

Councilor Paul Galicia, who is director for the program, said the PSDMRP has since maintained a pool of lecturers and preachers. Capitol employees have convocation programs, where they have monthly value-formation discussions facilitated by competent preachers.

The program has also spread down and replicated to the 11 municipalities in Comval. Activities such as bible sharing, regular prayer meetings and providing spiritual advisory services to employees and the public are already conducted.

“Sa Mabini, gitawag ang mga pastor, kaabag ug Imam. Maayo ang impact tungod kay wala naghatag ug gap sa mga Muslim ug Christian tungod sa ani nga program,” (In Mabini, pastors, kaabag and Imam are called. The program has a good impact because it does not create gap among Muslims and Christians) Muslim Mayor Hadji Amir Muñoz said.

“Daku kaayo ang ikatabang sa lungsod sa Pantukan sa MRP, kada Sabado aduna kitay ginatawag nga dawn prayer. Matag kadlawon ang mga pastor ug kapulisan nagapahigayun ug usa ka prayer para sa kaayuhan sa atong lungsod” (The Moral Recovery Program has helped Pantukan a lot. Every Saturday, we hold Dawn Prayer where early morning, pastors and the police hold prayer for our town), Pantukan Mayor JC Celso Sarenas said.

In the afternoon, the interfaith assembly had their physical fitness challenged in a friendly competition in various indoor and outdoor games such as table tennis, chess, scrabble, dart and basketball played between pastors and priests. (IDS ComVal)

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