The First IVE Family Day was held in the Philippines on the day of the Solemnity of Jesus Christ, the Universal King, and the King of All Families. The gathering at the IVE seminary included also all the members of our Religious Family of the IVE and the 3rd Order.
At this moment of history in which the family is the object of numerous forces that seek to destroy or deform it, the Church sees a more urgent and compelling need of proclaiming the plan of God for marriage and the family. It is only by the acceptance of the Gospel that marriage and the family will come to their fulfillment. In line with this, Dr. Angelita M Aguirre, a medical doctor specializing in internal medicine with 39 years of experience in the field came to deliver a pro-life talk, having also had vast experience with Human Life International.
St. John Paul II says: “Willed by God in the very act of creation, marriage and the family are ordained to fulfillment in Christ and have need of His graces in order to be healed from the wounds of sin and restored to their ‘beginning, that is, to full understanding and the full realization of God’s plan.’” Accordingly, Dr. Aguirre skillfully exposed all the dangers facing the modern family and the remedies offered by the Church to counter such dangerous and corrosive poison.
As it was a Family Day, many families turned up and while the talk was going on, the kids were kept occupied by the seminarians and sisters who kept them entertained with many games and activities in the seminary grounds.
There were also sporting activities for the youth who attended. With their children occupied, the parents could calmly absorb and participate in the formation provided by Dr. Aguirre.
Some snacks and coffee then followed, to energize the participants for the next event, which was the Procession with the Blessed Sacrament through.
The people gathered at the Chapel of San Celestino in San Celestino Centro where the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament began, before the procession formed, led by Fr. Miguel Soler, Provincial Superior of the IVE.
The procession made it’s way through the barangay (village) towards the seminary. The Catechism 1674 states: “Besides sacramental liturgy and sacramentals, catechesis must take into account the forms of piety and popular devotions among the faithful. The religious sense of the Christian people has always found expression in various forms of piety surrounding the Church’s sacramental life, such as the veneration of relics, visits to sanctuaries, pilgrimages, processions, … etc.” The Catechism continues “These expressions of piety extend the liturgical life of the Church…” and for all of us, it was a way to manifest our belief in the Universal Kingship of Our Lord Jesus by bringing Him through the streets, His streets.
There were 3 altars where the Procession stopped for the Benediction before finally ending in the Seminary Chapel.
The Mass of Christ the King was attended by an overflowing crowd. During the Mass, several people who are close to our religious family and want to share in our charism were admitted into our Third Order.
After having made their commitment public, the new members were formally received. Their membership was symbolized by the presentation of a medallion embossed with the arms of the Institute.
During the Mass, many people availed themselves of the Sacrament of Confession from the priests available outside, while music for the Mass was provided by the choir of our Religious Family.
A small celebration followed after the Mass where a simple dinner, with dances, songs and other performances were enjoyed by everyone in a truly familial atmosphere.
May the Virgin Mary, who is the Mother of the Church, also be the Mother of “the Church of the home.” Thanks to her motherly aid, may each Christian family really become a “Domestic Church” in which the mystery of the Church of Christ is mirrored and given new life. May she, the Sorrowful Mother at the foot of the Cross, comfort the sufferings and dry the tears of those in distress because of the difficulties of their families.
May Christ the Lord, the Universal King, the King of Families whom we celebrate today, be present in every Christian home as He was at Cana. On the solemn day dedicated to His Kingship we beg of Him that every family may play its part in realizing the coming of His Kingdom in the world-“a kingdom of truth and life, a kingdom of holiness and grace, a kingdom of justice, love, and peace,” towards which history is journeying. – St. John Paul II, Familiaris Consortio.