Once again I had the privilege of
serving our brethren at the Maximum Security Compound
of the National Bilibid Prison. I have been there 4
or 5 times through the years. This time it was much
more delightful. There was the evident anointing of
the Spirit on our work.
had the first session of a CLS. Though over 200 wanted
to attend, the number was limited to 100, for resource
considerations. We targeted the heads of the 12 gangs/groups
inside. But even then, 150 attended. As the discussion
groups for the 100 had been announced, there were still
50 more already inside the venue who attended the session.
They could no longer be turned away. There was even
one group of women, the wives of the inmates. Then we
had a Eucharistic celebration presided over by Msgr.
Bobby Olaguer, and after that a prayer assembly. We
already have 400 members.
had quite a sizeable team, manifesting the enthusiasm
and commitment of our members. The team even included
4 lie lows who had just come back to CFC-FFL. And they
were already there serving!
was most touched during the Mass. The participation
was intense, the singing was loud, the devotion was
striking. Here were the supposed dregs of society, but
they were there as followers of Christ. You could sense
the deep spirituality of the inmates. God was indeed
present and actively at work in their lives.
had said before that our ministry for restorative justice
(prison ministry) is to be a major component of our
work with the poor, to be at a par with our building
of Restoration Villages. These two would be the major
aspects of our work with the poor. I encourage our brethren
to participate in mission here and in other prison colonies
whenever they are given the opportunity, whether you
serve in a CLS, or just join the team during their weekly
formation and prayer assembly. The resident Ombudsman
is our brother and will assist in getting our work established
in the other colonies throughout the country. We will
be needing more resources, human as well as financial.