• Here, in the first breakfast, folks came to “see” who or what is the BCBP. How many came back?

This photo ( 2 years later) shows a Merienda Cena at the St. Elizabeth Catholic Church in September 2018.

Here we tried a new tack: “Merienda-Cena, to coincide an hour before the First-Saturday monthly Tagalog mass, at church. Result? Not bad, considering that Pinoy “Couples for Christ” folks joined in. Success? Nope.

Photo of BCBP Ohio CLP 1

With CLP 1 graduates, we thought that BCBP Ohio had finally taken off. But sadly, we reckoned wrongly.

One graduate joined another church ( no issues with that), one returned to his parish priest job in Cagayan de Oro (same, no issue either), while the third, was transferred to NY city. While these are not exactly “losses,” it was a minor set back to BCBP Ohio. People need to move and live their lives.

Photo: Four Points Sheraton breakfast

Photo: Breakfast at Pilipino restaurant, w Fr. Ramon Owera, chaplain.

More than 2 years of hard work and great expenditures of missionary zeal, manpower, and thousands of miles driven or flown over 24 months in autumn, summer, fall and winter.

Energy, resources, prayers, sacrifices, and even profound misunderstandings, and heartaches from both participants, leaders and all ( from California, Chicago, New York, Washington DC, Mactan, even Cagayan de Oro, and Bohol) has brought BCBP Ohio to the place it finds itself in fall of 2018.

Blest by God, still in wonderment at how it will measure up to the standards or high bar set by its own leaders, and just as puzzled how it can make a mark in in Columbus where there are dozens and dozens of prayer groups. So while we continue to invite them, they, in turn offer their invitations to us to attend their prayer events.

Frankly, we thought, but mistakenly, that by now BCBP Ohio should be doing well.

But we still continue to struggle.

And so we ask: Is there coherence in how we, on the ground, or our leaders, local, regional or international first of all, see our environment (Our Subjective View of reality

Are we on the same page? Are we looking at the same road Map or Vision?

And secondly, how do we see the Concrete Reality itself ( Objective Reality)

With our intuition and our reason, we can very well figure out what is the “Objective Social Reality,” What is the Columbus reality? or, what are the realities that we find in our “BCBP” US cities? What are the concrete conditions in Queens, New York City, where we strive to find growth? Or, Chicago? Or, Washington DC-Virginia?

Definitely we cannot import “success stories” from, say, any part of the US like, say California, and expect a duplicate clone will also be successful if applied (without much adaptation) in other US cities.

For this we should dig deeper into scripture and try to figure out how the early churches in Jerusalem or in the Greek Gentile territories began with Peter, and Paul and Barnabas and Timothy and the rest.

In figuring out the “What is,” we have two sets or methods of figuring out this “What is,”

First, “The BCBP USA, method” or point of view.

And Second, “The BCBP Phils, method” or point of view.

I am aware that in fact, the politics in the high echelons of our BCBP, is adversely impacting the the thinking of some of our leaders. I know because I have my personal conversations with them. And I also realize that while issues of relationships can and indeed clouds designations of who might be the best to lead us here in the US cities, the fact remains that feelings have clouded judgements and personal pride may have set in.

In 2 Gal we have Paul, face to face rebuking Peter for the high bar Peter may be setting for the Gentile converts, requiring them to conform to Jewish religious customs, before they can be baptized, which Paul said was wrong. Fortunately, Peter relented and the early church went on to grow.

But one thing they both got correct, and agreed on was that at the heart of The Lord’s message, was “we were to be mindful of the poor,” which Paul said “I was very eager to do.”

Now could this singular thing that St Paul said he “was very eager to do,” the one ingredient which BCBP, in its headlong push to organize, to evangelize, to catechize and to baptize, be the single ingredient that could transform and unite us?

It is said in folklore that when “elephants clash, that is the little ones who suffer.”

Applying this to our own BCBP organization, whenever Management arrives at a decision that seems, based on rationalizing the reality of geographic distances in the apportionment of management duties and responsibilities to some and not to others, that it makes no sense to buck a collectively-arrived-at decision (Board decision, say), provided further that that decision was (1) collectively arrived at, and (2) that the decision was informed by all facts available.

For to have “no regard for objective conditions, i.e. say, a Board decision, even if one is “ purely driven by passion, optimism, or illusion,” however correct, righteous, or seemingly solid one’s position may be, is to be on the wrong side of history.

This phenomenon is called ” voluntaristic subjectivity.” Google it, and discover that lives, even millions of lives, could adversely be affected when inordinately uncontrolled personal will go against the concrete walls of reality.

Photo of a pray-over, members of Columbus Catholic Charismatics, St. Elizabeth church

In the above photo, as I visited the Columbus Charismatic “pray over, I realized that the Spirit “led” me to this group, for a personal concern that I had, and after being “prayed over,” I requested to sit down as “proxy,” for our BCBP leadership, both Phil.and US leadership, and after explaining the situation to them, they proceeded then ended with a “prophecy,” that “humility” is important in this our walk with other leaders. Specifically, attention was given to Chap 2 of Proverbs ( see photo below)

“Holy Spirit, breathe upon our minds, souls and spirits bringing wholeness, and the Spirit of renewal, in Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Proverbs 4 :

“Happy the man who finds wisdom,

The man who gains understanding

… My son, let not these slip out of your sight

Keep advice and counsel in view;

So they will be life to your soul,

And an adornment to your neck.

Then you may securely go your way;

Your foot will never stumble;

When you lie down you need not be afraid,

When you rest your sleep will be sweet.

Honor is the possession of wise men,

But fools inherit shame.”

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