GUIGUINTO, Bulacan, March 2, 2015 — The Immaculate Conception Major Seminary of the Diocese of Malolos, Bulacan hosted the SANGTUKRISTO 2015, a gathering of seminarians and priests all over Luzon on Feb. 13 with the theme, “For me, to live is Christ” (Philippians 1:21).
SANGTURISTO is derived from “Isang Tugon Kay Kristo”, which refers to the desire of the participants to heed God’s call to the priesthood. It is annual inter-college seminary gathering of seminarians and priests from Northern and Central Luzon.
Fr. Enrico Gonzales, OP gave a talk to the participants at the seminary gymnasium, stressing the importance of solidarity in the Church and looking at it as a family.
Church as family
“Dapat makita ninyo ang simbahan at ang inyong diocese bilang pamilya ninyo (You should see the Church and your diocese as you family),” he said.
Gonzales also urged the seminarians not to be discouraged even amid scandals that the Church faces at present. “Do not lose confidence in the Church because of the scandals. Remember that the Church is a Holy Church of sinners. It is Holy because Jesus is our head. It is a Church of sinners because we, its members, are wounded by sin. As head, Christ is the source of hope of the Church… we have hope [in Christ]” he added.
This year, seven seminaries gathered at ICMAS for the event namely; Mother of Good Counsel Seminary (MGCS), from the Archdioce of San Fernando, Pampangga, Our Lady of Peace College Seminary (OLPCS) from the Diocese of Tarlac, Tarlac, Maria Assumpta Seminary (MAS) from the Diocese of Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija, Mary Help of Christians Seminary (MHCS), from the Archdiocese of Ligayen-Dagupan, St. Joseph College Seminary (SJCS) from the Diocese of Alaminos, Pangasinan, St. Dominic College Seminary (SDCS) from the Diocese of Bayombong, Nueva Viscaya, and Mary Cause of our Joy Seminary (MCJS) from the Diocese of Laoag.
The event began with a solidarity walk from the Barasoain Church to the Immaculate Conception Cathedral and on to the Minor Basilica in Malolos City, Bulacan. Afterwards, Malolos Bishop Jose F. Oliveros, DD presided over a Eucharistic celebration.
Playing, praying together
A motorcade from the Malolos Cathedral up to ICMAS followed the Holy Mass. At ICMAS, the SANGTUKRISTO delegates were welcomed by the ICMAS seminarians, seminary formators and staff, as well as the parents of seminarians.
SANGTURISTO 2015 activities included team building exercises and group dynamics, sharing, and a lucernarium. These activities were designed to foster familiarity and friendship among seminarians through playing and praying together.
A dinner program was also held wherein each participating seminary presented a cultural number that highlighted the festivities, art, music, and dance of their provinces.
The event concluded with fireworks display and a serenade to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Priests and Seminarians.
MHCS will host the next SANTUKRISTO. (Arvin Ray C. Jimenez/CBCPNews)