State of the Province (Narrative)
Of the 100 confreres, 42 confreres (in ad intra and ad extra commitments) have a three-year appointment. Eight confreres 70 years old and above, have a one-year appointment. The rest are either retired, students, bishops, on sabbatical or on exclaustration. The District Coordinators and the Rectors of religious houses are constantly animated to take up their respective roles, as stipulated in our Provincial Statutes, as seriously as they can. The chairpersons of the seven provincial committees will assist the provincial superior and his council in implementing the action plans contained in our five-year strategic planning.
A new paradigm in the inner dynamics among the committees and the provincial government is in place. Before, the committees and the different entities (formation houses, schools, parishes, special ministries, and administration) were somewhat independent, if not even in conflict or in competition. Now, the synergy and inter-linking of these different aspects and entities are promoted. The structures to ensure this paradigm is in place.
A well-planned personnel deployment scheme is adopted and will be in place. All the appointments and the term of office of those in the schools have just been synchronized. All of them have a fresh start and a new mandate starting from July 1, 2015. The synchronization of the appointments and terms of those confreres in parishes will be in place. Most, if not all, will receive new terms starting July 1, 2016. This move will make the planning of the deployment, preparation and capacitation of confreres a lot feasible and attainable. This would facilitate the evaluation of the different commitments, especially in the parishes, in view of their possible turnover. Since June of 2013 to date, there have been five requests from several local ordinaries for CICMs to open mission stations in their dioceses and vicariates. We have responded to two of these five requests.
We will continue to prepare confreres for specific missionary tasks, which would require special studies or special preparation.
We will continue to animate Filipino-born confreres working in their mission countries to render home service for at least two terms, assuring them that they can return to their mission countries, after their home service. We are a sending and receiving province. The Philippine province has two formation houses catering to congregational needs, namely: Theophile Verbist Novitiate and Asian International Formation Community. Some provinces are sending their candidates (for the novitiate) to learn English in the Foreign Language Institute of Saint Louis University and are accommodated in Maryhurst Seminary. In view of this, we see the need to have confreres, with positive missionary experience, in these formation houses.
- The CICM Province of the Philippines has a lot of potentials. The confreres are aware of this and believe in this. The majority of the confreres have pledged to look forward and move as one corporate entity, with One Vision, One Mission, in different and varied ministries. This was expressed during the May 2013 Provincial Assembly.
- On-going formation is stressed, from the basic and fundamental Spiritual Direction to formal updating courses. The long list of possible activities on this level is clearly spelled out in the recently updated Provincial Statutes.
- Financial Budgets: Each confrere, each team, each entity is required to submit a realistic and fully justified budget. Submission is October 31 of each year.
- Financial Reports: Clear accounting, with supporting documents is enforced. Submission is January 31 of each year. A system of checks and balances is in place. The funds that will be needed for the different commitments, after careful assessment by the Committee on Finance and the Provincial Government, will be in place.
- Whenever possible, religious communities, with rector and treasurer are created. Comunity schedules for prayer, relaxation, meals and evaluation are in place.
- It is the goal and desire of the whole province to move towards the creation of teams of at least two confreres. We will strive as much as we can to form teams in the different mission commitments where we are. As much as possible, a confrere living alone will be discouraged.
- An updated evaluation grid, which will be used to assess our missionary presence in all fields, will be formulated and implemented.