Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Reflections and Musings #1

I had an entry lined up to address Bishop Tobias' letter to the IC, but I think I'll just maybe share my thoughts with you all tonight.

There's a short back story to this so bear with me please. I had been working on a "gift" that I've been meaning to give the CFC Home Office/Center for quite sometime now, but it was only recently that I figured out how to put it together properly and cohesively. If you read the response by the MMC in this entry, you'll see that the home office has had some issues in communicating with its database of leaders and members because the person in charge joined the FFL. I encountered this verse during my search for a solution for that:

He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore. - Isaiah 2:4

Obviously, you can all read into this however you want, but it particularly struck me in how it relates to what we are doing now - and by we, I mean us the IDOTRCFC bloggers, and the Easter Group. It made me think about the over all effect (global effect, if you may) caused by the CFC split and the subsequent, very public, tit-for-tat exchange it has generated.

Those of you with marketing backgrounds like me will know what I'm saying here: Image is everything. Customers are won first by the image of the product, then you retain them through the quality of the service you provide. That's why companies spend millions of pesos/dollars on advertising that on the surface looks quite pointless at first, but subconsciously strengthens the brand image. That applies to things tangible and material like clothing and other goods, but also to intangible items like certain services, and in our case faith.

What am I getting at, you may ask. Well, if I was to look at this situation from a strictly marketing perspective, I would first give you numbers.

As of this minute:

I've written 160 entries, garnering 777 3731 comments. ([I initially used the wrong program to count the comments.] Yeah, I was suprised too, and how's that for the right time to get a comment count?) The Voices of Faith and Reason entry takes the record for the most comments at 108 ... and counting.

This blog has had 522,000 page views, this month alone has over 65,000.

Of that, if you scroll to the very bottom of this page, you'll see that close to 180,000 are unique visitors.

Now what do those numbers mean? To a marketing man tasked with protecting a brand, I would have quit my job already. Why?

Both the CFC and FFL have at their core a mutual goal of evangelization:

Taken from CFC's official site:
Couples for Christ is a work of Christ which raises up Christian couples and establishes Christian families committed to the work of evangelization, winning the world for Christ and Total Human Liberation through the power of the Holy Spirit.

From the FFL's official site:
The CFC Foundation for Family & Life is a gathering of concerned CFC brethren looking to the restoration, preservation and strengthening of the authentic Couples for Christ charism, focused on evangelization and family life renewal.

If you were told that 180,000 people have now seen your brand in a negative light, and you must regain their goodwill, where would you start? It is logical to assume that to be successful in either group's goal, each must possess a certain amount of credibility, not only to spread the work of Christ, but also to exemplify the strength of the family, through Christ. But with what has been published in this blog and the numbers it has reached, coupled with the FFL's own statements attacking the IC or GK, one can assume that the job of protecting either brand from negative connotations is going to be a tough task.

Why?

On one hand, Frank Padilla not only has set an example of exactly how to break up a family, but also shows how to apply vengeance and anger in keeping it broken up. How can CFC and the FFL evangelize properly if we cannot even show that we can work out our own problems, internal or otherwise? Then you have the "stealing" of venues, the statements issued by the FFL using every Vatican press release to make their case and attack CFC, and now the kicker, Bishops being forced to take sides and disagree with one another.

I can't claim to know what is going in Frank's mind or in anyone's in the upper leadership of the FFL, but are they truly thinking about the repercussions of what is going on here? I don't know if they're thinking their actions through or merely trying everything they can to prove their case, no matter who gets hurt in the end. Every attack they've made on the IC that was covered in this blog only strengthens the beliefs of tens of thousands of CFC members that they've made the right choice. But that's actually just one aspect of it. What about those potential members, who are just starting their CLP's? What if they go online and research what CFC or the FFL is all about? I've no doubt that they constitute a sizeable part of the 180,000 unique hits that this blog has received. Everytime they see one of Nonong Contreras' self-righteous emails, accusing the bishops of reading tea leaves, etc., now constitutes for a potential member ("customer") to undergo what in marketing we call a negative brand experience. It takes ten times the goodwill and resources to win back a customer with a negative experience than it takes to win one who has a neutral opinion. That's 180,000 negative experiences. What's sad is that it applies to CFC as well. I don't know how effective the FFL's blogs and mass email campaigns are, but even if it is just directed at their current members, one must assume a fair amount of outside distribution. And those emails remain unanswered, I can only assume that the majority of the FFL's members avoid this blog because they've been told to. I am sure, however, that the Easter Group weren't counting on this blog to reveal the real reasons for the split, and putting a monkey wrench in their plans to create a new organization and poach the members from CFC. They probably didn't have a plan in place to create goodwill.

I'm quite sure Frank and co. know that the FFL's only realistic chance of success on the scale of what CFC has accomplished (in their lifetime at least), is to either wrest control of the CFC name, along with the Vatican recognition, or share it. He could try for unification of course, but that would mean submitting to the IC, which Frank will most likely not agree to (He would also have to answer to his co-incorporators, who are probably looking to get a return on their investments.) It is a time consuming process to have to submit to each diocese for approval as a new organization, then slowly work on the numbers and reach to gain their own Vatican recognition. I don't doubt they could do it, but it seems they are impatient and want everything NOW. With the damage caused to their name (not only in this blog but by their own actions) it has truly become an uphill battle.

I'm not washing my hands of guilt. Each day I ask myself if what I'm doing is the right thing. I question if getting the truth out is worth the damage I feel I'm doing to the CFC name. Believe it or not, I wish the FFL well, I wish that they'd continue on their stated goals and succeed at it. It is not my wish to hinder that by painting their leaders in a bad light. Surely the majority of you feel the same way too.

So what to do? First I will state where I stand right now.
I believe (and I feel, proven) that the root of the split in CFC was not caused by mere "veering" from charisms or supposed partnerships with pharmas (since it is not unique to CFC or GK among catholic orgs). I believe it was caused by very human traits like jealousy and vengeance coupled with questionable motives.

I believe that having two CFC's will only cause confusion and hinder our efforts in achieving our goals. Especially if they continue to share the same CLP areas, the same event dates and venues, and they both bad mouth each other. All this is happening right now.

I believe that the continued "warfare" between CFC and FFL will erode and degrade the good name and goodwill that CFC has built up over the years. This can cause not only a decline in membership in both groups, but an over-all market resistance, making it harder to fulfill our stated goals.

Now we have to think of a way to put a stop to this, for good. The recent comments have advised going the legal route. Still others are saying to just continue our work and let FFL be (if they will let US be...). I would like your opinions. First state where you stand, then what you believe we should do to get past this - before it's too late.

Surely we cannot keep all this up in the coming years, firing salvo after salvo, ironically causing more damage to ourselves than we are to the other side. I wish the solution were as easy as saying, "If you stop, we'll stop.", but obviously the Easter Group have their own reasons for wanting to fight for the CFC name. Until they find an alternative name or get stopped in their tracks, we can expect that we here will remain in the trenches, always at the ready to defend CFC.

72 comments:

Anonymous said...

cd,

i agree with your 2nd and 3rd points where you stand.

btw, i know it's not obvious to you... example of your 3rd point is http://defendingcfc.blogspot.com/.

cfcyfc-usa servant said...

hi again po.

i've been in the family mins for most of my life (womb-to-tomb, only a teenager) and this has already happened to us here in usa before. like now, of course the breakaway hurt and made its damage, but like everything of course God has His way.

no matter what is said about us here in usa, know this: we continue to stand for God as one CFC family. we are proud to be cfc youth for Christ.

as for what we should do to get past this, God is always in control, and He is always enough. no matter what, just know that we stand solidly with our brethren all over the world as we be still in God's presence, and sing "send me Lord, and i will go!" no matter what happens, even we here in cfc-yfc shout "God is where? Everywhere! And everywhere? GOD IS THERE!"

may the Lord's light continue to shine in our actions, and continue be led by the Holy Spirit! amen, alleluia!

God bless po!

Bro. Mero :-) said...

Hi CD,

I agree in what you have said in this blog. And besides nakakapagod na rin. Pabalik-balik na issue and it is getting nowhere.

I believe that the IC have already lay down their swords. The have stopped entertaining FFL's attack. (And i think they never raised their swords to fight)Whatever ad they publish in the newspapaer is just a result of Cardinal Rylko's instruction.

You are asking how to end this? Here is my proposal.

1. Resolve the issues with the Vatican and its ecclesiastical authority and not with FFL. (I know the IC is currently doing this, so all of us should put our trust in the IC to handle these issues.)

2. Evangelization should be our focus.

3. Make our mission statement as our guide. "Building the Church of the Home and of the Poor.

4. Open more our hearts, so there will be more space to love and forgive and accept FFL members.

5. Volunteer in GK and spend time with the poor. (Baka kasi nasobrhan na yung ating kade-defend, and we forgot that the real lossers in all of these are the poor.)

6. Entrust everything to GOD. Frank says in his letter to Fr. Herb, (during the split of CFC from LNP) Only God owns CFC and not LNP. So if God owns CFC, i don't find any reason why we will not turn to God and tell what is happening to all of us right now. besides, in your previous blog, "The Power of Prayer", God has proven his majesty and power, so why won't we turn to him this time to ask for healing and reconcilliation.

7. Forgive,
8. Forget, and
9. Love.

God bless,

Bro. Mero :-)

Cluster 2 Chapter D said...

Hi all, its been awhile huh. Here's my take...

I once heard Gretchen Barreto saying on TV: "kapag di na ako na-iintriga wala na akong career" or something to that effect.

Since marketing strategy ang tema ni CD sa palagay ko ganito rin ang game plan ni FAP ala Greta: "Kapag di na ako pinatulan ng mga ito wala ng saysay ang pag-iingay ko. Wika nga sa showbiz good or bad publicity it's still publicity".

Kung media mileage ang pag-uusapan palagay ko mas nakikinabang si FAP kumpara sa IDOTRCFC bloggers, eh ano ba naman ang motibo natin kumpara sa motibo nila.

What I mean is this, they have nothing to lose but everything to gain.

Kaya nga masipag silang magsusulat laban sa CFC dahil maraming magtatanggol at dahil doon lagi rin silang mapag-uusapan at laging nasa limelight.

Kaya kung may national election ngayon at kandidato si FAP mananalo siya due to NAME RECALL!

Bakit di natin devote ang buwan ng Hunyo in LOVING ONE ANOTHER... Let's talk about LOVE - testimony, sharing, share articles basta anything about LOVING ONE ANOTHER... kalimutan muna natin issue ng FFL laban sa CFC for 1 month.

It's just a thought!

From Riyadh with LOVE!
C2CD

Deo Volente said...

For me, I think we are nearing the end. The only issue I see now is the name issue. Once the name issue is resolved, and everyone is in conformance, we're done. This name issue is dragging this conflict for far too long.

In my humble opinion, the FFL use of the "CFC" name is an undue burden not just for the real CFC but also for FFL. With their decision to call themselves CFC, it brings forth a need for them to eternally justify the reason for their existence outside of and apart from the other CFC. And in the process of justifying their existence, it would be at the expense of always having to prove that the other CFC is wrong or is veering away (otherwise, there would be no need to create another entity). And the natural tendency for the members of the mainstream CFC would be to also prove that they are not wrong or that they are not veering away. Thus, there is a perpetuation of this vicious cycle of attack and counter-attack, which I think is not healthy for both groups.

If the name issue is settled, and FFL decides to just use FFL (and not CFC), then there is no need for it to explain how it came into being. (They wouldn't have to answer questions from their participants regarding their differences with CFC). It would be enough for them to say that they will focus on evangelization. The confusion will then be no longer there. Both groups can bless one another and move on with their respective mission.

"Foundation For Family and Life" is a very beautiful and well thought of name. I am sure that if they ask the Father to bless this name, the Father will bless it and make their harvest bountiful. If their intention is good and they work hard in their service to the Lord, "Foundation For Family and Life" could one day be more famous than CFC.

So let us all pray, my dear brothers and sisters, that the name issue will be resolved soon.

In the mean time, let's try to conduct our exchange with lots of love and charity towards one another, even to those who are not in agreement with us.

Anonymous said...

I believe the issue is just under the subject- "Use of the name". 2 groups with the same name no matter how long or short are the letters attached as an appendage will drag the entire community down. Each one will affect the other and yet each one does not have anything to do with each other, it just can not work. We are pulling each other down. FFL's insistence on using the same name is divisive.

Unless leaders of both communities will sit down and be in total agreement on how to function as 2 bodies under one group.

The question here is how to put this to an end.

If we say no to the sharing of the name CFC, then the IC should do everything, and everything means- including going to court.

We have tried the church authorities, we rejoiced when vatican spoke, but what are the bishops saying? While others say yes, only CFC can use the name... other bishops say they rule in their own diocese. Bishops differ in their opinions.

The only option left is the legal way. Let us go to court and let the courts decide who has the right to use the name Couples For Christ!

Tigilan na ang pamamangka sa dalawang ilog!

ano-ini-moose said...

I dare ask:
Is it time to go legal?
I dare agree

I dare comment:
anonymous said-
"Tigilan na ang pamamangka sa dalawang ilog!"

I dare conclude:
Ang namamangka sa dalawang ilog, pag tumaob ang bangka-
Dalawang beses malulunod!

jconline said...

while being meek in the face of adversity is how we can answer to all the attacks of our brethren in ffl, i believe we can also act in ways to BLOCK OFF or even CORRECT their misleadings. some members that joined ffl were not there because they wanted it. they were there because they were misled in the first place due to false and deceitful advertisements like:
1. "nasa ffl ang basbas ng bishop" (at least in gabby's case, yes)
2. "pag dyan ka GK ka, dito sa ffl family and evangelization"
3. "nilustay ang pera ng GK"
4. "kinawawa nila si frank"
5. at marami pang maling kwento.

now, some of them who now knows that what were told to them at first were not true at all. some of them ask why they don't hear CFC's side before? because of our BE STILL stance, they thought we are guilty. but lo, God is doing our battles for us and little by little with the help of sites like these and other people, we are slowly but surely correcting their poisoned (or is it hypnotized?) minds.
it is only a matter of time that i hope and pray, they (ffl) return to cfc's fold. the thing is, if they'd be humble enough to admit their mistakes or humble enough to want to come back.
we always teach our members to walk the right path. to fight for what is right should be our ideal for it takes a few good men to do nothing for evil men to truimph.

jonitanitayturin said...

CD:

Please expand your take of the conflict from a “MARKETING” standpoint towards “RELIGIOUS POLITICS” so that we can temporarily set aside the incipient pressure of forcing the “brand name” issue with the courts, as someone suggested in another entry.

Frank Padilla's and FFL's insistence that the CFC-IC WAS DISOBEDIENT TO THE CATHOLIC CHURCH (represented by Bps Reyes, Lagdameo, and Villegas) was definitely a very convenient "smokescreen" to cover his cardinal sin of JEALOUSY or ENVY that, the “despot” that he was for the last 25 years at the helm of CFC, he and his close allies harbored against Meloto.

Sources have it that back in 1991, LNP trained Meloto to co-manage CFC in order to hopefully neutralize Padilla’s rise in CFC that was expanding beyond the limits expected of it as an “outreach” (of LNP). Accordingly, Meloto shared his forebodings with Padilla and pre-empted LNP by getting Padilla to appoint him instead as Director of the CFC Philippine Mission towards the end of 1991. That was also a "smokescreen" applied in what Meloto was reported to have said as his first brush with "religious politics".

Thus, let us delve more deeply into this angle of RELIGIOUS POLITICS in CFC. Yes, the "devil is in the details" and it is not in the CFC "brand name".

Let us go back to the accusations made about "DISOBEDIENCE" and the SUSPICIOUSLY STRONG POLITICAL SUPPORT EXTENDED BY “THEIR BISHOPS” TO “KILL” THE REGULAR ELECTION PROCESS LAST YEAR.

Yet, I foresee that beneath all this is the stillness of the Cross – Jesus Christ being above, behind, and below all the confusion as a steady and sure foundation, be it CFC, CFC-FFL, FFL, etc. By our fruits we will be known, the old saying goes. And no one can constantly use a smokescreen to distract the work of God in pursuit of dirty “religious politics”.

There is certainly a lot insights to be made out of the historical antecedents (the UGNAYAN’s and the other still-unrecounted versions) in order to “make straight the path” of CFC. At this point, though, I wish to reiterate that old “Sodalist” of Mary’s by-word: “THE CROSS (IS) OUR ONLY SWORD.”

This is only a matter of suggestion. Thank you.

Jojo Peña/Jiggs said...

CD an All,

i guess we all need a break at this time. not counting the stats you just mentioned here and looking at the right side of this blog - we already have 12 entries for April and 12 in May compared to 7, 2 and 3 in the first 3 months of 2008.

i thought all is Quiet when January and the first months came. i would understand why we were ALL quiet in December because i recall some members and i asked for "tigil-putukan" for the Christmas season. :)

but then the machines started working again and cant help but react and be in defense to all thats been happening lately.

i would say mahirap talaga to let your hands down and not be on guard when others continue to jab at you.

i request once again... its the LOVE month of June and OUR anniversary month. let's VEER AWAY from negative reactions to what issues will be out there for a while and focus on loving and sharing. let us offer this as a pleasing sacrifice for OUR ANNIVERSARY Month.

Let me be the first to greet you brothers and sisters:

HAPPY 27th ANNIVERSARY CFC!!!
GOD BLESS US ALL.


my next greetings will come in late July or early August when they would have had their 1st anniversary.

Agree? Mabuhay tayo!

Anonymous said...

Hi,

Have been visiting and reading this blogsite from quite sometime and it's really very enlightening especially to the current issues.

With regards to the current post, here's my 2 cents worth of comment;

First, IC has done the proper and best way to confront the issues by "being still" most of the time and has gained support from the Vatican through God's own way. Apparently, it's not getting much headway, but we know in His time He will resolve all this name issue, so let us then "be still" and do our works unmindful of what the others will say and do. Keep up the good work !!

Second, aside from being still, i also believe that going through the legal route to solve this name issue is a viable alternative, unfortunately, it would be very costly and time exhausting. However, if in the end, the Justice Court decides on our favor, then definitely by all means, ALL the Bishops here in the Phil as well as the group of Frank will have to obey and adhere to the law of the land and the name issue will be put to rest.

i know, it's easily said than done.

But I'm sure God is a God of Order and He will put everything in it's proper order.

God bless..

Jiggs said...

should read 12 for April and 16 for May

Anonymous said...

Dear CFC Brethren,

The issues raised against the CFC-IC & GK were all designed to justify the "planned" split or the break-away. These issues were already settled in front of the Catholic bishops and the representatives of the 2 groups. So, why can't everyone seems to move on? My answer is simple: the "REAL" issues were NOT brought out and addressed properly. These issues were rooted in these 2 words: ENVY & POWER!!!

How can we resolve all these?
1) There must be a distinction between the 2 groups. The "name issue" should be settled once & for all no matter who gets hurt. Truth hurts but it must be pursued to the very end.
2) Pray for both groups to succeed in their separate ways of carrying out their charisms.
3) Pursue with passion and deep conviction our mission of building the church of the home and of the poor.

God will bless the humble of heart. "The greatest among you should be the servant of all", says the LORD.

Amen.

DBC

Anonymous said...

The finality of who will be given the exclusive use of the CFC name is as of today, a HOPELESS issue.

Reasons:

1. Asking the Catholic Church to make one final comment and decision is now proven futile, inutile, and a dead end. Why, because as one blogger here commented: "...there is NO one church entity that can give a definitive instruction about the use of the CFC name which will be followed by Frank and his FFL followers..." [or words to that effect]. Proof: See Bishop Reyes' statements on the Rylko statement.
As a side comment: The compliance of the IC to advertise and accept guilt for whatever scandal is now also proven ineffective and useless. We thought the words of the President of the Pontifical Council of the Laity's words will stick. Now we all realize that in the Philippine Catholic fiefdom, the President of the Philippine Council of the Laity will state otherwise and blatantly defy and overrule the Cardinal and get away with it, with nary a reprimand from anyone in the Church. Good thing Bishop Reyes has a small following. Such proud posturing by a Philippine Bishop diminishes my respect of the nation's church leadership so I struggle to strengthen my Catholic faith. Now we know one fact: Catholic Church is made up of many structures and all of its Cardinals/Bishops [hopefully not priests] have voices and rules and behavior independent of each other.

2. The stubborn / dead-set leadership posture of FFL will not comply with any pastoral/spiritual/Vatican/diocese pronouncements that will prevent them the use of the CFC name. Even if we throw them tons of counter-charges that they are now the ones exhibiting the very 'disobedience' or 'veering away' behavior, they will simply act the way they are pre-programmed to act, that is defy anyone not who will not allow them to use the CFC name.
With all the things Frank & his other servants are doing in their continuing effort to discredit CFC, to believe that there is a ghost of goodwill for CFC left in their hearts is irrational.

3. The hesitancy of the CFC leadership [ I mean, IC] to use legal means [w/c is a fact as of today] is in effect buying time for FFL to do what they need to do. I really wish the IC could be visibly pro-active because I get the feeling many of the leadership are getting frustrated. Sometimes, this leads me to think that the creation of STMA is more for ‘social posturing’ rather for actual use in times like this. I ask pardon from any STMA member, I don’t mean to criticize you. It is the IC's rather slow action, to my mind, is what is at issue here.

I just know of one possible event that will really put CFC in total shambles and quickly disappear: Bring back Padilla, Agana, Contreras, Maribel/Mimi, Andrews, Nillas (pacman) in CFC with the Vatican recognition. Good thing that's a great improbability.

So we are all in a waiting game.

CD, please just continue to provide this space -- an effective and efficient ad venue, if WE consider CFC as a 'product'.

AS for me, no prayer is overstated so I will always pray for the CFC community.

(Sgd. Trying hard to be patient..yet getting anxious)

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but I have a little clarification to make.

Does "BE STILL" mean do not sue?

for christ alone cebuano said...

As i always believed and will forever hold on to is that, the Lord is the captain of our ship and we are just but His deckhands. He takes us where He wants to and it is but just sad that others wanted the other way..thus, the split..And it really is very painful, so painful that most of us are already numb and have stagnated because we don't know where to go and who to rely on..We are all left astray by th split and that causes much more pain than the split itself.

My two cents worth of reflection:

1. First, let us all be still and listen to what God has to say in all these.Because of the pain and our desire not to be hurt by the false accusations, we have been very anxious and agitated to really strike back and defend our beloved community, but in the end, we forgot to listen to God and truly hear His take. Thus our need to be still so that we can be totally in union with Him and act accordingly.

2. No matter what the reasons are for the split, or the selfish motives behind it, Christian as we are, we must learn to forgive those who have caused us pain and anguish. Because if we do not, then we will never be at peace. Peace is not the absence of war but is borne out of the fullness of our hearts to forgive each other.

3. Let the IC do what they had to do and leave them at that. What is so commendable about them is their innate ability to remain still and face the battle head on, protecting their brethren from the damaging effects of the split and make it bearable for all of us. What we can do is to continue to pray for them that they will have more strength and to pray for our community that we can withstand the attacks against us.

4. We can lay to rest this blog. Most of the attacks coming from the FFL are taken from the contents of this blog more specifically from the comments that we bloggers have made in order to defend our community. Though what has been laid here are truths, but then, they are so gifted in literary writing, that they can make it appear that the IC has been the one making all these, thus the strings of attacks to the IC. Even if this blog shed light on the current issues, but being a public one, anybody can just have access to all these contents. It would be too bad though to lay this blog to rest, but in the interest of the community and our desire to be able to move on, no matter how painful it is, but we must let go and this time allow God to take His actions.

Anonymous said...

CD, I agree with you. Much time, I think, awasting and as someone commented to me personally, much time now is spent here than on evangelization and prayers.Where we are, we are quiet. We figured we will leave our IC to iron out what must be ironed out while we move on. Concerned GK volunteers here, non-CFC, brought up their concern about "wagging tongues" and my response to that was: let the tongues wag,only God knows what's truly going on, on both sides. Wagging tongues do not accomplish good deeds. There is so much to do there and here in the USA for CFC to grow. Wagging tongues are the devil's tool to take our focus away from our misson.

Please read Galatians Chapter 5 and 6.

There is merit in going legal but that is for our IC and elders to decide. Meantime, there is also merit in taking a break, else emotions may only lead us nowhere.
Let us tame our tongues so that any word that comes out of our mouth reflects the love we are to give to one another even to our FFL brothers and sisters. Vengeance is not ours to inflect.

Let us pray: "Lord God, have mercy on your people and heal the divisions in the body of Christ. May all Christian people throughout the world attain the unity for which Jesus prayed on the eve of his sacrifice? Renew in us the power of the Spirit that we may be a sign of that unity and a means of its growth. Increase in us a fervent love for all our brothers and sisters in Christ."
Jesus I trust in You!

/Show Me, USA

Let's ask this in UNISON said...

If you say that the Church does not have one united ruling/mandate /anointment over the exclusive use of the CFC name, therefore one is saying that the Catholic Church admits, in effect, that there is no REAL UNITY in their leadership.

So to whom do we, the laity, turn to if we want to hear a teaching on UNITY?

Not even to Cardinal Rosales I suppose!

Anonymous said...

One thing is sure: 'BE STILL' does not mean inaction!

"Be Still" means spend personal, long and precious moment in communion with GOD! It refers to prayer and scripture [not tea leaf pattern reading as one occult in FFL says over their Bishops]reading time!

It means not over-emphasizing what we tell our God in Praise, Thanksgiving or Petitions, rather I think, 'Be Still' demands that we enter into a quiet moment so that God's whisper can be heard. It is an active but silent and meditative avoidance of the world's call for us to be busy or shutting out our mind's noise. It is emptying of our ego or our desires and taking on GOD.

After that moment of 'being still in God's presence listening to His precious whispering Goodness for us', we then MOVE, ACT & DO something for His Glory.

And MOVING, ACTING, DOING all to protect the name of CFC is MOVING, ACTING, DOING all to Honor God!

Let no FFL action/word prevent you, CFC, from doing that.

t2mc said...

At the very start it is my belief that there is something more serious that is going on other than the GK3 issues being peddled at that time. I would like to share or re-issue what I have written on this subject way back at the time that Bro. Frank et al decided to broke away and establish a new organization. Please click HERE or HERE to read the article.

There are two main personalities that are not in agreement or are in conflict with each other. Factionalism among some leaders has already arisen. The situation aggravated when the financial investigation was conducted, which made Frank believes that the other personality/ies is/are being prejudiced upon. Ever since that time the question boggling my mind was is this man really worth fighting for, whether wrongly or rightly, at the expense of the whole community? Or of peace and or unity? Or of what we as CFC stands for as brotherhood is concerned? In fact when the situation is starting to get out of hand, I also wrote an article which you can view HERE or HERE.

More than jealousy or envy, there are lots of questionable motives involved, and sad to say, greed is one of them.

What's happening to our community is sad, really sad. How can we fulfill our mission when we can not even clean up our acts. I hope that the two sides will realize that this exchange of blows will only harm both sides.

On our part, we can still keep this blog and keep on commenting on every issue. But let's make our comments more constructive and most importantly, we should not demean personalities, there should not be any personal attacks. I think this is what the IC meant of being still.

Danny, WB said...

It's very obvious the the Good Bishop of Novaliches is "Frankly Misinformed" because:

1. He believes Frank is the Founder of CFC.
2. He believes CFC only does GK work, and does not do evangelization work anymore.
3. He can not understand the meaning of "...your name Couples For Christ cannot be used by any other organization."

Had the Good Bishop only read (and understood) the CBCP Official Newspaper then he would have realized that Frank is NOT the Founder of CFC.

According to the Good Bishop, the problem lies only in the top leadership and not in the grassroots level.

Obviously, his Excellency is not in touch with the parishes under his care, unless there is no confusion in the parish level as to what CFC is and what FFL is, which I really doubt.

I suggest we email the Good Bishop at novaliches_diocese@yahoo.com so he can be informed that confusion is happening at the grassroots level.

Anonymous said...

my stand:
I believe on the teachings that i've receive when we we're in sfc and now in cfc.

I believe in the mission and vision of cfc.

I believe that our Lord fix everything, in His own time.

suggestion :
1. We should shut down this blog. I know it is our source of information, but it is a bad publicity to us CFC, bad for evangelization.

2. Make sure that we have a central source of information just incase na merong kailangang i-explain sa lahat ng members ng CFC.

3. When criticized, Be still and let's do our evangelization and social work. In short let our action do the defending.

alipinsagigilid

WillyJ said...

Just my Thoughts and Musings:

1. There should just be one organization that will retain the name of CFC and it should be the CFC under the IC as recognized by the Vatican. Two groups assuming the same name is simply untenable as our present sitation demonstrates. CFC-FFL must change its name.
2. Both CFC and the splinter group (under a different name) must be accorded full support by the Church, each should respect their own charisms and possibly partner with each other in the future as circumstances allow so that both may serve fruitfully and flourish under the Catholic Church. Under such circumstances, a Christian gentleman’s agreement should be worked out among the two groups to avoid confusion in the reservation of venues and such matters.
3. Both CFC and the splinter group must refrain from undermining each other, and must recognize one another as true expressions of Christianity, each in their own unique ways. However, they are both entitled and are under obligation to defend their respective organizations against unfair attacks from wherever they come from.

The ideal solution for # 1 above should be a voluntary acquiscence on the part of CFC-FFL to drop the CFC name. While legal proceedings are possibilities to pursue towards settling this matter, it is an unattractive option, as a protracted legal battle is most likely, and would hurt both sides in the end regardless of whom the legal proceedings will favor. If voluntary acquiscence is not acceptable on the part of CFC-FFL, then the only way to resolve would be for both parties to jointly seek final clarification from the Vatican, with both sides clearly in agreement beforehand that whatever the Vatican decidedly clarifies will be respected and upheld both in the local and international setting. Of course a unified CFC, if it is at all possible, remains the most ideal option but the turn of events proves this is a Utopian expectation at least at this time.

How item # 2 should be done is self-explanatory.

Item # 3 would be the most difficult obstacle, and in fact both items 1 and 2 practically hinges on this one. Sadly, the "Real Truth" document released by FFL practically brands CFC under the IC as an "enemy" of the Church. While there have been hurtful accusations by some leaders of FFL, I am under no illusions that there are no imperfections with CFC under the IC, but it never occurred to me (or to the IC for that matter) to brand CFC-FFL under its current leadership as "enemies" of the Church. We hope that a new CFC Spiritual Director can guide both groups to a charitable settlement for the benefit of all concerned, even as Faith and Reason is upheld. In the meantime, I also hope and pray that CFC-FFL’s appraisal of CFC under the IC takes on a more charitable stance, and until then, I assume it remains an obligation for us to defend CFC and the mission it stands for - with gentleness and reverence.

While we all have these aspirations, God’s work must go on, and I now see the wisdom behind the whole point of brother andyalquiros of quezon’s comments in the other thread - yes, let us "do our faith".

Anonymous said...

We are indeed in a very sad state. We have stooped so low as to calling brothers and sisters in Christ masters of lies, deceits and disinformation. Has anybody thought of what all these is doing to our Lord Jesus Christ? During our household meetings, a household of magulo but quite kindred spirits, I usually would say (after a burst of laughter from the group) that our God in heaven is smiling at our kasutilan. The bickerings between CFC and FFL have me wondering what we'd see if we can see God's face right now. What I fear most about this whole thing is its effect on our Singles for Christ. Not much with YFC since they would accept anything we say. But not young mature professionals. The question they have in their minds now is why the bitter exchanges? why the accusations? why the unforgiveness? Eventually SFC might themselves take things on their hands, separate from either CFC and FFL and form their own group, a group that is of pure intentions and pure visions, not marred by jealousy, prejudice and hate. Please, I beg both CFC and FFL, especially Bro Frank Padilla, put a stop to this. Bro Frank started it all, he has to accept that things cannot be run just his way. Before we work on unity, there has to be acceptance of difference in opinions... May God have mercy on us and grant us the grace to forgive one another and focus on our work on Christ, not on the shortcomings of our brethren...

Athrun Atreides said...

DAY 469 OF THE CRISIS.

There is no feasible solution. Going to the Philippine courts would be scandalous and tedious. Besides, there would still be the possibility of going in every court of every country, because our courts are limited only to the sovereign territory of the Philippines. (Nope, not even the International Court of Justice can help; it's not designed for situations such as ours, and besides, according to international customs, countries do not need to abide by the decisions of whichever international organization they belong to. That, in parallel terms, was what Bishop Gabby meant when he didn't heed Cardinal Rylko's statement.)

There's a way: we wait.

We wait until all those involved in this situation reach the arms of the Creator.

Then it would be a tabula rasa: the next generation can come in, renovate CFC, and hopefully unify the opposing factions.

Judging from the ages of those involved, I say we'll have to suffer this for forty more years, just like the Israelites in the desert.

What can we do until then?

We'll have to live...one awful day at a time.

Anonymous said...

Now that the other issues have been raised from among the members through this blog, is there a way to ask the FFL Bishops their personal reflection about their opposition to the CFC election last year?

If they had known what they know now (including the minutes of the Easter Playboys/Bunnies), would they still have recommended the break-up of CFC?

If break-up was necessary, would they STILL have agreed to the use of the CFC name by both CFC and FFL?.

It seems that all along, this whole problem of CFC was encouraged by the Bishops. Someone said it is the scandal of the lambs because of the failure of their shepherds, or something to this effect.

CD, focus on the bishops / episcopate and their primary role in leading the break up of CFC.

still sue said...

My take:
1) to go legal;

take action upon SEC to make a judgement on whether ffl could use the name CFC. as it is today certain unseen forces are asking the SEC commissioners to be 'still'

2) to go to Vatican;
ask cardinal rylko to make a clear directive- one for cfc,, one for ffl and another one for the clergy and bishops

3) to go to frank;
ask him to pack up his plans and let go;

Question:
1) who will go legal?
International Council
2) who will go to the vatican?
International council
3) who will go to frank?
International council

if sec says yes
if vatican says yes
if frank says ye

PEACE TIMES AHEAD

if sec says no
if vatican says no
if frank says no

MAY GOD HAVE MERCY ON OUR SOULS!

Anonymous said...

Dear Us,

Both CFC & FFL have lost integrity and credibility to its vision and mission, lost in their desire to outdo each other by points, accusations or by innuendos and mostly acting unchristian towards each other.

Since this is the case its best to adopt a new name or 'brand as in any marketing approach' if your business name is comrpomised and your image is going down the gutter its best to change and be seen as a new entity.

Dumped the CFC name and logo as its a blasphemy to use 'C for Christ' when the words and thoughts that comes out from each source CFC or FFL is a defilement of their bearing.

History reflects this in-house fighting because of differences of theological approach e.g. NT-Jews vs Christians, Catholics and its number of orders, monasticism Catholics splitting to Protestants and Protestants having many denominations Methodist, Baptist, Pentacostal, Prebysterians etc.

Let us admit that as we become big and successful in our undertakings that manner of approach do change.

There will be Elders wanting the standard conservative evangelical approach as the main standard; whereas visionaries and liberal new thinkers would like to try other approaches but still be effective in their christian affinity and service.

The main thing to consider is: Do our actions and thoughts express the will of God or adopted to our own human will..

Vic DG
Melb CFC servant

Anonymous said...

This letter was in the Parish Newsletter of Our Lady of Consolation Parish in Mira Nila QC. I guess our beloved Bishops Reyes, Tobias and the others should also recognize the issue of confusion resulting from FFL claiming to be the true or another CFC.

If we relate those highlighted portion of the letter these can well apply to our current situation.


Roman Catholic Bishop of Novaliches

The Apostolic Catholic Church
Circular 2008-05

To: All Parish Priest and Principals of All Diocesan and Congregational Schools in the Diocese of Novaliches

Our office has received several queries about the Apostolic Catholic Church. Parish Priests have complained that their priests go around our parishes soliciting funds sowing confusion to our Catholic Faithful, with their claim that the Apostolic Catholic Church is the same as the Roman Catholic Church. More often than not their priests call themselves as Bishops or Monsignors or simply Fathers after a little training. Usually, they appear well groomed in spotless white and thus seem more priestly than some of our Catholic priests. They also have sisters in long white robes.

A fundamental principle in the work of ecumenism is to point out not only what is the same among the churches but also to accept honestly, even if sadly, that each is different from the other.

As your Bishop, I want to inform all Catholics that the Apostolic Catholic Church is a cult founded by the mother of its present Patriarch, John Florentine L. Teruel. The cult deceivingly resembles the Roman Catholic Church because they have some vestiges of the true faith, like worship of the Triune God: Father, Son and the Holy Spirit and devotion to our blessed Mother Mary under the title Ina ng Poong Bato. They recite the Rosary and make novenas. Also in a very particular way, they call God the Holy Spirit Ingkong. However, since the Apostolic Catholic Church does not accept the supremacy of the Pope of Rome but recognizes only Patriarch Teruel, the Apostolic Catholic Church thus is Schismatic Church. Its members therefore have ceased to be Roman Catholics. The Apostolic Catholic Church is thus, not the same as but is very different from the Roman Catholic Church we were all baptized into.

This circular is to be read in all Sunday, including Anticipated Masses of April and May 2008.

Given in the Chancery in Fairview, Quezon City, this 1st day of April in the Year of our Lord, 2008.


Most Rev. Antonio R. Tobias, DD
Bishop

Attested by:
Rev. Fr. Jaime S. Lara
Chancellor

Timothy1 said...

I think the IC and FFl's council should again sit down and discuss and agree on terms of separation. Like a couple getting a divorce, the question is who will preside as the Judge. One who is not biased and has Church authority. Once the terms of conditions are signed, everybody should abide from the elders down to members so both party can go their own way.

At this point, the reason for the separation or who's to blame is immaterial now. Like in a broken marriage both party loses. Both party just try salvage what can be saved of their dignity and move on.

Anonymous said...

It’s a shame...

* months of fighting
* hundreds of entries and comments
* hundreds of name callings and nasty words written
* thousands of hours that could have spent with families and love ones

and still... you do not know where you are going.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said,
"Both CFC & FFL have lost integrity and credibility to its vision and mission, lost in their desire to outdo each other by points, accusations or by innuendos and mostly acting unchristian towards each other."

I think these are pretty steep words;
this blog is for the defense of CFC, and I rise to its defense...
CFC has not lost integrity and credibility, the last time I checked, our own parish priest has only teh CFC parish workers to rely on for all parish activities.

The last time I checked CFC that I belong to has not veered away from it vision and mission, we have not stopped conducting CLPs our household are still meeting and our members are still eagerly doing their volunteer work with GK.

The last time I checked in our service meeting we discussed how to serve our members better, there was no mention of ffl at all.

the last time I checked, it was a letter from the Easter group who were accusing of a "GK Anomaly"

the last time I checked it was Nonong Contreras who acted quite in an unchristian manner when he paid a scandalous amount just to have his opinion printed in a major daily, that is, after bad mouthing- his so called "our bishops" as prelates- twiddling their thumbs.

another blogger comments;
suggestion :
1. We should shut down this blog. I know it is our source of information, but it is a bad publicity to us CFC, bad for evangelization.

the last time i checked nowhere did this blog, in any form or manner, cast a bad light on CFC.actually by the manner by which the comments are posted, is the best gauge if he/she is cfc or ffl

the last time i checked, i read about words of wisdom, of christian discourse, of brotherly correction...

this is evangelization at work.

Anonymous said...

I believe the easiest way to resolve this problem is to forget everything, let them say all the bad things about CFC or GK and instead of firing back, let us be still, reflect and examine if what they said has truth or none, if there is truth then let us use it as our basis for change. We are all imperfect people. If what they propagate against us has no basis then let us pray for them for they do not know what they do. Just make sure that in all our activities to come, vebues, dates,etc..should be properly coordinated with all the proper warning so that what had happened will not be repeated.NOW!! Let us move on..As the famous late Cardinal Sin said.. VAMOS!!!
By the way..GK 1 World Summit in San Diego, California was very successful!!
May God Bless Us All!

Anonymous said...

ON THE OTHER HAND, I THINK WE JUST HAVE TO BE STILL SOME MORE

GK is doing fine. The regular CFC activities are being conducted (CLPs, YFC camps, SFC gatherings, inter-sectoral sports activities, teaching nights, fellowships, etc.). We're into CLP Talk #1 (by one of our units) this weekend with me as the resource speaker, our youth camp for 2 chapters will start tomorrow... we just plod on.

Of course we are concerned about tomorrow, and the name usage. But then, we have been taught that there is a God of Order. So, we worry? Not us in the CFC community!

Let us move on and leave the major decisions to our IC. Let this blog go on to share God's wisdom. Let us also purify our minds by an authentic act of contrition through the Sacrament of Confession.

GOD BLESS US ALL.

Anonymous said...

2 Peter 2:1
There were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will introduce destructive heresies and even deny the Master who ransomed them, bringing swift destruction on themselves.

Bro. Mero :-) said...

To Vic DG (Melb CFC servant)
who said:
"Both CFC & FFL have lost integrity and credibility to its vision and mission, lost in their desire to outdo each other by points, accusations or by innuendos and mostly acting unchristian towards each other."

Question: Are you refering to the leaders of CFC and FFL or the whole of community?

1. If you are referring to the whole community of CFC, i think even Australia must not use the name "CFC" anymore, coz you might lose your integrity too.

2. If you are referring to FFL as a community, then it would be unfair to those who join FFL whose passion is only to serve God in the charism that describe much by FFL.

3. If you refer to FFL leader (especially Frank) then, i agree with you 1000%.

4. If you refer to CFC-IC, i beg to disagree. I think that is not fair. Why?

a.) They were just elected then and have not done much yet, when the split arise.

b.) The IC appeals to every member to "BE STILL" amidst all the accusations. That is humility per se.

c. I haven't heard/ read of any article, blog or paid ad from the IC against Frank and many others. But from Frank, Nonong and many others, yes, they always attack the IC. Frank even appeal to the International Community to withdraw their support to the IC. To me, that is the worst unchristian attack that Frank has ever made.

d. Whatever statements written by the IC are just a response to the many confusions and lies that Frank and FFL have peddled. And in fact such statements are not intended for FFL but for the guidance and information of CFC members. This act is not unChristian and does not lose annointing nor credibility nor integrity as what Australia is claiming.

e. It is unfair, because who among the current IC wants to handle such a very terible headache. Who wants crisis in the first place (except Frank)?

In fact i honor the IC, because they did not left the community in the moment of crises and scandal but face it all with all humility. For me this is the supreme sacrifice that they have made.

It would be easy for Joe Tale to just leave the community and live a private life that is far from scandal, noise, crisis and all sorts of headache, but he never did. None of the IC members left.

In fact if there is someone or somebody who lost his credebility or integrity, those are the "Judases" and "Pilates" of the community who just simply washed their hands or betray CFC and started to jump on the other camp.

In fact i honor those who are the "Simon Peters" of CFC who denied CFC 3 times or more, but after coming back to their senses, repented and came back.

Bro Vic DG, if your premise is this:
"CFC have lost its credebility, integrity and/or annointing because of the scandal and/or crises in it", then i would say even the Catholic Church have long time lost its credibility and integrity too for the many scandals he is having- past and present. I would say too, how small-minded are we in believing the idea that someone lost his/her credebility, integrity or annointing just because of the scandal (where in fact he/she never ask for it in the first place.)

Sometimes, I picture the IC praying in the garden of Getsemane saying like this, "O father if possible take away this cup of crisis away from us." and then followed by, "But not our will, but yours be done."

Who among us in CFC, can do what the council have done?

Just a thought! And i hope Australia will be enlightened by this too.

God bless

Bro. Mero :-)

Where the real SHAME & SCANDAL LIES said...

Anonymous of May 28, 2008 writes the following:
“It’s a shame...

* months of fighting
* hundreds of entries and comments
* hundreds of name callings and nasty words written
* thousands of hours that could have spent with families and love ones

and still... you do not know where you are going.”

The statements above are a classic examples of an FFL member’s mindset who is BLINDLY following the Servant General Frank Padilla & Bishop Basher Nonong Contreras.

Now let me tell you of what I think are the REAL SHAME & SCANDAL in YOUR FAMILY.

Here goes:
1. You claim a name that is NOT YOURS: COUPLES for CHRIST

2. Your Bishop – Frank Padilla’s pet # 1 in the Catholic Church, Gabby of Antipolo, - defies the order of Cardinal Stanislaw Rylko, President of the PONTIFICAL Council of the Laity. Not I capitalized the word Pontifical, just to stress on your mind that he bears a higher rank than your Bishop.

3. Your family celebrates birthdays that are FALSE. Imagine your barely 2 year old Ministry celebrating a LIE that you advertised to the whole world, after just having formally recognized your corporation in August 2007 that you are on your 27th year? One for the books. If there’s a Guinness book on Stupidity this is one entry that will make it on the top ten list!

4. Your favorite leader and now Servant General tells you that you have NOT LEFT CFC [after resigning in Feb 2007] and on the other hand registers a new CFC-FFL corporation with SEC. Not only that: you have your new office, new logo, new CLS talk [w/c you loudly proclaim on nationwide TV that you had to reduce it in number to distinctly identify as not the CLP of CFC!], etc, etc.

5. Another one of Your favorite leaders, Bishop Basher Nonong Contreras writes that your Bishops, namely Reyes, Lagdameo, Villegas do nothing to improve your FFL lot in the Catholic church and they stay idle “twiddling their thumbs, reading tea leaves and smoking pot”.

6. You send one of your Africa agents – forgot his name – on the days CFC is conducting a Congress there with the assignment to seek audience with the Cardinal and unashamedly ask the Cardinal to recognize you in that Continent, after you have abandoned the mission workers there because such mission workers remained in CFC!

7. You complicate the lives of CFC members by doing your activities on days that CFC schedule theirs, worst you go to the extend of using the innocence of third parties vis-à-vis CFC, when you identify yourselves as CFC and steal the use of venues you did not reserve.

8. You do all these things and then have the pride to tell us that you are Consecrated to the Virgin Mary, as if the consecration to the Blessed Mother is an exclusive right FFL only owns!

I think there should be more SHAMEFUL & SCANDALOUS things you are doing but I’d just let some of the bloggers here tell you about it.

You think we don't know where we are going?

Take off your blinders, bro or sis...it is so easy for us to know our direction.

All we need to do this to avoid the PATH THAT YOU ARE FOLLOWING!

Anonymous said...

Hi CD,

regardless of what you decide to do based on the inputs here. I sure hope that we still get to see the video and letters that Bro. Vic Gutierrez mentioned in CFC origins part 3.

I think that material and relevant facts that are needed for the enhanced enlightenment of everyone.

Thanks

Anonymous said...

CD, may I just suggest that the blog items on each page be presented from the NEWEST to the OLDEST?

That way, regular Blog readers don't have to go down to the bottom of the "page" [sorry I do not know the correct terminology] just to get the latest.

Thanks and more power to you and this blogspot! God Bless you too!

This Tony Will Not Get an Award said...

Now I think there is a pattern in and among the church leaders when they criticize or judge CFC to be just doing GK and not evangelizing. The seed of such idea, we all know, came out of the mind of the Servant General in, on, or around the days when the Ramon Magsaysay Foundation decided to give the award to Tony Meloto.

Bishop Tobias is the latest ...er 'victim' shall we say for falling into that trap!

Around the area of Novaliches there are so many GK areas. There at least three CFC Sectors operating in those areas, I think, and if he just asked the Sector Leaders to bring him to at least one and then while in the GK area, he interviews any of the residents he would have discovered that there is a LIE coming from FFL's direction that CFC nor GK does not do evangelisation.

See that is where all these statements of church leaders confuse the faithful. The fact that there are church leaders who make such statements make us, faithful. realize that they too have feet of clay and are likely to fall on their faces.

Church leaders rarely bother to check the validity of their statements because they have accustomed themselves into having their statements taken hook line and sinker by the faithful.

The laity is truly obligated to listen to them when they speak in homilies, but to believe their statements on areas [literally and figuratively] they do not know anything about is NOT RIGHT. I think it is even a SIN because it perpetuates a LIE.

Any Bishop who in the last 1 or 2 or 3 years has NOT BEEN to any GK area HAS NO RIGHT TO SPEAK ABOUT IT, specially if the statement he makes is NOT the truth.

We can understand if some in the church leadership do not wish to go to the GK areas because the dirt and the mud will soil their fine robes. Fine, so long as they keep quiet and not speak irrationally about the GK area.

But if they are not willing to leave their air-conditioned quarters, and if they are not prepared to give their hands in a warm handshake to the poor man in the GK area, then they are indeed better off doing the spiritual exercise in praying while sitting in a rocking chair in their residences.

I am tempted to call any church leader who falls into this category some names, but then I realize I could not compete with former CFC-IC Contreras in his area of expertise.

Anonymous said...

To: Where the real SHAME & SCANDAL LIES,

name-calling-count = add 5 more, thank you for proving my point.

I guess instead of calling people names, because everybody has seen that already, please tell me why I was wrong.

So after these months of un-Christian attacks (aka defending), have you succeeded in anything good here? (question #1)

Add a million more in your blog’s visit count, a million more entries/comments like yours, a million more attacks to the bishops, Frank, FFL and everybody else aside from you CFC and IC, will that make you right? (question #2)

* This blog does not represent Christian attributes. It is not helping make our (FFL and yeah CFC) situations better but WORSE
* You’re not defending, you’re ATTACK, attack, attack and don’t even admit it
* You are DISOBEYING your IC for not being ‘still’ and you feel you are doing them good and IC is okay with that.

So you know where you’re going? (question #3)Please let everybody hear it. As your boss CD said:

“I would like your opinions. First state where you stand, then what you believe we should do to get past this - before it's too late”

Hmmm, how about ask your IC for a change? (question #4) -:)

Anonymous said...

Hi. I think the best thing to do now is to keep on praying, fasting and mortifying and offer all our actions to God. After all, we are doing His works through our community in CFC as one declared by the Vatican.

All the graces had been bestowed to us by God being registered in the SEC Philippines and in the Pontifical Council for the Laity in Vatican. "Nasa atin ang grasya ng Diyos".

Just a piece of advice in this website;

Keep up the good works. The truth will always set us all free. However, we have to be careful in defending the real CFC and even the Church. As what my SD advised once; we should be careful in dealing with our brothers and sisters. We all know that slander is a mortal sin but defamation is in a way a more complicated sin because overexposure of the truth without solicitations will not increase the light of Christ.

Idor, am just sharing my formation, dito kasi sa Macau ako daw ang nagprovoke ng split after deciding to stand with the IC. In the first place kasi, sila sa FFL ang nakipagsplit dahil iba na nga ang name nila, etc. Let us just cling to God, hindi nga namin akalain na may 14 participants pa kami na nakatapos ng CLP-1 after the split here in Nov. 2007.

At heto, umpisa uli kami ng CLP-2 sa May 31, 2008. Please pray for our success here in Macau. Malakas ang CFC Macau dito. Thank God and more power to this website.

On behalf of the Governance team of CFC Macau-Dante and Jhoone David.

Thanks and God bless.
Pax.

WillyJ said...

I wish to add to my previous thoughts:

4. Cultivate a harmonious, engaging relationship with the clergy.

The priests and bishops are not indefectible, however they are infallible when they speak in unity with the Pope on matters of Faith and Morals. St. Peter himself showed a lot of frailties, yet he was chosen to be the Rock upon which Christ built the Church. We should take heart that Christ promised a Helper to guide today’s successors of Peter and the Apostles, and that the gates of Hades will not prevail against His Church. When a priest or bishop makes an erroneous (as we see it) assessment with respect to CFC, then nothing should stop us from arranging a cordial face-to-face meeting to reason out matters. We must also be proactive in our relations with the clergy by inviting and involving them in our key activities, making our active presence felt in the Parish and Diocese level, even inviting them to fellowship events to develop a bonding relationship. Maybe they do not know what we are really doing, and it could be that partly we are responsible for that. I know a lot of chapters are already doing this, pero kulang pa siguro. Even the holiest among bishops can make honest mistakes, but we can do something about it. I am sure the clergy will not resist our initiatives to touch-base with them more closely, Pope Benedict already gave the cue to the recent Congress of the Pontifical Council of the Laity: "...let us make an effort to know their reality adequately, without superficial impressions or reductive judgment..." .

Bro. Mero :-) said...

To Bro/ Sis Anonymous who said:

"It’s a shame...

* months of fighting
* hundreds of entries and comments
* hundreds of name callings and nasty words written
* thousands of hours that could have spent with families and love ones

and still... you do not know where you are going."

I do not intend to argue on this but allow me to share my thoughts:

"So after these months of un-Christian attacks (aka defending), have you succeeded in anything good here? (question #1)"

Answer:
YES! Somehow it helps to clarify certain issues. Before i only receive emails from Frank or easter group, but when this blog was made it gives me a balance view of the situation.

By the way, just a point of clarification, defending is different from attacking.

"Add a million more in your blog’s visit count, a million more entries/comments like yours, a million more attacks to the bishops, Frank, FFL and everybody else aside from you CFC and IC, will that make you right? (question #2)"

Answer:
Again, please refrain from insisting that we are attacking coz we do not. The point here is not to make us right and prove FFL wrong. But from the title of this blog "In Defense of the Real CFC" it speaks for itself. We make our voices be heard to appeal for a fairer view of the crisis, we appeal for an unbiased judgement. This is not attacking, but defending..and more likely appealing!

* This blog does not represent Christian attributes. It is not helping make our (FFL and yeah CFC) situations better but WORSE

Answer:
Please tell this to FFL too. That their tactics of stealing venues, maliciously doing their activities with the same date with CFC, and peddling lies does not also represent a Christian attributes.

* You’re not defending, you’re ATTACK, attack, attack and don’t even admit it.

Answer:
Why do you insist that we attack? That is not fair. Who holds the trumpet in the first place and blew it loud for everyone to hear and see? Who tore the CFC logo and hang it in the trumpets?

Who wrote CFC and GK#3?

I never read/ heard or received any email from the IC, even in their pronouncement which attacks or offensive to FFL. All their statements were just a response for the lies peddled by FFL. And in fact such statements are not intended for FFL, but for the CFC members' guidance against the confusion.

* You are DISOBEYING your IC for not being ‘still’ and you feel you are doing them good and IC is okay with that.

Answer:
Please read the paper THE REAL TRUTH, THE REAL ISSUE". IC already answered on the issues about bloggers and anonymous emails.


So you know where you’re going? (question #3)

Answer:
YES! We are going to brookside to fix the houses damaged by the flasflood, wanna join?

“I would like your opinions. First state where you stand, then what you believe we should do to get past this - before it's too late”

My stand:
CFC did not VEER AWAY and never DISOBEY. What we did is what our conscience told us is right.

And as long as there are people who will continue to spread lies, discredit and destroy CFC, I will not stop defending CFC even without these blog.

Hmmm, how about ask your IC for a change?

Answer:
Sure, that's a pretty idea. But not without you. We need people like you to improve our community for the better.

So far, we had a Pastoral Congress held last year, an expounded mission and vision statement for deeper understanding, global goals and many others. But even though, i believe that there are still a lot of room for improvements.

Why don't you come and suggest and help in implementing it?

May you have a nice day ahead!

Bro. Mero :-)

Where The Real Shame & Scandal said...

“Anonymous said...
To: Where the real SHAME & SCANDAL LIES,

name-calling-count = add 5 more, thank you for proving my point.

I guess instead of calling people names, because everybody has seen that already, please tell me why I was wrong.”

[Bro or Sis Anonymous, here’s my reply. I’ll enclose them in brackets so you can clearly see, and I hope CD has the time and patience to have it printed on blue text so it is very clear to you.]

I already wrote about a mindset that is BLIND. I think that’s what makes your statement wrong.

I am not calling Frank and Nonong names. Frank is really Servant General as I learned from an Eastergroup email.

Neither did I with Nonong. Last time I heard, when someone writes derogatory remarks about anyone that is called bashing. So I am not the bishop basher but your Nonong is. Or perhaps you’re too busy you never found out about that e-mail Nonong wrote. It is somewhere in the pages of these blog. Find time to check it out.]

So after these months of un-Christian attacks (aka defending), have you succeeded in anything good here? (question #1)

[As far as I am concerned, I did not mean to attack. I meant to defend. You were the one who started it by insinuating we do not know where we are going. You threw an opinion in the air. It hits my good sense so I chose not to let it be. I chose to reply to clearly show you about the shame you are talking about. In that way I have succeeded! There are other success stories in this blog. I define success here as the correct and righteous response made to wild statements coming from your side .. like the one you made. By the way, you are in agreement with me. You wrote: "these...Un-Christian attack is ALSO KNOWN AS (aka) Defending. See I knew I'd find some sense in what you wrote!]

Add a million more in your blog’s visit count, a million more entries/comments like yours, a million more attacks to the bishops, Frank, FFL and everybody else aside from you CFC and IC, will that make you right? (question #2)

[I think this statement is a result of your pique and your tantrum. What I think makes me right is the list of shameful and scandalous behavior (which by the way, you are not denying because you can’t!) which your Family has already done, and I have posted here even if a lot of people (FFL included) already know.]

* This blog does not represent Christian attributes. It is not helping make our (FFL and yeah CFC) situations better but WORSE.

[Christian attributes are better found in persons, not in blogs. I am sure that if I just knew you personally, I’d find the Christian attribute that God planted in your heart. Blogs are a just a picture of the moment; and accumulation of words written by people who go through different emotional states. Words written/uttered while a person is in pain, in a specific moment in time, could be so negative yet it does not represent the potential for goodness of that person. I’d say it is good that people could express themselves and the success of this venue is that it has provided the forum for you and me to give expression to our opposite views. In that sense this blog does not make matters worse. It makes matters transparent and it generates a medium for discussion]

* You’re not defending, you’re ATTACK, attack, attack and don’t even admit it.

[Let me just please edit this statement: “You’re not defending, you’re attacking, attacking, attacking and you don’t even admit it.”]

[Pardon me but I do not see much sense and point in this one, so I’d pass]

* You are DISOBEYING your IC for not being ‘still’ and you feel you are doing them good and IC is okay with that.

[Let me tell you that I have a different view of “obedience” and “being still” and it does not fall under whatever it is you are trying to insinuate in your statement.]

So you know where you’re going? (question #3)

[I thought my statement was very clear. Yes I know where I am going – AVOIDING the PATH THAT YOU ARE FOLLOWING!]

Please let everybody hear it. As your boss CD said:

[Boss? What Boss? In my many years in CFC I have not heard of anyone call anyone Boss. You’ve been watching a lot of those gangster-type movies, perhaps?]

“I would like your opinions. First state where you stand, then what you believe we should do to get past this - before it's too late”

Hmmm, how about ask your IC for a change? (question #4) -:)

[Just for me to write a response to your posted comment, I need to ask IC? Is that what you do over there?]

Feel free to address directly to me whatever it is you still need to be clarified about.

WillyJ said...

To brother anonymous who said "It’s a shame...",

I assume you are from FFL. I will have to agree with you that the situation is really a shame, although maybe we are coming from different perspectives. You must admit though in all honesty that there are FFL public websites likewise that contain attacks on CFC-IC like restorecfc.multiply.com. For one, bro Nonong Contreras’ half-page ad is posted there for everyone to see. His 15-point response to Esposo contains heavy criticisms of CFC, IC and GK, don’t you think so? If we shut this site down to prevent "more attacks" shouldn’t we also agree to shut down all contending sites altogether, in all fairness? This should also include doing away with mass-mailing messages attacking each other. You are surely aware of the "Real Issue, Real Truth" document that has been disseminated in cyberspace. Surely anyone will readily categorize that as an "attack" (a mild term) on CFC, regardless of which side your sympathy lies.

I am going in the direction of bro. Mero’s recent comment. I wish not to debate the merits of various points of contention with you, and we like to hear your suggestions too. I think CD’s point in this specific thread would be to elicit opinions on what we can do to alleviate our situation. I assume you are conversant with the issues. Perhaps you’ve read the many propositions brought forth here. Now, we’d like to hear from your side. We don’t have to be partisan to be able to suggest what is best, under the circumstances. Oftentimes it is best to concentrate on what we can do rather than on what others do. As FFL, what do you think is the best thing that needs to be done from your end? And what would you suggest to your leaders?

Yours in Christ,
- WillyJ

jiggSAw said...

hmmmm...
im sure uusok na naman tong blog if you will check your inboxes.

anyway, we only have 2 days to go before our LOVE month, so hinay hinay lang mga kapatid. make sure your norvasc and calcibloc are always on your side. sa june, bawal magalit... hehehe

HAPPY ANNIVERSARY CFC !!!

sa luneta po ang venue natin, singisiguro ko lang para hindi kayo maligaw... paalala, please ensure nakapag-downpayment na sa venue habang maaga pa. happy weekend...

Anonymous said...

agree po ako na sa 3 pts nyo..sana talaga matapos na to..nstead na mga bagayan, ba na lng pagusapan naten lyk ung mga actvtes naten sa area naten..para naman nourshn lalo...we can be nspre by everyone's story...mas ok un d ba mga tto and tta?...we can move on pag magssmula na tyo ng bang topc... sorry, nagloloko ang keyboard ko,me kulang na letter, m sure malalaman nyo..hehehe...pagod na ako ayusn...


excted na ako sa annv....luneta ulet? wow...ths tym..maghapon ako sa annv...ktakts mga tto and tta


God bless everyone!!!

ace
yfc mla

Anonymous said...

GO TO LEGAL MEANS, Dito sa Area namin I think our LEADERS WILL DO IT.

First, we should talk with FFL amicably. If they dont STOP USING CFC, by our laws of this country, They will be prohibited to USE CFC soon.

FFL were already asked if they have consulted their LAWYERS already.

'YAN LANG. The Church cannot easily tell these FFL people to stop SO WE WILL LET THE LAWs of the LAND to LET THEM STOP.

Anonymous said...

in the early days of the conflict, i was very disappointed with how of many of our leaders including the IC responded to the initial salvo of Bro.Frank against CFC and Gk.How he lambasted us as a community and we did not speak out. worse than the way he "scolds" us whenever we have low thithe collections in the ECG then.

now, i can see brethrens speaking out freely and even responding to Frank and Co. at every instance of "attack".

i've lost quite a number of very good friends as a result of this conflict (many of them very dear to me), but me and my wife joined COUPLES FOR CHRIST and we owe the community for what we are today as a couple and as a person.

i hated it when people talk ill of the "home' i grew up with..worse, when i felt nobody even stood up to defnd its honor as God's gift to us..

i agree that we should not take this negative things distract us from where God wants us to go. we cannot go on like this throwing garbage at each other. at some point it should end and i think the time is now.

but let it be known that there will always be brothers and sisters who would be ready, able and willing to STAND UP for CFC ...tolits

Anonymous said...

CD Naala-ala ko lang, there is really a tendency among leaders to be arrogant, 'yun bang appearance of "self-righteousness" because of some kind of "annointment".

Musing lang ito,(this is my own musing, too) because the best way is really to confront the person concerned. Kaya, since there is this blog, it also serves to ventilate a feeling that otherwise would have no, or very little chance of having an outlet.

I wish to pray for simple, pure humility of leaders and members... of the sensitivity to words and gestures hat can be misinterpreted, of attitude towards other people who are not their equal in CFC rank that are suggestive of haughtiness, especially if some kind of a "food for thought" was raised. I also pray for the intellectually-challenged leaders who can conveniently hide their shortcomings and pretend superior (not necessarily moral) grounding because of the hierarchical structure - both manifest and latent, through their demeanors, though - which all the more insult the intellect. I also pray that those who feel intellectually insulted will have the humility to offer their wounded pride before the Cross...

A blessed day!

Anonymous said...

I’ve been reading this blog’s entries for several months now and have been, up till now, uninvolved. But CD’s call to make a stand finally broke my resolve to keep silent. So, for whatever it’s worth, here’s my take on things.

Allow me first to explain my understanding of what is going on. As far as I can determine:
- I believe CFC is stronger now than before this conflict started. This conflict is the crucible in which we are being tested.
- When I read FFL’s “we are peace” declaration in August last year after the joint statement, I thought, okay we can all move forward now. But all the actions I’ve seen from them since then did not reflect this peace.
- CFC remains dynamic – its mission is pursued with vigor by the members who give their part according to the charisms given to them by the Spirit. Truly a community whose hearts are on the rise, having separate eyes but with a vision of one.
- CFC is the vehicle God has given to the members so they can exercise their charisms for the good of the church. As a gift from the Spirit, CFC itself is a charism given to all the members. From the exercise of these charisms, each member derives his own identity as a member of CFC.
- The brothers and sisters rising to defend CFC are not just defending the good name of the community; they are defending the very identities they have received from the Spirit through their charisms. I admire and salute you, heroes all.
- In the process of defending, some are more vehement than others. Others defend through prayer, for such is their charism. Others became better evangelizers, using the attacks to spur them on to better performance in service. Still others exhibited fortitude, inner strength, one of the seven gifts of the Spirit. I personally know of several who are deliberately keeping still but responding with wisdom and understanding when directly asked about the conflict. My friends, to me that is an extraordinary show of obedience to the IC while practicing a charism. I am truly convinced that CFC has not lost its charisms as the opposition contends. I believe that the conflict is forcing members all over the world to confront their own selves and discover more and more of their charisms.

Why am I talking about charisms? Because I am convinced it is a central issue.

“A charism is a grace, a freely bestowed gift of the Spirit, given to some persons but not to all, for some useful purpose, and as a special way of being in relationship with God…Some charisms the letters (St. Paul’s letters) name are: prophecy, teaching, leading, governing, evangelizing, miracles, healings, tongues, almsgiving, helping, serving, doing works of mercy, and administering material goods…In the charisms the Holy Spirit is almost, we might say, visible, audible, tangible; all the charisms manifest the one Spirit whose gifts they are” – Francis A. Sullivan, Charisms and Charismatic Renewal, 1982.

“The decree Perfectae Caritatis (Adaptation and Renewal of Religious Life), 28 October 1965, without using the word charism, centers the religious life in the action of the Holy Spirit. The text lists four essential elements of this action: (1) inspired by the Spirit, (2) freely accepted by the individual, (3) dedicated to the good of the Church, and (4) recognized by Church authorities. The spirit (Paul VI will later call it the charism) of an institute has an indefinite duration, but the institute as an organization either changes or remains static with respect to the force and the effectiveness of its founding spirit.” – Lasallian Studies No. 13, The Lasallian Charism, pp 36.

The text refers to the “spirit of an institute”, what Paul VI later called as the charism of an institute. This also gives an additional meaning to the Vatican recognition of CFC, namely that the Church recognized and approved the charism of CFC, as an institution. This is also why the CFC Statutes are specifically mentioned in the Vatican Recognition – an institution is defined by its statutes. In the same way the By-laws (read statutes) of companies become the basis for corporate registrations. CFC, as an institution, retains its recognition only if it follows the Vatican approved statutes. (This is the major reason why FFL cannot share this recognition – they do not subject themselves to these Statutes).

Back to charisms. The second paragraph of Nº 12 in Lumen Gentium, vigorously endorsed by Cardinal Léon-Joseph Suenens, places charisms alongside the other basic elements of the Church and provides Vatican II’s basic definition of charism:
“It is not only through the sacraments and the ministries of the Church that the Holy Spirit sanctifies and leads the people of God and enriches it with virtues, but, “allotting his gifts to everyone according as he wills” (1 Cor 12:11), he distributes special graces among the faithful of every rank. By these gifts he makes them fit and ready to undertake the various tasks and offices which contribute toward the renewal and building up of the Church (1 Cor 12:7).

These charisms, whether they be the more outstanding or the more simple and widely diffused, are to be received with thanksgiving and consolation, for they are perfectly suited to and useful for the needs of the Church. Extraordinary gifts are not to be sought after, nor are the fruits of apostolic labor to be presumptuously expected from their use; but judgment as to their genuineness and proper use belongs to those who are appointed leaders in the Church, to whose special competence it belongs, not indeed to extinguish the Spirit but to test all things and hold fast to that which is good (1 Thess 5:12 and 19- 21). (Nº 12).”

The Church leaders have the responsibility to judge the “genuineness and proper use” of an institution’s charisms. Because the Vatican recognized CFC, I believe we can safely conclude that the Vatican has also given its judgment as to the “genuineness and proper use” of CFC’s charisms. Especially in light of this conflict, the fact that the Vatican hasn’t withdrawn recognition, is de facto proof that CFC’s charisms are genuine and being used properly, including it’s charisms of uplifting the poorest of the poor and building the church of the poor. GK is a charism of CFC.

One final point on charisms. “Founder’s charism” is a special term used in ecclesiology to refer to the special gift given by the Spirit to an individual who, in response, started and created an institution or community dedicated to following that charism. For example, John Baptist De La Salle was such a founder. Today their charism even has a name – the Lasallian Charism. St.Ignatius was another – he started the 400-year old company that changed the world – the Compania de Jesus. This charism is supposed to be given for life. This is the root of the term “keeper of the charism”. Others may share in this charism while others may find their own charism because they followed the founder’s – like the Jesuits’ charism to educate giving birth to a music ministry.

Having said all these, here’s how I see the “other side”. Like many of you I have some very close relationships with some of their members, relationships that have been strained by the conflict.

I see evidence of conscious strategy in what they are doing:

a. FFL’s slogan is “restoring the original CFC charism”
b. FAP is claiming that he is the Founder of CFC
c. FAP is laying claim to the Title “Keeper of the Charism”
d. FFL is fighting tooth and nail to keep the CFC name.

In order for FFL to “restore” the original charism, it has to “remain” in CFC, otherwise there is no restoration to speak of, much less aspire to. To restore is to bring something back to an earlier state. But only if you are still part of that something. That’s why they’re fighting tooth and nail for the name. Without it they cannot fulfil their objective of restoration.

But what is it they say needs restoring? The original charism. To do this, they have to lay claim to it first. After all one cannot give what one doesn’t have. How to prove that they have it?

They can’t do the proving on their own. Because of Vatican II, they need the Church to pronounce judgment on the genuineness and proper use. But they also have to show that whatever charism FAP has is, as he says, the CFC charism. To prove this, all FAP has to do is prove that he is the founder of CFC. If he can do this, he can lay claim to the Founder’s charism and the title of Keeper of the Charism.

So, in order to achieve their goal of restoration, FFL has to be seen to be “in CFC” – hence the tenacious hold on the name – and FAP has to be recognized as the founder of CFC by the Church and by the community. Sounds logical, doesn’t.

How to achieve this? First, FFL changed the meaning of the word FOUNDER. In an email to their brethren in Canada, dated 2 March 2008, entitled THE FOUNDER AND KEEPER OF THE CHARISM: THE MEANING IN ECCLESIOLOGY AND ITS IMPLICATIONS TO CFC, they said “If we refer back to the above-referenced article we released explaining the implications of Archbishop Lagdameo's letter, the meaning of Founder is one who has shaped the life and mission of the community.”

Their meaning of founder is “one who shaped the life and mission of the community.” It does not have anything in common with the one from Webster Unabridged Dictionary which defines founder as “One who founds, establishes, and erects; one who lays a foundation; an author; one from whom anything originates; one who endows.”

The difference is like this: GE was founded by Thomas Edison in 1890. But it was Jack Welch who made GE (shaped its present life and mission) what it is today. Democracy was not founded in America but it is the US that is giving shape and life to it.

FFL says FAP is the founder because he was the one who shaped the life and mission of CFC and because a few Bishops said so. But this doesn’t change the fact that he wasn’t the author. Charisms, remember, are gifts of the Spirit and Spirit bestows it on whomever He will. Obviously the founder of CFC is the one to whom the Spirit gave the idea, the original inspiration. This was not FAP, because when he joined CFC in the first CLP, CFC was already founded. What FAP may have is a participative charism but certainly not the Founder’s Charism. The Bishop’s pronouncements don’t have anything to do with it. Remember the Church’s responsibility is to judge the genuineness and proper use of the charisms. I have no doubt that FAP’s charisms are genuine but whatever they are, they are not the Founder’s charisms because he is not the founder.

Truly, only the real founder and the Spirit know who has the Founder’s charism. But FFL would have us all think that by changing the definition of the word founder and adding the pronouncements of the Bishops, FAP can be declared as founder and, (retroactively?) gain the original Spirit-given charism. If this is how it truly works, we should all convert to FAPism because these guys have the power to change the truth and correct the Spirit.

However they do it, it is essential for FFL to prove that FAP is the founder AND keep the CFC name. Otherwise they cannot become who they profess to be – restorers of the charism.

Mark this well, my friends, this is not just a battle for a name and it is more than envy or pride. It is a battle for their very existence. In the same way that the heroic bloggers defend their very identity, FFL is fighting to keep their raison d’etre. Without it they cannot continue to exist. So they will not stop until the price has been paid for their continued existence - the destruction of CFC.

So where do all the accusations of veering away, disobedience and attacking the church come in? Well FAP needs a reason why the charism has to be restored, doesn’t he? After all the books he has written, doesn’t he realize that by nature, attacks intend to destroy? There is an old Chinese saying: “A man is known by his tools. An axe for the woodsman and a plow for the farmer. “ Written and verbal attack is hardly a tool for peace.

My friends, let us not indulge in illusions. This will not go away until there is a victor. And to him go the spoils. CD, you have to keep this forum running. If you’re getting over 180,000 unique visitors, then we in CFC are not doing enough, considering there are over 800,000 of us throughout the world.

Here’s what I think we can do.

1. Get MMC to commission a book on the Charisms of CFC. Develop new teachings on the identity of a CFC member. If we are forced to defend it, then we better know a lot about it. Who are we as CFC members? What sets us apart? What charisms define us? You all know a lot about this topic. Let’s institutionalize that knowledge and get it out to all members worldwide, especially to those who just graduated from the CLPs. The objective is to strengthen the identity of each member. The premise is if you know who you are then no one can make a fool of you without your consent. This should contribute to building up our immunity to FFL’s attacks.
2. Create a new teaching on Christ’s meekness and get this out to the rest of the world. Jesus, even at the point of death never defended Himself. Neither did He condemn His accusers. The lesson here is that this meekness, this apparent weakness, is in fact divine strength. Inner strength that allows us to turn the other cheek and love our enemies. This should answer the questions of members who are asking why we have to be still when we are being attacked. You see, it is not about what you are against but what you are for. Everything you are against weakens you but everything you are for strengthens you. This is why FFL’s attacks backfire because they fight against something and that weakens them.
3. FFL denounces GK. Our response should be to get the word out on GK, massively. Use this forum, text your friends, use all means at our disposal to extol the GK heroes. Let everyone know the selfless sacrifices our GK caretaker teams and full time workers are giving. Circulate GK stories. Better yet, let the pharma companies provide testimonies of their own evangelization. We know that FFL’s accusations are becoming boringly repetitive. Let’s provide contrast. Let’s inform the world and the Vatican how exciting GK’s charism to evangelize the poor is.
4. FFL repeatedly accuses CFC of veering away and talks about CFC in angry tones. As the teaching goes – by their fruits you shall know them. There is also the orange juice lesson. Why do you get orange juice when you squeeze an orange? Because it’s what’s inside. Now when you squeeze a person and hatred and anger and self-righteousness come out, it’s not because of the one doing the squeezing. It’s because that’s what’s inside. Galatians teaches us that the fruit of the Spirit is joy, love, peace, generosity, etc. WHAT SPIRIT IS PRODUCING THE FRUIT OF ANGER IN FFL? Because that is what is coming out, it must be what’s inside. THEREFORE, we should behave in the exact opposite. Not just in the blogs but all over the world. Let’s give “Be Still” an additional meaning, not just the passive keep quiet but the active dealing with them in peace, turning the other cheek. One question I would really love to ask FFL is this: “What is hurting you so much that you have to attack me and put me down just so you can feel better?” I know this is hard to do. But someone else’s neurosis does not have to be ours. Be still can also mean be at peace. And peace is not just the absence of strife. It is an active exercise of a charism.
5. Let all name calling stop. Let’s not stoop to that level. Practice the seven gifts of the spirit.
6. On the right side of the blog is a prayer request corner. Put up a prayer request for the intention that FAP and FFL will be enlightened. Ask participating people to click on it and then put up a very visible counter showing how many people are praying. Let’s drive this counter to massive numbers. Print T-Shirts saying “I prayed for FAP”.

For the kalog in all of us, consider these:
7. Name a GK Village for FAP in honor of his 26 years of tenure.
8. For those who have a mean streak: rename the GK Livelihood program FFL (for Feed For Life.)
9. Stretch goal: get Pfizer to sponsor a natural birth control program and call it Families Faithful to Life (FFL).

oremus-pro-invicem said...

you ask where do i stand in all of this?

I: It has been a year and cfc has moved on in many ways, how?
a) new executive director
b) new style of governance
c) new strategies
d) emergence of new leaders

II: What has the IC done?
a) instituted changes
b) transparent in their govrrnance
c) assessment of who and what we are (pastoral congress)
d) successfully launched for a debt free cfc in under a year, something never done before

III: What is happening in the grassroots?
a) new sense of belongingness
b) inspired members
c) inspired leaders
d) eagerly looking forward to a new cfc home

Question?
Was Franks departure from CFC a blessing or a curse?
answer- there is joy there is peace and there is properity, this is definitely a blessing!

YES! CFC is a blessed community therefore we should:
Protect it from all evil, how?
1) protect the name CFC, at all cost
2) protect the work we do specially GK

Continue to do Gods work as we are tasked, how?
1) improve on our evangelization
2) re-train our leaders
3) pray, pray and pray more
4) And not to forget, since it is a blessing, let us share it with others...

Now, I ask-
Is FFL a blessing or a curse?

That my dear brothers and sisters is for Frank Padilla and all his followers to ponder and to pray upon.

For that matter, I think we should-
Oremus pro invicem!

Anonymous said...

Oremus pro invicem!- Let us pray for each other

nw19socal said...

"Is FFL a blessing or a curse?"
For the sake of our friends who followed FP to FFL, I pray that it will also be a blessing for them.

Anonymous said...

anonymous said... "there is really a tendency among leaders to be arrogant"

my musings:
1. what's the proper posture of a leader... chest in or chest out? (humble vs proud)

2. when Christ increase should a leader decrease or increase more?

3. most members and leaders serve without perks (us footsoldiers), nay, we are even the source of their perks... can these leaders (FTW excluded ha) receiving perks still serve WITHOUT PERKS like us?

- by another anonymous called C2CD

Anonymous said...

CD, what's the BISHOP TOBIAS LETTER all about?

Is it a fair assessment of our situation vis-a-vis FFL, or is just another pro-FAP/ pro-FFL spin?

I am already up to my ears in having a Bishop's biased thinking against CFC and its GK work....and I've already concluded that the Bishops --- whoever they are in the Philippines -- will not be able to resolve with finality the question of the use of CFC name.

I have also come to realize that the Bishops WILL NEVER be a source of fair judgment on these matters. Even those who are pro-CFC are shy, afraid, silent, or prone to keeping to themselves their position. I don't know but there really must be some form of politicking and horse trading among them too. Talk of unity...my foot!

We expected much for a fair judgment but we only got a display of a Bishop's wrong position in favoring FFL while being named CFC's Spiritual Director. In the corporate world, he would have been sued for conflict of interest. In the church, he can continue to display one-sidedness and people in FFL do not see the dualism, hence dishonesty, in the man.

Isn't that the bigger SCANDAL?

SO is THIS the Bishop Reyes we are supposed to listen to? If this is just a small window of what is rotten in the Philippine leadership of Bishops, we should NOT wonder then why there are media men who write negatively of them.

So if the TOBIAS LETTER is of the same kind as Bishop Reyes' pronouncements, I think it is better you just keep in the files!

Postmodernist said...

Frank Padilla should be sanctioned (e.g. excommunicated). He is not only causing divisions inside the Church. But his examples are becoming the root-cause of schism, for him, heresy is not enough. A Catholic inclined to the charismatic movement (should he wish to remain faithful to the true Church of Christ viz. the Catholic Church) should be wary of Mr. Frank Padilla, and preachers like him and their teachings.

johnpaul said...

CFC-FFL

Couples for Christ!
Free From Lies

Anonymous said...

C2CD, let me by C3CD:

May not be bad at all to muse about LEADERS WITH PERKS, although it will be petty.

Perhaps it will be good if we leave it as "food for thought", as mentioned by anynymous there, those observations like "haughtiness" and also "despicable" bearing or demeanor that are insulting to the spirit. Maybe those concerned will tone down, or else increase some more to imitate Christ as Christ becomes bigger.

Anonymous said...

teka, a friend from yfc is south area said that his ffl friend, yfc before, that ffl will celebrate their 27th year this year...

pati nga ung ffl na cfc yfc before ay natatawa na lng din...

mas maganda 28th year na agad sila..par mas advance sila....


ano_ka_hilo

Musings of Fr Joaquin Bernas SJ said...

Sounding Board
The CfC and the GK
By Fr. Joaquin G. Bernas, S.J.
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:33:00 06/02/2008
MANILA, Philippines-

I am better known for being a dabbler in Constitutional Law, but somehow, probably because of the S.J. after my name, some think that I might have answers for non-legal questions. So when I was asked what I thought about the debate between the Couples for Christ group under Frank Padilla and that under Tony Meloto (identified with Gawad Kalinga), I found no better way to answer it than by quoting from a co-conspirator, former Bukidnon and Bontoc Bishop Francisco Claver, S.J. He had had ruminated about it in an article he wrote for the CBCP Monitor, May 15, 2008. Without bothering to ask for his permission, I offer his article to my readers without benefit of quotation marks. Let him sue.
Bishop Claver wrote:

http://opinion.inquirer.net/inquireropinion/columns/view/20080602-140161/The-CfC-and-the-GK

t2mc said...

Hello everyone,

Since we are still on the subject of reflections and musings, let me share to you Fr. Bernas' musings on the controversy of accepting donations from the pharma company.

you meay read his Sounding Board opinion coulumn at Philippine Daily inquirer today ,The CFC and GK .

His position is the same as that of Bishop Claver, which he quoted lengthily in his column.

And I agree with him that the real scandal is not the donation or partnering with the pharma company but in the apathy of the self-righteous Christians. For we have already found a great way of helping our poor countrymen, that is GK. Still, there are some who wants to claim otherwise.

Anonymous said...

I have just read Fr. Bernas' comment on Bishop Clavers article about the "The Devil" and this surely affirms GKs stand on accepting donations from
companies like Phizer. For Fr. Bernas
to support the Bishops opinion is really something knowing his stature as a Constitutional lawyer. So Frank, Nonong anong say nyo?

Anonymous said...

Frank Padilla and Bp Reyes may not ignore the voices of Msgr. Claver and Fr. Bernas, all SJs, supporting CFC's work with GK. Either they put up or shut up. What a pity.

Anonymous said...

bros & sis,

check on our website the cfc 27th anniversary sked. i wonder why the theme is 'grand homecoming'?

t2mc said...

Hello again everyone!

Here's another story about a man of peace. A man working for unity among the different faiths of the world, Tony Blair. In an article published by the CBCP News Tony Blair launches foundation to unite religions in global action.

Tony Blair earned media mileage because of his statute being once a premier of the United Kingdom.

This is also the objective of Pope John Paul II when he wrote his famous book, On the Treshold of Hope. It is his only wish that during his term as Pope, he could unite all the people of the world, regardless of what faith you believe in.

Here in the Philippines, there is another one who have already succeeded in such an endeavor. Tony Meloto and GK. Uniting different faiths and people of diverse background to work for a common cause - alleviating poverty.

I have seen the work of GK in Mindanao myself about two years ago when I covered the GKare Medical Mission for the 3rd Mindanao HOPE Caravan. I have seen how Christians and Moslems can work together to make this country a better place to live in.

These are men of peace. Men who are willing to practice their faith. Men working for unity.

I believe in these kind of men.

Anonymous said...

bakit di na post ung ibang comment ko? masama po ba sinabi ko?

may anniv daw ffl..27th same sa cfc..nakakatawa talaga un...kasi last year lng sila nag exist...mas maganda pag 28th na agad sila


ano_ka_hilo

Anonymous said...

Since Fr. Bernas and Bishop Claver have clearly veered away (according to the stand of other people), I would not be surprised if someone asks for withdrawal of support or resignations.

Anonymous said...

PLEASE PRAY FOR the UNITY & Reconcilation Meeting that was called by the BISHOP in our area here in Canada.

The five or so couples who left and aligned with FFL and Our CFC cluster leaders will have meeting with our parish priest and/or Bishop who wanted unity and reconciliation and hoping that we become the yeast for Unity and Reconciliation.

Maybe a TRUE HOME COMING indeed for our 27th Anniversary.

jconline said...

in addition to what I commented earlier, I would like to emphasize on what restoring the original charism is frank talking about?

we have a happy and dynamic chapter prior to the split. we have people working in gk not only in tatag but also in kb, siga, sagip, mother's circle, lusog, etc.

we believed that someday the world can be much brighter than today. we all grew in CFC together through each other's experiences, sharings, sacrifices and love for one another. yes we grew with one another and not because frank or tony is in our household.

but now we hardly talk with those who left for ffl. those who were staunch supporters of gk suddenly have a 180 degree turn. caring for the poor just like what Jesus did is now being avoided and even condemned.

so what charism are you talking about frank? you have bought chaos, confusion, contradictions and disbelief.

you don't have the right to the name couples for christ, frank. God has chosen somebody else to see the promise land. you are but a Moses in present times.

joel ferraris said...

Hi again,

It's been a long time since I last posted a comment here. By the looks of it, these voluminous developments posted in this blog would mean that I will spend months to digest them all after reading them in between my busy schedule.

Based on the following...

Taken from CFC's official site:

Couples for Christ is a work of Christ which raises up Christian couples and establishes Christian families committed to the work of evangelization, winning the world for Christ and Total Human Liberation through the power of the Holy Spirit.


From the FFL's official site:

The CFC Foundation for Family & Life is a gathering of concerned CFC brethren looking to the restoration, preservation and strengthening of the authentic Couples for Christ charism, focused on evangelization and family life renewal.

...I am inclined to believe that it is really evangelization that we, as believers in our Almighty God the Father through Lord Jesus Christ, are supposed to do. But, as a former CFC (not even a CFC-FFL now but a disappointed person), I have encountered a very serious issue, while having our regular household meetings, regarding the teachings from the Holy Bible that we are supposed to spread to people especially non-believers.

Let's focus for example on the issue regarding the 2nd Commandment of the 10 Commandments, most especially on the use of hand-graven images. I have written things and concerns to reflect on very deeply in my blog:
http://spiritualjourney14.blogspot.com/

CFC is for Gawad Kalinga and evangelization while CFC-FFL is for evangelization too. But the issue about the doctrines of Catholicism tainted with pagan practices is very much a serious concern that is still being given serious attention by other Christians like the Protestants, etc.

I joined CFC because those who recruited me in 1998 made it clear to me that non-Catholics like me are welcome and therefore the Sacraments part of the 5 spokes is optional.

The 2nd Commandment is my concern because as an artist (like the rest of all other artists doing images for people to venerate) I am in serious trouble as an accessory to the crime once a churchgoer or worshiper fails to differentiate what veneration is in contrast to worship and adoration.

How, for example, in my limited capacity and lifetime, could I explain religiously and clearly to millions of people that a dynamite, for example, is not for killing but for the purposes of construction?

This is precisely the reason why God the Father Almighty from the very beginning (same as issue about divorce), through Moses, specified in the 10 Commandments that the production, the use and worship of handgraven images are forbidden.

THOU SHALT NOT MAKE UNTO THEE ANY GRAVEN IMAGE, OR ANY LIKENESS OFANYTHING THAT IS IN HEAVEN ABOVE, OR THAT IS IN THE EARTH BENEATH, OR THAT IS IN THE WATER UNDER THE EARTH: THOU SHALT NOT BOW DOWN THYSELF TO THEM, NOR SERVE THEM.

I THE LORD THY GOD AM A JEALOUS20[4] GOD, VISITING THE INIQUITY OF THE FATHERS UPON THE CHILDREN UNTO THE THIRD AND FOURTH GENERATION OF THEM THAT HATE ME; AND SHEWING MERCY UNTO THOUSANDS OF THEM THAT LOVE ME, AND KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS.

By the looks of it, the job of the two warring factions of the CFC is to mend broken families as a result of the disobedience and neglect or ignorance of the 2nd Commandment by a people in a country who is supposedly majority are believers.

I do hope that what is happening between CFC and CFC-FFL is not just another case of Hegelian Dialectic
http://www.calvertonschool.org/waldspurger/pages/hegelian_dialectic.htm
wherein in the end the opposing parties will be one, yet the more serious issues about what God the Father Almighty really wants is not being paid attention to.

Take the case for example of the GK site in Novaliches that I have visited 2 years ago. The clear presence of rebultos in those houses did not even protect the place from a serious calamity that hit it. Isn't it that we are supposed to be protected because we have strong faith? And what did the statue of Mary did to save the country from mess even after the dictator was gone?

We only have one life here on earth and one chance to either be blind spiritually or be truly enlightened. Therefore, it is very wise to give attention to serious matters about what really pleases our Almighty God the Father first, like what Lord Jesus Christ did, before we could even really extend His love to our neighbors who are more blind than us. This is the only key to true and real evangelization under Lord Jesus Christ as the only
mediator.

This is not at all about who gets the approval of the Vatican or the license from world authorities. It is all about the purity of our hearts in really following, obeying and loving a jealous and all-seeing, all-knowing, eternal, holy and living God the Almighty Father as exemplified by His Son our Lord Jesus Christ.

A reading from Samuel...about the way how our Almighty God the Father chose David the shepherd boy and instructed Samuel to anoint him as king of Israel instead of the good-looking and strong older brother would reveal the truth that the message of the unleavened bread is very very important.

Ayaw na ayaw ng Diyos Ama ng paalsa o white-washed walls just to make us look good from the outside so that people will praise us because of our numbers and good works.

We cannot see our hearts like we cannot see Him. But like we know that our hearts are inside us we know that He is there guiding us if we truly have allowed Him to write His Words into our hearts wherever we go and whatever we do.

As for images? ahh..they are there just to satisfy the eyes and the whole weakness of men while they are being devoured by the evil that they do.

Sincerely,

Joel F