Tuesday, June 3, 2008

What's In A Name Pt 2

Updated, a conclusion was added by anonymous.

This was not written by me, or by anyone I know, but I felt it is a very insightful view on the "name" issue, and one that can finally cap off the 2 part essay on the CFC name. It was taken in full from an anonymous comment in the Reflections and Musings #1 entry.

To anonymous, whoever you are, thank you (sooooo much). I believe you've hit the nail on the head, and succinctly at that:

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).

What say you, my friends? Can we do it?

Who wants to come up with the prayer for FAP and the FFL?


Update: Our anonymous contributor has given us a second part:

I want to share some thoughts with all you heroes who defend CFC. I want to lift up your spirits if I can. This was supposed to be part of the first piece but it just got too long...

We should defend CFC not because it is the family in which we grow but because it is a gift from the Spirit to us. Such a gift, such a treasure, is worthy of protection. Yet a gift from God is not a passive thing. This treasure is not like a pearl or a bar of gold that, by itself, is helpless. This gift of ours is, by nature, active. Believe it or not the best way to defend CFC is to live out its teachings to the full.

I have often wondered why St Paul lumped love, joy, peace and six other traits into one and called it the fruit (singular) of the Spirit. Perhaps it is because when God gives, He doesn’t give in pieces but wants us to have it all. CFC is like that. We are a community of joy and peace, generosity and kindness, love and goodwill and more, all rolled into one.. CFC is not only the synergistic result of over 800,000 charisms but the vehicle in which we experience all the parts of the fruit of the Spirit. It is truly a work of God.

My friends, who is he who can destroy God’s work? Who among the mass of humanity throughout all history has ever succeeded in trumping God? God is never mocked. The Lord has already triumphed. So let us defend but let us not attack. Contrary to popular belief, in this case, offense is not the best defense. Why? Because the Lord already proclaimed victory. Let us not fight a war that was already won. This is the first argument I have why there is no reason to attack FFL.

The second has to do with their tactics. After reading many examples of FAPs argumentations I came to the conclusion that he mixes tools in logic to justify his own conclusions. Case in point: Bishop Claver’s excellent piece on GK. What the good Bishop used was casuistry or case based reasoning used in ethical argumentations. In other words, Bishop Claver considered the merits of the case before forming his conclusions. Since the Bishop posited a case based argument, the responses should be have been case based as well. But FFL’s response was “the good Bishop would like to make us believe that such good deeds absolve the evils wrought by the killing of millions of unborn children.” FFL is not talking here at the case level but shifted the issue to a general principle, almost equating partnerships with pharma companies with supporting murder. The result is absurd and unfortunately makes the statement sound like they have the high moral ground. The principle applied is that there is no justification for the killing of unborn children. In truth there are cases where the Church permits the removal of an unborn child if the mother’s life is at stake. The article at http://ncronline.org/NCR_Online/archives/011703/011703d.htm may help. The point is that the Church does apply case based reasoning in this.

FFL’s hardline application of general principles to a posited case based argument is confusing people while making them feel that they have to take sides. Let me tell you that the worst time to make a decision is when one is confused. So Pareto’s rule will apply and 80% of confused people will choose the principle side.

This is the second argument I have why there is no reason to attack FFL. If they are increasing their number through confusion, then they will ultimately lose. Using confusion as a tactic is well documented here – using the same venues, insisting on the name, etc.

But we do have assurance from Isaiah 9:13-16:

Yet the people do not turn back to Him who struck them,
Nor do they seek the Lord of hosts.
So the Lord cuts off head and tail from Israel,
Both palm branch and bulrush in a single day.
The head is the elder and honorable man,
And the prophet who teaches falsehood is the tail.
For those who guide this people are leading them astray;
And those who are guided by them are brought to confusion.

Why use confusion as a tool to win people over? Is not love enough? Is not witnessing to the Spirit enough?

In CFC we learn (Mt 5:37) that we should say yes when we mean yes and no when we mean no and all else comes from the devil. We have to call a spade a spade. We have to say what we mean and mean what we say. We also have to be clear in what we are saying. We are not supposed to sow confusion. Again, we should do the exact opposite of what FFL does.

Brothers and Sisters, huwag na ho tayong magalit sa kanila. The peace that we have been given as part of the fruit of the Spirit is simply too valuable to lose. Like I said before, someone else’s neurosis does not have to be ours. Besides, I’m sure you’ve noticed that the best way to peeve someone trying to attack you is to show him that his attack is not affecting you. We simply put on the armor of faith and let peace be our shield. Parang si Bro Jerome - by remaining cool, sinong lalong nagalit? In short all we have to do is be ourselves – CFC people practicing their charisms.

Further, these times should be for us a time of learning. Why? FFL is providing the necessary learning environment. How many times do we pray in our households for peace in the community? Well, here’s our chance. FFL is giving us grounds to practice. The Buddhists say that peace does not lie in the world, it lies in the man who walks upon it. At every mass the priest reminds us that the Lord has given us His peace. So let’s practice it. Let’s not look on it as a burden. Let’s look on this “practicing the peace” as an opportunity to become even closer to God. Because practice makes perfect and the more FFL does what it does, the more practice we will have. Kaya po, let’s not get angry. Let’s thank them instead.

Whenever they speak in anger, they allow us to practice love.
Whenever they accuse us and malign us, they allow us to practice forgiveness.
Whenever they question our motives, they allow us to clearly define who we are.
Whenever they attack our leaders, they allow us to test our faithfulness and loyalty.
Whenever they say we are attacking the church, they allow us to see our faithfulness to the church even more clearly.
Whenever they act the way they do, they give us examples of what not to do.

You see? We are not getting weak, we’re getting stronger.

Let them do what they do. That defines them. Let us be who we are. That defines us. Remember that what the Spirit teaches is not something to do. They are all something to be. You don’t do peace. We be peaceful. You don’t do love. We be loving. One does not do joy. We have to be joyful. This is what Abraham Maslow called the philosophy of being. While FFL is busy showing themselves to the world by what they do, let us just be who we are – a loving, peaceful and joyful community. Being is more important than doing. After all, we are human beings, not human doings.


"What's in a Name Pt 1" is HERE.

* * *


Fr. Joaquin G. Bernas, SJ has a column in the Inquirer in support of Bishop Claver's article in the CBCP Monitor about GK. Please click HERE to read.

Also,
Read more of William Esposo's take on the modern Pharisees HERE.







108 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is a brilliant piece. I'm all for it.

WillyJ said...

Excellent analysis and recommendations. The treatise on Charisms should lay to rest the "issue of veering away from the purpose and charism of CFC". It
simply covers it from all angles. May I add that FAP goes beyond the issue of veering away from CFC's charism - he actually accuses CFC of a more serious charge - that
of veering away from the Catholic Faith. That is plain to see from the "Real Issue, Real Truth" document, as well as FAP's recent personal messages to his followers.
This lends credence to the conclusion that FAP is really bent on destroying CFC to justify
their existence.

With regards to praying for FAP, I am all for it. I just want to point out that this is easier said than done. Henri Nouwen says praying for an adversary is the most difficult prayer of all because it is contrary to our impulses, and because you cannot really lift a person up to the Lord and at the same time continue to hate him. This explains why some saints say it is the main criterion of holiness. People who make our lives
miserable and cause us so much pain are least likely to receive a place in our hearts. We must first pray for God's grace otherwise we cannot do it. We must first pray for our own selves that our hearts will be filled with compassion and charity, that when we pray for FAP, we are no more and no less worthy of our own enemies praying for us...

Then we can start with "Lord forgive him for he knows not what he is doing..."

malchi3/widows might said...

I second the motion. I will say a special prayer for FAP and his wife Gerry.

Paulijah said...

Magnifico! Defend CFC and love FAP and FFL. Why not?

Athrun Atreides said...

On a lighter note...

1. Type "FFL" in Google and one of the top websites is Food For Life Global, which describes itself as "the world's largest vegetarian/vegan food relief with programs in over 50 countries" and established in the 1970s. (So there's CFC Global, and there's FFL Global...)

2. On the matter of t-shirts: Well, I thought of printing one to use for the two anniversaries. The two logos (CFC and FFL) are at the top, and below is a statement that reads:
I attended their anniversaries and all I got was this t-shirt.
At the back of that shirt, there's this statement:
Your t-shirt cannot be used by any other individual.

Anonymous said...

Yes! From now on, I will pray for FAP and FFL and ask forgiveness for all the bad thoughts that I have on FAP and the bad meanings of FFL I coined! May the Lord forgive me of what I have thought and said! May God bless us all and peace dwells in our hearts!

CFC West C Sector said...

Hard as it seems, am all for it!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
oremus pro invicem said...

Jesus, Mary and Joseph we consecrate the Couples for Christ community and the Foundation for Family and Life, to you.

We thank you for all the graces and blessings that you have bestowed upon the leaders and members of both communities.

We humbly ask that you grant us the grace to be able to overcome all of the anxieties and difficulties that is in our midst today.

Holy Spirit, we ask you to enter into our memory and heal every hurt and all the broken relationships. Today, we choose to forgive and ask that we be forgiven as well. Remove all traces of bitterness in our hearts and fill the empty spaces with your love. Bless our minds and our hearts that we may be able to accept each other as we are today.

Bless us and teach us how to love one another, as we ought, and to live together in perfect harmony and unity with You.

Loving Father, grant us the grace to conform our lives to your commandments and the precepts of the church, that we may all live in union with the Holy Spirit.

Fill us with the grace to appreciate the Eucharistic Mystery, and to find in it the strength and love that will hold our communities together.

Empower us with the fire of Your love that we may have the strength to do your mission for us...to renew the face of the earth.

May the Spirit of peace reign over us all, members of Couples for Christ and Foundation for Family and Life.

AMEN.

Bro. Mero :-) said...

Good day everyone...

Thanks ANONYMOUS.. (whoever you are)! it was a very commendable post you did!

What you wrote opened for more hope to all of us who defend CFC. And i believe, that is exactly your charism and what the Holy Spirit has prompted you to speak!

What i admire here in CFC is we work with different charism but all came from the same Spirit and give it for the greater glory of God.

While others have the aggressive charism, your charism is soemthing that amidst all the silence you maade...BUNG! You have shared a thought that was really a profound one!

I agree 10000% with what you are saying! The best way is to do more of our work and highlight the positive part of the crisis!

May God be praised!

Bro. Mero :-)

Danny, WB said...

I rest my case Your Honor!
Excellent piece of Literature!!!

LET'S DO IT!!!

t2mc said...

Dear Everyone!

This piece I may say is an opus. Bro or Sis Anonymous had said it clearly and I congratulate him/her for a very profound and well thought of essay. He/she has delivered it clearly what I was trying to say in the beginning, we should not let our sensibilities get the upperhand but let's look at the situation with love as the way true followers of Christ should. Our reactions should have been done in such a manner.

Let me share to you all today’s reflections by the Word Among Us and I’m dumbfounded that what is suggested in this site today coincides with what is reflected in today's gospel. This is all about flattery and sincerity. I invite everyone to read this taken from the Gospel of Mark 12:13-17.

Ahh! Really, CFC is truly guided by the Holy Spirit, it is only up to ourselves if we will obey the message or not. If we will, I can see that peace will be upon us all. Let us all keep CFC's charism alive in our hearts. One of that charism is building relationship.

God bless us all!

Jojo Peña/Jiggs said...

Great! Count me in!

Let the LOVE month begins with these suggested actions.

That's a great way to start our ANNIVERSARY month!

jonitanitayturin said...

I salute ANONYMOUS for finally taking the brave, illuminating stand here.

I TOTALLY AGREE that the “raison d'etre” of FFL is the ABSENCE of the original CFC. It is about FAP and FFL restoring a CFC charism through the destruction of the original CFC.

LET ME ALSO SAY THAT IT IS SOME BISHOPS’ “SCHEMING FOR, AND KOWTOWING” TO FAP AS “FOUNDER OF CFC” THAT ARE MATERIAL TO THE RESTORATION EFFORT – SADLY, RELIGIOUS POLITICS AGAIN. (“Religious politics”, which dominated the power struggle over CFC in the early 1990’s, is, I believe, the same major factor in FAP’s “restoration” objective, with the collateral destruction of Gawad Kalinga as a necessary consequence.)

I should not be thankful if so-called “FFL bishops” are now “twiddling their thumbs, reading tea leaves and smoking pot” as described by FFL’s Nonong Contreras, not because I want to hate FAP less, but because I want to respect our bishops more. And the great stumbling block to that “charity” is the ugly fold those so-called “FFL bishops” created while hewing the pattern that should have clearly distinguished the charism of a CFC Founder (certainly not FAP) from one who only shares of it (this time, FAP, yes), even if in both cases the charisms are deemed genuine.

I quote lengthily from a fellow blogger up there ("Musings..." June 1, 8:13 pm) who says:

“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?”


About this “battle” with FFL, I want to think less in terms of victors getting all the spoils... and dwell on the bits of wisdom these old maxims can give:

“Beware of Greeks bringing gifts.” and

“Forewarned is forearmed”.

(PS: CD, I hesitate to post this here NOW, amidst the spirit of love and forgiveness permeating this particular, how do you call this, “entry”? But I do wish it also brings in some kind of charism, as intimated by Anonymous...GOD BLESS.)

Anonymous said...

I want to share some thoughts with all you heroes who defend CFC. I want to lift up your spirits if I can. This was supposed to be part of the first piece but it just got too long...

We should defend CFC not because it is the family in which we grow but because it is a gift from the Spirit to us. Such a gift, such a treasure, is worthy of protection. Yet a gift from God is not a passive thing. This treasure is not like a pearl or a bar of gold that, by itself, is helpless. This gift of ours is, by nature, active. Believe it or not the best way to defend CFC is to live out its teachings to the full.

I have often wondered why St Paul lumped love, joy, peace and six other traits into one and called it the fruit (singular) of the Spirit. Perhaps it is because when God gives, He doesn’t give in pieces but wants us to have it all. CFC is like that. We are a community of joy and peace, generosity and kindness, love and goodwill and more, all rolled into one.. CFC is not only the synergistic result of over 800,000 charisms but the vehicle in which we experience all the parts of the fruit of the Spirit. It is truly a work of God.

My friends, who is he who can destroy God’s work? Who among the mass of humanity throughout all history has ever succeeded in trumping God? God is never mocked. The Lord has already triumphed. So let us defend but let us not attack. Contrary to popular belief, in this case, offense is not the best defense. Why? Because the Lord already proclaimed victory. Let us not fight a war that was already won. This is the first argument I have why there is no reason to attack FFL.

The second has to do with their tactics. After reading many examples of FAPs argumentations I came to the conclusion that he mixes tools in logic to justify his own conclusions. Case in point: Bishop Claver’s excellent piece on GK. What the good Bishop used was casuistry or case based reasoning used in ethical argumentations. In other words, Bishop Claver considered the merits of the case before forming his conclusions. Since the Bishop posited a case based argument, the responses should be have been case based as well. But FFL’s response was “the good Bishop would like to make us believe that such good deeds absolve the evils wrought by the killing of millions of unborn children.” FFL is not talking here at the case level but shifted the issue to a general principle, almost equating partnerships with pharma companies with supporting murder. The result is absurd and unfortunately makes the statement sound like they have the high moral ground. The principle applied is that there is no justification for the killing of unborn children. In truth there are cases where the Church permits the removal of an unborn child if the mother’s life is at stake. The article at http://ncronline.org/NCR_Online/archives/011703/011703d.htm may help. The point is that the Church does apply case based reasoning in this.

FFL’s hardline application of general principles to a posited case based argument is confusing people while making them feel that they have to take sides. Let me tell you that the worst time to make a decision is when one is confused. So Pareto’s rule will apply and 80% of confused people will choose the principle side.

This is the second argument I have why there is no reason to attack FFL. If they are increasing their number through confusion, then they will ultimately lose. Using confusion as a tactic is well documented here – using the same venues, insisting on the name, etc.

But we do have assurance from Isaiah 9:13-16:

Yet the people do not turn back to Him who struck them,
Nor do they seek the Lord of hosts.
So the Lord cuts off head and tail from Israel,
Both palm branch and bulrush in a single day.
The head is the elder and honorable man,
And the prophet who teaches falsehood is the tail.
For those who guide this people are leading them astray;
And those who are guided by them are brought to confusion.

Why use confusion as a tool to win people over? Is not love enough? Is not witnessing to the Spirit enough?

In CFC we learn (Mt 5:37) that we should say yes when we mean yes and no when we mean no and all else comes from the devil. We have to call a spade a spade. We have to say what we mean and mean what we say. We also have to be clear in what we are saying. We are not supposed to sow confusion. Again, we should do the exact opposite of what FFL does.

Brothers and Sisters, huwag na ho tayong magalit sa kanila. The peace that we have been given as part of the fruit of the Spirit is simply too valuable to lose. Like I said before, someone else’s neurosis does not have to be ours. Besides, I’m sure you’ve noticed that the best way to peeve someone trying to attack you is to show him that his attack is not affecting you. We simply put on the armor of faith and let peace be our shield. Parang si Bro Jerome - by remaining cool, sinong lalong nagalit? In short all we have to do is be ourselves – CFC people practicing their charisms.

Further, these times should be for us a time of learning. Why? FFL is providing the necessary learning environment. How many times do we pray in our households for peace in the community? Well, here’s our chance. FFL is giving us grounds to practice. The Buddhists say that peace does not lie in the world, it lies in the man who walks upon it. At every mass the priest reminds us that the Lord has given us His peace. So let’s practice it. Let’s not look on it as a burden. Let’s look on this “practicing the peace” as an opportunity to become even closer to God. Because practice makes perfect and the more FFL does what it does, the more practice we will have. Kaya po, let’s not get angry. Let’s thank them instead.

Whenever they speak in anger, they allow us to practice love.
Whenever they accuse us and malign us, they allow us to practice forgiveness.
Whenever they question our motives, they allow us to clearly define who we are.
Whenever they attack our leaders, they allow us to test our faithfulness and loyalty.
Whenever they say we are attacking the church, they allow us to see our faithfulness to the church even more clearly.
Whenever they act the way they do, they give us examples of what not to do.

You see? We are not getting weak, we’re getting stronger.

Let them do what they do. That defines them. Let us be who we are. That defines us. Remember that what the Spirit teaches is not something to do. They are all something to be. You don’t do peace. We be peaceful. You don’t do love. We be loving. One does not do joy. We have to be joyful. This is what Abraham Maslow called the philosophy of being. While FFL is busy showing themselves to the world by what they do, let us just be who we are – a loving, peaceful and joyful community. Being is more important than doing. After all, we are human beings, not human doings.

Anonymous said...

While I agree with most of what genius "Anonymous" wrote for this particular page, I would like to put in my two-cents worth on Item 3: GK

GK, as everyone knows is a class in itself, matter of fact I think it did not only revitalize a shrinking attraction of CFC. I say that without intention to put a criticism on leadership - past or present. Some may agree with me; others may not. Take your pick, I don’t have a beef on that, to my mind, it is just the way it was.

My point is that I'm in TOTAL AGREEMENT with our GENIus Anonymous, whom I’d refer to as "GENI", for short.

GENI says: “Our response should be to get the word out on GK, massively.”

I propose that a new set of TALKS, something like a ‘PRIMER or GK 101 Course’ should written and given to the greater bulk of CFC members who know GK but are only peripherally involved in GK. This teaching could be given after the Financial Stewardship Talk and it should be made as a necessary teaching prior to being a household head. It does not have to be 12 talks like the CLP but its two major components should include:

1. A topic (1-2 talks) on “Why or How GK is closely akin to what Jesus did in the 30 years He lived on earth”; and another

2. A topic on “Deep involvement with the Work with the Poor is NEEDED for one to be Mission Person of CFC”.

Indeed, for how can one call himself to a “Mission Core” member without knowing GK? MUCH WORSE for leaders how can you live as a missionary, WITHOUT EVER STEPPING INTO A GK SITE?

Massive information given to the cross-section of CFC (hopefully spearheaded by one or two of the Council members then all Sector Heads/Regional Country Heads and all Chapter Heads – (Chap Hds. in RP at least) along the greater number of CFC & Family Ministry members, will hopefully evolve into an army of CFC leaders & members actually stepping in Jesus footsteps.

In these talks, it is necessary to highlight the modeling done by Jesus in His preferential option for the poor rather than the failed and false leaders of the church then (and now?).

We need to ingrain in the minds of CFC/Family Ministry leaders the true value of GK. Forget about the “nation-building-instead-of-kingdom-building” charge of FFL on GK. That is one statement they copied from a Protestant line that sounded cute at this current scenario we have with FFL. Consider it part of their FAPism which is of no value to us who see GK as a pro-Jesus activity.

GENI continues to say “Let everyone know the selfless sacrifices our GK caretaker teams and full time workers are giving. Circulate GK stories. Better yet, let the pharmacy companies provide testimonies of their own evangelization”

This statement is a great suggestion. Paging Gerry Bacarro!

And for the rest of GENI’s suggestion, PAGING THE CFC & THE BOARD OF GK!!!!! (please don’t just read and file this)

(sgd) Flying High with CFC

Anonymous said...

Teka, ang sinasabi po ba noong may comment na magkaroon ng GK 101 course, eh kahit na mataas ka na ba sa iyung leadership sa CFC, eh pag-aralan mo pa ng mas malalim at sumali ka sa gawaing GK?

Aba kung ito po talaga ang ibig sabihin niya, ako po ay sumasang-ayon!

Magaling po na makita ng mga tao-ng hindi naman taga-CFC at GK na kasali sa gawaing GK ang mga namumuno ng CFC. Nandyan na si Ginoong Joey Cuisia, ex-Central Bank governor po pala yun, eh nagpunta na ng at least dalawang beses dito sa GK Ruby at Payatas!

Nakakahiya po kung mas marami pa siyang oras sa GK kaysa sa ating mga taga-CFC, eh tayo naman ang nagsimula ng GK.

Meron din po akong suhesyon sa IC, pakinggan sana atin ang mga karanasan ng mga tumutulung sa GK --tulad ni Ginong Joey Cuisia o yung ex Mayor ng Nueva Ecija sa MC' para meron tayong "wider appreciation" sa mga taong ito ng naturuan ng kilos na maka-Diyos. Siguro hindi na malayo na maging CFC din sila, di po ba evangelisasyon din yun?

Salamat Po!

Anonymous said...

To Brother or sister 'Anonymous' who caused CD to honor you with a page on this blog:

PLEASE COME OUT OF YOUR SHELL, IDENTIFY YOURSELF AND BE A MEMBER of a team of writers / thinkers that CFC always needs for the Ugnayan Magazine, for the Ugnayan Multi Media, for those who write CFC Teaching Talks for Leaders' Assemblies like the recent "Disciples Weekend".

Your great mind should not only used for apologetics!

As you said, a Gift is to be used!

How abut it Brother or Sister?

Anonymous said...

Breaker...

We may have forgotten that it is not all of the FFL membership but mainly FAP and his "legionnaires". Like us, FFL may do what they preach but become human beings themselves, too (don't get me wrong, I accept Anonymous' "dichotomy" for emphasis or to "drive home" a point);

Don't make a saint of the bishops who veered away and encouraged FAP/FFL's sowing of confusion and making of illogical statements towards a pretentious moral high ground (e.g., equating the acceptance of donations from "anti-life" pharmas as murdering the unborn)

And, what about the "FFL" Bishops, indeed? They have sowed confusion too? Does Pareto and Maslow have any principle re/about them? Or else, may our charism not point toward their insincerity or lack of direction? Love them too, including their silence or possible "horse-trading"?

Yes, we say what we have to say, and mean what we have to mean.

I mean: WHAT ABOUT THE "FFL BISHOPS" who were ennumerated by Mr. Contreras: Bishops Reyes, Villegas, and Lagdameo. SHALL WE CONTINUE TO TRUST THEM? CAN WE NOT RECOMMEND A DIAL0GUE WITH THEM IN THE SPIRIT OF LOVE, PEACE, AND JOY, BUT WITH THE WISDOM DRAWN FROM SOME UNFORTUNATE, "SERPENTINE" (having suffered from the stings of the "serpents") EXPERIENCES? ARE WE NOT COMMITTING SIN BY NOT CLEARING FROM OUR MINDS THE NEGATIVE THOUGHTS BROUGHT TO US BY MR. CONTRERAS? OR, MUST WE ALSO ASK THE HIGH HEAVENS TO GIVE THEM AND US A FORGIVING HEART? WHAT ABOUT THEIR OWN FAILURES? WILL WE ALLOW OURSLEVES TO BE "PASTORED", LED, OR ADVISED BY THEM?

andyalquiroscfcquezon said...

Doing does not necessarily define ones Being because there are so many hypocrites who do good but for evil purposes or for ones own glorification because they do not act in Faith.

Let me quote what Paul said to the Galatians" It is in the Spirit that we eagerly await the justification we hope for, and only Faith can yield it. Faith, which expresses it self through Love" and " Let us not grow weary of doing good; if we do not relax our efforts, in due time we shall reap our harvest. While we have the opportunity, let us do good to all men". Now brothers and sisters in Christ when I said DO your FAITH this defines your Being in Christ. Faith without works and works without Faith means nothing to GOD. BY the grace of GOD Your Doing in Faith defines your Being in Faith.

Let me end by quoting another passage of Paul to the Corinthians " Men should regard us as servants of Christ and administrators of the mysteries of GOD. The first requirement of an administrator is that he prove trustworthy. It matters little to me whether you or any human court pass judgment on me. I do not even pass judgment on myself. Mind you, I have nothing on my conscience. But that does not mean that I am declaring myself innocent. The Lord is the one to judge me, so stop passing judgment before the time of his return. HE will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and manifest the intentions of hearts. At that time, everyone will receive his praise from GOD".

So CD this is where I stand:

Letter of Paul to the Hebrews:

" Therefore,holy brothers who share a heavenly calling, fix your eyes on Jesus, the apostle and high priest whom we acknowledge in FAITH, who was faithful to Him who appointed Him. Moses, too,"was faithful in all God's household" but Jesus is more worthy of honor than he, as the founder of a house is more honorable than the house itself. Every house is founded by someone, but God is the founder of all. Moses was faithful in all God's household as a servant charged with a task of witnessing to what would be spoken but Christ was faithful as the Son placed over God's house. It is we who are that house if we hold fast to our confidence and the hope of which we boast".




"

Anonymous said...

SO, Brother andyalquiros, only in DOING your FAITH can you BE. In some "higher sense", yes, this is ok, because an agnostic or someone who refuses to believe may after all not realize the fullness of his BEING? Seguro nga, but then this is really a matter of FAITH, I think (or believe, if you will).

I was thinking that, as much as we could accept doing and being as measures to define an FFL from a CFC follower, as suggested by Anonymous (to do love or be loving, to do peace or be peaceful, for instance) ---

"May we distinguish FAP and his "legionnaires" as "humann doings" from the rest in FFL, who do the best they can be, as human beings?


(CD, I give you authority to ban this question if it sounds like an unChristian speech.)

Anonymous said...

GK 101 is a great idea! If we CFCers show the world we are practicing our charisms, wouldn't that be proof that CFC has not lost its charism? Then there is nothing to restore, di ba?

Question: If it is only the Holy Spirit who gives charisms, doesn't if follow that ONLY the Holy Spirit can restore it, if it was lost in the first place? So why does FFL think they can restore it? Who do they think are?

Bro. C. Tsew said...

Very insightful piece. I hope some friends from FFL have read it as I know of some well-meaning CFC brothers here in West C who must have emailed it to them by now.

Bro. Anonymous, God has blessed you with much wisdom! Thanks for the lightening of the load by making me see it a bit clearer.

Anonymous said...

Peace be with you, Brothers and Sisters, titos and titas.

Thank you for the this entry, brother. I believe you spoke truly what was in the hearts of many.

Brothers, let us not let those who would put CFC down define who we are, let us rather love the more and show the example of what CFCs charism is about.

It hurts. But we could only lose, if we give in to hate. That is the only way CFC will fall.

Loving does not mean, relenting and allowing ourselves to be trodden on. It means holding firm to what we know - That CFC is here to stay and will continue to do God's work.

Let us not condemn others, even as we are condemned. When I joined community, I was told of loving correction and its simplification KKK (Kiss, Kick, Kiss). So let's not attack anymore.. and please let's leave our bishops alone. Let us no longer drag them into this. They are human too, and are allowed to make mistakes.. let us not even presume to judge what mistakes those are. Those are between them and God... and if their conscience is clean, then praise God.

In my hometown of Sydney, CFC has been divided and until now there is much confusion, gossip and misinformation. And each time I speak with a tito or tita on the train or wherever I meet them, we no longer speak about CFC. We don't even know who is where. But I pray that the love, respect and kindness will always be there. And one day our unity will be complete again. For now we must stay the course and continue to serve God and love one another.
Please pray for us too.

Peace be with you all.

God Bless our community, FFL, all Catholic groups, our church, all christian denominations, all muslims, all jews, all religions, all atheists and those who need him the most. May God's blessing fall on all creation. May we all be one.

God Bless you.

we own the name cfc said...

If you say we are at war over a name, then let's use what's WITH our name that no one else can own no matter HOW they argue and rationalize about their perceived yet erroneous claim to be the one who are the true owners of such name.

And what WITH our CFC name?

Here's what they are:

1. We have the "patent" or "property rights" (not sure if those are right legal terms).

2. We have the biggest "market coverage" in the Philippines and elsewhere in the world.

3. We have the largest membership of any Catholic organization in the country, or perhaps even in some foreign countries vis-a-vis similar organizations based in those countries.

4. We have the biggest renewal "subsidiary" organizations in the Family Ministries.

5. We have the "best-seller product" of all time, and still going strong -- Gawad Kalinga!

6. WE have the biggest number of lay leaders in the country -- at various age levels; the leaders over age 60 are still at work and not rushing to "retirement"

7. We have a big number of youth leaders - everyone below age 30 - who are found in SFC, YFC, GK & GK Programs, who are all dedicated to the pursuit of staying in Jesus footsteps, even top-notch & bright kids recently graduated who are not keenly desirous of secular work.

8. Also, we are not in any way short of church endorsement -- from Rylko's "...your name CFC cannot be used by any other association!"; to the Jesuits Claver and Bernas; Bishops Arguelles, Pacana, etc and the many unnamed priests some of whom do not tow the pro-ffl line of their bishops.

So let us continue the great work of evangelization!

Congratulations to the GK areas now having their CLPs! You are the biggest source of fresh membership to CFC! Congratulations to all Chapter Heads who retained their being Project Directors of GK -- you are the better example of faith and good works, despite your "disobedience" to the one service policy!

Anonymous said...

God’s grace fills us with compassion and love such that we find it less offensive to pray for an enemy.

Without illusions, yes, FAP and FFL’s “survival” in the charismatic life depends on their destruction of CFC. They are my enemy. So, I pray that God melt me towards compassion and forgiveness. But this is faster said because I still have to compose my prayer, and someone seems to want answers to these questions:

What if FFL succeeded in destroying CFC, at least for the next 25 years?
What if our prayer will be heard only after FFL succeeded?
What if we continue to allow them to use the name CFC?
What about “their” bishops and the others? May it be like those pagan times when Nero played “guitar” while Rome burned?
Having access to the best facilities (at least for now) needed to draw historical insights of various religious conflicts, how does one love a sworn enemy?


The self-preservation instinct within me cannot readily accept that I give a space in my heart for someone who swears my destruction. That is why, I need to articulate a prayer that asks God to make me forgive my worst enemies and love them. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit...

Anonymous said...

Whats in a name you ask?

A lot I'd say!

Some say it's the wealth behind the name that makes the name.

Jesus says it's what's in the heart throbbing within the name that makes the name!

CFC may be poor in some material things yet it is rich in spiritual matters.

CFC was "poor" by as much as 20.o M at one time last year and up to the early 2008s but now has gotten richer by reducing that 20.o M pesos debt to a measly 1.2 or 1.3M.

How that was done is CFC's wealth -- for it is made up of true and caring leaders and members! At the core!

So continue fighting the war for the CFC name, it is a good fight of faith!

WillyJ said...

"In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage - with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry."

The above passages are from Paul’s pastoral epistle in 2 Tim 4 (emphasis mine).

I re-read our good anonymous brother’s excellent post in the light of the above and it all lines up pretty well.

If we take note of yesterday’s Gospel reading, the Sadducees try to trap Jesus with a trick question on marriage based on the Old Testament Scriptures, but Jesus readily corrects them: "Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God?...He is not the God of the dead, but of the living. You are badly mistaken!. There are many instances in the books of the gospels where Jesus rebukes and corrects the Pharisees, the Sadducees, even his own disciples often enough when the situation calls for it, but his ministry stands out not because of those corrections he made. Jesus’ ministry stands out with preaching the Gospel in words and in deed, the greatest deed of which is the supreme sacrifice on the cross – the epitome of unconditional love. As I have said, I am all for praying for FAP and all our misguided brethren, but we have to (learn to) forgive and love them as well in spite of the our own hurts. On the matter of forgiveness, again I quote Henry Nouwen who says that "forgiveness has two qualities: one is to allow yourself to be forgiven, and the other is to forgive others". The first quality is harder than the second. It may put one in an irrational defensive mode where one might say "I didn’t do anything wrong, I don’t need your forgiveness". We have ALL sinned against each other in one way or another, some more grievous than others, which calls for a contrite and deep examination of conscience. True restoration begins with the person. We are at peace when we are reconciled with God, relaxed and breathing easily as we go on with renewed vigor of putting our charisms at work, comforted by the embrace of a forgiving God.

t2mc said...

CFC is a community founded on building relationships. This is the reason why CFC instituted the household support group among its members. It fosters harmonious relationships among the members of that household group. These small groups are what make the whole CFC community dynamic. This is CFC’s charism, our own charism. In this, everyone of us participate in that charism.

The bond that ties us together as a community makes each one of us strong. How we relate with one another is our strength. This is CFC’s strength. This is what CFC life is all about.

Loving one another is our call for the year. What else could be more important than this call? To love is the basic foundation of being a disciple of Jesus. And his call is not just loving those whom you can love easily but also those who are giving us heartaches. Let’s not call them our enemy, but let’s seek the goodness in them. It will be hard, but let’s pray to God that He grant us the grace to see them.

With regards to FAP, he still has my respect. Why? It is my belief that he really was one of the persons responsible who shaped the life and mission of CFC. That is his strength. That is the good he did for the community. He did participate in the charism and he has done it well. I am not saying I am for what he stand for today. The problem is he has given in to his weakness. We are all but human. We have our strength and we all have our weakness. Let’s give him the due respect for what he has done in his 26 years as our leader. He has given his full commitment more than what all of us has given for the community.

The only thing we can do for him now is to pray for him with all sincerity.

This is also a way we can help our IC and our beloved CFC be at peace. This is the best way we can show our obedience to the call of the IC to be still.

CFC I pray must also find its humanity back. To be in fellowship with one another. Men and women who give their respect and friendship to one another, nothing more, nothing less. This is what we must share to the world. Our life. Our fellowship. Our humanized relationship.

Only then can we all be proud to say that we do everything for our God.

“For God is not unjust so as to forget your work and the love you have demonstrated for his name.” – Hebrews 6:10

momoy said...

what's in a name? a lot! it is something that belongs only to ONE entity or personality. no 2 can share it.

let's not complicate things. an example: juan dela cruz is going to the US. however, there are 7,000 other filipinos by that name. so what does our juan dela cruz do? he gets an affidavit stating he is juan dela cruz, and is not the same juan dela cruz who has a criminal record. but since his name is common and not unique to him only, he needs to go through all the hassles of securing proof of his identity.

that is why a name should be unique to ONE entity or personality alone.

is that too difficult to understand?

Anonymous said...

Wow! This is wisdom coming from God! Bro/Sis anonymous you sound like Deo Volente. You are worthy of respect. And if you practice what you posted here then you have truly matured in your Christian faith and you've understood what Jesus taught on peace and love 2000 years ago. I'm from the FFL side but I totally agree with your call for BEING!

I'm reminded of the movie Evans Almighty where the character of God says: (Paraphrased) "If you ask to be patient God will give you opportunity to be patient; strong, opportunity to be strong; loving, opportunity to love."

God bless us all!

GS

jonitanitayturin said...

CD, may June, 208, be also a month of prayerful blogs.

MY PRAYER (1): For Rev. Bishop Gabbby Reyes, D.D., the Bishops and the Clergy

Lord, that I will be kinder in everything to the Rev. Bishop Gabby Reyes, who, I fervently pray, may understand me and forgive me for whatever excesses and abuses I have committed against him in writing, in discussions, and in my thoughts and desires.

That being the source of his anointment, You, O Lord, will cause every thought, word, and action Bishop Gabby Reyes makes in connection with the Couples for Christ Community to bring inspiration, encouragement, and peace to any CFC follower, and that You may do the same to the other reverend bishops who could have manifested “indecent” distance, (if I may, Lord, and if I may not, please forgive me!) from us in CFC.

That in their solitude as well as in their public ministries, you will lovingly keep all our clergy individually unwavering, faithful, and firm in their commitment to follow your Holy Orders, and will grant their prayers plentifully, their whole being heaving the fullest, most joyful and peaceful satisfaction of a passionate and loyal servant. Please remind them also Lord, that we, their sheep in CFC, have committed ourselves to support and be with them, as much as we fervently pray that we will all be worthy of the forgiveness and mercy You will bestow upon this mutual trust and support we sincerely desire to have for each other.

Grant, O God, that all followers of CFC be forgiven by all your clergy for ALL that that could have caused them any harm, and let this prayer, O Most Loving Father, be united with all the prayers for peace in the world and in our hearts, most especially with the prayers of our brethren in CFC for reconciliation and healing with them, our brethren in “CFC-FFL”.

Father in heaven, may this my prayer be granted through your Infinite Mercy, in Jesus’ Name, together with the prayerful intercession of our Blessed Mother Mary. Amen

Anonymous said...

To FFL member who said "Wow! This is wisdom coming from God! Bro/Sis anonymous you sound like Deo Volente. You are worthy of respect. And if you practice what you posted here then you have truly matured in your Christian faith and you've understood what Jesus taught on peace and love 2000 years ago. I'm from the FFL side but I totally agree with your call for BEING!
Mag Homecoming ka na kapatid!

Athrun Atreides said...

May I ask this: would it be actually possible for CFC people to visit at the FFL anniversary, and vice-versa?

This suggestion is out of curiosity than malice; I'm really, really interested in seeing what would happen at the two anniversaries, and I would like to take pictures as well, to show that both communities are happy. I promise I'll upload those shots as soon as I can.

Similarly, I invite our FFL friends to the CFC anniversary. Let us on both sides see the events on both sides. Like what Anonymous said to Anonymous: Mag Homecoming ka na kapatid!

(I won't wear the shirt I mentioned in an earlier comment here, as I don't have the time to have it printed.)

On a lighter note:
For those who need to appreciate the term "repetitive accusation," try watching this animation for eight straight hours. (There's a counter on the bottom.)

Anonymous said...

diba sabay po ung anniv ng 2? so malabo na pumunta sa mga anniv ng isat isa..at sa akin..masakit pa pumunta sa anniv ng ffl kasi me mga bagay pa na pwedeng sabihin nila na makakasakit sa community ko..so ill focus on one..God bless us all!!!

ace - yfc

Athrun Atreides said...

Ace, about the schedule. Ano yata, FFL will hold theirs in the morning and end at 6pm, while we'll hold ours in the evening, from 4 to 11pm. Kaya siguro, kung willing bumiyahe mula Marikina pa-Maynila (2 hours travel, I think)...

WEST C Dec/2006 Upper Banlat said...

hi CD, GENI(ANONYMOUS), EVERYONE

I love your piece (explanation).
And everyone who contributed here.
Wisdom is in here, given by the HOLY SPIRIT.

Light that shine upon us...

Power of Love...
Ohhhhhh GOD, iloveyou.

Athrun Atreides said...

Sorry, but I've got three things to ask:

1. Did anyone see this last December 9?

2. Out of curiosity, what font was used to write the name "COUPLES FOR CHRIST", yung calligraphy na name na nasa stickers?

3. Again out of curiosity, what font did FFL use to write their name?

My apologies for asking these very trivial things; It's just that I only remembered to ask them now, whereas there were more appropriate posts previously.

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous who sai: Mag Homecoming ka na kapatid!

I'm already at home in the Catholic Church! But if you mean going back to CFC community, probably not because I am happy working with my family in FFL. At our level we don't talk about this fight over a name, we just do God's work. If the leaders on both sides decide to reunite in the future, then that's fine. The single most important thing is to do God's work and grow in love with Him and our neighbors in the process.

May Christ's peace be with y'all.

GS

Sleepless in NJ said...

Just a question: this is not about disobedience to bishops or veering away.

This is about the legal right on the name...

Is it ok for members to sit idle while our group tries to justify stealing the name (cooperate/legal) of an organization?

When the Pharisees tried to trap Jesus about paying taxes (following legal law of the land), Jesus commented "Give caesar what is to caesar... give God what is to God" (paraphrasing)

There is nothing wrong in starting another group. It is human nature to be disenfranchised and in one's discernment decides to make a different group. It is ok to disagree with the CFC IC or CFC elders… we have an open door policy … we are all volunteers in this mission… it is ok to leave and form a different (better) organization. But to say that separating from a group gives one the legal right to have the same organizational name and anniversaries leaves a bitter taste to my reasoning.

Call a SPADE A SPADE. You have an opportunity to tell the emperor that he has no clothes. You as a community can guide and correct.
Both groups will have difficulty moving forward until this issue on the name is resolved. Until then there will be more confusion especially to the new people.

It is better to deal with the bitter "truth" now and start the healing ... for both group.

Anonymous said...

To FFL member who is happy working with FFL doing God's work ,may your tribe increase in FFL,hopefuly you can talk to Frank Padilla and Nonong Contreras to focus too on God's work and follow the example of the I.C. to be still

Anonymous said...

To FFL member who is happy working with FFL doing God's work ,may your tribe increase in FFL,hopefuly you can talk to Frank Padilla and Nonong Contreras to focus too on God's work and follow the example of the I.C. to be still

Anonymous said...

This is to honor our Bro/Sis who is happily working for the Lord in FFL,you know who you are you are, as you said ,an FFL member. Calling yourself FFL is a major step I honor you. FFL needs disciples like you, kapatid.

Anonymous said...

Let's change the name of GK Baseco to Gerry Padilla GK Village or Sandra Soto GK Village

Anonymous said...

Noon pa, bago pa ang GK, sabi ko sa mga kasama kong volunteer na ang mga CFC member na ayaw sa GK ay maiwanan sa viaje, nong gusto nilang paalisin ang GK sa CFC, harapharapang sinabi nila kay TM yon, sabi ko "ang mga ayaw sa GK ang mawawala sa CFC hindi ang GK ang aalis sa CFC". Wala pang isang taon nag resign si FAP, dahilan GK. Isa ako sa nagulat, kasi bago lang kami nagkasama noon ni FAP na pumupunta sa isang proposed GK site!

Anonymous said...

To the Bro/Sis who said that it’s only FAP and his legionnaires who attack…Thank you so much for reminding me. I wrote it the way I did because FAP’s pronouncements are always signed FFL signifying that his whole community is one with his views. But that is no excuse. Thank you bro/sis for pulling me out of that pit. I also apologize to those FFL members who do not attack and who must therefore keep silent out of loyalty to FAP even though they don’t agree with his methods.

To the FFL kapatid who responded. Forgive me if I identified you with those who attack. I rejoice in you who is a voice of reason in these times of crises. I love you, bro.

This thread of comments is so full of hope, forgiveness and love. From the different voices one can see a prayerful commonality and a great willingness to accept the other. I believe that for the ones whose thoughts are here, FAP has been forgiven. Truly God's mercy makes us merciful as well.

I am awed and humbled by all of you that I sometimes feel my words unworthy of you. Yet the joy of seeing your charisms in action is greater. It reminds me of David's prayer: "Who am I, Oh Lord, that you have brought me this far?"

There is only one way to describe what you do - faithfulness in action. Thank you all. You have strengthened the reason for me to practice an attitude of gratitude.

As for FAP..."If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps he is walking to the beat of a different drummer. Let him step to the music..." (Thoreau). FAP seems to believe this is part of his lamentations from last year. I think this is his desert to wander. This is his cup to drink. Let us pray that his wandering will bring him back soon. Let us pray that the prodigal son return to the Father soon. For we know he will, sooner of later, "for none can escape the grace of God".

Lastly, to the Bro/Sis from MMC who asked me to join the Ugnayan team. Thanks for the invite but I happen to live 7,000 miles away from you and that would make it a bit of a commute to Greenhills. If you can come up with a way for people like me – and there's a host of others out there – to help out, you have my commitment.

God bless everyone. Love reigns!

Anonymous said...

tito/tita athrun,

june 21 po ba o june 22? ang alam ko po june 21, di ba sat un? di ba sunday usually? talaga? hanep naman..excited...

ace, yfc

Athrun Atreides said...

Ace, sa June 21 parehong anniv celebrations. Check mo both websites. :-)

PS. It's Kuya Athrun, hehe.

Anonymous said...

hi kuya athrun..hehehe

ffl sabi 22 daw..anyways..God bless everyove...

may metro mla kasangga kahapon ang yfc...hanep..dami yfc's and naka skul uniform pa ung iba..truly God's affirmartion that He is with us...happy 27th anniv!!!

malachi3/widows might said...

Don't Look now the FFL's Anniv was moved from June 21 to June 22, but it still reads 27th Year , more prayers still needed.Let's storm the heavens with our prayers maybe they will change 27 into 1 year anniv and drop the CFC name. But the Bible warns of wolves in sheeps clothing so lets be vigilant.

Anonymous said...

i learned that the land where Alpadi is was donated to CFC long ago. Is this true?

It could be one of the reasons why FAP is vehement on the "CFC" name because if his FFL doesn't have it, pffft, gone is Alpadi.

Anyway....

yes, i continue to pray for FFL. it really is a lesson of loving the "hard-to-love".

FLM said...

Hi all,

As we are trying to cope with the situation, allow me to share our experience in our particular parish.

Our Bishop did not come up with a Diocesan directive concerning the CFC split, and so the parish priests were left unto themselves to handle the matter in the way that their particular parish circumstances may warrant. Some parishes within the Diocese have recognized only CFC while some have recognized both CFC and FFL for reasons of their own. In our parish, the local CFC chapter already had very good relations with the local parish when the split came, and majority decided to stay with CFC(IC). About four months ago, FFL applied for their own parish recognition under the name CFC-FFL. Our local CFC chapter head sent an official letter to the parish priest (copy Parish Pastoral Council - PPC officers), to the effect that we welcome FFL (and any other lay group for that matter) as fellow workers for the parish, although the local CFC chapter requests FFL to drop the CFC name tag to avoid confusion, and in consonance with our top governance's (CFC-IC's) position on the matter. The CFC letter was endorsed by the PPC board, and so the parish priest welcomed FFL under the condition that they drop the CFC name tag and use only the name FFL to avoid confusion. The local FFL head acceded to these terms (I think he had no choice), whereupon the FFL group was recognized under probationary status. CFC and FFL are now both active in the parish under the umbrella of the Family and Life Ministry (FLM). The FLM Ministry, by the way, is presently under the coordinatorship of a CFC leader-couple. There are still confusions in parish facilities reservations, activities and functions, although the local FFL chapter agreed that their official name is FFL as far as our particular parish is concerned. In their private circle of course, they continue to refer to themselves as CFC-FFL, but it was agreed upon that in all parish public announcements, communications, parish administration and official representation with the PPC, they are officially known as FFL (not CFC-FFL). Just sharing, thanks.

God bless.
-FLM

Anonymous said...

That sounds like the ideal scenario. It's a blessing to have another group helping the parish bring people closer to God. Preventing confusion by having distinct names for each organization is a step in the right direction. I wish both groups (CFC and FFL) the best.

CFConly said...

FLM,

Would you mind emailing me a copy of the Endorsement letter for our reference to cfconly@gmail.com.

We have a current crisis in our parish rightnow similar to this.

We need help asap.

Thanks,

CFC only

FLM said...

CFCOnly,
Sure brother, I shall email you the letter shortly. Expect it in awhile.
Good luck and God bless,
-FLM

CFC only said...

THank You FLM,

I like to request everyone in CFC to pray for our dialogue with FFL and with our Spiritual DIrector first week of OCtober.

Thanks,

CFC only

Anonymous said...

CFC only,

You have our prayers bro. I will ask the other households here to take this up in their next meeting on Sunday.

CD, wouldn't it be good to publish Bro FLM's story more prominently here? This is a success story, Bro. We should celebrate it.

- TE

FLM said...

Bro CFCOnly,

Rest assured we will pray for that meeting and that it will work out for the good of everyone concerned.
This same problematic situation is probably familiar to many parishes. Back then, we thought that at least the international chapters would be somehow insulated from the name conflict issue, especially as we take note of Bishop Reyes clarification last May 2008 that states: "Abroad, Couples for Christ – Foundation for Family and Life may not use CFC in their names.". Meanwhile in the Philippines, it is supposed to be a diocesan prerogative and in the absence of that, a Parish level prerogative. Lacking a uniform Church position, it may have been much simpler if the local courts intervened to uphold what is just. But now that we are facing an unclear timeframe as to when the name issue will be resolved with finality by the courts, it remains imperative that our community and parish service moves forward unrestrained if at all possible, by the difficulties arising from this.

The position that we articulated to our parish (in various meetings and communications) mainly revolved around the following:

1) We welcome FFL and wish to work with them harmoniously in the Parish; 2) Name conflicts has caused and will continue to cause unnecessary confusion not only to CFC and FFL but to the general parishioners as well. This is against the parishes' interest; 3) CFC has already been recognized in the parish long before the CFC conflict materialized, and if another group separates from the officially recognized CFC and makes representations under a separate recognition, it must be clear that it is distinct and separate from the incumbent CFC which is officially recognized by the Vatican- under its approved statutes; 4) any new lay organization has to go through the same process that previous organizations have undergone to get accredited per the local parish guidelines; 5) By all means let everyone agree that the reasons and capability behind serving does not rest on appending the CFC tag, and with this realization, the matter of assigning the name CFC exclusively by its original designation, should have no effect other group's dedicated service; 6) Lastly, we emphasize that we look forward to serving together with FFL harmoniously, and with all other lay groups and parishioners for that matter.

Each day is a new day.
God bless everyone.
-FLM

Anonymous said...

Dear Brod FLM,
Can you send me also the Endorsement letter to jbfranc60big@yahoo.com?
Thank you in advance.

European brod

CFC only said...

THANKS FLM!

THANK YOU ALSO TE for responding my request for prayers.

This few remaining days before that meeting is very crucial.

The other side will be moving Heaven and Earth to win their cause.

I keep you updated.

CFC Only - The Real One

FFL - Fake Fake Lang

Anonymous said...

Hi CD, FLM,

Is is possible to attach the document in this blog? I guess many would like to go to that path and who knows it will also be successful in their respective areas. I for one will broach that idea here in New Jersey.

Raul Aclan

Anonymous said...

THE (Proposed) SPIRIT
OF THE
‘CFC SOLUTION ROADSHOW’


Hi, CD, TE, FLM, Everyone!

1. It is a parish-by-parish forum involving the three 'sharers': from CFC, from FFL, and PPC/FLM of the model parish which implemented the same as recounted by FLM (may cite the copy of the Parish Council’s endorsement of the proposed solution)

2. ‘The underlying principles’ of the solutions roadshow are adopted from FLM, thus:
- CFC welcomes FFL and wishes to work with it harmoniously in the Parish;
- the name conflicts will continue to cause unnecessary confusion not only to CFC and FFL but to the general parishioners as well.
- if another group separates from the officially recognized CFC and makes representations under a separate recognition, it must be clear that it is distinct and separate from the incumbent CFC which is officially recognized by the Vatican- under its approved statutes;
- any new lay organization has to go through the same process that previous organizations have undergone to get accredited per the local parish guidelines;
- by all means let everyone agree that the reasons and capability behind serving does not rest on appending the CFC tag, and with this realization, should have no effect other group's dedicated service; 6) Lastly, we emphasize that we look forward to serving together with FFL harmoniously, and with all other lay groups and parishioners for that matter.

3. An open forum follows the sharers’ presentation, which may include comments/reactions participants. Of course, the activity opens and ends with prayer. A unity song or any joyful one may be sung during closing.

4. Other Concerns / Possible Considerations
- may also welcome solution from the hierarchy, especially those who’ve openly supported FP and FFL;
- venue
- handouts to include: brief history of CFC; copy of endorsement letter (as mentioned by FLM(
- others (this is just a draft which may be modified and/or expanded)
- this is suggestion in-progress.

Anonymous said...

Now that's a very good suggestion, bro. Let's all contribute to this and bring this outline to a full document. This can be submitted to the IC. MMC can turn this into a new leaders' training.

In this way, Bro FLM's parish best practice can be learned by others and everybody benefits.

Bro anonymous, will you take it on your shoulders to take in all the suggestions and work it into a work in progress document?

Here are a few ideas:

1. I believe Bro FLM's success has several factors:
- best practices in creating and maintaining excellent relationships with the parish leadership
- best practices in running an effective parish council
- best pratice in running the meeting where FFL agreed to the conditions
- a respectful, loving and spirit-guided approach to the dialogues with FFL, the parish council and the parish priest.

Bro FLM, would you be willing to share your thoughts on these points?

2. The roadshow will be good in spreading the word that "it can be done" and in inspiring others to do it. This will allow others to try it out in their own parishes, but people might end up re-inventing what Bro FLM already did. Couldn't we complement the roadshow with a workshop so others can learn to implement the actual best practice? The workshop may include role plays and group dynamics. Talking points would also help.

- TE

FLM said...

TE and all,
One those 4 points, let me share some of our experiences. I am not sure they can be called best practices, as I believe many of our chapters have been doing quite the same all along:

(1)- best practices in creating and maintaining excellent relationships with the parish leadership
- Senior CFC leader represent chapter head in all PPC meetings. Regularly attends.
- Some CFC members serve as Lay Ministers
- CFC member heads Parish Music Ministry
- CFC couple heads Family and Life Ministry
- CFC actively supports all parish programs.
- CFC serves prominently in various committees in parish anniversaries.
- Parish priest is regularly invited to some of the Chapter HH's fellowship
- CFC (sector level) ProLife Ministry assists our parish in its NFP programs
- SFC serves under Family and Life Ministry
- YFC serves under Youth Ministry
- CFC chapter head gives talks on PREX parish seminars
- Join PPC in social events
- Conduct CLPs at the church whenever possible

(2) - best practices in running an effective parish council
- PPC comprised of about 20+ organizations structured around the key ministries
- PPC board formed out of elected officers and Ministry heads
- PPC board represent the entire body as consultative to the Parish priest. Policy/strategy level.
- CFC is represented in the board through the Family and Life Ministry
- Clear Parish Vision/Mission, bylaws, annual strategies and plans
- well-managed PPC/board meetings with clear agenda

(3) - best practice in running the meeting where FFL agreed to the conditions
- orient Priest/ PPC beforehand with salient backgrounder facts
- arrange special PPC board meeting/s (we had 4 meetings before agreement was finally forged)
- meetings attended by CFC and FFL chapter heads together with PPC board and parish priest
- send formal letter to priest/PPC prior to meeting
- present factual situations transpired/happening in the parish that necessitates resolution of name issue
- Maintain cordial atmosphere all throughout
- Shake hands before and after, regardless of how each particular meeting turns out

(4) - a respectful, loving and spirit-guided approach to the dialogues with FFL, the parish council and the parish priest.
- present stand more or less along the 6 points mentioned. I'm sure the chapters can add/ improve on those points, specific to their circumstances.
- continue interacting with FFL for parish activities even if name resolution is still unresolved
- continue serving the parish by all means, even under the most challenging conditions
- pray for one another

One with the Catholic Church.
God bless everyone.
- FLM

FLM said...

Hi all,
For those interested, you can download a copy of our letter here.
It is just a simple letter, you can certainly make a better one while citing the particulars in your case.
The letter itself is just one minor aspect of the process.
Thanks,
-FLM

Anonymous said...

Not to nit-pick, but I think the following line in the letter:

As long as they use a different name and logo, we trust that all this confusion will not come to pass.

should be:

As long as they use a different name and logo, we trust that all this confusion will come to pass.

Anonymous said...

Bro, the phrase "come to pass" means "to happen" but I suppose one can also read it as "come to pass by". So i suppose you and the letter are correct.

CFC only said...

Hello Mga Kapatid,

I like to ask a copy of a letter from Vatican last 2000 when the CFC started to be recognized in VAtican, I saw it on one of the websites I cant remember well I think it was a website in Middle East or AFrica, I SAW THE NAME OF ROQUEL PONTE because he was the Executive Director at that time. I like to have this in our dialogue Because for sure they will Argue in the DECREE because FPs name is there but WE ALL knew that it is just FP was the Director at that time BUT IN THE SUCEEDING statements The DECREE mentioned the STATUTES SEVRAL TIMES and to be IN FORCE!
Email it to me pls at cfconly@gmail.com

CFC only said...

CD and other Brethren,

Can we have the REcognition History of CFC sa CBCP and Vatican,

I downloaded from old website na it was approved 1996 by CBCP and 2000 then with some amendments it was approved in 2005.

I LIKE TO SHOW THEM WHO WERE the names in THERE, I BELIEVED it is not all FP s name.

Please asap.

I need this doc to support our presentation in the diocese.

CFC only

CFC only said...

Who was the Executive Director in 1996 when CBCP approved CFC as national ...?



Who was the Executive Director in 2000 submitting and applying for Vatican REcognition and approved for 5 year experimentum?

CFC Only

Anonymous said...

Brother CFC Only:

Is there a need to go back and say, (please don't get me wrong) 'bicker' as to who were or who were not in the roster of names, especially as ED, when CFC was recognized by CBCP or the Vatican?

Malayo na ata ang narating natin, Brod (we have come a long way already, Brother). What is important is that FFL must be advised by the PPC that its use of the CFC tag or name confuses the work of evangelization at the parishes, given that the members of the mainstream CFC are governed by statutes that are duly recognized by the Vatican. In this sense, CFC can be impervious to individual squabblings, like the nitty-gritty on credits for doing this or that...

I only wanted to share my sense of your query, and please forgive me if I am wrong.

Thank you.

CFC only said...

IT is just that WE are presenting and having dialogue with FFL, our SD, a parish priest that allowed CFC FFL in the parish and the CHANCELLOR in the ARCHDIOCESE. These people from the Clergy dont have idea of our Structure and if they only see FPs name in the DECREE and with FFL statements we cant easily refute them Their Words against our words So I like to KNOW because I dont know and if there is an official letter from CBCP and Vatican Addressing the name other than FP then I CAN TELL the Clergy and can easily convince them that It is because FP was the ED at that time and I will show those Docs and say LIKE THESE Docs, It's not FP name. Hope you get it.

I will be making it in Power Point when I m done with it I will share to EVERYONE with here. So Please PROVIDE info that I NEED or DOCs that I asked.

because I DONT KNOW. Who were thos People IT WAS NOT IN THE BOOK CFC ORIGIN, THought it should be there so We can trace thosE previous ED.

Anonymous said...

Brod CFC Only:

Just because the name of Padilla appears in a Vatican decree acknowledging CFC does not mean that FFL already has exclusive rights to CFC. Everyone knows Mr. Padilla left and founded FFL while the Elders' Assembly, the governing body of CFC, stood pat to safely steer CFC in accordance with the Vatican-approved statutes.

Yet, your predicament is understandable, Brod. If I were in your shoes, I admit I am also not in possession of any official, say one-page documentary of the current situation that insists and asserts on the legality and righteousness of the CFC administrative structure as implemented by the IC. So, I wish to beg CD to make representation with the CFC-IC or the MMC to come up with an official brochure that our chapters can use to support their defense of CFC at the parishes - A S A P ! ! ! !

In the absense of such brochure or formal guide from the IC, I suggest you just insist in the upcoming meeting that FFL is not CFC and its use of the CFC Name can not be tolerated if the parish also acknowledges the traditional role performed by the mainstream CFC.

Courage, my friend and brother. You may not get all the information you want to present to the upcoming meeting with representatives of the Diocese where you belong, but we shall pray for your fortitude, courage, humility, and faithful witnessing to the truth. GOD BLESS.

Anonymous said...

Also Brod CFC Only,

We will have to admit that all through our CFC life, we had only practically Frank Padilla at the helm of our organization. To try to sort of "depreciate" that important role he played by trying to "sneak" in some names (that may appear in a transmittal or two to or from the Vatican)to prove it was not him at all that only "mattered", I think would be futile, if not inutile - not useful. In fact everyone in the know about our beloved CFC, will easily decry the pride and ambition that drove Mr. Padilla to leave and and stop loving the CFC friends he had made for quarter of a century already. Sayang na sayang!

Anyway, as they say, "no use crying over spilt milk." Let's give it to Padilla for steering CFC for 25years. Yet let us also say that he left it in bad taste and badmouthing. So, thanks and no thanks for the 'spilt milk' (may be laced with milamine, too, for all we know...) God loves you, Frank Padilla.

Anonymous said...

Come on Mga Kapatids,

Sino please list the Exec Directors from 1993 - 2003

Anonymous said...

Brod CFC Only:

'Not to CRY over spilt milk'... iba pa 'yung 'spoonfeeding'...

We only have virtually FP for ED; no need to make a list. There was only a brief 'changeover' by Bro. Roquel when FP et al had CFCFI 'killed' and replaced by CFCGMFI in 1993, because it was not good that as ringleader of the 'coup d'etat' then (1993), Frank Padilla would head of the 'new' CFC. When things settled, FP was again the ED and dictated on CFC until he voluntarily gave up power February, last year.

Now, it is a challenge on your part to give your best 'scholarly' and morally defensible piece of public defense (using powerpoint) of CFC. Like I said here, I decry the lack of formal guide from the CFC-IC (perhaps through a one-page brochure, just like they would have about any product promoted) about the use of the CFC name at the parishes. You can't expect a list Brod, but if you insist on having one, your powerpoint's yearly bullet will constantly 'list' or repeatedly enter the name of Frank Padilla up to 2007, except perhaps one or two years from 1993 when Roquel shortly acted as ED. Hope and pray that the officials of the Diocese where you belong, particularly of the parish where you operate, will preempt FFL from using the CFC name in order to avid any confusion at evangelization.
GOD BLESS.

Anonymous said...

Bro, the exact words mentioning Frank Padilla in the Vatican Recognition are: "Having examined the request presented on September 27, 2004 by Mr. Frank Padilla, Couples for Christ Director, to receive the definitive approval of the Statutes of the above mentioned association by this Dicastery;..."

Frank is mentioned as the one who presented the request for approval. The Vatican recognition is a recognition of the association whose Statutes have been approved. It is not a recognition of Frank Padilla as the head of Couples for Christ. The Vatican recognition is based on the approval of the submitted Statutes.

Let's make this very clear: What the Vatican recognized was an association (not a person) whose Statutes were approved. These are not FFL's statutes.

That Frank is mentioned in the document is incidental. At that time, he was the director of CFC and it was his duty to present it to the Vatican. If someone else had been the director, that someone's name would have been on the document. The mention of Frank's name is immaterial to the recogntion. What was essential to it are the statutes.

- TE

Anonymous said...

For Exec Directors, check out

http://couplesforchrist.wikia.com/wiki/Executive_Director

The page lists them as:

1983 - 1985 Raul Sarceda First Executive Director

1985 - March 19, 1993 Francisco Padilla

1993 - 1995
1995 - 1997
1997 - 1999 Rouquel Ponte

July 1, 1999 - June 30, 2001
July 1, 2001 - June 30, 2003
July 1, 2003 - June 30, 2005
July 1, 2005 - February 22, 2007 Francisco Padilla

February 22, 2007 - June 30, 2007
July 1, 2007 - Jose Tale

- TE

CFC only said...

THANKs Bro TE,

PLease ask and remind to pray on OCt 6,

The dialogue with FFL, SD, a parish priest and ArchiDiocese Chancellor will be tape recorded.

As I mentioned before that I will put it in Power Point I think HIndi na lang. I only have the DECREE and STATUTEs to PResent that we want to enforce and uphold.

CFC only

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry, it was not a short stint at all for Bro Roquel Ponte as ED following Frank et al's killing of the CFCFI in 1993.

Bro CFC Only, I guess you have a clearly defensible stand there given by TE. The Vatican-approved CFC Statutes is not FFL's just because Padilla is now FFL.

In replying to the CFC application for Vatican recognition, the name Padilla as CFC ED was mentioned because he represented the association of Couples for Christ. Further, the Vatican recognition was to the CFC association not to the Padilla person. No other name was mentioned by Vatican in the transmittal except Padilla's because, as ED, he was expected to represent CFC.

Anonymous said...

Bro, this may help you further...

The association recognized by the Vatican as Couples for Christ is the association whose statutes were approved. Mark those two highlighted words, Bro, they're important, because:

1. The decree is only for the association who owns and submits to the approved Statutes.

2. Since the Statutes state that the overall governing body of the recognized association is the CFC International Council, only those communities that

- submit to the Statutes,
- recognizse the authority of the International Council,
- and are duly recognized by the International Council as belonging to the association,

can claim to have Vatican recognition.

3. The Vatican Decree recognizes us under the name Couples for Christ.

FFL has its own Statutes and does not recognize the authority of the International Council. But far and away more important, the International Council does not recognize FFL as part of the association that the Vatican recognizes as Couples for Christ.

In Summary: FFL does not have any Vatican recognition, no matter what they try to do to claim the name. Even if the impossible happens and FFL gains the CFC name in civil court they would still not have Vatican recognition. Why? Because it is not the FFL statutes that the Vatican approved as basis for recognition. The most that FFL can do is try to share the use of the name within the civil context. They cannot take away the name from us because it is our Statutes that the Vatican approved and the Vatican knows us as the association called Couples for Christ. If FFL wants Vatican recognition, they must go through the process themselves - they have to submit their Statutes to the Vatican for approval and eventually they might get recognized. But since the Vatican has already given permanent recognition to us as Couples for Christ, if FFL obtains recognition it would not be as CFC because, under Canon Law, the Vatican has already recognized us as such. In other words, the Vatican has already given the name away (to us). Under Canon law no other organization can be recognized under the same name as an association already enjoying permanent recognition.

- TE

Anonymous said...

Wish to honour all the silent workers in CFC, to specially mention a relatively and remarkably 'nondescript' or 'unheralded' key work by Bro Roquel Ponte as CFC-ED for more than six (6) years from March 1993 through 1999. Their blades will have cut deeper into the fertile fields of evangelization, as they plodded on straight ahead, neither bothered nor disturbed by any secular credit, merit or 'Award'...They were, are and forever will be CFCOnly and not FFL.

Anonymous said...

Bro. CFC Only:

Bro. Look for CFC I.D.s of those who dedicated CFC between 1993-1999, Roquel Ponte signed it as the CFC Director for your additional proof. And also do not forget to bring a copy of the letter from Carinal Rylko to Joe Tale, mentioning that NO OTHER ASSOCIATION CAN USE THE NAME "COUPLES FOR CHRIST". MAY THE SPIRIT OF GOD GUIDE YOU TOMMOROW'S MEETING. GOD BLESS YOU!

Anonymous said...

Hi All,

Just got wind of a news in New Jersey that one Archbishop in NJ have sent a note to the Pastor's re: FFL not to use the CFC name. I saw the letter (and read it) but did not have a copy of it (they were sent directly to different Pastor's desk within the Diocese). It reiterates that the Arcbishop only recognizes the CFC under Mr. Joe Tale and that the dissident group headed by Mr. Frank Padilla have clearly separated from CFC because of differences in mission, charism and other areas.

It said in the letter that FFL is not recognized as part of CFC but as another group hence they should cease and desist from using the CFC name. The Archbishop even mentioned the request of Cardinal Rylko of the directives re: CFC's name cannot be used by any other group.

I have to remain anonymous for now but rest assured the letter is true and in existence. Reason for my being anonymous is...I know FFL people are also reading this blog and it might give them an impression that CFC in NJ are rejoicing in this development. Not at all. We all pray for reconciliation and to qoute from the letter, "...will continue to pray for reconciliation between these two groups so that there is no further scandal or dissonance and that healing and unification may eventually occur".

God bless us all!
Concerned Jerseyans

Anonymous said...

Yes, by Archbishop Myers of the Archdiocese of Newark, New Jersey. The letter says in part "I do not recognize Foundation for Family and Life as being part of CFC. While FFL may do many good, charitable, and spiritual works within the parishes, they are no longer part of CFC and they should cease and desist using the title of CFC within this Archdiocese"

I go with the Concerned Jerseyans. We certainly do not gloat over this letter, and regret that an explicit prohibition has to be issued by an Archbishop. Our posture is for UNITY under the CFC recognized by the Vatican. We pray for reconciliation and are open to this anytime with open arms.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info, CFC New Jersey. Praise God for your self-restraint!

Like you, I also don't want an open 'rejoicing' on the reported proscription of FFL's use of the CFC name by an Archbishop there; rather this must be received in all humility.

I pray that if reconciliation by FFL and CFC followers is not yet possible, our Christian lives and evangelization efforts will work toward the greater glory of God!

By the way...CFC Only, what happened Bro, to your parish-level 'clarification' meeting last October 6 regarding CFC and FFL? Praying it turned out well for all concerned.

Anonymous said...

These are the contents of that Letter -- Discernment in Toronto

Archdiocese of Newark
OFFICE OF THE ARCHBISHOP

September 26, 2008

My Brother Priests:

This communication replaces my letter of November 15,2007 with regard to this matter.

Recently, I have been receiving communication again about the conflict between Couples for Christ (CFC) with Gawad Kalinga (GK) and the dissident group Foundation for Family and Life (FFL).

I want to soundly and thoroughly reinforce my endorsement of Couples for Christ with GK under the leadership of Mr. Jose Tale. I understand that Foundation for Family and Life which is headed by Mr. Frank Padilla is still attempting to use the name Couples for Christ even though his group has agreed to separate ways because of clear differences in mission, charism and other areas. Also, after a recent visit to the Archdiocese of Newark by Mr. Padilla, again there is resurgence in desire for many to continue to call themselves CFCFFL, simply indicating another branch of the CFC, which it is not. Again, this is causing scandal and confusion among the faithful of the Archdiocese and even some pastors are failing to enforce the difference in the groups' names.

Clearly these are two different organizations with two different missions and should not be using
the same moniker. A Council Statement of CFC from the Philippines dated November 19,2007 states, "The group that calls itself Foundation for Family and Life has separated voluntarily from CFC. They have publicly developed their own vision, mission and leadership structure ...."

Furthermore, Stanyslaw Cardinal Rylko, President of the Pontifical Council of the Laity, stated in a letter to Mr. Jose Tale, leader of the CFC, "Couples for Christ is the official name the Pontifical Council approved .... In addition, your name 'Couples for Christ' cannot be used by any other organization." Some of our faithful and our clergy are in violation of the Cardinal's request to not extend the name CFC to other organizations, namely, FFL.

Finally, I want to clearly and emphatically reaffirm the recognition of the original Couples for Christ with Gawad Kalinga under the leadership of Mr. Jose Tale in this Archdiocese. I do not recognize Foundation for Family and Life as being part of the CFC. While FFL may do many good, charitable and spiritual works within the parishes, they are no longer part of CFC and they should cease and desist using the title of CFC within this Archdiocese. FFL may continue to operate in a limited role under the guidance of the local pastor, but they cannot, under any circumstances, use the name CFC. Pastors, at the same time should be respectful and obedient to my very clear request.

I pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to bless Couples for Christ members in their effort to do good work and spread God's Word. I will continue to pray for reconciliation between these two groups so that there is no further scandal or dissonance and that healing and unification may eventually occur.

With kindest personal regards, I am
Sincerely in the Lord,

"'Most Reverend John J. Myers
Archbishop of Newark
Archdiocesan Center
171 CLIFTON AVENUE· POST OFFICE Box 9500· NEWARK, NEW JERSEY 07104-0500. (973) 497-4004. FAX (973) 497-4018

Ernie said...

To Anonymous,

"Just got wind of a news in New Jersey that one Archbishop in NJ have sent a note to the Pastor's re: FFL not to use the CFC name.

I saw the letter (and read it) but did not have a copy of it"

Here is the link to the letter;

http://couplesforchristglobal.org/v2.1/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=83&Itemid=80

ErnieS

jocken said...

Well, the thing is that as of now kahit ano pang gawin natin to our brethren who went to FFL ay wala ring manyayari. Its because most of them joined FFL not because they beleived FFL is the still CFC or FAF is the original CFC but its because most of them joined FFL dahil thier friends were there.
Here in Vienna, I once told a brother of our who is now with FFL that the Bishop of Vienna only recognised one CFC and that is our CFC with the IC and FFL should start from the Diocese to get its recognition from the Cardinal of Vienna.
By the way FFL is not recognised as CFC here in Vienna according to the our Bishop.
Well, so far nothing change thier mind . . . Pareho lang daw yan . . . CFC or FFL ???

CFC Only said...

Mga Kapatid,

No final Resolution yet, We are for UNITY, we asked them to come back, we gave time to decide.

There will be another meeting next month, if they prefer to be with FFL then we will endorse our stand, WE WILL UPHOLD our DECREE of RECOGNITION and International STATUTES.

The ArchBishop already told the the Parish priests who mediateD us that ONLY one CFC will be recognized. FFL Showed Only the letter from FP MENTIONING a letter from Cardinal Rylko- we asked for a copy of that letter, we in CFC showed, our DECREE AND OUR STATUTES and mentioned to them that their group does not submit to our International Statute and does not recognize the Intertnational Council as the governing body worldwide. We read specific Sections of the Statutes.

The priests proposed unity, so we invited them to come back to be with our pastoral care and governance but they always say they are already a separate group.

Anyway, pag ayaw nila and we already exhausted our efforts to reconcile and for unity, we will let them go and do their calling.

Please continue to pray.

God Bless,

CFC only

garnet said...

WE all know that the use of CFC by FFL has created confusion, and scandal too. The archbishop has not prevented them in their parish work. He is just stating a fact that under the Vatican recognition it is CFCGlobal that is recognized. I may not be jumping with glee, but I certainly welcome this clarification.
As for those in New Jersey who still think that we can fall under one CFC - i think it's about time na tanggapin na natin - this will not happen soon.
The world certainly needs a lot of workers for the Lord - so we can all work side by side. pero magulo talaga using the same name!!!! ( venue reservatios,etc - sana kung miscommunication lang - but parang sinsadya yong iba).

Anonymous said...

Hi All! Can somebody give Fr. Tulabing a thorough overview of the real situation of CFC? I was reading his piece of Aug. 24th 2008 below:

It is somehow very important to determine where’s the loyalty and obedience of the leaders and members of Couples for Christ-Global-GK. Is it to the Church authorities giving them ecclesiastical recognition both under the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines and the Pontifical Council of the Laity? Or is their loyalty and obedience given to Joe Tale and Tony Meloto? Recent events showed that the International Council and the Council of Elders of Couples for Christ failed to listen to the bishops. Several years ago CFCGlobal leaders and members were begging the priests and the bishops to recognize them in the dioceses and in the parishes, to allow them to conduct Christian Life Programs, to be part of parish life, etc, etc. Some of the leaders and members of CFC-Global-GK call me a fanatic of Frank Padilla. No, I’m not. I am a fanatic of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and I am concerned with order and discipline in the Church. Yes it is true that I am favoring the cause of Bro. Frank Padilla. Kay kinsa man diay atong paboran? Sila ang mga tawo nga nakaamgo sa ilang mga sayop sama ni Bro. Frank Padilla ug sa tanang mga miembro sa CFC-FFL ug mibalik sa mga igsaktong pamaagi nga Diosnon ug Simbahanon? Now I realize nga ang recognition diay sa CFC-Global sa Roma padugang ra diay sa color para sila ilhon dyud sa kadaghanan nga maayo, ug aron ma-attract nila ang mga tawong maayo’g kabubut-on. Apan sa ila karong wala pagtuman sa mga spiritual guidelines sa mga kaobispohan ug sa direktiba pastoral nga gikan gayod sa Roma, they are saying nga wala sila manginahanglan og recognition sa Roma, karon nga dako na ang ilang organization ug gamhanan na sila ug nakaestablish na sila’g ilang kaugalingong gingharian ug daghan na kaayo sila’g kwarta. They now feel and believe that they are now very powerful and so they think they can now defy Rome’s directives. Even in our relationship with God, we may or may not follow His Laws and Decrees because He respects our free will. But the consequence of not following and obeying God is sin. And sin has consequences in our life. So if the CFC-Global Council and provincial local leaders do not follow the directives of their pastors, there are also consequences and they must suffer the consequences- disorder and chaos, disunity, and eventually separation, and the danger of disintegration. Dili angay ug dili makiangayon nga moingon ang mga leaders and members sa CFC-Global nga mga leaders ra kuno nila sa Manila ang gaaway ug wala sila’y labot dinhi sa Negros Oriental ug sa uban pang mga probinsiya. Labot gyud mong tanan kay mga members gud kamo. And all the members of CFC must be very concerned about the real issue and what is going on in the whole structure. Unsa man diay ‘mong klase sa pagka-members sa CFC kung moingon lang kamo nga wala mo’y labot sa dakong problema nga giatubang karon sa Couples for Christ? If the leaders of CFC-Global do not help in the restoration of Couples for Christ and instead consent to the wrongdoings of the International Council of CFC, then the members can leave CFC-Global-GK and be more faithful to the Church. Ang dili nako ganahan kay ang mga local leaders sa CFC-Global-GK nagpakabuta-bungol o mi-konsente lang hinuon sa sayop sa CFC- International Council. Asa man nila dalhon ang mga members sa CFC? Are they still shepherding them well?

Anybody wants to translate the dialect to english?

I will send Fr. Tulabing my piece of mind but he dismayed me knowing that he lacks the necessary information of what went on with our community.

God bless!
Raul Aclan
New Jersey

Anonymous said...

Bro Raul, all
It's been several months already since Fr. Tulabing came to our attention. In some of his articles he has also intimated that he has read the comments in this blog. I think he has enough information already. I also think he knows how to access the necessary information. What we have here is a priest who, despite knowing the truth, still writes inflammatory articles while supposedly proclaiming being right. This is a priest who holds some authority over other priests and because he is published, he has the capability to help shape public opinion. Freedom of the press nothwithstanding, this is a priest who should know better and who should take his responsibility as a journalist seriously.

Why does he still continue to do it? Two reasons come to mind:

1. He suffers under the neurosis of needing to be right. Maybe he is embarrassed by the comments against him and, perhaps because of hardheadedness, obstinately insists on the rightness of his position. The need to be right is a neurosis that unfortunately affects millions of people worldwide.

He obviously knows the truth but insists on giving it his own twist. Take for example the following passage from his article: "Now I realize nga ang recognition diay sa CFC-Global sa Roma padugang ra diay sa color para sila ilhon dyud sa kadaghanan nga maayo, ug aron ma-attract nila ang mga tawong maayo’g kabubut-on." (Now I realize that the recognition of CFC-Global by Rome is just to add color so that they can be known by many as good and so that they can attract people of good conscience.) If that's not adding his own twist, what should we call it? Imagine reducing the Vatican's recognition to a marketing gimmick. But perhaps the whole thing is a really big stretch for Fr. Tulabing to comprehend.

Let's take another one: "Apan sa ila karong wala pagtuman sa mga spiritual guidelines sa mga kaobispohan ug sa direktiba pastoral nga gikan gayod sa Roma, they are saying nga wala sila manginahanglan og recognition sa Roma, karon nga dako na ang ilang organization ug gamhanan na sila ug nakaestablish na sila’g ilang kaugalingong gingharian ug daghan na kaayo sila’g kwarta. They now feel and believe that they are now very powerful and so they think they can now defy Rome’s directives. Even in our relationship with God, we may or may not follow His Laws and Decrees because He respects our free will. But the consequence of not following and obeying God is sin." (But because they didn't follow the spiritual guidelines from the bishops and the pastoral directive from Rome, they are saying that they do not need the recognition from Rome, because their organization has grown large and powerful and they have established their own kingdom and have plenty of money. They now feel and believe...")

He is deliberately ignoring the content of the letter from Cardinal Rylko. He is also trying (too hard?) to give the impression that ALL the bishops are against CFC. He is ignoring that Bishop Lagdameo and others co-celebrated the mass at Luneta, in effect giving their support to CFC. I wonder what he would say about Archbishop Myers' stand in New Jersey? No doubt, he will say that Archbishop Myers is wrong. But he goes farther than ignoring facts and giving his own twist. He reminds everyone that the consequence of not following and obeying God is sin. Writing that sentence immediately after putting CFC down is no accident. It was deliberate and he is deliberately saying that CFC, by following its own statutes which Rome itself approved, was an act of disobeying God, a sin. Note that he has now equated the bishops' recommendation as a command from God.

And what's with the large organization and plenty of money thing? Where did that come from? Do you detect a tinge of envy here? I guess he has conveniently forgotten that FAP left CFC with a 20 million peso debt.

2. The second reason I see is that he is a blind follower of FAP. "Yes it is true that I am favoring the cause of Bro. Frank Padilla. Kay kinsa man diay atong paboran? Sila ang mga tawo nga nakaamgo sa ilang mga sayop sama ni Bro. Frank Padilla ug sa tanang mga miembro sa CFC-FFL ug mibalik sa mga igsaktong pamaagi nga Diosnon ug Simbahanon?" (Yes it is true that I am favoring the cause of Bro. Frank Padilla. Why shouldn't we favor them? They are the people who realized their own mistakes like Bro Frank Padilla and all the members of CFC-FFL and went back to the right ways, which are of God and of the church.) His is implying that CFC's ways are the opposite of godly and are not of the church. Otherwise, why choose sides? This is tantamount to saying that the other bishops who support CFC are being ungodly.

Now I'm sure he does not intend to accuse the bishops, including Archibishops Lagdameo and Myers, of being ungodly. So why write it that way? Unless his being enamoured of FAP has made him blind...

The thing is, the only way he can sell FFL's position as right is to make CFC's wrong. This is where he needs to understand his responsibilities as a journalist better. He admits his bias for FAP, declares that he is a fanatic of the Lord and proceeds to insist that FFL is right, not by giving evidence of rightness, but by making CFC wrong. What is he saying? That fanaticism, as long as it is for the Lord, is fine and justifies making others wrong. This is exactly the attitude that history tells us has caused wars and bred terrorists. It doesn't require Mensa level thinking to know that this is not what Our Lord teaches. I advise Fr. Tulabing to take a week's retreat contemplating the 2008 Theme of the year of CFC - Love one another as I have loved you.

Let us remind Fr. Tulabing that we are either in love or not. There are no in-betweens. Based on his writings, Fr. Tulabing obviously is not.

- TE

Anonymous said...

That is why, Brother Raul (Aclan), there is no point in giving credit to this Tulabing. In Bisaya, 'pundol' or 'habulan' ang iyang hinagiban (his weapon is dull or blunted). People in Dumaguete will son discover his folly and ignorance, and he will be confounded by the good works CFC does, particularly through GK.
GOD BLESS

Anonymous said...

Brother Raul Aclan,

As much as I respect Fr Tulabing and his opinions, there's not much sense in reasoning with him. He had pretty much made up his mind. He is insisting on the sinfulness of the International Council despite the absence of an official investigative body. He had rendered his judgement already even though his conclusions are subjective. I don't think there is anything we can say that will change his perception. Much of what he is saying is false but I don't blame him if those are his personal observations. He is entitled to those personal opinions even though to me they are blatantly wrong. The only thing we can do is pray for him that the Holy Spirit will manifest its power over him and give him the gift of knowledge.

May God bless him.

2k2k said...

TE, Ikaw nay hirit diha brod! para makasabot si Fr. Tulabing, kay murag wa jud ni masaktohig pasabot! God bless you!

2k2k

Anonymous said...

I don't really understand kung anong ibig sabihin ni PadreT pero the way I understand it is this..
1. CFC leaders in Negros are not listening to the complain of other CFC members (FFL?)2. CFC leaders are not listening to their Diocese Priest.
3. CFC leaders are not enterested in the problem of CFC (FFL?) in Negros.

I think I can only say, Padre, please read CBCP Journal, I'm sure you've read all this issues since. This issues of disobedience to the church has been resolved long time ago. The issue now either FFL can carry the CFC name or not because it creates so much confusion in all Diocese even in your own backyard... Please, don't keep on repeating again and again all this tele-novela dahil we won't end up anywhere. Concentate on the present issue.

Anonymous said...

(how do we comment in Village Part III - under this format, and not using the 'intense debate' ware? Anyway, I'll log my comments here...)

OKAY FFL (reur Oct. 16,2008 report on 'international restoration village'):

May be good to note that you have added some 22 units to GK Int'l Village in Remarville after you took over it - although you do say this has been slow. May also be worthwhile to say that even if slow, the gesture of using private and family finances to help brother Filipinos own a home is always laudable. So I say, for those who sincerely believe in your version of GK - the Restoration Village -- please go on and may God show mercy on your magnanimity.

However, since you have admitted to financial troubles after taking out the Int'l village to be cradled by FFL, and acknowledging to an 'attempt' by GK to run it, I believe you need to look at the legalities very clearly. Also, you may not have noticed that CFC and its elders may have been 'slow' and gave you time to think through - including of course leaving your decision to the Almighty. But then, in the end, perhaps, things will settle down properly... donors will have sensibly coursed their assistance through GK, which was the original 'project proponent and owner/manager'...likewise, CFC's investment in developing the facilities at AL PADI will also have been repaid with CFC-GMFI ultimately getting physical possession of that estate, it being the donee...GOD BLESS.

Anonymous said...

Good to have you back, CD. You had us concerned for a while. The work is not yet done, bro... We have to continue to lift the banners high.

Mga kapatid, the question on the table is "What do we do with Fr. Tulabing?" That is, what do we do with him as a group on the one hand and as individual Christians on the other?

As a group, this is now the third time that he is the focus of correction in this blog. Matthew 18:15-17 says "If your brother sins [against you], go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have won over your brother. If he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, so that `every fact may be established on the testimony of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell the church. If he refuses to listen even to the church, then treat him as you would a Gentile or a tax collector."

Should we, as a group, follow this teaching literally? The first time around, Bro Raul Aclan responded. The second time around, this blog, "established the facts". The next step would be to tell the church.

Fr. Tulabing seems to exhibit extraordinary hardheadedness, for a priest. (Gahi gyud ug ulo, di ba T2k?). Could he be what Proverbs 12:1 - "He who loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid." - is referring to? Because he is a priest, I would venture that he knows his scriptures. That is, after all, one of the quiddities of a priest. What's the probability that this particular verse from Proverbs escaped his notice? What if what he is really trying to do is to make this passage come true? Sorry about that. Just couldn't help it.

Anyway, as individual Christians, the teaching goes beyond Matt 18. 2 Timothy 2:24-25 says "A slave of the Lord should not quarrel, but should be gentle with everyone, able to teach, tolerant, correcting opponents with kindness. It may be that God will grant them repentance that leads to knowledge of the truth..."

And in Titus 2:10-15, St. Paul says - "For the grace of God has appeared, saving all and training us to reject godless ways and worldly desires and to live temperately, justly, and devoutly in this age, as we await the blessed hope, the appearance of the glory of the great God and of our savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to deliver us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for himself a people as his own, eager to do what is good. Say these things. Exhort and correct with all authority. Let no one look down on you."

The teaching is clear. We should correct him, gently and with kindness. Since the next step is to tell the church, what we can do is for each of us to individually write a letter to Fr. Tulabing's Bishop and Archbishop. What say you?

The Diocese of Dumaguete is a suffragan of the Archdiocese of Cebu. The Bishop of Dumaguete is Bishop John Forrosuelo Du. The mailing address is: Diocesan Chancery Office, P.O. Box 85, 6200 Dumaguete City, Philippines. The Archdiocese of Cebu has the following mailing address: Chancery, P.O. Box 52, Cardinal Rosales Pastoral Center, Cor. P. Gomez and P. Burgos Sts. 6000 Cebu City. The Archbishop is Cardinal Ricardo Vidal.

I will write each of them a letter. I urge you all to do the same, to stand up and be counted, to step into the gap. Stepping into the gap is take up the cross, the responsibility. The admonition is from Ezekiel 13:5 "Ye have not gone up into the gaps, neither made up the hedge for the house of Israel to stand in the battle in the day of the Lord." And Ezekiel 22:30 - "And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none."

The more letters the better. While the Bishops may be too busy to listen to one voice, it would be hard for them to ignore many voices. History has precedents for this. The best that comes to mind is Gandhi's India. Gandhi blamed the Indians, not the British, for the occupation of India. The author Jonathan Black writes that "He (Gandhi) pointed out that 100,000 Britons would not be able to control three hundred million Indians unless they went along with it." There are more Fr. Tulabings out there. If we do nothing, if we do not correct, we would be "going along with them", giving them our silent approval for what they are doing.

But we have to be truly loving in this correction - to correct with kindness, as St. Paul says. Jonathan Black explains it this way, in reference to Gandhi "He believed that the cosmos is governed by truth and by the laws of truth and that, by acting in accordance with these laws, an individual would gain Satyagraha, the force of truth and love... This soul force, he believed, could deflect the greatest military power, because the intention behind an action could have greater and more widespread effects than the action itself.

Gandhi was a devout Hindu, but he lived according to the deeper laws as also laid out in the Sermon on the Mount. Talking to hostile Hindu and Muslim factions, he argued that someone whose spirit of self-sacrifice did not go beyond his own community eventually became selfish and made his community selfish. The spirit of self-sacrifice, he said, should embrace the whole world."

The intention behind the action could have greater effects than the action itself. I believe this is the same reason why Jesus taught that the moment we think of doing something bad, we have already sinned (Mt 5:28). This means we should all write our letters with love and kindness, not out of spite or inis. Our motivations must be pure because intentions are greater than the actions.

In the same vein, FAP and Fr. Tulabing should reflect on their intentions and their spirit of self-sacrifice.

- TE

Anonymous said...

Thank you all for your advise. I have started my little piece of mind for good Fr. T. But on second thought, you are right TE and all. I guess I will just let go by not informing Fr. T how 'diosnon' (godly) Frank Padilla when he used the mormons issue as one of his reason for separating from mainstream CFC. Although I have first hand knowledge that there was no agreement between CFC and the Mormons, he still used it when he talked here in Our Lady of Mercy in Jersey City last year. I guess the good Fr. thinks that lying Frank is really 'diosnon'. When Local FFL last December sent an invitation for a Christmas party, the invite is just plain CFC. No 'FFL' letter is attached. When their leader was asked why, we were told that it is for the whole CFC. But when the top leaders of CFC (not FFL) were asked, they said that they were never invited. Only a few CFC (members and some HHheads) were invited. I believe the good Fr. think that their (FFL) group is still 'diosnon' even if they are lying to high heavens. Again, thank you all. I will hold my piece and let the good Fr. T where he is. There are more reason I can give the good Fr. but I'd rather that he asks me personally. Heck! I can even spare a few hundred dollars expense just meeting him face to face. But I guess my priority right now is to serve where I can be of good service to the Lord and the community. I will be in Sierra Leone this Nov.6 with Bro. Ricky Cuenca for the mission.

Fr. Tulabing...diyan ka na muna. Mas daghan ang akong mahimo by just ignoring your mental diarrhia.

God bless!
Raul Aclan
New Jersey

WillyJ said...

My take on the 14 Ateneo professors' statement.

WillyJ said...

FYI, this letter is being circulated by FFL. You may download a copy of attached memo from Cardinal George here.

***
----- Original Message -----
From: CFCFFL Home Office
To: Recipient list suppressed:
Sent: Monday, October 27, 2008 8:57 AM
Subject: Co-existence of 2 CFC Communities Worldwide Reinforced by Cardinal Francis George

Dear Sisters and Brothers,

On September 26, 2008, the Most Rev. John J. Myers, Archbishop of Newark in the state of New Jersey, released a letter to his fellow clergy quite negative about CFC-FFL/CFCFI. From his own indications, he admits in his letter that after a recent visit of Bro. Frank Padilla, "there is resurgence in desire FOR MANY (underscoring ours) to continue calling themselves CFCFFL." And yet, despite a clear and strong interest by many of our brethren to join CFC-FFL/CFCFI, the good Archbishop has banned the group from using the CFC name in his archdiocese. He even cited that this was the wish of Stansylaw Cardinal Rylko, President of the Pontifical Coincil of the Laity based in the Vatican.

Regretfully, the good Archbishop of Newark is sadly misinformed. Attached you will find the October 2, 2008 letter of His Eminence Francis Cardinal George of Chicago recognizing the co-existence of the 2 CFCs in his area of jurisdiction. The letter of Cardinal George is significant because he took the extra and prudent step to seek the opinion of Cardinal Rylko himself regarding the recognition issue.

Cardinal George was advised by Cardinal Rylko to maintain strict neutrality in the current controversy. As a result, the good Cardinal (George) decided quite wisely and prudently to extend recognition to both communities. The decision of Cardinal George reinforces the message contained in a letter addressed to both Bros. Frank Padilla of CFC-FFL/CFCFI and Joe Tale of CFC Global that Cardinal Rylko himself acknowledges the existence of both communities, contrary to the claims of CFC Global about its sole and only legitimacy. While the letter of Archbishop Myers was dated Sept. 26, 2008, that of Cardinal George is more recent, dated October 2, 2008. Added to this recency is the incontrovertible fact that the good Cardinal sought the counsel of Cardinal Rylko himself.

In the light of these developments, the legal actions filed by CFC Global which have caused quite a scandal acquires dubious validity since the opinion of the Vatican has been clarified by the query of Cardinal George. While the actuations of CFC Global are purely secular and legal in both nature and form, the more valid source of the use of the name and the right to co-exist is no less than the Vatican which has spoken twice over. Again, it remains a matter of wonder and puzzlement why CFC Global would again take the risk of disobeying the Church by virtue of its actions. If CFC Global continues to say it still belongs to the universal church and still subjects itself to the statutes to the Church, the Vatican should be given the final say instead of the courts.

CFC-FFL /Couples for Christ Foundation, Inc.
***

WillyJ said...

Grabe.

Hindi ba nila naiintindihan, ang Chicago Diocese ay hiwalay sa New Jersey Diocese.

Cardinal George's memo does not in any way supersede the memo of Archbishop Myers. Walang kinalaman yung dates nung mga letters dun. The decision of Abp Myers stays. The decision of Cardinal George stays too. Independent jurisdictions yan. The FFL in New Jersey cannot use the decision in the Chicago Diocese for basis of action in New Jersey. Tapos sasabihin pa nila: "the good Archbishop of Newark is sadly misinformed". Ay naku, patawarin kayo.

At ano naman ang ibig sabihin nila na: "the Vatican should be given the final say instead of the courts."
Agree tayo dyan 101% percent. Kasi sa ngayon pa lang ang recognized sa Vatican statutes ay CFC-GMFI, hindi FFL.

Kung TALAGANG papanindigan nila itong salita na ito, ay inaamin nila na wala sila sa lugar.

Hay naku,

- WillyJ

WillyJ said...

teka, me napansin pa ako dun sa letter ng FFL,
ang sabi:
Dear Sisters and Brothers,...
usually dear Brothers and Sisters, diba?

baka si Ge**y ang sumulat :-)

Max said...

Hello mga kapatid in FFL,
I read about your latest email below and I just have clarification/question.
With your statement as I quote below,

“… Cardinal Rylko himself acknowledges the existence of both communities, ……”

Did Cardinal Rylko gave FFL recognition? Of course everybody acknowledges the existence of both communities, CFC and FFL but the latter continue to use its name even if it doesn’t submit to the International Statutes.

There is only one CFC Decree of Recognition and that Decree cites the International Statutes. Why don’t you submit to that Statutes if you wish to call yourselves CFC? Are you waiting for the Vatican to tell you so? The Vatican leave that to you because it’s common sense and appropriate to do and FFL can do a self correction.

With your statement below,
“If CFC Global continues to say it still belongs to the universal church and still subjects itself to the statutes to the Church, the Vatican should be given the final say instead of the courts.”

How About FFL? FFL continues to say it still belongs to CFC BUT DOES NOT subjects to the STATUTES of CFC. WHY?

How does people call you and differentiate to the group who abide and submit to the Statute?
Since you insist to use CFC in your name, will you agree & happy if people will call your group CFC – FFL, the Rebellious CFC? The Dissident CFC? They are the CFC that does not abide its STATUTES (SPIRITUAL hence it’s VATICAN APPROVED STATUTES).

Pinipilit NYO talagang gawing TAMA ang MALI.

WE SUPPORT OUR IC TO GO TO COURTS, FRANK's FALSE DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED WILL BE REVEALED IN COURT

MAX


Below is the latest FFL statement:

Dear Sisters and Brothers,

On September 26, 2008, the Most Rev. John J. Myers, Archbishop of Newark in the state of New Jersey, released a letter to his fellow clergy quite negative about CFC-FFL/CFCFI. From his own indications, he admits in his letter that after a recent visit of Bro. Frank Padilla, "there is resurgence in desire FOR MANY (underscoring ours) to continue calling themselves CFCFFL." And yet, despite a clear and strong interest by many of our brethren to join CFC-FFL/CFCFI, the good Archbishop has banned the group from using the CFC name in his archdiocese. He even cited that this was the wish of Stansylaw Cardinal Rylko, President of the Pontifical Coincil of the Laity based in the Vatican.

Regretfully, the good Archbishop of Newark is sadly misinformed. Attached you will find the October 2, 2008 letter of His Eminence Francis Cardinal George of Chicago recognizing the co-existence of the 2 CFCs in his area of jurisdiction. The letter of Cardinal George is significant because he took the extra and prudent step to seek the opinion of Cardinal Rylko himself regarding the recognition issue.

Cardinal George was advised by Cardinal Rylko to maintain strict neutrality in the current controversy. As a result, the good Cardinal (George) decided quite wisely and prudently to extend recognition to both communities. The decision of Cardinal George reinforces the message contained in a letter addressed to both Bros. Frank Padilla of CFC-FFL/CFCFI and Joe Tale of CFC Global that Cardinal Rylko himself acknowledges the existence of both communities, contrary to the claims of CFC Global about its sole and only legitimacy. While the letter of Archbishop Myers was dated Sept. 26, 2008, that of Cardinal George is more recent, dated October 2, 2008. Added to this recency is the incontrovertible fact that the good Cardinal sought the counsel of Cardinal Rylko himself.

In the light of these developments, the legal actions filed by CFC Global which have caused quite a scandal acquires dubious validity since the opinion of the Vatican has been clarified by the query of Cardinal George. While the actuations of CFC Global are purely secular and legal in both nature and form, the more valid source of the use of the name and the right to co-exist is no less than the Vatican which has spoken twice over. Again, it remains a matter of wonder and puzzlement why CFC Global would again take the risk of disobeying the Church by virtue of its actions. If CFC Global continues to say it still belongs to the universal church and still subjects itself to the statutes to the Church, the Vatican should be given the final say instead of the courts.

Anonymous said...

I know FFL people are reading this blog. Here is my challenge to them. By still using the 'CFC' word, you confuse people. If you confuse people, that is not good. Now, let us cite from the Bible, anything that is not good is not from God.

If that is the case...you draw your own conclusion. We are all grown up.

Raul Aclan
New Jersey

Anonymous said...

FFL's antics is getting tiring isn't it?

30 years ago I had a friend who had a girlfriend with a decidedly suspicious bent. One day he decided to give her a box of chocolates and a bunch of flowers. Her reaction was, "What have you done now? What are you trying to make up for?" I'm sure you are all familiar with such episodes. You would be flabbergasted, too, just like my friend. These reactions are typical of people ruled by fear and feelings of unworthiness and people who think someone out there is trying to get them.

Secretly believing in their own inadequacies, such people attempt to feel good by trying to force others to acknowledge their importance and superiority. And one of the ways they do it is by imputing non-existent meanings to what others do and say.

Take, for example, these lines from FFL's letter: "Cardinal George was advised by Cardinal Rylko to maintain strict neutrality in the current controversy." Cardinal George then proceeded to recognize the co-existence of 2 CFCs in the Archdiocese of Chicago. But FFL draws the conclusion that (1) Archbishop Myers of New Jersey is "sadly misinformed" and that (2) "legal actions filed by CFC Global... acquires dubious validity since the opinion of the Vatican has been clarified by the query of Cardinal George."

You see what I'm getting at? When does "maintaining strict neutrality" ONLY mean co-existence of 2 CFC's? Maintaining strict neutrality means "don't get involved" and just keep the status quo. Neutrality refers to a position taken by a party. It does not, by itself, imply the equality of two other parties. Neutrality means simply to not take any one's side. Since CFC's position is that FFL is NOT CFC, Cardinal George's decision was clearly taking the side of FFL. Cardinal George ignored the position of CFC and acknowledged the position of FFL. In other words, Cardinal George wasn't neutral. He did not follow Cardinal Rylko's instructions.

And how does Cardinal Rylko's advise "to be neutral" give CFC's legal actions "dubious validity"? Can you follow FFL's twisted logic here? This only makes sense when Cardinal George's action in favor of FFL can be described as being neutral. Webster's dictionary defines neutrality as "1. The state or quality of being neutral; the condition of being unengaged in contests between others; state of taking no part on either side; indifference." Clearly, by taking FFL's side, Cardinal George was not neutral.

FFL has clearly attached a different meaning to neutrality here. They've done this before when they tried to redefine what being a founder means.

Another way they do it is, as before when they were trying to convince the world that FAP was the founder, they will try to lead you to a pre-defined conclusion by deliberately showing only a part of the information. Clever, huh? Show people half of the truth and you can lead them to believe a lie without knowing it. Considerthe following: Remember that they have already said that the Vatican's advise was to maintain strict neutrality. FFL then writes "In the light of these developments, the legal actions filed by CFC Global which have caused quite a scandal acquires dubious validity since the opinion of the Vatican has been clarified by the query of Cardinal George."

If an uninformed person reads that, he'd come to the conclusion that:
(1) The Vatican's advise of neutrality means to take FFL's side
(2) Cardinal Rylko's advise is the opinion of the Vatican
(3) Cardinal Rylko's advise was unclear and required clarification
(4) Cardinal George's stand, arrived at after "clarification", is the correct stand, implying that this is the stand of the Vatican itself.

And all Cardinal George did was "seek the opinion of Cardinal Rylko" who "advised neutrality". How FFL's logic made the jump from neutrality to a belief that the Vatican upholds FFLs position regarding the name can only be explained if we also agree that FFL has the power to redefine the word neutrality.

Take a closer look, critcally read what they wrote and you will find it advertises the phoniness, the hyprocisy and the intellectual vacancy of their position.

- TE

Anonymous said...

I believe below is a very good basis for the 'CFC' name issue:

Harvard University beats Harvard Jeans in Philippine court

Nov 4 01:55 AM US/Eastern

A Philippines court has ruled that a local clothing company breached copyright by using the name of elite US university Harvard in a logo for its jeans, according to court papers Tuesday.
The Philippine Court of Appeals denied a petition by Fredco Manufacturing Corporation which had insisted the logo "Harvard Jeans" did not infringe the official trademark of Harvard University.

The court said Harvard University was able to prove the company was using the trademark 'Harvard' and its related shield symbol way ahead of Fredco as the school had been established in 1636.

"Respondents are the actual creator of the Harvard name and symbol," the court said.

It added that "such unexplained use by petitioner Fredco of the dominant word 'Harvard' lends itself open to the suspicion of motive to trade upon the reputation of the university."

Raul Aclan