On July 22, 2016, the Feast of St. Mary Magdalene, patroness of the Order of Preachers, the House of St. Mary Magdalene celebrated the twenty-first anniversaryof Caleruega Philippines. The Holy Mass was presided over by Br. Gerard Zabala, OP, Superior of the House and Director of Caleruega Philippines, together with other Dominican priests at the Transfiguration Chapel. The event was attended by the workers and friends of the Community, and by the Dominican family.
Br. Zabala, in his homily, said that Mary Magdalene was just fit to be considered the patroness of the Order of Preachers because “Ordo Praedicatorum”, when mispronounced, might become “Ordo Peccatorum” –“Order of Sinners”. Mary Magdalene was a sinner but after her conversion, became the “apostle to the apostles” as the first preacher of the Resurrection. He also related in history the coming of the Dominican friars on board a barca (barcada) in the Philippines which dates back on July 22, 1587. On the same occasion, he also thanked thepeople behind Caleruega Philippines’ achievements,like the priests, the workers, the benefactors, the visitors, and the retreatants. He emphasized that only by working together can they reach their goals.
Awards of recognition were given to eight of the workers who dedicated themselves for fifteen and twenty years of loyal service to Caleruega Philippines. Teams of Liga Caleruega also received their prizes that night. Dinner was served at the dining hall as everyone watched, listened, and applaud the performance of the Caleruega Children’s Choir.
We wish more years of bringing people “Close to Nature” and “Closer to God”.
by Br. Vince Stanley Iñigo, OP