HomeDiocesan Reports'Domestic church' very much alive amid challenging times

‘Domestic church’ very much alive amid challenging times

AGAINST a backdrop of uncertainties and anxiety brought about by the new coronavirus pandemic, which has already claimed thousands of lives, losses in livelihood, and business opportunities, Bishop Joel Baylon of Legazpi said the economic standstill brought better air quality, cleaner environment, and closer relations among family members.

In a pastoral exhortation on the “new normal” released on June 7, Blessed Trinity Sunday, Bishop Baylon said while people have not attended regular celebrations of the Eucharist, they have had the opportunity to pray together, reflect on the Scriptures, and participate in Church celebrations through the social and broadcast media.

“The faithful have rediscovered the beauty of having a ‘church in our homes,'” said the prelate. He said it is in one’s home or family where the “Ecclesia Domestica,” the “first Church, the Domestic Church,” is. He said it was Pope Francis who referred to homes as the source of Jesus Christ’s love and “where every family member partakes of God’s love.”

“Families have participated in online masses or tuned in to radio stations or watched television channels which air Holy Masses,” the 66-year old bishop said. Faith is nourished through sacraments, though most have not received Holy Communion nor gone to confession because of health restrictions, he noted.

“The COVID-19 pandemic brought families together at prayer, turned to helping one another in household chores and attended to the needs of the poor and the sick and at the same time exercised patience and extended understanding, compassion and forgiveness to those who have erred,” said Bishop Baylon.

He referred to the teachings provided in the “Catechism of the Catholic Church” to remind each and every faithful of each and everyone’s responsibility to God and his fellowmen. The pandemic has also opened the faithful’s eyes to the basic benefits from tending farms, be they small plots for vegetables or to other crops needed for one’s survival.

The bishop said that while the government has began to ease community quarantine standards, one should not forget the importance of the “Domestic Church” as one of the most memorable undertakings by the pious communities outside Metro Manila.

- Newsletter -

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