“Mahirap gawin ang magpatawad but this Jubilee of Mercy is the most opportune time for us to forgive all those who have wronged us,” says Fr. Quirico “Dodoy” T. Pedregosa, O.P., Rector of the University of Santo Tomas (UST) Central Seminary during the ninth session of the Diocese of Novaliches’ Basic Ecclesial Community (BEC) Year of Mercy Forum Series (YOMFS) held last September 28, 2016 at the Palace of the Rock, St. Peter Parish Shrine of Leaders, Q.C.
“There is so much to learn and to gain from forgiveness like gratitude, humility and joy. There is nothing to lose except one’s hurts, pride and sin,” Fr. Dodoy explained to emphasize that forgiveness paves the way to rediscovering the fullness of God’s Mercy.
To make the act of forgiveness easier, he shared the three forms of Prayer for Forgiveness: Prayer before the crucified Jesus, Prayer for the offender, and Recourse to the Holy Eucharist.
“In this Holy Year, we look forward to the experience of opening our hearts…and eyes and see the misery of the world, the wounds of our brothers and sisters who are denied their dignity, and let us recognize that we are compelled to heed their cry for help,” Fr. Dodoy quoted Pope Francis’ Misericordiae Vultus  to remind his audience to carry out corporal and spiritual Works Of Mercy.
“Exercise them (Works of Mercy) with unmistakable joy,” he said. “For us, Christians, God’s bountiful Mercy is both a grace and a mission.”
Entitled “Living the Year of Mercy,” the ninth session of the forum also explained the Mercy of God and identified the different Works of Mercy. The Corporal Works Of Mercy are feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, visit the sick, ransom the captive, and bury the dead. While the Spiritual Works of Mercy are instruct the ignorant, counsel the doubtful, comfort the sorrowing, admonish the sinner, forgive injuries, bear wrongs patiently, and pray for the living and the dead.
During the workshop portion of the forum, participants were asked to apply what they have learned by recalling life situations or realities that call for mercy in their respective communities/parishes. They were also tasked to choose a particular work of mercy and visualize how they could be implemented in a more organized way and suited to today’s beneficiaries. There were a total of 80 participants during the forum. Two more forums
The YOMFS is a project of the Diocesan BEC Pastoral Team led by Director Fr. Antonio De La Cruz. With him are, Religious Coordinator Sr. Christina Pranata, Lay Coordinator Joemar Maulion, and BEC Animator Karl Comiling. Two more sessions are set for the year, one on October 26 and on November 24, 2016. (~Lulu Reclusado-Nario)