Friday, May 13, 2016

2016 May

May 13 :  Samar Mission in cooperation with the Philippine Army

On the occasion of the 6th Founding Anniversary of the Battalion in Calbiga, Samar, the Commanding Officer, Lt. Col. George Domingo sent a request to ACIM-Asia for medicines and personnel to support the medical civic action program that they planned to conduct for the residents of hinterland barangays of Literon, Binangaran, Daligan, Buluan, Ceri and Hubasan - all in Calbiga. 

The Battalion had suffered injuries and lost a man at a recent ambush by communist rebels. They wanted to reach out to the people and educate them in order to establish solid peace and order.  

We sent medicines and personnel. The target number of patients was 1,000 but because of the recent ambushes, the people were a bit wary of traveling; so, there were only 333 patients served at the mission:  186 medical patients (adult and pedia), 82 surgical (minor) patients, and 65 dental patients.

The pharmacy was provided by the Rosa Mystica Health Mission.  Elaine was strictly in control.

The patients lived below the poverty threshold and were easily swayed by communist rhetoric.  As they waited for their turn to see the doctors, they listened to brief presentations about the work of the military and also the civic programs programs offered by the military.


A Legion of Mary member from Rizal Province came to teach catechism to the patients. Her help was very much needed because she could speak Waray - the local dialect.  Three hundred received rosaries and 220 were given the brown scapular.  The patients were wonderfully surprised about the catechism.  All of them said that it was their first time to learn how to pray the Rosary and to hear about the importance of the scapular.  They were eager to hear more, saying they have never had any catechism lesson before and they wished to overcome their ignorance on the basic Catholic teachings, but time was short as it was only a one-day mission.....  

The people's ignorance regarding catechism is not surprising considering that there the dedicated advocates for the poor are communists and the most vocal communist in the area is a priest-turned-rebel - Fr. Santiago Salas - who is the spokesman for the communist National Democratic Front. No wonder, the people are more aware of communist propaganda than Catholic doctrines. Five months ago, military troops conducting a routine peace and security operation captured a communist New People's Army camp with 18 bunkers, a multipurpose hall and a classroom... where, we presume, the people did not listen to catechism lessons.  God have mercy on them all.  

Rev. Fr. Timothy Pfeiffer squeezed his schedule to spare time for the mission.  So the mission was able to start with a Holy Mass
 attended by around 60 people 
and some 15 soldiers.

Afterwards he gave a conference to 22 officers of the Philippine Army in the 87th Infantry Battalion.

The military men's knowledge of the basic prayers was assessed then they were taught about the Miraculous Medal and the Militia Immaculatae.

The errors of communism and the means to defeat it were discussed. 

The men were interested to have follow up conferences but the main problem was how to accommodate their needs considering the priest's hectic schedule

Getting ready for the procession of Our Lady of Fatima to commemorate the 99th anniversary of the first apparition on May 13, 1917.

"Say the Rosary every day, 
to bring peace to the world and an end to the war...."

The men constantly battling with communist forces pray to Our Lady of Fatima. 

"In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph."

O Mary conceived without original sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee and for all those who do not have recourse to thee! 


Catechism for the patients.
Mitte Domine operarios in messem tuam....

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