National Gathering of BEC Directors and Coordinators 2016

The Episcopal Commission on Youth was invited to the National Gathering of BEC Directors and Coordinators 2016, held last November 28-30 in the Diocese of Malaybalay.
With 2017 dedicated as “Year of the Parish as Communion of Communities”, part of the annual themes in preparation for the Jubilee of 2021, which is the 5th Centenary of the First Mass and Baptisms in the country, the CBCP entrusted to its Episcopal Committee on BEC (Basic Ecclesial Communities) the animation and coordination of this year.  The BEC Committee kicked off its year-long program through this gathering.
There were 174 participants to the gathering: BEC Directors and Coordinators from majority of the dioceses in the country, and including representatives of some CBCP offices, i.e. Commissions on Biblical Apostolate, on the Laity, on Social Action, Justice and Peace, and on Youth.
The gathering was inaugurated by the Eucharistic Celebration presided by the Bishop-Emeritus of Malaybalay, Most Rev. Honesto Pacana, SJ, in the San Isidro Labrador Cathedral.
The next days unfolded with liturgical celebrations and prayer sessions, a regional workshop on challenges to the BEC in the dioceses, panel discussions, BEC liturgy in foster homes, thematic inputs, and presentation of the proposed celebration of the Year of the Parish as Communion of Communities.  Of the last, one of its highlights is the nationwide simultaneous parish and BEC celebration on Trinity Sunday, which falls on June 11.
A unique yet relevant feature of the gathering was the billeting of participants in foster families for the duration of the event.  In these families, they were treated to a BEC experience; here, too, the BEC liturgy was celebrated in the second evening.
This National Gathering ended with the Eucharistic Celebration, presided by the Bishop of Malaybalay, Most Rev. Jose Cabantan, DD, where the Year of the Parish as Communion of Communities was launched.