Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Philippine Bishops receives the Palium from Pope Benedict XVI

Amidst the controversial reports of Bishops receiving Pajeros that were circulated by some news outfits and some blogger as the "Pajero Bishops", which was later vindicated by the Senate Blue Ribbon committee in their findings that no "Pajeros" were ever given to them and that the circulated reports were not true, two Filipino Archbishops, Jose Serofia Palma of Cebu and Sergio Lasam Utleg of Tuguegarao and 43 other bishops from 25 different countries were given their Palium, a garment used by archbishops as a sign of communion with the Pope.

The event which coincides with the 60th Celebration of  the Priestly Ordination of the Holy Father took place at the Vatican Basilica as the Pope con-celebrates a Holy Mass with the Archbishops.

In his Homily the Holy Father reminded the Archbishops that this woolen band "reminds us of the Shepherd Who Himself became a lamb, out of love for us. ... It reminds us of Him Who took the lamb - humanity - me - upon His shoulders, in order to carry me home.  It thus reminds us that we too, as shepherds in His service, are to carry others with us, taking them as it were upon our shoulders and bringing them to Christ.  It reminds us that we are called to be shepherds of His flock, which always remains His and does not become ours.  Finally the pallium also means quite concretely the communion of the shepherds of the Church with Peter and with his successors - it means that we must be shepherds for unity and in unity, and that it is only in the unity represented by Peter that we truly lead people to Christ".

The Holy Father then, concluded his homily by returning to reflect on his ordination sixty years ago, saying "I feel prompted at this moment to look back upon the things that have left their mark on the last six decades. I feel prompted to address to you, to all priests and bishops and to the faithful of the Church, a word of hope and encouragement; a word that has matured in long experience of how good the Lord is.  Above all, though, it is a time of thanksgiving: thanks to the Lord for the friendship that He has bestowed upon me and that He wishes to bestow upon us all. Thanks to the people who have formed and accompanied me.  And all this includes the prayer that the Lord will one day welcome us in His goodness and invite us to contemplate His joy. Amen".

Archbishop Sergio Lasam Utleg

Archbishop Sergio Lasam Utleg who was ordained priest at Tuguegarao, Philippines in March 30, 1968 and then ordained Bishop on March 17, 1997 in St. Peter's Cathedral, of the same province succeeded as the Bishop of Iligan In july 26, 1999. He held this position until November 26, 2006 when Pope Benedict VXI appointed him as Bishop of Laog and then five years later, on June 16, 2011, was elevated to Archbishop of Tuguegarao, replacing retiring Archbishop Diosdado Talamayan.

Archbishop Jose Serofia Palma

The Most Reverend José Serofia Palma, D.D., S.Th.D was born on March 19, 1950 in dingle Archdiocese of Jaro.  He studied philosophy at St. Vincent Ferrer Seminary and had his theological studies at the St. Joseph Regional Seminary. He was ordained priest for the Archdiocese of Jaro on August 21, 1976 and received his licentiate in Sacred Theology(STL) at the Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas in Manila, and his doctorate from the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas in Rome.

In 1997 he was made Parish Priest of St Anthony of Padua in Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo (Archdiocese of Jaro) until November 28, 1997, when the Blessed John Paul the Great appointed him Titular Bishop of Vazari Diddi and Auxiliary Bishop of Cebu. He was consecrated a year later on January 13, 1998 and was made Bishop-Ordinary of the See of Calbayog.

On March 18, 2006, Bishop Palma was appointed Archbishop of Palo by Pope Benedict XVI, succeeding Archbishop-Emeritus Pedro R. Dean. Four (4) years later on October 15 2010 he was appointed Archbishop of Cebu replacing Ricardo Cardinal Vidal who had been archbishop for 29 years and was installed on January 13, 2011 at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.

He served as Vice-President of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines from December 1, 2009 until July 11 of this year where he was elected President.


VIS-Vatican Information Services

Jose S. Palma. (2011, July 23). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 00:15, August 3, 2011, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jose_S._Palma&oldid=441030746
Sergio Utleg. (2011, June 18). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 00:16, August 3, 2011, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Sergio_Utleg&oldid=435001373

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