Caritas Manila taps local partners to rebuild churches

Cardinal Tagle, who chairs the Board of Caritas Manila, said that the concert hopes to recognize this “living faith”.

June 10 2014, 2:53 PM
Caritas Manila taps local partners to rebuild churches
Caritas Manila Chairman Cardinal Luis Tagle of Manila and Executive Director Fr. Anton Pascual (left) with renowned composer-musician and papal awardee Ryan Cayabyab and Esther Santos, President of PLDT-Smart Foundation during a press conference.

Caritas Manila on its 60th anniversary is organising a fund raising concert of sacred music of renowned composer and musician Ryan Cayabyab on June 11 in Manila Cathedral.

The project named ‘Rise! Rebuilding from the Ruins’ with Ryan Cayabyab, a papal awardee, intends "to raise the social consciousness of the people to help the churches that were destroyed in Samar and Leyte areas," said Father Anton Pascual, Executive Director of Caritas Manila. 

Cardinal Luis Tagle of Manila at a press conference on May 30 recalled with admiration the "unshakable faith" of people amidst suffering that he had witnessed during a Mass in typhoon ravaged Palo cathedral at the close of the archdiocese's diamond jubilee celebration last November.

Cardinal Tagle, who chairs the Board of Caritas Manila, said that the concert hopes to recognize this “living faith”.

"One thing I appreciated was people stayed through the rain and finished the Mass. This is the church – the building – but this is also the living church which stays firm even when the roof blows away," Cardinal Tagle reminded.

He said the "effort to rebuild the buildings made of stone and steel and iron sheets is actually not only a tribute to God or to the faith, but also a tribute to the living community and their living faith."

Organizers, talents and supporters of the upcoming concert are also paying tribute to the physical church that serves as refuge, sanctuaries, evacuation centres and dormitories in times of crises like Haiyan, Cardinal Tagle said.

Father Pascual said the target is to raise at least 20 million pesos (U.S. $456,300) for 20 barrio churches and chapels in the two neighbouring provinces in the central Philippines.

He said that the project aims to complete construction in most churches and chapels before the end of the year, not only because Pope Francis has said he would come to the Philippines in January, but also because rains and typhoons sweep the country around that time.

Cayabyab, who also turned 60 this year, said it was for him a way of "giving back" to the church.

The concert presented by PLDT-Smart Foundation and One Meralco Foundation with the Cultural Centre of the Philippines for Caritas Manila's Haiyan rehabilitation program features seven Philippine-based choirs, Voices of Aloha choir from the University of Hawaii, and veteran Filipino artists Basil Valdes, Dulce, Soprano Clarissa Ocampo, Tenor Ervin Lumauag among others, said Cayabyab.

Source:  National Catholic Reporter