LECTIO DIVINA, Baptism of the Lord A, (B & C)

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Mt. 3:13-17 (Mk. 7-11; Lk.3:15-16, 21-22.)

  1. Invoking the Holy Spirit.

We invoke the Holy Spirit using the words of St. Augustine.

          Come, Holy Spirit, by whom every devout soul, who believes in Christ, is sanctified to become a citizen of the City of God! (en. Ps. 45:8) Come, Holy Spirit, grant that we receive the motions of God, put in us your flame, enlighten us and raise us up to God. (s. 128,4) Amen.

  • Lectio.

With heart well disposed, with serenity, read slowly the following words, savoring them and allowing yourself to be touched by them.

          13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him, 14 John tried to prevent him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and yet you are coming to me? 15 Jesus said to him in reply, “Allow it now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness,” Then he allowed him. 16 After Jesus was baptized, he came up from the water and behold, the heavens were opened for him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming upon him. 17 And a voice came from the heavens, saying, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”

  • Meditatio.

Let us now meditate with the commentary of St. Augustine on these words of the Gospel according to Matthew.

          Therefore, John was sent ahead to baptize the humble Lord. The Lord wanted to be baptized for humility, not because he could have any iniquity. Why was Christ the Lord baptized? Why was Christ the Lord, the only begotten Son of God, baptized? Investigate why he was born, then you will discover why he was baptized. There you will discover the way of humility, which you cannot learn with proud feet; a road which, if you do not tread with feet of humility, you will not arrive at the sublimity to which it leads. He who descended for you was baptized for you. Note how he became small despite his greatness: Who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. The equality of the Son with the Father was not robbery but nature. In John it would have been robbery if he had accepted to be considered the Christ. Therefore, he did not consider it robbery to be equal to God. It is not a result of robbery, he was co-eternal with the eternal, by whom he was begotten. Nevertheless, he emptied himself taking the form of a servant, that is, taking the form of man. Who, though existing in the form of God, emptied himself taking the form of a servant. He assumed what he was not without losing what he was. Remaining God, he assumed being man. He took the form of servant, and became God-Man, who being divine became man. Consider, therefore, what majesty, what power, what greatness, what equality with the Father; he came to assume for us the form of servant; also take note the road of humility taught by such great Teacher. More worthy of mention, is that having willed to become man, he still willed to be baptized by a man.” (s. 292, 3).

          We become aware that, at the Jordan River, our God presents himself in his Trinitarian nature. Jesus arrived and was baptized by John, the Lord by his servant, an action whose objective was to give us an example of humility. Thus when John said: I ought to be baptized by you, and yet you come to me? He replied: Let it be for now, that all justice may be fulfilled. He manifested that it is in humility where justice is fulfilled. Therefore, once baptized, the heavens were opened and upon him the Holy Spirit descended in the form of a dove. Then a voice from above was heard: This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. Here then we have the Blessed Trinity with clear distinction of the Persons: in the voice, the Father; in the Man, the Son; in the dove, the Holy Spirit. Certainly it was only necessary to remember it, since seeing it is very easy. With all the evidence, therefore, and without scruple of a doubt, the Trinity is being proposed, because Christ himself, the Lord, who comes to John in the condition of Servant, is certainly the Son, it cannot be said that he is the Father or the Holy Spirit. Jesus came, it says, certainly he is the Son of God. As regards the dove, who can doubt? Or who is there to say, “What is the dove?” when the Gospel itself very clearly bears witness: The Holy Spirit descended upon him in the form of a dove? Similarly, as regards the voice, there is no doubt that it is of the Father, because it says: You are my Son. Therefore, we have here the Blessed Trinity with the distinction of Persons (s. 52, 1).

  • Oratio.

With the text, let us now pray from the depths of our heart. I suggest the following phrases and questions that can awaken in you dialogue with God, and at the same time can give rise to affections and sentiments in your dialogue with God. Do not move to the next phrase or question if you can still continue dialoguing with God in one of them. It is not a matter of exhausting the list, but of helping you to pray with some points that better fit your personal experience.

  1. “This is my Son, the Beloved, my Chosen One” (Mt. 3:17).
  2. What does it mean that Christ is the Chosen and the Beloved of the Father?
  3. From baptism we are sons of God. How can you apply these words of the Gospel to your own life (to be the chosen and beloved of the Father)?
  • “If you do not tread with humble feet the road of humility, you cannot arrive at the sublimity to which it leads” (s. 292, 3).
  • Why is humility necessary in your life?
  • How can you be more humble?
  • Contemplatio.

I propose to you some points for affective interior contemplation. Once again, you need not follow all of it, rather you can choose what fits your personal experience.

  1. Contemplate Christ going down the river to be baptized. Contemplate his humility. Ask that you too be able to be humble.
  • Contemplate how God pronounces the words: “This is my Son, the Beloved, the Chosen One,” upon Christ, and also upon you. Verify the sentiments and affections that arise in your interior as you interiorly hear these words pronounced over you.
  • Communicatio.

Think of everything that you can share with those around you about the experience you had with God, especially about being the beloved and the chosen of the Father. The following points can help you as guide to share with your community the experience of the lectio divina on this text.

  • What have I discovered about God and about myself in this moment of prayer?
  • How can I apply this text of Scripture at this moment of my life? What light does it give me? What challenges does it put before me?
  • What concrete commitment does this text of Scripture ask of me in my spiritual life, in my community life?
  • What has been my predominant sentiment during this moment of prayer?
  • Final Prayer of St. Augustine.

Turning towards the Lord: Lord God, Father Almighty, with pure heart, as far as our littleness permits, allow us to give you our most devoted and sincere thanks, begging with all our strength from your particular goodness, that you deign to hear our petitions according to your goodwill, that by your power you may drive away the enemy from all our thoughts and actions; that you may increase our faith, govern our mind, give us spiritual thoughts, and bring us to your happiness, through your Son Jesus Christ, our Lord, who with you lives and reigns, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen (en. Ps. 150:8).

“What is the baptism of Christ? The bath of water and the word. Remove the water, and there is no baptism; remove the word, neither is there baptism” (Io. eu. tr. 15, 4).

“ad unius Dei laudem atque dilectionem”

(doctr. Chr. 2, 38,57)

(N.B. The Gospel narratives of the Lord’s Baptism are taken from the three Synoptics, but tell of the same story; thus St. Augustine’s commentary is one and the same.)

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena, OAR

Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Priest/Religious/Bible Professor of the Order of Augustinian Recollects in the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno.

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< 2023 >
February
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   1
  • All day
    February 1, 2023

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO CONGO-KINSHASA
    (January 31 – February 3)

    DAY 2: KINSHASA
    9:30      HOLY MASS at “Ndolo” Airport
    16:30   MEETING WITH VICTIMS FROM THE EASTERN PART OF THE COUNTRY at the Apostolic Nunciature
    18:30   MEETING WITH REPRESENTATIVES FROM SOME CHARITIES at the Apostolic Nunciature

    BIRTHDAY

    Bro. Ramon Monroy, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Yolanda Zaragoza, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Corazon Timones, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Emma Miguel, SAR (Brooke’s Point Chapter)
    Sis. Brigida Gabriel, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Rizalina Salera, SAR (Cavite Chapter)
    +Sis. Dorotea Sarmiento, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

2
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    February 2, 2023

    FEAST OF THE PRESENTATION OF THE LORD (CANDELARIA)

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO CONGO-KINSHASA

    DAY 3: KINSHASA
    09:30   MEETING WITH YOUNG PEOPLE AND CATECHISTS in Martyrs’ Stadium
    16:30   PRAYER MEETING WITH PRIESTS, DEACONS, CONSECRATED PERSONS AND SEMINARIANS in the Cathedral “Notre Dame du Congo”
    18:30   PRIVATE MEETING WITH MEMBERS OF THE SOCIETY OF JESUS at the Apostolic Nunciature

    27th WORLD DAY FOR CONSECRATED LIFE PATRONAL FIESTA
    OF OUR LADY OF SIERRA LEONE PARISH (Kamabai) Time: 1100H (Sierra Leone)
    Presider & Homilist: Most Rev. Natale Paganelli S.X.

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Ma. Petra Pascual, AR
    Sis. Josephine Bangura (Trialer / Kamalo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Socorro Japson, AR

3
  • All day
    February 3, 2023

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO CONGO-KINSHASA THEN TO SOUTH SUDAN

    DAY 4: KINSHASA / DAY 1: JUBA

    8:30     MEETING WITH BISHOPS at CENCO
    10:10   FAREWELL CEREMONY at Kinshasa “Ndjili” International Airport
    0:40     Departure by airplane from Kinshasa “Ndjili” International Airport to Juba

    The Holy Father is making the Journey to South Sudan together with the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland

    15:00   Arrival at Juba International Airport
    15:00   WELCOME CEREMONY
    15:45   COURTESY VISIT TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC at the Presidential Palace
    16:15   MEETING WITH THE VICE-PRESIDENTS OF THE REPUBLIC
    17:00   MEETING WITH AUTHORITIES, CIVIL SOCIETY AND THE DIPLOMATIC CORPS in the garden of the Presidential Palace

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Ceferino Roberto Añez
    Sis. Celerina Santos, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Celerina Jaurequi, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Marilyn Miraña, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Filomena de Jesus

4
  • All day
    February 4, 2023

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO SOUTH SUDAN

    DAY 2: JUBA

    9:00      MEETING WITH BISHOPS, PRIESTS, DEACONS, CONSECRATED PERSONS AND SEMINARIANS in the Cathedral of Saint Therese
    1:00       PRIVATE MEETING WITH MEMBERS OF THE SOCIETY OF JESUS at the Apostolic Nunciature
    16:30     MEETING WITH INTERNALLY DISPLACED PERSONS in the “Freedom Hall”
    18:00    ECUMENICAL PRAYER at “John Garang” Mausoleum

    INTERNATIONAL DAY OF HUMAN FRATERNITY

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR VOCATIONS

    BIRTHDAY

    FRAY BERNARD AMPARADO, Prior Provincial
    Sr. Jannet Nicer, AR
    Sis. Erlinda Dionela, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    Sis. Diana Concepcion, SAR (Bacolod Chapter)

5
  • All day
    February 5, 2023

    APOSTOLIC JOURNEY TO SOUTH SUDAN

    DAY 3: JUBA – ROME

    08:45    HOLY MASS at “John Garang” Mausoleum
    11:00    FAREWELL CEREMONY at Juba International Airport
    11:30    Departure by airplane from Juba International Airport to Rome
    17:30    Arrival at Rome Fiumicino International Airport

    36th FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY (1987-2023)
    OUR LADY OF CONSOLATION PARISH, Miranila, Quezon City
    Time: 1100H
    Presider & Homilist: Prior Provincial

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray James Castelo
    Fray Jovy Gallego
    Sr. Anselma Millan, AR
    Sis. Purificacion Rallos, SAR (Laray Chapter)
    Trina Genicet Zamora (RAY-Valencia)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Ofelia Cruz, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    +Sis. Rosario Manese, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

6
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    February 6, 2023

    GENERALATE: MEETING OF THE DIGITAL EVANGELIZATION TEAM (ONLINE)

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Ronel Gealon
    Mo. Ma. Emilia Gaspillo, AR
    Sr. Doraine Suyko, AR
    Sis. Marlin Regalado, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Dorothy Joy Balcueva, SAR (Baguio Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Fray Alberto Avanzado

7
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    February 7, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Jess Marco Sanchez
    Br. Christian Peralta (postulant)
    Sr. Ma. Lina Gonzaga, AR
    Sr. Gewena Gay Villarubia, AR
    Sis. Jaena Lascano, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Cecile Pedregosa (RAY-Urbiztondo)

8
  • All day
    February 8, 2023

    9th INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER AND AWARENESS AGAINST HUMAN TRAFFICKING

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Elflida Palma, AR
    Sis. Lydia Morales, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Crestita Pabon, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Lourdes Cajes, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Ruth Gonzales, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Anita Miranda, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

9
  • All day
    February 9, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Elpedio Sarita, Jr.
    Br. Kirvie Bodiongan (aspirant)
    Bro. Romeo Reyes, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Florentina Alambra, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Teresita Torrecampo, SAR (Talisay Chapter)

10
  • All day
    February 10, 2023

    24th INAUGURATION ANNIVERSARY (1999-2023) OF THE PROVINCE OF ST. EZEKIEL MORENO

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Virginia Toledo, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

11
  • All day
    February 11, 2023

    OUR LADY OF LOURDES

    31st WORLD DAY OF THE SICK Theme: “Take care of him” (Lk 10:35) / Compassion as a synodal exercise of healing

    PATRONAL FIESTA OF OUR LADY OF LOURDES QUASI-PARISH
    Brgy. Tambo, Ayungon, Negros Oriental
    Time: 1000H
    Presider & Homilist: Prior Provincial

    CHARTER DAY OF TALISAY CITY, NEGROS OCCIDENTAL

    CLOSING OF RED EDUCAR 2023 MEETING
    Venue: Colegio de San Agustin, Costa del Este, Panama
    Date: Jan 20 – Feb. 11, 2023

    GENERALATE: AUGUSTINIAN CLASSROOM OF EDUCATION (MADRID)
    Date: Feb. 11-12, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Filomena Oliva, AR
    Sr. Marisa Dacuya, AR
    Sis. Edelyn Celeste, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (2017-2023)

    Fray Roweno Eugenio Hamo
    Fray Sir Michael Dineros
    Fray John Paul Tanquis

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Romana Caballero, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

12
  • All day
    February 12, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Heart Danielle Nakila (RAY-Balamban)
    Sis. Moonyen Llorca, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Lourdes Bonifacio, SAR (Tondo Chapter)

13
  • All day
    February 13, 2023

    INSTALLATION OF FRAY JULIUS JAMES TINAPAO AS PRIEST IN-CHARGE OF ST. EZEKIEL MORENO
    QUASI- PARISH, CAIDIOCAN

    BIRTHDAY

    Sis. Erlinda Vergara, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Sis. Catalina Matahum, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Victoria Maniago, SAR (Manila Chapter)

     

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Bro. Pedro Magalit, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

14
  • All day
    February 14, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sis. Filomena Duro, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Mena Quiambao, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Serena Principio, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Era Santos, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Lucresia Samson, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Josephine Palanca, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Mary Grace Escayo, OAR (Bacolod Monastery)
    +Sis. Teresita Labos, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

15
  • All day
    February 15, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Maria Aurora Baygan, AR
    Bro. Julius Cayabyab, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)

16
  • All day
    February 16, 2023

    FORMATION OF FORMATORS
    (Part 1: Feb. 16-18, 2023)

    GENERALATE: GENERAL COUNCIL MEETING (ROME)
    Date: Feb. 16-17, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Porferia Tundag, AR
    Sis. Herminia Villanueva, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Cecilia Cabildo, SAR (Miranila Chapter)

17
  • All day
    February 17, 2023

    5th ANNIVERSARY OF THE ARRIVAL OF PIONEER RECOLETOS MISSIONARIES IN CUBA

    GENERALATE:  ONLINE MEETING OF THE GENERAL TREASURER WITH THE PROVINCIAL TREASURERS

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Virgilio Paredes, Jr.
    Sis. Lourdes Tupaz, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Albina Panelo, SAR (Baguio Chapter)
    Sis. Femesolone Gamboa, SAR (Talisay Chapter)
    Sis. Segundina Valderama, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Helen Villarin, SAR (Valencia Chapter)

18
  • All day
    February 18, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Jerik Troy Siozon
    Fray Mark Saludes
    Sis. Erlinda Torrecampo, SAR (Talisay Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Fray Walthrode Conde, OAR
    +Sr. Genoveva del Sgdo. Corazon de Jesus, AR
    +Sis. Estrella Montes, SAR (Manila Chapter)

19
  • All day
    February 19, 2023

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE SICK

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena
    Bro. Gavino Bucao, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Remedios Laguisma (Brooke’s Point Chapter)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2003-2023)

    Most. Rev. Patricio Buzon, SDB, D.D. (Bishop of Bacolod)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Pia de San Sebastian
    +Sr. Josefina Disen, AR

20
  • All day
    February 20, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Joseph Neil Baygan (simply prof.)
    Sis. Reba Pacres, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Mary Rose Capulong (RAY-Urbiztondo)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ines de Padua, AR

21
  • All day
    February 21, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Nimrod Launio
    Sis. Betty Sinon, SAR (Miranila Chapter)
    Sis. Emily Vallejo, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)
    Sis. Ma. Lourdes Bonete, SAR (Puerto Princesa Chapter)
    Sis. Josefina Buletic, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Fernanda Kintanar, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Nellie Cabutotan (Trialer / Baguio Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Aniceta de la Santisima Trinidad, AR
    +Bro. Luis Clauor Jr., SAR (Bacolod Chapter)

22
  • All day
    February 22, 2023

    SEASON OF LENT STARTS: ASH WEDNESDAY

    BIRTHDAY

    Br. Jay-R Vailoces (aspirant)
    Sr. Ma. Flora Silverio, AR
    Sis. Emiline Navera, SAR (Provincialate Chapter)
    Sis. Margarita Gamboa, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Soledad Baraya, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

23
  • All day
    February 23, 2023

    FORMATION OF FORMATORS
    (Part 2: Feb. 23-25, 2023)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Ana Maria Rosello, AR
    +Sr. Exaltacion Lagrimas, AR

24
  • All day
    February 24, 2023

    CHARTER DAY OF CEBU CITY

    ANNIVERSARY (2022-2023) OF ACCEPTANCE AS
    BROTHER-GENERAL OF THE PROVINCE OF ST. EZEKIEL
    MORENO

    Prof. Emmanuel Luis Romanillos
    Bro. Edwin Ruiz, SAR

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Rommel Rubia
    Sis. Ma. Magdalena Ramos, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Jesusa de Vera, AR+Sis. Fedelina Escalante, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

25
  • All day
    February 25, 2023

    37th EDSA PEOPLE POWER (1986-2023)

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Roselyn Jardenil, AR
    Sis. Edna Mariano, SAR (Tondo Chapter)
    Adrian Gonzales (RAY-Talisay)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Wenifreda Sajorda, AR

26
  • All day
    February 26, 2023

    FIRST SUNDAY OF LENT

    BIRTHDAY

    Fray Julius James Tinapao
    Br. Ren Hard Rodriguez (aspirant)
    Sis. Gloria Gaviola, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Fray Severino Cuesta (2000-2023)
    +Sr. Teresa Constantino, AR
    +Sis. Lilia Lepasana, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    +Sis. Anita Paloma, SAR (San Carlos Chapter)

27
  • All day
    February 27, 2023

    GENERALATE: SPIRITUAL EXERCISES (MONTEAGUDO)
    Date: Feb. 27-March 2, 2023

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Teresita Caberte, AR
    Sis. Clarita Cortez, SAR (Antipolo Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sis. Casimera Griarte, SAR (Provincialate Chapter

28
  • All day
    February 28, 2023

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE MISSIONS

    MEETING OF THE PROVINCIAL PROCURATOR WITH THE LOCAL PROCURATORS
    Talavera House of Prayer, Cebu City / Feb. 28 – March 1

    BIRTHDAY

    Sr. Ma. Crisanta Armendez, AR
    Bro. Fulgencio Culaton, SAR (Baguio Chapter / Brother-General of the Order)
    Sis. Macaria Decena, SAR (Manila Chapter) Sis. Maria Semine, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    Sis. Perlita Narag (Urbiztondo Chapter) Sis. Emma Basul (Miranila Chapter)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY

    +Sr. Milagros de San Nicolas de Tolentino
    +Sis. Estrella Montes, SAR (Manila Chapter)
    +Sis. Maria Torralba, SAR (Cebu Chapter)
    +Bro. Waltrudes Torres, SAR (Cebu Chapter)

    

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