BASEY, Samar – San Antonio de Padua Mission Center located in Barangay San Antonio, this town, is now a parish by virtue of a decree issued by Most Reverend Isabelo C. Abarquez, D.D., bishop of Calbayog.
The decree erecting San Antonio de Padua Parish was signed by Bishop Abarquez and Rev. Fr. Noel Labendia, Chancellor of the Diocese of Calbayog.
The pronouncement of the erection of San Antonio de Padua Parish and appointment of its first parish priest was made by Bishop Abarquez before he presided the High Mass in honor of Saint Anthony of Padua about 9 am on June 13 on the feast day celebration of Brgy. San Antonio, with Nenita “Mabel” Cabonce Labitigan-Calip as ‘hermana mayor’ for this year.
After the declaration of Bishop Abarquez about the significant historic events on this year’s fiesta, the decree erecting the San Antonio de Padua Parish and the appointment of Rev. Fr. Basil S. Salino as its first parish priest were read by Rev. Msgr. Niceas Abejuela, vicar general of the Diocese of Calbayog.
Fr. Salino who was installed as priest-in-charge of San Antonio de Padua Mission Center on March 15, 2019.
He is the fifth priest to be assigned in San Antonio following Rev. Fr. Agustin O. Gelera, Rev. Fr. Rex M. Ibañez, Rev. Fr. Eduardo T. Bersamin and Rev. Fr. Noel A. Abiertas.
Bishop Abarquez explained to the faithful the intricate process in erecting a parish saying it started with a letter submitted to him by the previous Fr. Abiertas signifying the intent for San Antonio to become a parish.
The letter was indorsed to the Council on Parish Creation which favorably recommended it to the Board of Consultors before it was submitted back to him for his final decision.
In his homily, Abarquez explained that San Antonio will be a parish under the Diocese of Calbayog.
He asked the community to do their part not only in supporting the parish priest in his pastoral ministry but in the temporal needs as well. He also challenged the faithful to live harmoniously by living the gospel values of forgiveness and compassion as a community.
The High Mass of the fiesta celebration was presided by Bishop Abarquez as the main celebrant joined by other priests in the diocese.
This year’s barangay fiesta was led by the 2019 ‘hermana mayor’ Labitigan-Calip together with her siblings Dra. Myrna C. Labitigan-Labanda, Merle C. Labitigan-Huppenthal, Merlo C. Labitigan, Melba C. Labitigan and their respective families.