Newsletter of the District
29, 1999 Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul
Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest,that he send forth labourers
into his harvest.”
Friends and Benefactors,
still repeats itself. The following story could be written today.
When the young Bishop Sarto, future Pope St Pius X, took possession
of his diocese of Mantua, in Italy, he noticed the tragic situation
of the diocese and saw that the salvation of the whole diocese depended
on the restoration of the seminary. This is what he wrote to his
Church cannot stand without priests, and the priesthood cannot last
unless provision is made for the education of clerics. We must do
all in our power to make the seminary flourish once again…
you yourselves not witnessed the unused church, the abandoned altar,
the empty confessional? Have you not seen young men growing up ignorant
of the things essential for their salvation, the sick and dying
without the consolations of religion?
the Seminary! Let no one allege the scantiness of his income…for
there is no one who cannot give a cent, a fruit, a vegetable. Nothing
is impossible to him who loves.
Love the Seminary! This is the most necessary for the diocese at
the moment. Your small offerings will renew for you the prodigy
of the widow of Sarephta, who, for the morsel she gave to the Prophet
Elias, received the promise that the pot of meal should not waste
nor the cruse of oil diminished.
Love the Seminary! In this you will fulfil the great desire of your
bishop and you will merit to see this dear family, the apple of
my eye, growing to its fullness.”
such passionate words and to so ardent an appeal, the whole diocese,
clergy and people, rich and poor replied so generously that, within
a few years the seminary, already closed for 10 years at the arrival
of the saintly Bishop, was able to accommodate 147 seminarians.
Bernard Seminary-Sta. Barbara, Iloilo, Philippines as of July 17,
Many of our dioceses are in no better health today, in 1999, than
Mantua was then in 1885. We still need priests. In fact, in a sense,
we need them more than ever, as we see the growing spread of materialism,
liberalism and modernism.
Society of St Pius X has seen the root of the problem in the deficiencies
of the modern priestly formation and has decided to apply the only
solution: to open seminaries according to the traditional norms
laid down by the Church for centuries, using, as all the Popes have
urged us, St Thomas Aquinas as our sure guide in philosophy and
Lo and behold! It has worked! Young men who were searching for a
solid priestly training and could not find a ‘normal seminary’ in
their diocese or even in their whole country, have signed in the
Society’s seminaries in such numbers as to necessitate the opening
of 6 seminaries over the last 30 years. You must admit that it is
quite an achievement considering the worldwide drop of priestly
vocations. As of today, our ranks are lined up with over 380 priests,
working in more than 50 countries on the five continents. There
are still about 150 seminarians in the formation process, and the
numerous elementary and secondary schools opened by the Society
of Saint Pius X at the request of concerned parents throughout the
world are bearing beautiful fruits, including many present and future
From the time the Society of Saint Pius X began its work in the
Philippines in 1992, the effect of the grace of God has become manifest.
The numerous vocations to the sacred priesthood and to the brotherhood
now call for the opening of the Seventh Seminary of our Society.
This coming September 15, we will transfer the existing St. Bernard
pre-seminary in Manila to Santa Barbara, Iloilo, where we have built
a proper seminary structure on a 5-hectare property. The seminary
proper should open its structure on a 5-hectare property. The seminary
proper should open its doors, Deo volente, next June 2000, as the
month of June, in the Philippines is the beginning of the school
year. Alongside the seminarians, we will have a real novitiate for
brothers who are the priests’ helpers in the work of harvesting
souls. Will you help us to train these young men in the ways of
taken after the First Solemn High Mass in the Philippines
of the newly ordained Fr. Salvador – our second Filipino priest
last July 11, 1999. His Excellency, Bishop Salvador Lazo,
who delivered the sermon on that day, together with Frs. Couture,
Soliman and Onoda assisted the new priest.
God, the priest is all. Leave a parish 20 years without a priest,
alas! What will happen to it? They will adore the beasts, the plants.
Thus, when the enemies of the Church want to destroy the religion,
they begin their attacks with the priesthood because where there
is no priest, there is no longer a sacrifice. When the priests come
back, religion and happiness come back with them!” – St. John Mary
you help us ‘bring the priests back’? And with them, the Most Holy
Sacrifice of the Altar?
Dear Friends, if a glass of water given in Our Lord’s name will
not be left without its heavenly reward, what will God give to those
who will help the formation of not just a priest, but of priest
in a series in a seminary?
you in advance and may “God, who loveth the cheerful giver”, bless