On February 18, 2023, the Claretian Missionaries of the Fr. Rhoel Gallardo Province hosted the first Claretian Family in formation gathering with the theme “Claretian Family Cares” at the Fr. Moraleda CMF Hall, Institute for Consecrated Life in Asia (ICLA) in Tandang Sora, Quezon City.
The Claretian Family consists of the Claretian Missionaries (The Congregation of Missionaries Sons of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary (CMF), the Religious of Mary Immaculate Claretian Missionary Sisters (RMICM), the Missionary Sisters of St. Anthony Mary Claret (MC), and The Secular Institute Fraternidade Eclesial Claretiana (FEC). Present were the formators and major superiors of these congregations and their formandees (temporary professed brothers and sisters, novices, postulants and aspirants).
The gathering centered on a pressing concern of the Church and society: the protection of minors and vulnerable adults from sexual abuse. The event also aims to strengthen collaboration and the sense of being a Claretian Family.
Rev. Fr. Elias Ayuban, CMF, Provincial Superior of the Fr. Rhoel Gallardo Province, stated that the protection of minors and vulnerable adults is an integral part of the mission of the Church and that the abuse of minors tarnishes and undermines her mission. He also discussed how the Claretian family should handle allegations of sexual abuse, the tasks of formators, the protocols, and the code of conduct, especially on how to prevent such abuses.
Furthermore, Rev. Fr. Amador Tumbaga CMF, Prefect of Spirituality, also discussed the importance of spiritual accompaniment of the victims. At the end of the talks, the Claretian Family had a sharing, a simple lunch, and, most of all, the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. In the homily of Fr. Elias mentioned that the first important step is to know our own brothers and sisters. He further emphasized that the Claretian Family should continue to journey together with one mission: to be rooted in Christ and audacious in mission.