Online Newsletter Nr. 127
Philippine Community
    “We have many parts in the one body, and all these
    parts have different functions. In the same way,
    though we are many, we are one body in union with
    Christ, and we are all joined to each other as
    different parts of one body.” Romans 12:4-5

    May They be ONE

       UNITY! Is this still possible with the kind of society that we have nowadays? Is it not a fact that modern technology and the so-called social networking, e.g. Facebook, minimize personal contacts since most FB users spend their time in front of their computers? Is it not a fact that even religious groups are divided and those splittered groups still have internal conflicts because of power struggle? Will unity remain a utopia? Will it only remain a dream or a vision without realization?

       It is a tradition in the Philippine community since the time of the late Fr. Adonis Narcelles, Jr. SVD to celebrate the Bible Sunday every last Sunday of January. By the way, Bible Sunday is celebrated in many parts of the world. Fr. Adonis introduced this event in the Philippine community in 2005. All groups in the community that hold Bible Sharing meetings are encouraged to send representatives as members of the planning committee. In the past years, the following groups are in-charged of this event: Bible Sharing Groups-Berlin, CFC-FFL, Couples for Christ, Loved Flock Community and the Shalom Group. This year 2012, we are very happy to welcome the CWL – a civic organization in the Philippine community – to join the committee.

       This year's celebration is kind of unique. From the very first meeting, on January 18 until the last light was switched off in the Pfaarsaal of the Heilig-Geist Gemeinde on January 29, one could really feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. He was the guide of the group. At one instance, due to communication
       problems, there was a big misunderstanding, but the Holy Spirit comforted the afflicted and gave wisdom to the concerned persons. Harmony was thus readily restored. Another proof of His presence was the fact, that there was no script for the play which was to take the place of the Sunday homily. The Holy Spirit worked wonders. He enriched us with ideas that within a few hours the play was completed.

       The day before the presentation, we still did not have our props. With Fr. Simon's God-given talent and of course with the Holy Spirit enlightening and inspiring all of us plus the God-sent angels, everything was possible. Even the games on Sunday and the cleaning up afterwards went very smoothly. Everybody did his/her job well and with pleasure. There was so much laughter everywhere. From this year's Bible Sunday experience, I realized that unity is not far from reality, if we respect and accept each other's limitations and if we share our God-given talents with humility without thinking that we are better than the rest. God created each one of us differently, so we can complement each other. Each one has a role in God's plan; just like these groups with different functions in our community, they were united on this particular Sunday to promote the Word of God.

       I consider the Bible Sunday as a means to remind us to dust our bibles and start reading again the love letters from the Lord. One of the most important factors in order to achieve unity besides our continual prayers is the habitual reading of the bible. God communicates to us through the bible. The bible is our guide in dealing with our fellowmen with different characters. Yes, UNITY is possible! And if we live together in harmony, we already experience HEAVEN on EARTH. (GLORIA M. LANGE)