After ten years in the Philippines, we are able to start a “standard” Piarist foundation in
this country. We were looking already for a while for a place to start working,
since some of our juniors are finishing their initial formation, and even some of them have been ordained priests.
We were looking for a place in the South, in Mindanao Island, and we had contacted several bishops offering our services,
to no avail. But there was a place that was looking for us in the North, in Luzon Island, and it was the Bishop of Daet the one who contacted us asking
us to render our service in his diocese. He offered us the parish and High School of San Vicente, a town in Daet diocese.
San Vicente is a small town of around 12.000 people, in Camarines Norte province, Bicol region, 350 km. southeast from
Manila. Its setting is rural poor. San Vicente is between the mountain
and the sea, at around 12 km. from Daet, the capital of the province. A community of four religious, for the moment, will
start in San Vicente the Piarist ministry, in a very favorable situation to implement an integral service of education-evangelization,
giving the priority to the poor.
The school has 220 students, because there is no place for more. They are crowding in four rooms. Hopefully we will
be able to do something to improve the education in the town, with the help of the Providence… and some friends willing to help. In the town there is another High School, public,
and several Elementary Schools, in some of the villages around. But there is not a Preschool. Maybe we can do something, and
we can also thing of our own Elementary school.
Well, this is the beginning of a new stage in our Philippine History, where there are place for many dreams. May the
Lord help us to dream the best, ad to put it into practice. (By: Fr. Jose P. Burgues, Sch.P.)