Episcopal  Commission  on  the  Biblical  Apostolate 

Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines

Biblical Institute in Luzon Visayas and Mindanao

Summer is the best season for rest and recreation. As for the bible animators and facilitators, they enjoy gathering together as sisters and brothers growing in the Word doing formation in the different biblical institutes in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.

  1. WABI for Northern Luzon and Cordillera  - Word Alive Biblical Institute (WABI) is a three (3) week annual biblical institutes offered by John Paul I Biblical Center of Vigan City. The syllabus of WABI is designed to have a balanced program of biblical-pastoral and doctrinal - liturgical concerns arranged in three (3) levels. Upon finishing the third level, the participant may be installed by the Local Ordinary as an official Lay Minister of the Word in the parish or diocese after undergoing six months of pastoral exposure depending upon the recommendation of the parishioner. The latest Word Alive Biblical Institutes (WABI) was held at the Archdiocesan Lay Formation Center, Bonuan Gueset in Dagupan City last April 18 to May 8, 2006. In its  15 years of existence, almost 400 lay bible animators/facilitators have gone through the formation. Participants are a mix of youth leaders, lay leaders, pastoral leaders, catechists, teachers and religious who are involved and active in the Biblical-Pastoral Ministry. A WABI experience is always an unforgettable one: " . . .  we study and learn together . . we read, reflect, pray and live God's Word in community  . . . we share God's grace together . . .  we find meaning in our work for community . . . relaxation and recreation in the Word . . . celebrating life . . . glorifying and praising the Lord . . . God's Word is Alive in WABI"!     JPIBC Director Fr. Doms reports with a burning heart, "the Word Alive Biblical Institute 2006 ended well, filled with so many blessings. It was the best implementation and performance of WABI so far in my four years of leaving of serving the John Paul Biblical Center for Northern Luzon. The strongest "plus" factor was the full support of the local team with the Archdiocesan John Paul II Biblical Center of Lingayen-Dagupan headed by Bishop Renato Mayugba, DD (the former BA Director). The local Biblical Apostolate team helped in carrying out the program of the Institute thus reducing the burden of the JPIBC staff in terms of administration and supervision of the WABI 2006."

  1. Summer Biblical Institute for Mindanao 2006 - (SBI) in Digos and SBI was born . . . "fathered" by no less than the ECBA Chairman Bishop  Arturo M. Bastes, SVD, DD himself who founded Pope Paul VI Biblical Center for the biggest region in the Philippines covering 21 ecclesiastical territories. SBI is a 3/10 days biblical-pastoral formation for the laity and religious who are involved in the promotion of the Biblical Apostolate. The Institute is brought around Mindanao to maximizelay participation in the formation and at the same time minimize expenses. This gracious host Bishop Guillermo V. Afable, DD the Local Ordinary of Digos and coordinated by Fr. Banie Pardillo and his BA staff. The 15th Summer Bible Institute tackled the topic on the "Introduction to the Sacred Scriptures" with Fr. Henry A. Escasinas, RAMASE Dean of Studies as the Resource Person. The course was intended as a "refresher course  for the old timers in preparation for the reception of certificates as Lay Minister of the Word." The 80 participants came out with a four-fold recommendation for the Mindanao Biblical Apostolate to address:  1.  For the Bishops to continue to support the Biblical Apostolate, 2. For the Mindanao Clergy to inspire the lay faithful to hear and live God's Word, 3. For the participants of the 15th Summer Biblical Institute to sustain their journey with the Word, 4. For Biblical Apostolate coordinators to lobby for the agreed share from Bible Sunday collection for the Regional Bible Apostolate Center for Mindanao and ECBA. In the welcome Eucharistic Celebration, His Excellency Bishop  Guillermo V. Afable, DD encouraged the participants to have a "solid and deep formation" in the Word. During the graduation homily, he reminded the "summerians of the Word" that the spiritual warfare confronting the Christians today cannot be won by "high tech" means but by our fidelity to the Eucharist and to the Word." Archbishop Fernando R. Capalla of Davao who is ever supportive to the BA pointed out in his homily on the second day the centrality of Jesus in our lives. "We need to know Jesus in our mindsand in our hearts to be "hearers and doers" of the Word like Mama Mary." (Fr. Illuminado Rojo - Director Pope Paul VI Biblical Center)

  1. Biblical-Pastoral Formations in the Visayas and other Regions.  The lay people are very committed and dedicated to the promotion of the Biblical Apostolate. They are hungry for the Word of God. Thus we have Lay Formation Centers similar to the Cebu Christian Lay Formation (CLFC) that offers an integrated formation for the lay faithful so that they can better respond to their Christian vocation in the world. Their year-long program helps promote the growth of the person in the Word. Lately they have developed a Values and Leadership Training Course for the Philippine National Police working hand in hand with Pedro Calungsod Foundation. They have been working with the St. Jerome Biblical Center for Central Visayas for a long time. They are searching for ways and means they can further spread the Word of God through better coordination of their wonderful programs. The Eastern Visayas through the efforts of Msgr. Lope Robredillo have also developed their own modules according to their own situation. Western Visayas are regular in their efforts in coordination their formation especially for the young people during the Bible Week. Although it is difficult for them to come together, they are also searching for ways to improve their efforts since the directors have their own full time responsibilities (like the rest of the country). Some of the dioceses are just starting to organize their programs for the Biblical Apostolate.

  1. DEI VERBUM Biblical Pastoral Course (1987-2006) - Nemi, Rome "All the preaching of the Church must be nourished and regulated by Sacred Scripture" (DV 21). The course is designed to provide its participants with an informed biblical dimension to their on-going formation in pastoral ministry. Dei Verbum Biblical Pastoral Course takes its cue from the Dogmatic Constitution of Vatican II on Divine Revelation - Dei Verbum,which relocates the Word of God from the margins to the very center of the faith life of the ecclesial communities and their missionary mandate. The Society of the Divine Word (SVD) in occassion with the Catholic Biblical Federation (CBF), endeavors to contribute in a small way to the call of the Sacred Synod to diligently prepare the leaders in particular - priests, religious as well as the laity (DV 23,25) - to respond adequately to this renewed exailted status accorded to the Bible, through which "the Father who is in heaven meers His children with great love and speaks with them" (DV 21).  The course is intended for anyone who is devotedly engaged in biblical ministry: priests, religious and laity - both men and women. However, the understanding is that after the course, the participants will be actively involved in this ministry, since its specific aim is the formation of the minister of the Word. Eighty (80) Filipinos have already undertaken the program and many of them if not all are either volunteers in the Biblical Apostolate or full time ministers of the Word . .