Every time I mention the name of Father Phil Estrella, I keep hearing things like “Uy, Magaling yan,” or “He really gave me a lot to think about.” So I was really excited when Grace Padilla and the Contemplative Ministry told me that they had invited him to give his Adult Lay Spirituality Program here at San Antonio. On August 1, from 9am to 4pm, Fr. Phil will share with us the fruits of his long reflections on the laity and their role in the Church.
You don’t need to look very hard to see that the lay people make up most of the people of God. Probably 99.95% of all baptized are the laity. Father Phil wishes that the laity reclaim their rightful role in the Church and that the clergy support the laity in doing that. That’s what the Adult Lay Spirituality Program is for. It is Father Phil’s effort to guide the laity in bearing the fruits of their lay calling and stepping up to their role in the Church.
The Adult Lay Spirituality Program normally takes place over three days. But for San Antonio’s parishioners, Father Phil is going to compress the essentials into a single day seminar. It will begin with an introduction to Lay Spirituality and the trials that lay people face – what Father Phil calls the “Thorns of the Human Heart.” Then there is an invitation to embrace life and all its challenges with a mature faith. He will describe what it means to be an adult in your faith life. Finally, he will talk about the stages of faith. This will help each person see different landmarks in their faith journey and the role of spirituality amidst all of this.
If you feel like your faith has stopped growing, or if you feel like you may be called to greater things by the Lord, this seminar would be a good place to start. Each of us is called to grow in our faith and take responsibility for the gift we have received. I am reminded of the verse in Corinthians where Saint Paul says “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways.”
It’s possible to treat one’s faith in a mature way, and Father Phil will gladly share with us his thoughts on how do to it.
The seminar will be free of charge on August 1, Saturday from 9am to 4pm in the Santuario de San Antonio Parish Center. For any questions, please text 09175807182.