Bishop Alminaza Celebrates Mass of the Holy Spirit with Thomasians

Story & Photos By Georgene Quilaton-Tambiga

“It is always a joy to be with Thomasians.”

Most Rev. Gerardo Alminaza, D.D., Bishop of the Diocese of San Carlos proclaimed during his homily for the entire Thomasian community. The bishop was the main celebrant of the Mass of the Holy Spirit at the quadrangle of Colegio de Sto. Tomas-Recoletos, September 14, 2022.

As he is an Augustinian Recollect alumnus himself, Bishop Alminaza expressed his happiness that he had the opportunity to personally welcome the new members of the Order of Augustinian Recollects community in San Carlos City.

Rev. Fr. Cristopher Maspara, OAR, the prior of Recoletos de San Carlos and CST-R president, presented the OAR community beginning with Rev. Fr. Monday Benjamine Edobor, OAR, the Vice-president for Identity, Formation and Mission; Rev. Fr. Enrico Peter Silab, OAR, resident priest and former CST-R Director; Rev. Fr. Excel Saycon, OAR, resident priest.

Meanwhile, Rev. Fr. Marjun Almario, diocesan chancellor, joined the bishop.

Tips to Thrive during this School Year

Bishop Alminaza, while he recognized the challenges of another shift in the delivery of education from distance to blended learning, inspired the Thomasians with his tips and thoughts that can be remembered during the trials of student life.

“The secret is to develop this personal rapport with the Holy Spirit,” he clinched his sharing.

Thomasians from the seventh grade to the two college programs all learned a simple and short prayer to the Holy Spirit from Bishop Alminaza, who is widely known for his campaigns for the Care of the Common Home.

Teacher’s Pledge

Before the Mass of the Holy Spirit ended, Thomasian faculty members recited their Teachers Pledge in front of the bishop and the OAR community. Ms. Marinell Ocampo, the new principal of the Basic Education Department led the teachers.


A Bishop’s Welcome. The OAR priests with the bishop and his chancellor are flanked by Thomasians from all grade levels. From L-R Rev. Fr. Enrico Peter Silab, OAR, Rev. Fr. Excel Saycon, OAR, Most Rev. Gerardo Alminaza, D.D., Rev. Fr. Marjun Almario, Rev. Fr. Cristopher Maspara, OAR, (back) Rev. Fr. Monday Benjamine Edobor, OAR                                                                                                                                                                                                  
History Makers. “All of us who are present here are making history because as we begin the school year and the college department we have in our presence the Bishop.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
The Teachers Pledge. “I pledge to be Accountable for the instruction, inspiration and guidance of my students so that they fully realize their potentials and aspirations.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Inviting the Holy Spirit. Thomasians, students and teachers alike, offer gifts during the Holy Mass.                                                                                           
Thomasian Staff. All office staff members of CST-R join in celebrating the Mass of the Holy Spirit.                                                                                      


For a Fruitful School Year. “We need to intentionally invite the Holy Spirit,” Bishop Gerry, as he is fondly called, tells Thomasians.                       
Full Quadrangle. It is the Thomasian community’s first time to celebrate the Holy Mass at the quadrangle after the school lock down was imposed in March of 2020. With the combination of junior and senior high school and college students, the quadrangle is full. With their face masks on, Thomasians beam with joy to be in a physical gathering once again.
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