Eight deacons of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD) were ordained to the priesthood last Saturday at the Holy Spirit Chapel of the Divine Word Seminary, Tagaytay City in a solemn celebration attended by 127 priests and 2 bishops. This year’s batch of new SVD missionaries are called Logos Class, inspired by the Prologue of the gospel of John: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” (John 1:1)
The new SVD missionary priests are composed of three nationalities: 5 Filipinos, 2 Indonesians and 1 from Madagascar, highlighting the international character of the said congregation. They are Fr. Lawrence Llona, SVD (to be assigned in South Sudan, Africa), Fr. Ryan Diňo, SVD (to be assigned in Argentina South), Fr. Diderick Andrinjatovo, SVD (to be assigned in Philippine South), Fr. Franciskus Subandi, SVD (to be assigned in Philippine Central), Fr. June Lee Sarenas, SVD (to be assigned in Ghana, Africa), Fr. Gregorius Robi Dosom, SVD (to be assigned in Philippine North), Fr. Roberto Solis, SVD (to be assigned in Japan), and Fr. Lindsey Francis Taeza, SVD (to be assigned in Togo, Africa).
Ordaining prelate was Most Rev. Reynaldo Evangelista, DD of the Diocese of Imus. In his homily, he centered on priesthood being configuration to Christ, witnessing Christ and proclaiming Christ. He also reminded them never to lose sight of prayers, quoting Pope John Paul II: “Prayer makes a priest and through prayer a priest becomes himself.” He also stressed the importance of a “priestly conscience.”
The new SVD missionary priests will still continue with their theological studies at the Divine Word Seminary. For the Christmas season, they will be serving the parishes where they were assigned as deacons. Some of them will also have their thanksgiving masses where they go to their respective parishes. The two Indonesians Fr. Franciskus and Fr. Gregorius Robi celebrated their first Mass together with the big bulk of Indonesians priests, brothers and sisters who are assigned in the Philippines.