FAQ: What is the difference between a religious priest and a diocesan priest?

Fr. Manuel Mijares, SVD


A religious priest belongs to a particular religious order. Each religious order is founded to fulfill a particular need in the Catholic Church through various ministries. “Order priests” can be assigned to any location and any ministry where their religious congregation is present.

A diocesan priest is one who is responsible primarily to the bishop of his particular diocese, a specific geographical region of the Church governed by the bishop. Within this region, the priest usually serves in a parish, though he may also be involved in other ministries like administration, communications, teaching and hospital or prison chaplaincy.

Both religious and diocesan priests perform sacramental ministry.


7th Fiel Clan Reunion (Bonifacio Surposa Fiel-Modesta Darong)

The 7th Fiel Clan Reunion was initiated by the families under the family line of Bonifacio Surposa Fiel and Modesta Darong. It was sponsored by the family of Angela Fiel -Reymundo dela Cruz in Banale, Pagadian City on April 23, 2017. The theme “Pamilya: Mahimong dili nato makab-ot ang tanan, pero ang tanan makab-ot kung anaa ang panaghiusa.” (Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara)

Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara

Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Bonifacio was one of the brothers of my great-grandfather Julian Surposa Fiel (+April 11, 1945).



Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara



Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara



  1. Fabio “Abyong” Darong Fiel (July 31, 1914 – Sept. 28, 2006)
  2. Epifania Darong Fiel
  3. Magdalena “Magna” Darong Fiel
  4. Roberto “Berto” Darong Fiel
  5. Tranquilina “Kiling” Darong Fiel
  6. Florentino “Ponting” Darong Fiel
  7. Canuto Darong Fiel
  8. Angela Darong Fiel
  9. Vivencia Darong Fiel
  10. Avelino “Beloy” Darong Fiel
  11. Sendemeo Darong Fiel (b. September 1, 1941)


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Photo Credit: Vivian Fiel Alfafara


Children of Fabio “Abyong” Darong Fiel (July 31, 1914 – Sept. 28, 2006) – Priscilla “Lilang” Sulmeron (July 8, 1919 – August 24, 1997)

  1. Arturo Sulmeron Fiel (b. June 2, 1937)
  2. Praxedes Sulmeron Fiel (July 21, 1939 – January 19, 2004)
  3. Olivia Sulmeron Fiel (b. June 3, 1943 – April 24, 2012)
  4. Norma Sulmeron Fiel (b. January 28, 1944)
  5. Elias Sulmeron Fiel (b. March 31, 1945)
  6. Theodoro Sulmeron Fiel (b. March 26, 1952)
  7. Fabio Sulmeron Fiel Jr. (b. September 18, 1954)
  8. Marina Sulmeron Fiel (b. October 27, 1957)
  9. Maria Doris Sulmeron Fiel (b. March 26, 1960)


Children of Epifania Darong Fiel – Alberto Cagas          

  1. Felipe Fiel Cagas
  2. Remie Fiel Cagas
  3. Maria Fiel Cagas
  4. Lucio Fiel Cagas


Children of Magdalena “Magna” Darong Fiel – Esmael Solis

  1. Ernesto Fiel Solis
  2. Rudy Fiel Solis (not married, deceased)
  3. Alfredo Fiel Solis
  4. Celedonio Fiel Solis
  5. Emelio “Boy” Fiel Solis
  6. Rosario Fiel Solis
  7. Jonathan Fiel Solis
  8. Marcial Fiel Solis
  9. Editha Fiel Solis (b. February 2, 1963)


Children of Roberto “Berto” Darong Fiel – Marcosa Domaboc

  1. Cerilo Domaboc Fiel – twin brother of Cerila Domaboc Fiel
  2. Cerila Domaboc Fiel – twin sister of Cerilo Domaboc Fiel
  3. Bienvenido Domaboc Fiel
  4. Anecita Domaboc Fiel
  5. Julieta Domaboc Fiel
  6. Remedios Domaboc Fiel
  7. Concepcion Domaboc Fiel
  8. Benedicto Domaboc Fiel
  9. Rosesa Domaboc Fiel


Children of Tranquilina “Kiling” Darong Fiel – Bencillo Maňacap

  1. Rodolfo Fiel Maňacap
  2. Visminda Fiel Maňacap
  3. Estrella Fiel Maňacap
  4. Jesus Fiel Maňacap (b. June 24, 1949)
  5. Alicia Fiel Maňacap (b. May 14, 1950)
  6. Leonardo Fiel Maňacap (b. December 1, 1952)
  7. Reynaldo Fiel Maňacap (b. June 24, 1954)
  8. Lucia Fiel Maňacap
  9. Edna Fiel Maňacap


Children of Florentino “Ponting” Darong Fiel – Pesyang Dumagan

  1. Roberto “Roy-Roy” Dumagan Fiel (b. August 5, 1991)


Children of Canuto Darong Fiel – Juanita Endricoso

  1. Emerita Endricoso Fiel
  2. Jose Endricoso Fiel
  3. Joselita Endricoso Fiel
  4. Sendemeo Endricoso Fiel
  5. Unice Endricoso Fiel
  6. Luisa Endricoso Fiel
  7. Fely Endricoso Fiel (b. April 9, 1972)
  8. Josephine Endricoso Fiel
  9. Leonila Endricoso Fiel


Children of Angela Darong Fiel – Reymundo Dela Cruz

  1. Marcosa Fiel Dela Cruz
  2. Demetrio Fiel Dela Cruz
  3. Marilou Fiel Dela Cruz
  4. Pedro Fiel Dela Cruz
  5. Pableo Fiel Dela Cruz (b. November 12, 1963)
  6. Alfredo Fiel Dela Cruz
  7. Primitivo Fiel Dela Cruz
  8. Emiliana Fiel Dela Cruz


Children of Vivencia Darong Fiel – Andres Casinillo

  1. Nestor Fiel Casinillo
  2. Marilou Fiel Casinillo
  3. Alicia Fiel Casinillo
  4. Dethma Fiel Casinillo
  5. Evelyn Fiel Casinillo
  6. Ranillo Fiel Casinillo
  7. Judy Fiel Casinillo
  8. Anabel Fiel Casinillo
  9. Noel Fiel Casinillo
  10. Janneth Fiel Casinillo
  11. Chito Fiel Casinillo


Children of Avelino “Beloy” Darong Fiel – Duling Tengira

  1. Arnold Tengira Fiel
  2. Evangeline Tengira Fiel
  3. Teresita Tengira Fiel
  4. Merlyn Tengira Fiel


Children of Sendemeo Darong Fiel (b. September 1, 1941) – Ermina “Mina” Escat (b. March 24, 1944)

  1. Requello Escat Fiel (b. October 17, 1967)
  2. Malipeciado Escat Fiel (b. November 19, 1974)
  3. Lucia Escat Fiel (b. April 23, 1962)
  4. Josephine Escat Fiel (b. February 27, 1964)
  5. Maribel Escat Fiel (b. September 2, 1965)
  6. Joven Escat Fiel (b. August 7, 1977)
  7. Julieta Escat Fiel (b. July 26, 1975)
  8. Sherlita Escat Fiel (b. December 16, 1968)



Building Homes, Building Hope

The housing community in Dumlog, Talisay City

In the early 1990s, two Divine Word Missionaries, Fr. Heinz Kulüke, SVD and Fr. Max Abalos, SVD led the journey with the poor and the marginalized sectors of Cebu City, Philippines. They got involved in the concrete life situations of the fisher folks, urban poor, informal settlers, prostituted women and children and the scavengers of the four dumpsites of Metro Cebu.


It was also during this time, that another priest, Fr. John Iacomo, who was very active in the prison ministry started building up kindergartens as a long-term preventive measure for the children of today not to become the prisoners of tomorrow.


However, in the process, Fr. John also realized that if children would not have decent homes, and still have the same environment that would not promote good values, they might still go wayward and eventually end up in prison. It would be a never-ending cycle.

Vegetables garden in the subdivision

So, he initiated the San Pio Village project. It kicked off in 2006 and most of the houses were sponsored by the Habitat for Humanity, a foundation that put faith into action by building affordable homes in order to break the cycle of poverty.


However, due to health reasons, Fr. John had to go back to Australia. The project was turned over to Fr. Heinz Kulüke, SVD. The new management asked the leadership of the SVD congregation’s social arm, the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation – Integrated Development Corporation (JPIC-IDC) to manage San Pio Village.


Later on, with the leadership of JPIC-IDC, more houses were created and more structures and services were erected: livelihood building, cooperative building, drainage system, water pumps, concrete gate and barriers, multi-purpose building, basketball court, playground and piped water system.

The image of San Pio inside the subdivision


Eventually, the word “Janssenville” was attached to San Pio Village as a tribute to the founder of the SVD, St. Arnold Janssen. The JPIC leaders then started calling the housing beneficiaries as their “home partners.”


Also, more JPIC-IDC programs and projects were implemented in the village, like scholarship, livelihood, technical and vocational support to selected homeowners.


The JPIC-IDC is rooted in the vision of “fullness of life in a transformed society” and it commits to five very important missions: (1) women and children development; (2) human and community development; (3) economic and cooperative development; (4) education, and (5) disaster preparedness and emergency response and rehabilitation.


The home partners practice proper waste segregation


Palm and Passion Sunday (A)

Palm and Passion Sunday


Palm Sunday / Passion Sunday (A)

Isaiah 50:4-7

Psalm: My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

Philippians 2:6-11


Matthew 26: 14-27,66


Welcome to the Palm and Passion Sunday!


Tandaan po ninyo, ang linggong ito ang isa sa mga may pinakamagandang second readings sa buong taon para sa akin. Ito ay galing sa book of St. Paul to the Philippians: at ang mensaheng ito ay produkto ng pagninilay ng first Christian communities. “Though he was in the form of God, Jesus did not deem equality with God something to be used for his own advantage.” (Philippians 2:6). Sa simula pa lamang, si Hesus ay talagang banal. Ngunit hindi tumigil si St. Paul doon. Sabi pa niya: “Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in the likeness of men. Thus, he humbled himself, by becoming obedient to death, death on the cross!” (Philippians 2:7)


Ang Dios na banal ay naging tao, upang ang tao ay maging banal.


This is a special time of the year that we stop to remember and bring back the memories leading to our redemption and salvation. Yes, we remember Jesus’ dying and rising, but let us also remember our own dying and rising with him.


Let us ponder upon two questions for today:


  1. Do I have true sorrow for my sins?


Akin bang nararamdaman ang taus-pusong pagsisisi sa aking mga kasalanan? Ngunit hindi lamang iyan – ang pagsisisi ay hindi lamang iyong makaramdam ng kalungkutan, pananangis at pagtanggap ng parusa sa mga kasalanang nagawa ngunit ang pagbabagong-isip.


Ang tunay na pagsisisi ay yaong may kasamang paggawa ng  mabuti (Luke 3:8). Samakatuwid, kung ako’y magdarasal, hihingi ng tawad sa Dios, ako ay tunay na nagsisisi kung ang aral ni Hesus ay akin ng isinasabuhay. It is impossible to change if the person cannot and will not change. Change will come if you change. Imposible ang tunay na pagsisisi kung walang bungang pagbabago sa ugali.


  1. Am I willing to carry my own cross?


May story ako na naalala ko pa mula sa aking auntie na aking guro noong high school. Sabi niya, one day, a man complained to Christ dahil masyadong mabigat ang krus na kanyang dala. Then dinala siya ni Hesus sa isang lugar na puno ng krus. sabi ni Hesus, pili ka ng krus mo dyan.


So, ibinaba nya yong kanyang krus at nagsimula siyang umikot. He saw a very small cross, binuhat niya, then sabi niya: ang gaan naman. So ibinaba niya at naghanap ulit. May nakita siyang malaking krus, binuhat niya, ngunit sabi – sobrang bigat naman!


So, hanap siya ng hanap ng krus na babagay sa kanya. Naikot niya ang buong lugar ngunit wala siyang mahanap na krus na sakto lamang sa kanya.


Then, all of a sudden, in a corner, may nakita isang krus, hindi masyadong Malaki, hindi rin masyadong maliit. He carried it, not so heavy, not too light. Kaya sabi niya kay Hesus, “yes, Jesus, ito na ang napili kong krus!”


Jesus laughed at him. Sabi ni Hesus, that’s the same cross you complained about!


Brothers and sisters, while we ponder on the sufferings of Christ, let us also be mindful to accept our own sufferings, knowing that God never gives us trials beyond our capacity. (1 Corinthians 10:13). His grace is always enough for us.


Have a meaningful and prayerful holy week po.


This is Fr. Felmar Castrodes Fiel, SVD. Witness to the Word.





FAQ: About the SVDs

The SVD Philippines Logo


What does “SVD” stand for?

Most members of a religious community use initials after their name to identify the religious congregation they belong to. For example, SJ stands for the Society of Jesus and OSF reflects the Order of St. Francis. SVD is Latin for Societas Verbi Divini. Translated into English, it means Society of the Divine Word. However, in the USA, we are more commonly called the Divine Word Missionaries or the SVDs.

SVDs of Ipil Mission District

Do your members wear a habit?

No. Today’s Divine Word Missionaries do not wear a distinct or specific habit here in the United States. Other Divine Word Missionaries who serve in different countries wear clothing that is acceptable within their ministries. While celebrating Mass and participating in other liturgical services, ordained priests and vowed brothers wear appropriate religious clothing. If a Divine Word Missionary is an educator or works within an institutional environment, he may wear formal or casual business clothing and priests may wear their clerical collars. As a Divine Word College student, you will wear casual student clothing and dress either formally or semi-formally for certain occasions and special liturgical celebrations.

Brother Paulino Bongcaras, SVD together with our mission partner in dialogue (Photo Credit: Brother Paul Bongcaras, SVD)


What is your charism?

“Charism” comes from the Greek word charis, meaning grace. Since grace is a gift that we receive from God without any merit on our part, as Catholics and Divine Word Missionaries we share this grace by using our own particular gifts for the good of others and to spread the Word of God. This grace, or charism, has continued to grow in the spirit of our founder, St. Arnold Janssen, and is reflected in our international community life and ministry. Divine Word Missionaries profess vows of consecrated chastity, evangelical poverty and apostolic obedience. We learn the language and cultures of those we serve and are open to leaving our home countries to minister in any one of our Society’s global missions.


The SVD kindergarten in San Vicente Ferrer Parish of Sabang, Surigao City (Photo Credit: Fr. John Dua, SVD)

What are the ministries that the Divine Word Missionaries are involved in?

The Society of the Divine Word has a wide range of ministries that include, but are not limited to:

· Parish pastoral and sacramental ministries

· Educational and religious training and teaching

· Evangelization

· Youth, adult and family programs and services

· Lay leadership programs

· Healthcare ministries

· Seminary formation programs

· Counseling and chaplaincy services

· Economic, peace and justice ministries

Yes, we are international! (Photo Credit: Fr. Ariel Tampus, SVD)

How many countries do you work in?

Today, Divine Word Missionaries serve in over 75 countries worldwide and number more than 6,000. We preach the Gospel and share the Word of God by living, working, teaching, and sharing with others in many areas of global ministry. The society has grown to encompass four main SVD mission zones: AFRAM (Africa), ASPAC (Asia/Pacific), PANAM (the Americas), and EUROPE.

Fifth Sunday of Lent (A)

Fifth Sunday of Lent (A)

Fifth Sunday of Lent (A)

Exodus 37:12-14

Psalm 130: With the Lord, there is mercy and fullness of redemption

Romans 8:8-11

John 11:1-45



Welcome to the fifth Sunday of Lent!


This Sunday completes the trilogy na nagsimula noong third Sunday. On the third Sunday of Advent, the desire for the living water; on the fourth Sunday, the desire to be healed of spiritual blindness; and this Sunday – the desire to share in the eternal life with the Risen Lord.


The Gospel for today is the Raising of Lazarus Back to Life. Dedbol na po si Lazarus noong dumating si Hesus. Ayaw nang pabuksan ni Marta ang kanyang libingan sapagkat for sure, maantsot na.Ngunit ng si Hesus ay sumigaw, “Lazarus, come out!” Lumabas nga si Lazarus. Siya ay buhay!


Today, may I invite you that we reflect on two things:


  1. Our hope of resurrection.


The Jews believed that the soul of a dead person remains with the body for three days. Then after three days, the soul departs from the body and will never return again. It is at this point that the corruption of the human body will set in.


Eh si Hesus dumating on the fourth day. Kaya, sabi ni Martha, “But Lord, by this time, there is a bad odor, for he has been there for four days.” (John 11:39) In short, Lord, hopeless  na yan eh, umalis na ang kaluluwa niyan eh, di mo na maibabalik yan. Wala na eh.


But Jesus made the impossible. Jesus said in a loud voice, “Lazarus come out. The dead man came out.” (John 11:44)


This is a challenge for us never to give up hope even in hopeless situations as indiviiduals, as a church or as a nation. God will always make a way.


The raising of Lazarus back to life is already a symbolic narrative of Jesus’ victory over death and an anticipation of his resurrection. Ang malaking milagro ito assures us that we shall also be raised into eternal life after our battle with sin and death in the world.



  1. Our hope of being renewed.


The cave or the tomb kung saan nakahimlay si Lazarus is a place of darkness. When called out by Christ, Lazarus gropes his way out of the dark.


Ang muling pagkabuhay is not only something that we shall benefit sa dako pa roon. We can live it out every day by being hopeful. Hope will make a world of difference to those who have it.


Sabi ng isang kaibigan sa akin: You smoke, you die; you do not smoke, you die. You pray you die, you do not pray – you die. It is still the same. Mamamatay ka pa rin. So ano itong he who believes in Christ, will never die. Fr, Yong lolo ko, laging nagsisimba – namatay pa rin.


I told him, the difference is: when you believe and you have hope in your heart, you will endeavor to renew yourself everyday through the grace of God. Hindi ka latak! Hindi ka hopeless. Despite your darkness and many unbecoming behaviors, you too will never give up on yourself because God’s grace is always reliable.


Brothers and sisters, in hope we are saved. (Romans 8:24). With hope, our present, even if it is difficult, can be lived and accepted because we know our goal (eternal life) – and that is great enough to justify our effort for our journey.


The Psalm 130 for today reminds us: “With the Lord, there is mercy and fullness of redemption.”


This is Fr. Felmar Castrodes Fiel, SVD. Witness to the Word.