Official site of the missionaries of our lady of la salette ina ng pag-asa province
Official site of the missionaries of our lady of la salette ina ng pag-asa province
December 12, 1948 marked the arrival of the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette to the Philippines in response to the call of Bishop Constance Jurgens, DDof Tuguegarao to meet the spiritual needs of Isabela.
The first La Salette Missionaries assigned in Santiago was Fr. Conrad Blanchet, MS. The first years of the La Salette Fathers were spent in the organization of the parish. In 1951, Fr. Blanchet, MS continued rebuilding the church and was later completed in 1954 by Fr. Maurice Cardinal, MS who later took over as the Parish Priest.
In the mid 1960’s, after the Vatican II, the thrust of the parish centered on catechesis with emphasis on liturgies. The Parish Pastoral Council was then organized like: The Family Life Program, Marriage Encounter organized by Fr. Maurice Cardinal, MS, the Cursillo Movement through the efforts of Fr. Emery Des Rochers, MS and the Cooperatives through the initiative of Fr. Efren L. Musngi, MS. These programs were introduced in the other La Salette parishes with St. James as springboard.
In the early 80’s, the parish council as an organization was extended through the establishment of the WEST (Worship, Evangelization, Services, and Temporalities) Commissions. These Commissions were introduced by Fr. Orlando Sapuay, MS, strengthened by Fr. Constante Dannug, MS, and continued and activated by succeeding parish priests initiated the involvement of so many lay leaders and members. The WEST Commissions have been great help in the systematic functioning of an alive parish in its thrust of creating Basic Ecclesial Communities in the Barangays.
It was December 29, 1948, barely after the arrival of the La Salette Missionaries in Santiago, when the people of Aurora sent a delegation to Santiago requesting for a parish priest. That time Aurora was depending on the availability of the priest assigned in Santiago, who said Mass there once in every two weeks only until 1950.
After a year, Aurora was canonically erected to the status of a parish with San Isidro as its patron saint. Fr. Paul Douillard, MS was its first parish priest. He served the parish until 1953.
San Mateo was among the unpopular towns of Isabela way back in 1948. The población was at the old Centro and the people were practically all Aglipayans and Methodists because these were the only religious sects with pastors residing in the place. There was only a small number of Catholics and it they wanted to hear Mass on Sundays, they had to go to Santiago where there was a church and a resident priest.
It was for this reason that the late Vicente Diego and his wife asked the help of Bishop Constance Jurgens of the Diocese of Tuguegarao to give San Mateo a priest who could attend to the spiritual needs of the people. It was exactly December 12, 1948 when four La Salette Missionaries from the Immaculate Heart of Mary Province in the USA arrived in the Philippines in response to the plea made by Bishop Jurgensof Tuguegarao for somebody to attend to the spiritual welfare of the growing populace of the diocese which was then badly in need of religious spiritual attention. From Manila, the La Salette Fathers decided to set their base in San Mateo, Isabela where they were warmly received by the people.
Fr. Paul Douillard, MS was succeeded by Fr. Emery Des Roschers, MS who arrived on October 31, 1949 and stayed on until 1950. A year after, on December 8, 1951, San Mateo was canonically erected as a parish with Fr. Maurice Cardinal, MS as its first parish priest. Thus, San Mateo was established with the parish growing fast through the efforts of the La Salette Missionaries who were assigned there until time came when San Mateo was able to boast of 70% Catholic citizens in the locality.
Since then, the parish has grown through the efforts of the different La Salette pastors who have closely coordinated with the Diocese of Ilagan whose programs for the different parishes have greatly helped in the establishment of San Mateo as one of the most progressive parishes in Isabela.
San Manuel started as a mission under the parish of Aurora (which was canonically erected in 1951). The different ministries were performed by the then assigned priests starting from Fr. Paul Douillard, MS followed by Fr. Lionel Lacasse, MS in 1954 and the other priests like Fr. Frank Bourgeois, MS and the rest of the La Salette Missionaries who followed after from 1951 up to 1986.
On February 11, 1996 the sub-parish was canonically erected as a parish, with Fr. Franciso B. Tamani, MS as the first parish priest. Various renewal programs were then introduced to the parish such as PREX (Parish Renewal Experience), PRAYER (Parish Renewal Encounter for Youth), the Cursillo Movement, and BEC (Basic Ecclesial Communities) in the different barangays.
St. Andrew Parish was canonically established on November 30, 1954, has been served by the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette since 1949, with Fr. Paul Douillard, MS as the first visiting pastor and later followed by Fr. Alphonse Lachapelle, MS who became the first parish priest to reside permanently in Cabatuan from 1951 to 1955.
The immense growth of Cabatuan in terms of the people’s spiritual development could be attributed to the La Salette Missionaries who came and go but always leaving behind remarkable achievements. To name a few of the La Salette Missionaries who served this parish, they are as follows: Fr. Normand Helie, MS, Fr. Raymond Bouley, MS, Fr. Lionel Lacasse, MS, Fr. Andre Lussier, MS, Fr. Rene Bisaillon, MS, Fr. Rutillo Mallillin, MS, Fr. Maurice Cardinal, MS, Fr. Bernard Taylor, MS and the rest who helped in the evangelization even after it has been turned over to the Diocese.
After giving birth to the parish, nurturing it through the hearts and seeing it mature enough to be weaned, the La Salette Missionaries turned over to the Diocese the administration of the parish. This change of parish administration from the Missionaries to the Diocese is in fulfillment of the avowed role of the former to establish parishes in mission areas, and when they are self-sufficient, turn them over to the Diocese.
Thus, in May 3, 1987, the Bishop of the Diocese of Ilagan, Msgr. Miguel Purugganan, DD received the parish of St. Andrew from the La Salette Missionaries.
The parish of Jones was founded, taken out of the parish of Echague in 1926 under the patron saint, San Guillermo. Fr. Guillermo Lucas, Co-adjutor in Echague, was appointed as the first parish priest. The first church was built in 1928. The parish, then, was served by Diocesan priests who catered to the needs of a town where almost 100% of its constituents were Aglipayanos.
In the early 1950’s, the La Salette Missionaries took over. It was Fr. Raymond Leduc, MS who first worked in the parish and became the first parish priest when it became independent parish in 1951.
Organizing the parish where practically all residents of the town were Aglipayanoswas extremely difficult. Despite this difficulty, Fr. Leduc was able to establish the Knights of Columbus and implemented various programs like the catechetical and other civic projects; bible sharing was introduced, social and medical assistance were provided to uplift the conditions of the faithful in Jones.
It was in February 28, 1949 when the first La Salette Missionary, Fr. Conrad Blanchet, MS started saying Mass and continued performing Sunday ministry in Roxas, Isabela until the place became a mission of the Aurora Parish in 1951.
In 1955, Fr. Lionel Lacasse, MS took over the work of Fr. Blanchet, MS. After two years, November 1957 Roxas was separated from the Parish of St. Isidore in Aurora. Roxas was erected canonically in the status of a parish with Fr. Emery Des Rochers, MS as the first official parish priest.
Our Lady of La Salette Parish in Roxas, Isabela was the only parish administered by the missionaries named after its Patroness, Our Lady of La Salette.
Quezon has from the very start been a mission of the La Salette Missionaries assigned in Roxas, Isabela. It was then Fr. Andre Lussier, MS who came to Quezon , in the middle of 1950’s, to say Mass and to evangelize the people once a month.
A year after Quezon became a town, Fr. Normand Helie, MS came to assist the parish priest. Fr. Helie headed the construction of the of the Catholic Church which was the result of the concerted efforts of the Missionaries and the people whose desire to strengthen the Catholic crusade was evident.
Regular Sunday Masses were said with Fr. Normand Helie, MS officiating. Unfortunately, in October 13, 1969 he died of brain tumor. Before Fr. Heliedied, the Bishop of Ilagan granted Fr. Helie’s request to appoint Mr. Macario T. Villanueva as extraordinary minister to lead the people in prayer services in cases where Masses could not be said by priests. All the while, Quezon remained a quasi-parish until it was canonically erected as a Parish in 1961.
The parish of San Agustin was for a long time a mission of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary Parish, Jones, Isabela. Way back in 1956, Fr. Raymond Leduc, MS, then Parish Priest of Jones, used to say Mass there by taking a motorboat. It was Fr. Andre Lussier, MS, then assistant parish priest of Jones who came to say the Christmas Midnight Mass in 1956.
For ten long years, the Catholics of San Agustin begged for a resident parish priest. In March, 1966, Fr. Lionel Lacasse, MS took residence there with Fr. Paul Douillard, MS. After a year, they constructed a convent. It was blessed by Fr. Maurice Cardinal, MS, then Vice-Provincial Superior of the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette.
In April 1967, the town was canonically erected as a parish by then Bishop Teodulfo Domingo, DD of Tuguegarao, Cagayan with Fr. Lionel Lacasse, MS as the first Parish Priest.
The presence of La Salette Regents in the parish greatly helped in the revitalization of parish programs and projects. Bible services were introduced and catechetical instruction was extended to nearby barrios with the assistance and cooperation of lay leaders. This contributed to the strengthening and reawakening of the Catholic spirit in the parish.
Ramon used to be barrio Bugallon of Santiago. It took some barrios from San Mateo and Santiago when it was legislated into existence as a town and became a political entity of its own.
The place then, because it was a barrio of Santiago, was served by the priest stationed in Santiago parish with various priests taking turns to attend to the spiritual needs of the people. When the La Salette Missionaries arrived in 1948, Ramon became a mission of Santiago with the Assistant Pastor of Santiago taking charge of this mission.
From 1964-1966 when Bugallon became a town, Ramon remained a quasi-parish. It was only in 1978 when a priest started residing at the place in a rectory built at the back of the church. On March 28, 1981, the Bishop of the Diocese of Ilagan, Msgr. Miguel Puruggannan, DD canonically erected Ramon into the status of a parish with Fr. Conrad Blanchet, MS as its first Parish Priest.
Today, the parish of San Roque remains under the administration of the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette.
The La Salette missionaries took over Gamu in 1962 until 1977. The first La Salette missionary, Fr. Maurice Cardinal, MS, upon request of the parishioners, started the restoration of the Spanish church, and in 1968 a new roof was put up together with the flooring. Trained catechists taught catechism in the public elementary schools. More men were involved in the church through the CursilloMovement and the Holy Name Society. Masses were said every Sunday in barangay Caliguian(now Burgos), and Cullalabo. Masses were also said in barangays Mabini, Pintor and Lenzon.
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