Bishops to speak out on proposal to establish ‘personal prelature’ for Filipino migrants – Manila Bulletin

Catholic prelates will decide on a proposal to establish a “personal prelature” for Filipino migrants at their plenary assembly next weekend.

CBCP/MB

CBCP News said Msgr. Bernardo Pantin, general secretary of the episcopal conference, said the proposal will be on the table for decision at the July 9-11 assembly of bishops in Tagaytay City.

The competent authority to establish such an ecclesiastical territory is the Vatican, but only after consultation with the episcopal conference concerned.

“If the decision is affirmative, the proposal will be sent to Rome for approval,” Pantin said.

A personal prelature is an ecclesial jurisdiction without geographical boundaries intended to carry out particular pastoral initiatives.

Pantin said he will have his own bishop and his own priests who will take care of the pastoral care of Filipinos abroad.

“It’s unique…if approved, it will be a first for the entire Church,” Pantin said.

It was January 2020 when a Filipino priest serving in the American Diocese of San Diego discussed with the CBCP the need for such a prelature.

To deepen the proposal, the bishops created an ad hoc committee composed of four episcopal commissions: canon law, migrants, clergy and seminaries.

“It’s really about taking care of Filipinos around the world,” the father said. said Agustin Opalalic.

“Priests will not only go to their homes as guests but as pastors,” he added.

“If that happens, there will be Filipino priests who will be assigned to their places. This priest will be trained, trained and oriented so that he can take care of them,” Opalic said.

As of 2019, the country’s foreign affairs estimates that there are more than 10 million Filipinos abroad, of which three million are temporary migrants of overseas Filipino migrants.

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