ROMAN CATHOLICS MET ORTHODOXY
PHILIPPINES OF MY HEART
Philippines: The dawn of Orthodoxy
The Philippines is a group of coral-embroidered islands, which the Pacific Ocean stole from the land of South Asia and made its own. They form a sea carved archipelago of more than 7,000 islands with a population of 95 million people. Its people are characterized by politeness in speech and kindness. Their piety stems from as pure as crystal soul and the religious feeling permeates throughout their society.
The Grace of God, Who knows how to defy the odds, allowed our Orthodox faith, which leads to salvation, to rise in this country as well, about 30 years ago. It all began in 1983, when Vincent Escarcha, a Roman Catholic benectidine abbot from the island of Masbate in Central Philippines, made a trip to the USA. There, on Holy Saturday, he met a large crowd of worshippers outside a Greek Orthodox Church and felt the urge to participate in the Divine Liturgy of the Resurrection. He was touched by the Orthodox worship and began to attend the holy services regularly, which lasted for six months.
His quest for Orthodoxy did not stop there. After seven years of laborious research, studying and penetration into the Orthodox faith, in 1990 along with another 12 souls he accepted the pastoral visit of Metropolitan Dionysios of New Zealand and of the Bishop of Zela at that time, Fr. Sotirios Trampas. In the Continue reading “Philippines: The dawn of Orthodoxy”