by: Fr. Julieto Casapao, SMA

I am a missionary. As a missionary, it is important for me to remember the basic foundation of my calling, “Called as disciple of Jesus from the margin to the margins.”  It is God’s work that people and nations may find fulfilment of life in Him.  It is a challenge to follow Jesus to the Galilee of my life.
            Ministry involves knowing what I should do and to humbly accept myself and my calling, consecrated to do on what I am called for and not what I want to do. Commitment is an act of faith, a communion with others for a common goal and purpose.  Pastoral Leadership is to be involve in the life of the people and to empower people by formation of faith to clarify the Christian vision and mission. As a Minister, a servant leader is a significant image that is close to the life of the people. Retelling the stories in the scripture is a way of relating my experience and social reality to biblical ancestors.  Scripture truly speaks to the present life of people, in troubles and in peace, in depression and in hope, in hunger and in abundance.
            It is important for me to know the pastoral priorities that will guide me in my ministry.  Discipleship in following Jesus to Galilee is a constant reminder.  It is a radar in my ministry on the ways of Jesus Christ who is close to the poor and marginalized. As a Minister, living in a community I have to acknowledge that may attitude towards them is within my control. As a Minister, my human tendencies will be my challenge. I have to give respect to the commitment I made with the church, with SMA, with the community and with God. 
            As a Minister, it is important for me to listen and understand people of different culture and tradition and their stories. As I listen and understand them, I will be able to tell them the story and message of the Scriptures. In building a community of faith, I should find way to incorporate the message of the scripture to the people’s life, culture, norms and values. As a Minister, it is important for me to promote pastoral goals and plans which will respond to the present context of the people. Parish programs need to accommodate the reality of the people, to freely commit themselves in the practicing the Christian faith. 
            I ask God to give me courage to commit myself in working with the people of different culture and tradition.  I prayed for enlightenment to humbly accept my limitations and to continue to nourish the grace that formed my personality to be an effective Minister and disciple of Jesus Christ.   I believe nothing escapes from God’s loving concern, God is present in all creation.