WELCOME AND TURN-OVER CEREMONY OF BISHOP CIRIACO Q. FRANCISCO
The constituency of the Davao Episcopal Area gave a warm and enthusiastic welcome to Bishop Ciriaco Q. Francisco and Mrs. Crestetita Francisco through a “Welcome and Turn-over Ceremony” last January 13, Sunday, at the Cathedral: The United Methodist Church in 104 C.M. Recto St. Davao City.
The more than 350 church workers and lay people who came from places as far as Agusan Sur, Misamis Occidental, Bukidnon, North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Sarangani, Davao Oriental, Davao Norte, Davao Sur and Davao City expressed their support to the leadership of the our new bishop not only through their prayers but also their willingness and dedication to join Bishop Francisco and his cabinet in developing the Davao Episcopal Area churches dynamic, fruitful and vital congregations.
Bishop Cerrie Francisco and his family comes from the province of Bulacan so many of the church workers and lay people who were present were meeting him for the first time. Many of them were impressed by the humility and openness of Bishop Cerrie and Mrs. Crestetita Francisco.
The welcome event included a “Covenant Service” where Both Bishop Cerrie and the church workers and lay people promised to work together for the glory and kingdom of God. A part of the covenant made are as follows:
With God’s help, I promise faithfully to hear and to proclaim God’s Word, and rightly administer the Sacraments, as your pastor and servant.
With God’s help we promise to join with you in the life of praise and thanksgiving, and in the faithful use of the means of grace that god has given us.
By the grace of Christ, I promise to be among you as a teacher of the faith, a pastor of souls, and a means to the unity of the body of Christ.
By the grace of Christ, we promise to join with you in the life of learning, in the nurturing of God’s people and in the seeking of that oneness in Christ which is Christ’s gift to us.
In the power of the Holy Spirit, I promise to be for you a means of reconciliation and healing, that all those who are burdened or oppressed may be made whole and able to rejoice in their new life in Jesus Christ.
In the power of the Holy Spirit, we promise to be, with you, faithful witnesses,, serving justice, showing mercy, and in all things proclaiming the acceptable year of the Lord
In the name of Jesus Christ, Head of the Church, I gladly assume, with you and among, the ministry of the Word, Sacrament, and Order, of pastoral oversight, government, and service.
Strengthened by the love of God and the remembrance of my consecration to the episcopacy, I am resolved to served faithfully and well the congregations and people of the Davao Episcopal Area as bishop, pastor, and friend.
On behalf of the congregations and people, we receive you, Bishop Ciriaco Francisco, with joy and thanksgiving, as our bishop and pastor. We pledge to you our prayers, our loyalty, and our support as you lead us in the ministry of reconciliation entrusted to us all.
The applause and words of welcome that followed this covenant gave Bishop Cerrie opened very good start of his leadership at the Davao Episcopal Area annual conferences.