After World Youth Day Manila (1995), one of the most often asked questions was: “So what now?” My answer was simple: “We wait. The time of gestation has begun. When a seed is sown, we can only water it and wait until the first signs of new life makes its way out of the ground.”
I guess the same thing applies to any event where the gospel is sown. You know how the parable goes
“The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed upon the ground, and should sleep and rise night and day, and the seed should sprout and grow, he knows not how. The earth produces of itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.” (Mark 4:26-29)
Right now I am like a farmer waiting for seeds to sprout. Last Sunday we had our 77th Parish Renewal Experience with a large group of thirty-five graduating from it. I am especially interested in the group because some of those belonging to it are from the BECs we have established at Maligaya V and VI. I see them particularly as possible co-workers in those areas of the parish.
PREX Batch 76, the group that assisted the lead couple in facilitating the two-day sessions are mostly young people who are already members of our more established groups, the Cursillo, Kawan and the MGCP Youth Council among others. Most of these are already active and productive members of the parish, so I don’t really worry about them that much. Still, we will have to look after them and make sure that like salt, they continue to be “salty” and have a presence that contributes to the growth of the Church, albeit, silently.
Many of those who have undergone the MGCP PREX continue to help the Secretariat accomplish its task of organizing the parish renewal program. They come to assist as speakers, prayer warriors or table helpers. They are like the good soil that are now bearing fruit. Others have come and gone, but these have stayed in spite of the difficulties that they have been undergoing in their own personal lives.
I have written elsewhere how the PREX is the most natural means for the creation of basic cell communities in the parish. For this reason too I am like a farmer whose main work is to create spaces for these cell communities. The work greatly involves organization. When the cell groups begin to meet, the next level is to make sure that they have cell leaders who can continue overseeing them. When the cell groups begin to yield people who would like to actively participate in the life of the Church, then we will have to be prepared to meet the generous offering of their time and services. Even at the level of organization and programming, we cannot frustrate the Holy Spirit who continues to raise up co-workers for the Body of Christ.
Right now, I can feel the ground heaving and rising with new energy. When the seeds that the Lord have sown begin to push upwards, we should be prepared to water them and keep the soil where they grow healthy. The Lord gives life, but we, like Paul are the workers who look after God’s field (cf. 1 Cor. 3: 6–9).
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