Mar. 29, 2023 01:43 PM
DPRM and SSDM staff of Quiapo Church together with their priest-in-charge, Rev. Fr. Hans Magdurulang, Parochial Vicar and Rev. Fr. Rufino C. Sescon Jr., Rector & Parish Priest during the official start of I-Thirst program every Thursday (Photo by Social Communications Ministry (SOCCOMM), Quiapo Church)
On March 23, 2023, the Social Service and Development Ministry—Quiapo Church, with the help of other ministries and volunteers and the Hands to Heaven organization, launched its new program dubbed, “I Thirst-day” dedicated to feeding the soul and stomach of street dwellers around the parish vicinity.
The said program was derived from the inspiration of Rev. Fr. Hans Magdurulang, the priest-in-charge of Social Service and Development – Quiapo Church, to the very words of Jesus Himself while hanging on the cross (John 19:28) or about his presence among the poorest of the poor (Matthew 25:35).
Elders coming in as they are fed and given slippers during the program (Photos by Social Communications Ministry (SOCCOMM), Quiapo Church)
Fr. Jun shared in his homily during the mass dedicated to the inauguration of the program that the mission of every Christian is to give witness to Jesus the Nazarene. He introduced the new project to the faithful and expressed that, through it, the Quiapo Church can respond better to the needs of the homeless brethren so that they may feel the Church’s compassion for them. Afterward, Fr. Hans gave his piece of inspirational message that volunteers and organizers are indeed blessings for the beneficiaries. Nevertheless, the poor and less fortunate are blessing too for the volunteers and organizers as they encounter Christ himself through them.
Rev. Fr. Rufino C. Sescon Jr. and Rev. Fr. Hans Magdurulang giving homily and inspirational messages, respectively, to the beneficiaries of I-Thirst program (Photos by Social Communications Ministry (SOCCOMM), Quiapo Church)
Sixty-three beneficiaries attended the event way bigger than the expected number. Thus, Christ’s presence was very evident in this event. Both the volunteers and the beneficiaries enjoyed each other’s company. Physical Plant Department, Kitchen Department, Caritas et Labora, Finance Department, LBN Foundation, I.T. Department have collaborated in making the said event successful.
According to Saint Mother Teresa, “Not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.“This once-a-week feeding and catechesis for them might not change their state of life totally, but what matters is our effort and love to make them feel that they are part of the Church. They belong to the Family of God, and Christ is their brother.
The treasure of the Church is indeed our poor brothers and sisters, because we see in them the face of the suffering Jesus, and it is the Lord’s face that reflects through them. Thursday is also a significant day in the Church because Jesus established the sacrament of the Eucharist. Before they proceeded with the meal, Jesus washed disciples’ feet and asked them to do the same, which is what exactly Fr. Hans did during the program at least one day a week, the street dwellers will experience being cared for, and at the same time, took the initiative to wash their feet to make them feel comfortable and clean. Sooner or later, we look forward to offering them a full bath. There is service in the Eucharist, the service of Jesus in offering Himself for mankind. Hence, we, too, are called to the same mission: to serve and not be served.
– Jesmon Catacutan | SSDM
The beneficiaries lined up as their feet are washed similar to the washing of the feet of Jesus disciples during the Institution of the Holy Eucharist (Photos by Social Communications Ministry (SOCCOMM), Quiapo Church)