Fr. Joselin C. Gonda, Parish Priest and Rector of the National Shrine of Saint Padre Pio in Sto. Tomas, Batangas, spearheaded the Organizational Meeting of Confraternity of Padre Pio Groups on June 16, 2018 at the Divine Mercy Sanctuary for Pilgrims of the Shrine. There were around 600 people who attended the gathering coming from the different dioceses. His Excellency Archbishop Ramon C. Arguelles, D.D. gave an inspirational message to the members and stressed out that "heaven is more valuable than anything in this world."
Bro. Jesus N. Matias, OFS, author of the books, "Thirty Days with Lolo Kiko", winner of the 2016 Cardinal Sin Catholic Book Awards as Best Book in Spirituality, "Mahal Din Kita, Panginoon!" and "Praying with Padre Pio Part 1, 2and 3" talked on how the members can follow the good examples of Saint Padre Pio and how they can live out the Franciscan sprirituality. The statutes of the confraternity were explained by Fr. John Carlo Ma. Rosales, FFI. Afterwards, Fr. Joselin C. Gonda together with Archbishop Ramon C. Arguelles, D.D., other diocesan priests and lay ministers distributed scapulars and prayer books to the registered members.
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