By Fred C. Fuertes
Maintaining rapport with the church, Maribojoc Mayor Leoncio Evasco Jr. led local officials in a ceremonial welcome for newly-installed parish priest and parish vicar-fathers Warren Abarquez and Faustino Bisol last Tuesday at the Maribojoc Sports and Cultural Center.
In his speech, Mayor Evasco, once a priest himself, said he understands the routine of reassigning clergymen as a protocol.
He said he recalled his priestly days when he was reassigned to Baclayon where the then Fr. Juan De Dios Pueblos (now bishop of the Diocese of Butuan) delivered him to the Immaculate Concepcion Parish on board a motorcycle.
"That's the same transportation I took when I was reassigned to Dauis. This time, it was Fr. Boboy Cuorso who gave me the tilt," Evasco said.
The mayor was serving as priest in Davao when he went underground during the Marcos regime.
There was a controversy surrounding every assignment. Being assistant Diocesan Social Action the late Bishop Manuel MascariÃ±as to troubleshoot, together with Fr. Neri, the feud that existed between the parishioners and their parish vicar whom the accused of selling antique church properties, according to Evasco.
He was also sent to Dauis to help solve, together with the then Fr. Cirilo Darunday Jr., the animosity that existed between Mayor Carmelo Cimafranca and Fr. Romeo Dompor.
Later, since nobody wanted to be assigned to Ba-ang, Evasco volunteered to be reassigned to that rural area.
On the same occasion, Mayor Evasco presented to Fr. Abarquez, the salient features of the LGU economic profile and introduced his vice mayor, the Sangguniang Bayan members, barangay captains and kagawads, department heads and chiefs of offices who attended the welcome ceremony.
"I welcome you here because starting today, you are my constituents just as I am also your parishioner as far as church-related functions are concerned," he stressed.
Though the Constitution mandates the separation of the church and state, Evasco explained the importance of teamwork between the two for the attainment of progress of the community.
"We serve the same people- -the Maribojocanons," the former Davao City executive chief of staff pointed out.
In his response, Fr. Abarquez expressed elation over the municipal government's hospitality and vowed to support the endeavors of the town chief executive in attaining progress.
"I can learn to love you," Abar quez clinched his message.
For his part, Fr. Bisol- -his assistant parish priest- -quipped that "while I was called Nonoy in the seminary, you can call me here Fr. Tino, short for "Santino", the top-rated TV teleserye.
Former municipal councilor Isidro Mirontos, PPC chair, delivered the welcome message in behalf of the local church functionaries, while BEC coordinator Gilda Veloso-Bersalona introduced the PPC and PFC officers, chapel presidents and officers of mandated religious organizations in attendance.
Vice-Mayor Gabino Redulla welcomed the guests and general public, while Senior Municipal Councilor Fructuoso Redulla delivered the closing statements.
The famous Punta Cruz cultural collective opened the program with their doxology, while the LGU ladies and the LGU choir rendered dance and choral numbers.
The Lone lady municipal councilor, Cecilia Pantollana-Auntentico, hosted the program.Linkback: https://tubagbohol.mikeligalig.com/index.php?topic=20607.0