The first-of-its-kind BCBP USA Grand Gathering on October 10, 2009, saw the installation of BCBP Southern California (SoCal) Outreach as a Chapter, the first ever outside Philippine shores. As the 65th chapter of BCBP, BCBP SoCal Governance Team is composed of the following: Chapter Head, Dito de la Cerna; Mission Director, Rusty Carluen; Formation Director, Lib Madamba; Program and Services Director, Polet Tiano; Unit Heads, Hermes Quijada and Carlos Gorospe; Treasurer, Ed Obra; West Covina Mission Team Head, Edwin Dimaculangan.
The whole day event, held at Mary, Star of the Sea Parish Auditorium in San Pedro, California, kicked off with a Grand Breakfast, which was attended by more than two hundred guests and members. The guest couple sharers were Larry Veloso, BCBP National President and his wife Dedit.
A two-part retreat conducted by Father Herbert Schneider for BCBP Southern California and Northern California members followed thereafter. Then, a Holy Mass was held at 5PM prior to the installation rites proclaiming BCBP SoCal Outreach as a Chapter.
BCBP President Larry Veloso gave the opening message during the Chapter Installation. Bro Manny Jimenez, Area Managing Director – South Luzon announced the official appointments with Jun Obra, RCD – South Manila, handing over the appointment letters to each governance team member. Fr Schneider then prayed over the new Governance Team. The installation was witnessed by members and guests from the US and the Philippines headed by Bro Louie and Sis Lilli Morales, BCBP Alabang.
To cap the event was a Grand Fellowship for members and guests who were treated to a sumptuous dinner and non-stop dance music by the BCBP SoCal Music Ministry, which transformed itself into a pop-rock band.
As the 65th chapter, BCBP Southern California USA holds the distinction of having the most diverse membership profile representing Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao regions. No other BCBP chapter is endowed with such richness in regional diversity making it a microcosm of the BCBP communities in the Philippines. But what is even more unique with BCBP SoCal was the immense struggle it faced to take root and thrive in such a vastly complex and multi-faceted environment such as America.
BCBP SoCal’s American journey towards becoming a full-fledged BCBP chapter is a story wrought with unprecedented personal and collective sacrifice from among its ranks. And through it all, what makes the struggle so gloriously fruitful is the fact that GOD always makes a way when there seems to be no way.
A community of business people and professionals whose vision is to bring Christ into the marketplace and to win the marketplace for Christ, BCBP continues to break new grounds in the American marketplace. –Polet Tiano, BCBP SoCal
View more pictures in the Gallery/Photos.