New Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Ruben Labajo says he may be assigned in Cebu City
CEBU CITY, Philippines — With Bishop Ruben Labajo’s new role in the Catholic Church as auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Cebu, Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma said the newly-appointed auxiliary bishop should be “more accessible” in Metro Cebu.
“He should be more accessible and Balamban is too far from the other side of Cebu,” Palma told reporters on Friday, August 19, 2022.
The prelate, however, did not divulge yet as to where exactly Bishop Labajo will be transferred as part of his assignment.
Labajo serves as moderator of the team of pastors at the St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Balamban, Cebu, from August 6, 2019, until the present.
The municipality of Balamban, in southwest Cebu, is about 50 kilometers away from Cebu City, through the Transcentral Highway.
Labajo was ordained bishop at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral of San Vitalis on Friday morning, August 19, 2022.
In a separate interview on Friday, Labajo confirmed that many of the priests and bishops are supportive of the suggested transfer to Cebu City.
“Actually, I am happy in my current assignment in Balamban, but the Bishop, most of the priests, they wanted me to be in the City. Where in the City? I don’t know yet,” he told reporters.
“Wa pa ko kahibaw og asa, but maybe I’ll be assigned or transferred here in one of the parishes sa Cebu City,” he added.
Labajo then called on the Cebuano faithful to pray for him as he embarks on his journey as auxiliary bishop. He also displayed confidence that he can fulfill his new duty with the guidance of Palma, his fellow auxiliary bishop of Cebu Most Rev. Midyphil ‘Dodong’ Billones, and the rest of the priests and bishops in the Archdiocese.
He admitted that he was nervous, but he calmed during his episcopal ordination knowing he is entrusting everything to the Lord.
“Nalipay ko kay nahuman na ang seremonyas pero at the same time, naa gihapon ang mga kakulba tungod kay kahibaw ko what’s ahead no. Dako kaayo nga tahas nga gisangon sa akoang abaga, but you know, I just felt confident during the ordination because I entrusted myself, my life, my ministry to God,” he said.
“I-ampo lang ko. Ang mahal nga birhen lang g’yod akoang kadangpan and of course, sa akoa sad nga mga fellow Bishops, labi na ni Archbishop Palma, ni Bishop Dodong ug sa mga Bishop Emeritus. Naa ra man sila nga akong kasumbungan, kapangutan-an,” he added.
Here are some scenes during the Episcopal Ordination of Labajo on August 19, 2022. /rcg (photos by Wenilyn B. Sabalo)
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