by Fr. Vergel Dalangin, SSS
The novitiate house of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament (SSS) or the Sacramentinos celebrated its 60th year last September 29.
The Blessed Sacrament Novitiate (BSN) was founded by the American Blessed Sacrament Fathers on the hills of San Jose del Monte, Bulacan in 1961.
Its purpose from the very beginning is to house the Filipino SSS seminarians during their initial formation. The BSN building is geographically isolated from the rest of the world with the hope that the novices residing there will live undisturbedly the necessary “desert experience” with the Lord who invites them to enter into the silence and solitude of his Heart.
Since its foundation, the BSN was led by an uninterrupted string of superiors and formators, from its first novice master, Fr Daniel Roach, SSS to its present director of novices, Fr Vergel Dalangin, SSS.
At the 60th year of BSN’s canonical erection, Fr Vergel is joined by Fr Manuelino Maamo, SSS and Br Arthur Abalos, SSS in forming twelve novices, hailing from different parts of the country.
Each of these novices will spend two years in BSN to be initiated to the history and spirituality of the Founder, St. Peter Julian Eymard, and the Congregation, its Rule of Life, its traditions and prayer practices, the evangelical counsels, the teachings of the Church. The SSS novice will open himself to the riches of the Word of God and the Eucharist, while immersing himself to two revered prayers of the Church: the Divine Office and the Adoration before the Blessed Sacrament.
He will be given opportunities to test his vocation through prolonged retreats and selected exposures. When proven to bear the signs of vocation to the Congregation’s way of life, the fortunate novice will culminate his stay there with the first profession of the evangelical vows of poverty, chastity and obedience.