FORMER Secretary-General Fr. Rodel Aligan, O.P. was elected prior of the St. Thomas Aquinas Convent last Dec. 8.

Fr. Aligan succeeded former Rector Fr. Rolando dela Rosa, O.P., who served as prior for three years.

“It’s a great responsibility to lead the spiritual life of the Dominican community and the University. You need to be a leader and a servant,” said Fr. Aligan.

Before he was elected prior, Fr. Aligan had been appointed as vice-rector for religious affairs of the University last Oct. 16.

The position is one of the new administrative positions in the University as provided by the revised statutes of UST.

According to the statutes, the vice rector for religious affairs is in charge of the instruction in theology and professional Ethics in all faculties, colleges, and schools, except the Ecclesiastical Faculties, as well as the religious and apostolic activities in the University.

In addition, Fr. Aligan is supervising the community services of the University. The Office for Community Development, the Institute of Religion, and the Center for Campus Ministry are directly under his new office.

The new prior told the Varsitarian that his two positions need to be balanced.

“When you’re the prior, you always have to be in the convent and be visible in the community. On the other hand, being the vice rector for religious affairs of the University, you need to be out for the community services,” he said.

Fr. Aligan obtained his bachelor, licentiate, and doctorate degrees in Sacred Theology at the UST Ecclesiastical Faculties. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1981.

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He was prefect of Theologians at the UST Central Seminary from 1981-2001, regent of the Faculty of Arts and Letters from 1991-1995, and University secretary general from 1995-2001.

Fr. Aligan is a member of the Provincial Council of the Dominican Province of the Philippines, consultant for Religious Education of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), and teaches at the Ecclesiastical Faculties, Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, and the Graduate School.

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