ST. THOMAS FEAST: ‘Be firm in your faith in times of disbelief,’ acting rector tells Thomasians

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(Photo by Camille Abiel H. Torres/ The Varsitarian)

THOMASIANS need to be firm in their faith and personal devotion during the “age of disbelief,” Acting Rector Fr. Richard Ang, O.P. said during the University Mass in celebration of the feast of St. Thomas Aquinas at the Santisimo Rosario Parish on Monday.

Ang, the concurrent vice rector, said three values could be drawn from the life of St. Thomas: steadfast faith, gratitude and childlike wonder.

“[I]f we stop standing by our ideals then we begin to lose our Catholic identity, [because] public figures and some young people question our beliefs that they find too good to be true and our values that they find too outdated to be relevant,” he said in his homily.

Echoing St. Thomas, Ang emphasized the value of gratitude for the gift of faith and blessings in life.

Kung minsan nakalilimot tayo. Marunong pa ba tayong magpasalamat? Tumanaw ng utang na loob? (There are times that we forget. Do we still know how to be grateful?)”

Preserving Catholic ideals are important in responding to God’s mission, he said. Such ideals include philanthropy and volunteerism, which never run out of style, he said.

Ang also urged the Thomasians to be childlike and allow themselves to become “lifelong learners.”

St. Thomas Aquinas is UST’s patron saint and guardian. He is one of the 33 Doctors of the Church and is hailed as the Catholic Church’s greatest theologian.

Ang noted that St. Thomas has three titles: “Common Doctor” for his instruction in theology and philosophy that has served the whole Church; “Angelic Doctor” for his treatise on angelic creation; and “Doctor of Humanities” for his readiness to receive the values of all cultures.

Not many people know that St. Thomas composed many eucharistic hymns still used today, as well as the Mass of Corpus Christi, Ang said.

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