Monday, April 22, 2024


 (Posted by Frenchie)

Yesterday, Sunday the 21st of April 2024 was the feast of the Good Shepherd. We were reminded according to John 10, 11-12-13 the following " I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the Shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

Of course, due to my sarcastic nature I saw the immediate irony, which probably flew well over the heads of the Chancery's current renters. Just two days prior, we were treated to the final decision about the latest re-positioning of our Pastors (Shepherds) across our island parishes. Like in the famous Arthur Conan Doyle's detective books Sherlock Holmes, what was obvious was in fact not what was done, but rather what was not done.

The proverbial nose in the middle of the face is the lack of change at the Cathedral, and in Tamuning's St Anthony/St Victor where nothing is progressing. More of the same. The Devil's advocates are already making the argument that the Cathedral needed continuity. That argument in itself flies in the face of the reasons advanced for the re-assignment at other parishes. As the infamous mayor of Merizo declared: "what is good for the goose is good for the gander"

Another obvious taboo subject is the continuity at the bastions of the NCW of Agat, Barrigada and Santa Bernadita in Yigo, where we are treated to a musical chair charade, with one neo out, one neo in, de facto giving the sect unabridged territorial exclusivity. Here we not only do not have shepherds protecting the flock, we instead  have wolves inside the corral itself, all this with the complicity of the Apostolic administrator.

Despite these obvious and glaring shortcomings, there are some interesting moves with potentially good shepherds having the opportunity to show their mettle. For newer potentially promising shepherd, we can note Fr Richard Kidd in Santa Barbara, who has a great opportunity to rectify the disastrous administration of Fr Bien, and bring back God at the center of the parish. At our Lady of Lourdes in Yigo, Fr Val inherit a well oiled parish with good attendance and in fairly good physical shape despite the challenges. The question shall be will Fr Val be a good shepherd, if he can outgrow his sizeable Ego?

Father Junee has a good opportunity to grow as the good shepherd many people believe he can be in Maina. 

The south is the glimmer of hope here. Long neglected, or fully forgotten in certain cases. Used as an exile during the Apuron reign of corruption, the south is getting some interesting posting. St Joseph in Inajaran gets a true southerner with Fr Paul Gofigan, who has an opportunity to bring back many lapsed Catholics into the fold. Malojloj's San Ysidro  gets the unpredictable dilettante Fr Jucatan, but Merizo  and Umatac get Fr Granado (here a great opportunity to have a pastor in each parish was missed).  Finally Santa Rita will be reassured with Fr Pangan.

The big challenge remains what many call the "mercenaries"; these priests that hail from outside of Guam, that have little interest in their flock, beside getting a green card or a citizenship, and basically assure the minimum service in their parishes. Definitely the type of priests that falls unfortunately in the description of John's reading this past Sunday as "hired hand that cares nothing for his sheep"

In Closing, what we can learn from this latest priest reorganization can be resumed as follow:

1)The two parishes that cater to the self described local elites, are not required to go through the mandatory re-assignment gymnastics, and continue with their corrupted habits, of special privileges, and backroom deals. This is disheartening for many rank and file Catholics around the island, because it confirms the fact that the old Apuron deep state is still alive and well and living in Agana. The obvious danger is that the people "in charge" have not learned about their past mistakes, as highlighted by the likes of Msg Quitagua  and Adrian Cristobal.

2) The Neos are keeping quiet, but they have not slowed down at all. The delegate to the Way, Deacon Martinez has basically done absolutely nothing to keep the Neos to stick to their engagements. They continue their termite work, and the chancery is acting as if nothing is happening.  Further we have been notified that sexual predator on the run, Fr Louis is back in Guam, ( most likely, the prosecuting window  has expired) and ready to return to the fold. Where will Fr Louis end up? Maybe parents of young females should start demanding for answers. Another elephant in the room is the questionable behavior of Fr Harold Prieto towards some of his male contacts. While he is being deployed to the Neo stronghold of Agat, the opportunity for the Chancery to pose some questions, before putting him so close to a school has been lost. I guess time will tell. Yet again one can wonder if any lesson from the past was learned? Or is the hubris around the NCW so thick that our administrator is afraid of making waves? One can really see the gap between an administrator of the caliber of Archbishop Hon, and the likeable but shy and tentative Fr Concovar.

3) Finally the issue of the mercenaries priests is continuing to be ignored, and in some cases just being painted over, to give an impression of action.

While we have made some progress, on a few topics, many of the issues that took root during the Flores and Apuron tenures are still very much alive, and continue not to be addressed. When can we expect the Chancery to take these life altering problems seriously? Your guess is as good as mine.

St Maria Kamalen pray for us.


  1. Yes, it looks like the usual suspects equate running an Archdiocese with sweeping inconveniences under the rug.

  2. Unfortunately, this has been the modus operandi for a very lo g time