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  #11  
Old 9th November 2006, 02:52 PM
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Since most don't understand Tagalog, could you please translate the organizations name.
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  #12  
Old 9th November 2006, 03:05 PM
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Banal Na Pag-aaral means Holy Studies.

I'm running late for a meeting right now and will be back to answer the other questions as best as I can.
  #13  
Old 9th November 2006, 03:42 PM
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Again this is all my pov, from my personal experiences in the BNP I see it as a way to bring people back to God. Some of my friends, myself included had very little to no faith in our teen years, then we went got involved with the BNP it changed our lives and opened our hearts to something else, God.

I believed in God when I was younger but never really cared to do much except pray once in a while and never even went to Mass on Sunday's because I was too lazy. After getting involved with the group I started to go back to church, I started doing weekly or monthly confessions, I started to love my family, things that I never did before or wanted to.

The mission of the BNP is to bring people back to God, and that's what it does. Many of my friends who have been caught up in drugs, gangs and whatever else the world has to throw at them are now very devout Catholics because of their involvement with the BNP.

The "ban" of the Banal Na Pag-aaral was a misunderstanding that started in the Philippines. There was a group called Banal Na Pagsasanay (spelling?) that was started by a lady who went to one of the Banal Na Pag-aaral retreats and decided to start her own group. The Catholic Church though mistook the Banal Na Pag-aaral for the same group the lady started.
  #14  
Old 9th November 2006, 04:33 PM
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What does BNP do to bring people to the faith that you previously found lacking?

Do they have a website that is in english?

Is BNP in your area in good standing with the local Bishop?

Are priests involved?
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  #15  
Old 9th November 2006, 04:55 PM
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The BNP showed me that God is really there, that He exists everywhere around us. I'm sure there are other groups and movements that do the same, but for me I was fortunate enough to have been introduced to the BNP and now I try to share what I've experienced with God's love to other people. Like I said before, I never went to Mass, maybe once or twice a year and it was just being there physically. After my retreat I wanted to go to church every Sunday and sometimes everyday if I could, I was able to listen and feel the Gospel, I was able to try to live my life according to the Gospel, I was able to see that Mass was more than just spending an hour in a church singing songs ... after going to my retreat I was able to see that Mass is about the sacrifice that He did for all of us and that He is really present during the Mass.

It seems that I can't post the url here since I don't have that many posts, but we do have an official site which is currently under construction bnpnewyork.org and there is also an unofficial website that I have for informational purposes as well as a place for the other youth to share their experiences and what they have learned at bnpnyc.us

I'm not sure as to the status of the BNP with the Bishop here, but I do know that there are many priests who are in support of the BNP and know that the teachings are the same of the Catholic church.
  #16  
Old 9th November 2006, 06:29 PM
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Thank you for your reply, Simon. Yes, several things about the retreat seemed unusual, at least to me. For one thing, the facilitators presented themselves as "Brother X" or "Sister Y", and it wasn't until later that it became clear that they were not members of any Catholic religious orders.

The retreat lasted about eight hours. We were separated from our spouses during this time, and not allowed to communicate with them. The venue for the retreat was kept uncomfortably cold. Of the six instructors who spoke, only one entertained questions and she cut the Q&A short when she became uncomfortable. None of the speakers provided any references for their assertions.

The fifth speaker, an elderly woman, recounted a vision allegedly perceived by a mystic of some kind (again without references), a vision of Christ's crucifixion and the time immediately following from Mary's perspective. Halfway through this presentation a weepy Tagalog song started playing over the PA system, and by the end most of the women were in tears. We were then led off to a dark room, to kneel in front of a lighted statue of the Pieta, and after a few minutes a male voice led us in a "repeat after me" as he pledged his whole life and being to Mary. I don't know his exact words. We were led back to the first room and a different speaker gave a history of the Fatima apparitions.

Now, since I'm not Catholic I really can't comment on the theology of all of this, although much of it did seem innapropriate to me. One thing I saw that did conflict with Catholic teaching, AFAIK, was that one of the facilitors promoted indifferentism. Mostly it was the method of instruction which I had difficulty with, and that the facilitators seemed to be claiming authority by identifying themselves as "Brother" and "Sister". And they should have given references and entertained questions.
  #17  
Old 9th November 2006, 07:44 PM
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No problem hopefully I can clear some things up. The "brother" and "sister" thing is because we see each other as a Brother in Christ or a Sister in Christ, that goes for those in the BNP and those who have never went to a BNP function.

I'm assuming you went to a Marian Retreat in Michigan (is that where you're from?). I'm sure sure how they do things there, although I have gone to some of their retreat - but not specifically the Marian retreat in Michigan - here in NY we don't regularly call each other by "Brother" or "Sister," I notice that it's mostly "Tita, Tito, Kuya and Ate" to go along with the Filipino tradition of how we refer to those who are older than us.

I believe that the "Brother" and "Sister" is a matter of individual preference. Some people might refer to themselves as "Brother John" or "Sister Jane" but in no means are they trying to say that they are part of any religious order. Again I think it comes from the "Brother in Christ" and the "Sister in Christ."

I deal mainly with the youth, but have been part of the adult retreats too. For the youth retreats we have had retreats where there were both young men and young women, and some that were just for the young women or young men. From what we've learned from retreat to retreat is that when you mix the young men and the young women together, they are very easily distracted by the other sex, and sometimes when the opposite sex is around some people just don't want to open themselves up. With the youth retreats, if we have both the young men and young women, we try as much as possible to keep them segregated (sitting on different sides of the room during the speakers, not sitting together when they are in the chapel, etc.) so that they can keep with the prayerful and solmenity of the retreat - instead of trying to talk to the girls and getting their numbers.

Again I'm not sure as to the specifics of your retreat, all men, all women or mixed, so if you could fill me in I think I might be able to answer some more of your concerns.

As for the temperature in the place, it might have just been the place itself? Here in NY we try to keep it as comfortable as possible and if someone were to ask us to turn the heat up, or turn the a/c up we would try to accomodate them without making the others uncomfortable.

I believe that the different topics that they talk about during the Marian retreats are derived from different Catholic books and some books that are stories of Mary ... I'm not sure of the titles, but if I can get a list of them, I'll let you know.

The portion where you were led into the chapel with the Pieta is one of the solemn portions of the retreat where you get to meditate and pray. The music is there to help you focus on the Pieta and is also there to help you meditate and not let the other things going on around you distract you - it's basically your private time with Mary and her Son in the chapel.

Indifferentism ... hmmm what did that person say in regard to it? The BNP is open to all religions, you don't have to be Catholic to go, but we let the ones going that the retreat is based on the Catholic teachings. Maybe it was that one person's opinion??? Not sure.

Do you have the details of your retreat? Year, number and where it was held? Maybe I can find out more information for you?

When it comes to addressing the questions, I've found that here in NY when there were questions in regards to the references and in regards to other parts of the talks it was answered.

Hopefully this answered some of your questions
  #18  
Old 9th November 2006, 08:57 PM
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Hello.... I happen to just come across this thread. I can type as much as I can in this forum what my experience is in the BNP but none will probably be able to satisfy your curiousity or inquiry about the group. Each person are given different charisms and has different relationship with God. In the case of the banning. This is nothing new in the Catholic faith. The devotion to the Divine Mercy was also banned in the past prior to its approval. It is true that there are many questions people ask about the group however, their judgement is not conclusive. This case still remains open since the "visions" or "manifestations" are still occuring. Isn't it that until now the Blessed Virgin is still allegedly appearing in Medjugorje? Let us keep in mind that this occurence is also not fully backed by the Church since the apparitions are still going on. Mother Church is very cautious when to pass judgement. Bishops in each diocese do whatever they can to try and maintain their own. However, let us also keep in mind that there are times when they too may not recognize the workings of the Holy Spirit. For example the newly canonized saint, Mother Theodor Guerin who resisted her bishop and pursuid her desire to find a college for women. Anyway, this is a subject that cannot be answered thoroughly and in appropriately in this forum. I do know for a fact that there are many bishops and Cardinals who are in support of this group. Take for instance Cardinal Vidal of the Archdiocese of Cebu. He even allows BNP members to have nocturnal adoration in his own residence. Another factor that we also have to keep in mind is the cultural expression. Filipinos tend to be overdramatic and sometimes mix superstitions in their expression of their faith.
  #19  
Old 9th November 2006, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by sraymundo View Post
The "brother" and "sister" thing is because we see each other as a Brother in Christ or a Sister in Christ, that goes for those in the BNP and those who have never went to a BNP function.

[That's fine. But you can see how an uninformed person, seeing a flyer advertising a religious event hosted by Sr. So-and-so, might be led to believe she's a nun.]

From what we've learned from retreat to retreat is that when you mix the young men and the young women together, they are very easily distracted by the other sex, and sometimes when the opposite sex is around some people just don't want to open themselves up.

[Yes, well, we were all adults, primarily married couples, and I think you'll agree that it can be distressing to hear one's wife weeping and not to be able to go to her.]

I believe that the different topics that they talk about during the Marian retreats are derived from different Catholic books and some books that are stories of Mary ... I'm not sure of the titles, but if I can get a list of them, I'll let you know.

[Thank you.]

The portion where you were led into the chapel with the Pieta is one of the solemn portions of the retreat where you get to meditate and pray. The music is there to help you focus on the Pieta and is also there to help you meditate and not let the other things going on around you distract you - it's basically your private time with Mary and her Son in the chapel.

[Was the "repeat after me" thing typical?]

Indifferentism ... hmmm what did that person say in regard to it? The BNP is open to all religions, you don't have to be Catholic to go, but we let the ones going that the retreat is based on the Catholic teachings. Maybe it was that one person's opinion??? Not sure.

[Me neither]

Do you have the details of your retreat? Year, number and where it was held? Maybe I can find out more information for you?

[It was held last February, I think, in Port Huron, MI.]

When it comes to addressing the questions, I've found that here in NY when there were questions in regards to the references and in regards to other parts of the talks it was answered.

[I'm glad you had a better experience with this aspect.]

Hopefully this answered some of your questions

[Yes, thank you very much]
Sorry, but I guess I don't quite have the quote thing figured out yet .
  #20  
Old 9th November 2006, 11:17 PM
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Banal na Pag-aaral
Sounds like something Gandalf might fight in the mines of Moria.
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