Trivia about the Missionary Catechists of St. Therese of the Infant Jesus
“1 Seek Your Face, 0 Lord.” These words of the Psalmist (Ps. 27:8) reflect the unfathomable desire of a simple priest to seek the face of Jesus. He found it in the face of the poor, not the materially destitute, but those hungry and thirsty for an intimacy with a loving God.
This simple, gifted and prophetic priest, who later became the First Bishop of the Diocese of Lucena, was Bishop Alfredo Ma. A. Obviar. He saw the need for catechists to teach Christian Doctrine in the public schools within his diocese. But the problem of tepidity and tenacity arose among those who volunteered to help him in the work of evangelization. Many left the ministry for various reasons: marriage, further studies and’better-payinq jobs, among others.
To address the problem of losing permanent catechists, Bishop Obviar, inspired by the Holy Spirit and his pastoral obsession with the teaching of catechism, thought of founding a religious congregation. This was the auspicious birth of a new religious institute, the Missionary Catechists of Saint Therese of the Infant Jesus (MCST), named after Saint Therese, the patroness of the missions. It was on August 12, 1958 in the town of San Narciso, Quezon that the prayerful aspiration of Bishop Obviar began to be realized.
The MCST will be exactly fifty (50) years on August 12, 2008, fifty years faithful to the Church in its ministry of evangelization through catechesis in all levels: children, youth and adults; reaching out to different places, urban and rural areas and wherever catechesis and other services are needed.