From July 4-6, 2019, the outgoing Master of the Order of Preachers, Br. Bruno F. Cadoré, O.P., M.D. made one final stop to a province of the Order, the Province of the Philippines, where he inaugurated the University of Santo Tomas Hospital’s new St. John Paul II Building, toured the new Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati Building, and visited key institutions, like Bahay Dominiko or the Provincialate, Colegio de San Juan de Letran – Manila, and the Arzobispado, where he met His Eminence Luis Antonio Cardinal G. Tagle, D.D.
“I am personally, particularly touched that this occasion is, in a way, the end of my term,” said Br. Cadoré at the start of his homily on July 4. It was under Cadoré’s leadership that the Order of Preachers welcomed its 8th centenary, in 2016, and when UST welcomed its Quadricentennial (2011) and Neocentennial (2012).
As UST Grand Chancellor, it was under Cadoré that the University’s administration was finally turned over to the Dominican Province of the Philippines. In 2014, he also saw the revision and implementation of the most recent version of the General Statutes of the University, akin to the constitution of the University.
UST Rector fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P., PhD thanked the Master of the Order for being very supportive and patient as the University undertook its projects and expansion efforts. The St. John Paul II Building was one of such projects.
For his part, Dominican Province of the Philippines Prior Provincial fr. Napoleon B. Sipalay, Jr., O.P., underscored how the Master was not just present, but was physically present and available for many of the Province’s efforts.
The capacity to think and the need to do it together
During his message to the community at UST, Br. Bruno, who is formally called Very Rev. Fr. Bruno F. Cadoré, O.P., MD in UST by virtue of his office as Grand Chancellor, joked that in the Province of the Philippines, he “received a new baptism.”
Br. Bruno, a medical doctor specializing in bioethics prior to becoming a Dominican priest, emphasized that in universities most especially, “we must believe in one’s capacity to think for himself and herself, and we need to think together for us to achieve true community.”
In an exclusive interview with the University’s Communications Bureau, the outgoing Master of the Order said that he is personally amazed at God’s creativity, which is seen in how the Lord “gives unity in all this diversity,” which he said is important, especially because “there is a risk to always want to be different.” The Master emphasized that “we must find something common in all this diversity and make something together because we are a community.”
The faith that is present
Br. Bruno expressed appreciation at how “faith is very present in the Philippines.” Having visited the country several times during his term, the Master congratulated his brothers and sisters in the Dominican Province of the Philippines, for the work they do both in the mainland and the mission areas, where the “brothers minister to the sometimes forgotten people [in the Isla de Babuyanes and Camiguin missions].”
As is customary for the Order, the Master was accompanied by companions, who are also officials of the Generial Curia (the Order’s highest governing body). Joining him were the Socius (Companion) for Intellectual Life, Br. Pablo Sicouly, O.P.; Socius for Asia-Pacific, Br. Gerard Francisco P. Timoner III, O.P., who is also from the Province of the Philippines; and Procurator-General Br. Benjamin Earl, O.P.
Br. Sicouly and Br. Earl, who visited the Philippines for the first time, went around the University and visited the Museum, Center for Campus Ministry, Library, and the Communications Bureau. Br. Sicouly also visited the UST Sta. Rosa campus, as well as the new Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati, O.P. Building, which will house the UST Senior High School’s Grade 11 students starting this August.