About 68 priests from the dioceses of Dumaguete in Negros Oriental, San Carlos in Occidental, and other religious congregations, paid their last respects to the late Rev. Monsignor Bienvenido Antonio Escalambre Vicente, who was laid to rest yesterday afternoon.
Msgr. Gamaliel Tulabing, administrator of the Diocese of Dumaguete, officiated at the concelebrated funeral mass at the St. Catherine of Alexandria Cathedral in the city.
Vicente, 77, died of a lingering illness on May 21 at the Holy Child Hospital in Dumaguete. He had served various assignments and positions in the Diocese, since he was ordained to the priesthood on June 17, 1966 in Logroño, Spain.
In his homily, Msgr. Candelario Catubig fondly recalled his high school days at the St. Joseph Seminary where Vicente was then assigned. The late monsignor was a dedicated person and loved seminarians even though he was strict with them, Catubig said of Vicente.
Msgr. Julito Cortes, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Cebu, who had served for so many years in the Diocese of Dumaguete, said that wearing the cassock all the time was the trademark of Vicente, and that it deflected possible enticements from the worldly life.
Cortes, who offered a mass in last Monday’s wake, said Vicente was his mentor at the Saint Joseph Seminary. “He lived a simple life that earned the respect and admiration of many”.
Catubig said the diocese has lost a great priest, but told the bereaved family that while death is painful for those left behind, it is also a new and purified life for Vicente “who is now enjoying the company of his parents and Creator”.
The late monsignor was born in Bayawan City, Negros Oriental, on December 11, 1934, to couple Juan Vicente and Trinidad Escalambre, both now deceased. After the funeral mass, Vicente was laid to rest at the Dumaguete Memorial Park.*JFP
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