Friday, August 26, 2011

Auxiliary Bishop of Nueva Segovia

Auxiliary Bishop of Nueva Segovia
Titular Bishop of Basti

Born on December 29, 1963
Ordained Priest for Nueva Segovia on December 1, 1988
Appointed Bishop by Pope Benedict XVI on July 15, 2011
Appointed Auxiliary Bishop of Nueva Segovia on July 15, 2011
Ordained Bishop on August 26, 2011


Thanks be to God for the ordination of Bishop David William Antonio at the Conversion of St. Paul Metropolitan Cathedral in Vigan City, Philippines. Bishop William is auxiliary bishop of Nueva Segovia, assisting Archbishop Ernesto Salgado.

I am personally thankful to God for the gift of Bishop William to the Church not only in Nueva Segovia, but in the whole of Northern Luzon. Then Fr. William was our baccalaureate mass presider when we graduated at the Immaculate Conception Minor Seminary. I too had to the blessing of having him as formator, professor and rector at the Immaculate Conception School of Theology. When I was ordained for the Archdiocese, I had the privilege of working with him at the Chancery, and in the Steering Committee of the Priests' Assembly. I am here in the US working for a Licentiate degree in Systematic Theology very much through his prodding and support.

God has favored his people in Nueva Segovia with the gift of this new bishop, whose person is remarkable.

Bishop William chose as his episcopal motto "Ut vitam habeant" - "That they may have life, and have it more abundantly." from John 10:10. His choice reflects his approach to life and ministry - both are to be a gift of life for others.

Here is his coat-of-arms, and the explanation, courtesy of the Nueva Segovia Chancery:

The Motto, “UT VITAM HABEANT” (“…That they may have life, and have it more abundantly.”), is taken from the Gospel of St. John 10:10, where the Lord Jesus speaks of himself as the Good Shepherd. This figure represents the primary image to which the new Bishop and every Bishop must constantly refer. Chosen to shepherd the Lord’s flock, he is a pastor, a servant of Christ and steward of the mysteries of God (LG 21). The Bishop is a caring pastor who, configured to Christ by his holiness of life, expends himself generously for the flock. He knows his sheep by name (John 10:14), walks ahead of them (John 10:4), leads them to verdant pasture and lays down his life for them (John 10:15).

“UT VITAM HABEANT” expresses too the core-mission of Jesus, namely, the proclamation of the Kingdom of God or God’s salvation, understood essentially as a “New world or universe” liberated from all evils and filled with abundant life-blessings for all of humanity and the whole of creation. This is the same mission entrusted by the Lord to His Church until the final consummation of this kingdom at the end of history; a mission which the Bishop firmly commits himself to.

The Marian Symbol (Marian Monogram with a Crown) at the top portion speaks of the significance and influence of the Blessed Mother in the spiritual life and ministry of the new Bishop. It likewise calls to mind the institutions of learning, religious congregations and communities dedicated to or under the patroness of the Immaculate Conception of Mary – all of which have been instrumental in the bishop’s formation, education and ministry.

The Black bird with Bread on the right side reminds us of St. Benedict of Nursia, acknowledged as Father of Western Monasticism. It signifies the Bishop’s devotion to the saint as well as his interest in the monastic spirituality of Saint Benedict.

The Fleur-de-lis against a black backdrop on the left portion of the shield is reminiscent of St. Dominic of Guzman, whose devotion to the Blessed Mother, especially to Our Lady of the Holy Rosary is legendary. As a symbol of purity and chastity the fleur-de-lis is an iconographic attribute of Virgin Mary. St. Dominic is the patron of the parish/town where the new bishop was born and raised.


Laudetur Iesus Christus. Semper laudetur.