Report and photos by Rochelle Bien of DBP Grail
DBP Grail has been engaged in spiritual and outreach advocacies through the years.
The DBP Grail - photos by Rochelle Bien
The DBP Grail is a non-profit, volunteer, Catholic lay organization committed to bringing the Christian faith to the Development Bank of the Philippines and nearby offices. The Grail, as DBP employees fondly call it, was borne from the immense love for service and the Holy Eucharist of a brilliant but humble woman named Josephine D. Constantino, also known as J.D. Constantino.
In the 1960s, J.D. Constantino, an essayist, literary critic and poet, joined DBP as the Special Assistant to the Chairman and Head of the Training and Manpower Development Unit. She arranged DBP’s first anniversary mass in Makati City with no less than Cardinal Sin officiating the celebration. Afterwards, it was followed by regular first Friday masses in honor of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and daily masses during the Holy Week. Amidst the hustle and bustle of the corporate bank, devoted executives and employees paused and came together to hear mass during their lunch hour. J.D. Constantino later on took vows as a member of the Carmelite order in 1979. As of the writing of this article, she is 103 years old and lives as a cloistered nun as Sister Teresa Joseph Patrick of Jesus and Mary.
What happened in the years following The Grail’s inception was truly inspiring and could have only been possible through God’s providence. Founded on love for service and volunteerism, the Grail continued to grow with more priests coming in to celebrate Holy Mass and benefactors donating images, crucifix, altar linens, vestments, items to be used during the mass and even fresh flowers for the altar. Despite having to cease all activities during the COVID 19 pandemic, the DBP Grail quickly picked up where it left off and resumed masses as soon as prohibitions for community gatherings were lifted.
Today, its activities are now lovingly carried on by twenty-two (22) employees (and counting) under the dedicated leadership of Atty. Lutgarda C. Baquiran-Peralta, herself already a Grail volunteer prior to being its Chairwoman in 2007. By God’s grace, The Grail now holds daily masses with novena prayers for each day at the DBP Auditorium all year round, as well as confessions every first Wednesday of the month. It also arranges other activities of the faithful such as Lenten and Advent recollections, bible studies, block rosaries and Marian exhibits.
Through love offerings, The Grail is also able to help in little ways and support donation drives and other worthy causes such as The Yellow School Boat.
The Grail hopes to convey that with great love, anyone can bring Christ anywhere, even in the middle of the corporate world. To God be the glory!