The Philippine Province of the Order of Carmelites elected Father Rico Ponce, O.Carm. as its new Prior Provincial during the congregation’s Provincial Chapter in Tagaytay City from March 6-10.
Elected members of the Provincial Council are Fathers Esmeraldo Reforeal, Joseph Roque, Rhen Caculitan, Christopher Labrador, Brother Brandon Bahayanan, O.Carm., and Sister Angela Blardony Ureta, aO.Carm.
Father Ponce was born in Siquijor. He joined the Carmelites in 1986 and made the profession of vows in 1993. He was ordained priest in December 1998.
He is a professor at the Institute of Formation and Religious Studies, Mary Hill School of Theology and Institute of Spirituality in Asia. His fields of teaching are spirituality, theology, the social teachings of the Church and research methodology.
The Carmelite Province of the Philippines is under the tutelage and patronage of Blessed Titus Brandsma, a Dutch Carmelite priest, educator, journalist, mystic and martyr of the 20th century.