A man in black visits Ateneo: Former Ateneo physics student Anthony Uy is now an FSSP seminarian

The Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter together with Pope John Paul II

A man in black visited Ateneo last Thursday.  No, he is not looking for aliens to zap. You may have seen him: a tall Chinese walking in black robes like Neo in the Matrix. On his right hand is a book–not the Bible or the Book of the Seven Animal Fists–but a Breviary, a book of prayers in Latin prayed by the monks of long ago. His name is Anthony Uy, a seminarian of the FSSP (Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter), a society of diocesan priests devoted to the promotion of the Traditional Latin Mass.

Anthony studied in Ateneo de Manila University from year 2000 to 2002 as a Physics/Computer Engineering student.  As a physicist, he knows what a matrix is.  When his family moved to Canada in the middle of the first semester of his third year, he left Ateneo and completed his Physics Studies in his new country.  He took a job afterwards, but even before he went to Canada, he was already thinking:

“If I made the greatest discovery in physics, of what use is it?”

He joined the Ateneo College Ministry Group (ACMG).   He stayed more often in the Loyola House of Studies to enjoy the silence.  Soon afterward he began to join religious vocations discernment retreats.  When he went to his confessor, his confessor told him:

“Pray always.  God will give you your vocation.”

When he went to Canada and finished his studies, he worked for a year in the corporate world.  Then he heard about the FSSP, and the next thing he learned was that  he was already a seminarian in the Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary in Denton, NE.  He is now in his 4th year of studies.  According to him, two of his fellow seminarians have doctorate degrees in Chemistry and Physics.

Around lunchtime, Bro. Anthony visited the Manila Observatory where he met with Dr. Quirino Sugon Jr., the Coordinator of the Ateneo Latin Mass Society (ALMS) and faculty of the Physics Department.  They went to lunch at the College Cafeteria.

Dr. Sugon asked him, “After 8 years of being away from Ateneo, did you have some culture shock when you arrived?”

“Not really,” he said.  “The Ateneo looks the same as it was before, except for the new buildings.  But during our time, women dress more conservatively than now.”

After lunch, they both went to the Loyola House of Studies to visit Fr. Tim Ofrasio, S.J.  Fr. Tim went down from his office and met them in the lobby.  Dr. Sugon introduced Bro. Anthony to Fr. Tim.

“I heard, Father, from from Frank Chow in Vancouver that you are celebrating the Traditional Latin Mass,” said Anthony.

“Who is Frank Chow?” asked Fr. Tim.

“Frank Chow visited the Manila Observatory last December,” Dr. Sugon said. ” He told me that if the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate in Novaliches is making and selling Liturgical vestments for P 5,000 per set, depending on the color of the day, he would be willing to raise money in Vancouver for the Ateneo Latin Mass Society.  The only problem now is that we still don’t have a chapel.”  Frank is an Ateneo alumnus (BS Bio 1976) who lives in Vancouver, British Columbia. He and his wife attend the Holy Family Parish, a Traditional Mass parish in the care of the FSSP.

Fr. Tim asked Bro. Anthony who the FSSP were and how Anthony was able to find them.  Fr. Tim then shared about how he learned about the Traditional Latin Mass.

“I realized that the TLM was the reason why I became a priest in the first place,” Fr. Tim said.

Fr. Tim was assigned to Rome and went back to the Philippines.  He became a parish priest.  Then he was transferred to the Loyola School of Theology and taught there as a Professor of Liturgy.  As a liturgist, he teaches both the rubrics of the Novus Ordo and the Traditional Latin Mass.  But after the publication of the Pope Benedict XVI’s 2007 Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, which empowers any priest to celebrate the TLM without the permission of his bishop and which allows any group of faithful to join such mass, he began to celebrate the TLM everyday in his private chapel.  But this school year, he is now assigned as a parish priest in Novaliches; he only comes to the Loyola House during Thursdays and Fridays.

“In my parish, I am slowly teaching my parishioners about the proper devotion for the mass,” Fr. Tim said.  “I have this semimonthly talks in the parish where I educate them on the Traditional Latin Mass, and slowly bring them back to Tradition.  When I first came, nobody even knew how to sing the Salve Regina.  So I taught the choir how to sing Latin hymns.  Now, I am teaching my parishioners why the priest should face the Tabernacle and not the people.  By November, I wish to have our first Missa de Angelis in Novus Ordo, but with the priest facing the Tabernacle.”

After their meeting, Bro. Anthony knelt and asked Fr. Tim for his blessing.  Dr. Sugon followed Anthony and knelt, too.  Then Fr. Tim blessed them.

Dr. Sugon and Bro. Anthony then proceeded to Padre Faura Hall.  They visited Mr. Clint Bennett, who was his former teacher, and they talked along the corridor.

“I remembered you, Anthony, because you were selling me this machine with two wheels which allows you to move without walking.  It is not a skateboard because it moves in the perpendicular direction.  The person standing will not fall down because the machine has gyroscope sensors to keep it vertical.  It runs 30 kilometers per hour–much faster than walking.”

Dr. Celso Co also joined the discussion.  He is a faculty of ECCE (Electronics, Computer and  Communications Engineering).  He is one of the senior engineers in Intel Philippines before joining Ateneo.  He is also a former seminarian.

“In the seminary we learned a lot of physics.  We had 12 units of physics.  One of them was Cosmology.”

The clock struck 3 pm.  Bro. Anthony and Dr. Sugon bade goodbye and they went to Mr. Joel Maquiling office in the second floor.   In the office are two new faculty members, Jen Damasco-Ty and Billy Ignacio.

“Hello, Anthony,” Joel said.  “Look at you!  I don’t know if I shall say, ‘Bless me, Father’.”

“I am not yet a priest,” Bro. Anthony said.  “I am only a seminarian.  Did Don come?”  Elison “Don” Lato is Bro. Anthony’s classmate in Ateneo.

“I think he was only late,” Joel said.

Finally Don came.

“Where do you work now, Don?” Dr. Sugon asked.

“I am now a project manager in Hewlett Packard.”

“That’s great!”  Dr. Sugon said.

After the meeting, Dr. Sugon went back to the Manila Observatory.


About ateneophysicsnews
Physics News and Features from Ateneo de Manila University

5 Responses to A man in black visits Ateneo: Former Ateneo physics student Anthony Uy is now an FSSP seminarian

  1. We are blessed to have him!

  2. Jay Santos says:

    I would like to know if there is an FSSP seminary here in the Philippines? If where could I get in touch? Hope they accept late vocations to the priesthood?

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