The Archdiocese of Caceres rejoices with the whole Church as another priest from Caceres, being a native from Magarao, Camarines Sur, was recently appointed as the New Archbishop of Lipa, Batangas. Archbishop Gilbert Armea Garcera, Bishop of Daet Emeritus, received his appointed on his birthday last February 2, 2017.
His installation will be on April 21, 2017 at 9:00am at San Sebastian Cathedral, Lipa City.
Garcera was born in Magarao, Camarines Sur, to Celestino Borja Garcera and Nenita Romero Armea. He studied at Holy Rosary Major Seminary in Naga City, then at Holy Rosary Major Seminary where he completed a Bachelor of Sacred Theology in 1983. The same year, on May 29, he was ordained a priest. After his ordination, Garcera served for eight years until 1991 as an assistant parish priest at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist in Naga City. He subsequently received a Master of Arts decree in religious studies from Ateneo de Manila University, Quezon City, in 1992, with the thesis “A Proposed Basic Catechetical Formation Program for the Deaf.” In 2004, Garcera completed a Ph.D. in Organization Development (OD) from the Southeast Asia Interdisciplinary Development Institute (SAIDI), Antipolo City. His dissertation was entitled “An OD Intervention in Evolving the Desired Organizational Culture of the Episcopal Commissions of the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines (CBCP).”
In addition to other pastoral and diocesan assignments, Garcera was administrative director of Radio Veritas in Quezon City from 1992 to 1995, assistant secretary general of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines from 2001 to 2003. Since 2004, he has also held positions as National Director of the Pontifical Missionary Societies of the Philippines and as a member of the Superior Council Pontifical Missionary Societies, Rome.
In October 2015, Garcera was also among the six Filipinos out of the 270 cardinals and bishops and 18 couples from the world allowed by Pope Francis to attend in the historic Synod of Bishops on the Family at the Vatican. At present, he heads the bishops’ Commission on Family and Life and a member of the CBCP Permanent Council.
On his birthday, February 2, 2017, Pope Francis appointed him as Archbishop of Lipa, succeeding Most Rev. Ramon Arguelles who led the archdiocese for 13 years. (Credits to the sources CBCP, Caceres Archives, Wikipedia.org)