On July 23, 1994, José Manuel and Alberto, along with other companions, received the presbyterate in the Augustinian Recollect formation house of Marcilla (Navarra). On July 6, they celebrated their 25th anniversary at the St. Augustine College in Valladolid in a family atmosphere, accompanied by their closest relatives, and by some forty members of the Augustinian-Recollect Family, who joined in the joy of the commemoration.

The appointed hour for the Eucharistic celebration was one o’clock. Family members and other guests arrived during the morning. The college chapel was well prepared for the occasion, and the liturgist Germán Antonio Antónhad everything ready for the Holy Mass.

Germán Antonio read an introduction to what was being celebrated and the long entrance procession started as the “Pueblo de Reyes” was sung. All the concelebrant priests were Augustinian Recollects, the presider was the Provincial Vicar, Rafael Mediavilla. The hosting religious community was also present together with the Augustinian Recollect Sisters of the Philippines, and members of the Secular Order of Valladolid.

One of the rites was the imposition of the chasuble, Jose Manuel received it from his mother, Soledad, and Albertogot it from his sister, Guadalupe. After this, all the priests approached the two priests to congratulate them with a fraternal hug.

Relatives read the readings, and the gospel was proclaimed by Fr. Alberto.

They both agreed in sharing words during the homily.José Manuel, inspired by the Confessions of Saint Augustine, expressed his feelings of praise and thanksgiving to God for what He has done in his life throughout these past 25years. He also thanked God for all the people that have helped him in his priesthood. He recognized feeling that he has not corresponded fully to God’s grace, but, in spite of everything “all my hope is in your great mercy” he prayed.

Albertofirst made a brief comment in reference to the readings which invites everyone to follow Christ unconditionally. He shared some of his experiences and mentioned some key people who became part of their faith story, expressing their gratefulness to God. He mentioned he had apologized to all those he had offended one way or another throughout these past years. He also acknowledged that the most difficult task he has had to do is grant forgiveness. “Only love, which is God, can make anyone good. But with the way I see others, I can see them as being even more better”, he said.

After the homily, José Manuel andAlberto , individually read a prayer of renewal of their priestly promises.

The rest of the Mass developed normally accordingly to the established rites.

Before the final blessing, Rafael congratulated the two honored priests on behalf of the prior provincial, Sergio Sanchez , who said he would have loved to be present.

The hymn to our Lady of Consolation was sung and everyone posed for all the group pictures. The tables were set in one of the school´s cafeteria halls for all to continue the festive celebration.