You might have seen him on Facebook or YouTube, this Latin American priest with the salt-and-pepper hair speaking in flawless Filipino.
He is Fr. Luciano Felloni, parish priest of Kristong Hari, Shrine of Mary Untier of Knots in the Diocese of Novaliches. He’s also the self-described cyber missionary behind AlmuSalita, his daily video blog of reflections on the day’s Bible reading.
Like Pope Francis, Fr. Felloni comes from a family of Italian descent but was born and raised in Argentina. Active in his parish as a youth, he eventually shelved plans of becoming a lawyer to pursue a priestly calling. In the seminary, he studied and confessed under his teacher, Fr. Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the man who would become the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church. (Read: Pope Francis Before He Became a Priest)
Three years into the seminary, Fr. Felloni was still a missionary when he was sent to the Philippines in 1994 to work with the urban poor of Quezon City and Caloocan City. He hasn’t left since. Incardinated into the Diocese of Novaliches, the parish priest serves as a formator of seminarians in his diocese and helps in the rehabilitation of drug addicts in his area.
In 2015, Fr. Felloni was granted Filipino citizenship by Caloocan representative Enrico “Recom” Echiverri. (Read: Priest wants to help Philippine government in the war on drugs)
Netizens know him best for his AlmuSalita, “a whole day companion with the Word of God,” reads its website. “From morning reflection to inspiring quotes to Bible sharing and more.” Named by John Rudolf Gianan, a seminarian from the Diocese of Novaliches, AlmuSalita was an idea suggested by a Rappler reporter.
Quote of the DayJuly 20, 2020"Ipakita natin sa Panginoon ang sign na patuloy tayong nananatili at naniniwala sa…Posted by AlmuSalita by Fr. Luciano Felloni on Sunday, July 19, 2020
Delivered in conversational Taglish and applied to daily life, Fr. Felloni’s minutes’-long homilies are a source of comfort to anyone looking for a kind word, gentle reassurance, or answers to a complicated situation. He ends his vlogs on a positive note: “Kung nagustuhan mo ang video na ito, pass it on,” he says. “Punuin natin ng good news ang social media at gawin nating viral araw-araw ang salita ng Diyos.”
People have been doing just that. Viewed and shared all over the world, Almusalita has 4.55K YouTube subscribers and counting. Preach, Fr. Felloni!
Need a little pick-me-up or a shot of optimism for the day? Here are five 3-minute reflections on life from Fr. Luciano Felloni!
#ThankUMuna: No matter what it is you’re going through, you’ll always find a reason to say thanks to God.
#ThankUMunaPosted by AlmuSalita by Fr. Luciano Felloni on Saturday, July 4, 2020
#KahitPinaalis: Even in our anger and doubt, God never leaves us.
Daily Reflection – #KahitPinaalis
#KahitPinaalisMabuting Balita: Mateo 8:28-34July 1, 2020Posted by AlmuSalita by Fr. Luciano Felloni on Tuesday, June 30, 2020
#AtThatVeryMoment: You only have to ask—and really want it—and God will cleanse you of your bad thoughts, vices, painful past, and other demons you’re wrestling with.
Daily Reflection – #AtThatVeryMoment
#AtThatVeryMomentMabuting Balita: Mateo 8:1-4June 26, 2020Posted by AlmuSalita by Fr. Luciano Felloni on Thursday, June 25, 2020
#Plastik: To know a person’s true intentions, look at him from his heart and not by his words.
#PlastikPosted by AlmuSalita by Fr. Luciano Felloni on Monday, June 1, 2020
#Mission: Live with purpose, direction, and meaning to what you do: that is God’s gift to us.