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Photography and the Spiritual Exercises

Monday, June 11, 2007 at 10:35 PM

like little children

how i wish i can freely play all day long without worrying on something. life is getting complicated.
but maybe God is there...even in our complicated world.


Wednesday, March 21, 2007 at 12:16 PM


"Prayer is the offspring of humility. It is the cry of a lowly heart that recognizes its own weakness and calls upon the Lord for divine provision. In contrast, prayerlessness is the offspring of pride. It is the silence of an arrogant heart that imagines its own sufficiency and whispers to God: “I don’t need you, Lord. I will be fine on my own.” The way to revolutionize my prayer life, then, is not simply through the discipline of my will but the humbling of my heart in which I cultivate small thoughts of me and great thoughts of Him."

Taken from Fr. Jboy's blog.
Photo taken at Loyola House of Studies, Ateneo de Manila University


Monday, March 12, 2007 at 12:47 AM

My Students

All first years students of Sacred Heart School-Jesuits presented a play on Ibong Adarna, their project in Filipino. My Moderating class, I-Bellarmine won first place. Congratulations!


Saturday, February 24, 2007 at 4:53 AM

St. Ignatius on the Consciousness Examen

The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius is a book not to be read but to be savored. It actually logs the the spiritual journey of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus. Throughout the centuries, this book has been used by many retreat directors as they accompany their retreatants through their individual spiritual journeys.In this book, St. Ignatius outlines the Consciousness Examen which he suggests that the retreatant do everyday during his long retreat. This method of prayer though has been adopted by many religious and lay people as their daily prayer. It is suggested that the examen, as it is commonly called, be done twice - one during noon and the other before retiring for the day. The prayer is helpful to one who wishes to discern how God moves in the daily routine of his life and to pray over God's invitation to him everyday.Below is a quotation from The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius on the Consciousness Examen:METHOD FOR MAKING THE GENERAL EXAMEN.

It contains in it five Points.

First Point. The first Point is to give thanks to God our Lord for the benefits received.

Second Point. The second, to ask grace to know our sins and cast them out.

Third Point. The third, to ask account of our soul from the hour that we rose up to the present Examen, hour by hour, or period by period: and first as to thoughts, and then as to words, and then as to acts, in the same order as was mentioned in the Particular Examen.

Fourth Point. The fourth, to ask pardon of God our Lord for the faults.

Fifth Point. The fifth, to purpose amendment with His grace.
Our Father.

from http://spiritualorientations.com/first.html


Thursday, February 15, 2007 at 10:48 PM

“The Alumna I Met at Golden Acres”

I got this article from mike's blog: http://comyanderah.multiply.com/

A good reflection though...

A lot of people would say that if one graduated from the Ateneo, one’s ultimate success is secured. An Atenean would achieve whatever he or she wants, from luxurious houses, fine salary, and satisfying jobs, or so they say. Yet, there is this one Atenean I met who goes beyond the stereotypical Atenean who seeks material wealth for she has achieved success in a different light. I met her in the well known home for the aged “Golden Acres” which was my chosen institution for my CSP.

During the very first day of my CSP program, I attended the first orientation program runned by the workers. Once the orientation was done, we were toured by the social workers around the institution. I eventualy broke off from the group and toured other areas on my own. Then, suddenly, I bumped into this kind elder lady. One of the very first things she asked me was which school I was from. I quickly answered her, and then she suddenly spoke in eloquent English. I then quickly asked whether or not she was an Atenean, and she quickly said yes. I was shocked. Questions started roaming through my head, “Whatever happened to the idea that being an Atenean would secure ultimate material success? Why is she in Golden Acres? Does she even have a bank account? Isn’t she supposed to be in a mansion or at least in a simple home where a family is surrounding her? What happened to her “elite” lifestyle? Why does she have very little possessions? …So much for ultimate success.” I didn’t realize she was already talking to me for a couple of minutes and I was already being called by the institution workers. I then asked for her name; it was a name truly worthy of a real Filipina: “Lola Josefina.” Upon arriving home, I contemplated. I then decided that must know Lola Josefina.

Every CSP day, I would make it a habit to talk to Lola Josefina after socializing with some of the elderly. I then got to know more about her. My mind suddenly become filled with her history: She got her Masters Degree from the Ateneo, studied at Padre Faura campus, and then she got her diploma in the Loyola Heights Campus when the Ateneo transferred there. She also studied in UP and UST. She knew Father Delaney through a certain Madrigal and remembered him as a very thin priest. Her Master’s proctor, Father Kunkel, was so much of a strict proctor that merely pressing the wrong key of a typewriter would make the good priest red-faced and angry.
She also loved talking about the clean and green provinces, from the pristine waters of rivers where people can fish to the lush forests where people can hike and play. She also is smart; she was able to explain to me certain mining protocols and techniques needed to have better and more responsible mining operations. A lot of the scientific equations and data she explained to me were too complicated for me to comprehend. Aside from being smart, she is also a very prayerful and holy lady. Her faith is something that I will never forget. She prays everyday with the rosary and the devotions. She ever advised me to always pray to God and believe in Him, and though I was already doing that, her advice made me do it in a far more firm way. She also advised me to love my mom for my mom works hard just for me and my brothers. This advice from her for my mom really made me contemplate about Lola Josefina and her religiosity because she was able to make me examine my rocky relationship with my mom. I realized then she had a very strong Christian faith, a faith stronger than any of the stereotypical Ateneans. These discussions of ours really made me see who she really was and really made me reflect about myself. These discussions of ours and her faith or Christ-centeredness really changed my perspectives.
One day through our talks, I learned that she had lost much of her Ateneo memorabilia, including her Ateneo Masters diploma, to a fire that consumed much of Golden Acres a few years ago. The only things left of her memorabilia were her transcript of her grades.

She explained to me that she was already content with her life yet the very few things left that she valued, her Ateneo memorabilia, got burned. She was now a Christ-centered Atenean who has virtually no reminder of her Atenean past.
I then decided to help this kind lady finding some of her memorabilia which included her Ateneo Masters thesis. After a few days of searching, with the very great help of Fr. RB, we were able to find her thesis. When I gave her thesis back, she was so grateful. Though she still misses her diploma and hoping for another copy, I never knew that her gratefulness for the thesis would be that great. Her gratefulness would include giving me delicious “found only in the provinces” biscuits and food, giving “atsara” to Father RB and thanking him personally, giving rosaries to those who helped, and praying to God to bless those who helped her. I never knew that my CSP would end in helping out Lola Josefina. All in all, I can see and with honesty say that Lola Josefina succeeded.

I believe she succeeded in becoming Christ-centered, something better than being ultimately successful materially. Something divine paid back this alumna. Her faith or her Christ-centeredness made someone change to a point that this certain someone wanted to help her out, returning something that is most valuable to her. Her Christ-centeredness allowed her to get back what she most valued. She has now, once again, a part of the Ateneo.
Photo: October Medal, Taken at Loyola House of Studies, ADMU


at 12:32 AM

Vday at SHS-J

After getting out of the Ateneo, Loyola House of Studies for that matter and the cosmic world of philosophy, I'm back in the real world.

Wheeew. Valentine's Day...Nakakalungkot pala ang buhay ng isang relihiyoso sa araw ng mga puso. Pero patuloy lang.

But it was funny though, observing how young people, especially my first year students here at Sacred Heart celebrate this day.

I received cookies and cakes from my students but no flowers though. nahihiya at naiilang sila magbigay ng bulaklak at buti na lang...nabusog pa ako at mga kasama kong pari dito sa community. hahaha. But, my co-teacher, Ms. Sumalinog (math teacher ng aking mga anak, I-Bellarmine) gave me a beautiful and lovely rose (naawa kasi siya sa akin)

I saw chocolates and roses on my boys' chairs and bags...para kanino kaya mga yun? Hmmm?! Hope they will not get into serious relationships...hindi muna ngayon...Bata pa ang aking mga anak.

Heto mga istorya ng iilang mga nilala sa eskwelahan:

1. First Year Boy X broke up with his girlfriend and I asked him why, he said, "wala kasi siyang alam sa relationship eh." Hahaha. (Siya kaya, meron?)

2. First Year Boy Y waited for the girl to come out of the classroom and when she did, he serenaded her with a lovely filipino song. (Medyo baduy pero kilig ang girl, hahaha)

3. Three of my first year students would rather give calendars as gifts for valentine's day to their girlfriends rather than chocolates and roses. hahaha. Kuripot! (at calendar ng company ng kanilang tatay pa)

4. First Year Boy H waited for 7 hours for the girl to reply to his vday messages and he was so restless. And when he finally received it, he cried. hahaha. (Talo pa ang mga telenobela sa telebisyon.)

5. First Year Boy Z failed to ask his mother to buy chocolates for Girl X, instead he asked his driver to buy one in a nearby convenient shop and lo and behold--it was Goya Chocolate (with raisins, hahaha) Masarap naman ang Goya ah?! Yun lang nga, nabadtrip ang girl. hahaha.

Hay naku! mga bata talaga ngayon ano?!

But it was a nice day. I really had fun with the kids.

Marami pang mga kwento kaso lang pagod na ako.
Photo taken during the 2007 SHS-J Sportsfest at Abellana Sports Complex in Cebu.


Thursday, January 18, 2007 at 11:13 PM

"Help Your Students To Be Human" (Leo Buscaglia)

I remember being terribly moved by something that I read in a book of Haim Ginott's. It's a very poignant thing and it's written by a school principal who gave this to Ginott. She said:

I am a survivor of a concentration camp. My eyes saw what no person should witness. Gas chambers built by learned engineers. Children poisoned by educated physicians. Infants killed by trained nurses. Women and babies shot and killed by high school and college graduates. So I'm suspicious of education. My request is: help your students to be human. Your efforts must never produce learned monsters, skilled psychopaths, or educated Eichmanns.
Reading and writing and spelling and history and arithmetic are only important if they serve to make our students human.

You know what occurred to me? We teach everything in the world to people, except the most essential thing. And that is life. Nobody teaches you about life. You're supposed to know about it. Nobody teaches you how to be a human being and what it means to be a human being, and the dignity that it means when you say, "I am a human being." Everyone assumes that is something you have, or you should have gotten by osmosis. Well, it's not working by osmosis!

Like everyone I know, my life, too, has been a long series of interwoven relationships, both good and bad. I value them all. For it was mainly through these relationships that I survived my infancy, completed my childhood, ended my adolescence and moved toward a dynamic state of growing to maturity. They have been living lessons in meeting defeat, letting go and overcoming fear. They have helped to free my spirit and eradicate my fear of loving. My relationships are still my major source of stimulation, causing me to remain open, curious, eager to learn and be challenged by change. Now I understand more than ever the poet W.H. Auden’s remark, “We must love one another or die!”

Isn’t it time that we forget our petty egos, give up our fear of appearing sentimental or naïve and come together in our universal need, one for the other? Why is it so difficult for us to embrace each other fearlessly and with passion and to say, “Human being, take my human hand”? We all need each other.


Several years ago, when I was teaching my Love Class, we decided to attempt an assignment. We agreed to approach those people in our lives whom we valued and loved and express verbally that we “truly loved and appreciatetied. They felt ill at ease, awkward, even embarrassed by expressing their love. Several never completed the assignment. When we discussed and shared our experiences we agreed that it was strange indeed that so many found it threatening to communicate love! It then became obvious why we hear the voice of love so seldom and when it is heard it is spoken so softly, so shyly. This is true even though we have learned that unexpressed love is the greatest cause of our sorrow and regrets. We usually wait until people have died to express their value in our lives, to honor them in public and to express our love for them.
Photo: I-Bellarmine immerssion (Sacred Heart School-Jesuit) Cebu


Saturday, January 06, 2007 at 10:49 PM

On Mother's Love

My Mom had only one eye. I hated her...she was such an embarassment. She cooked for students & teachers to support my family. There was this one day during elementary school where my Mom came to say hello to me. I was so embarassed. How could she do this to me? I ignored her, threw a hateful look and ran out. The next day at school, one of my classmate said. "Eeeee, your Mom has only one eye!" I wanted to bury myself. I also wanted my Mom to just disappear. So I confronted her that day and said, "If you're only gonna make me a laughing stock, why don't you just die?!!!" My Mom did not respond... I didn't even stop to think for a second about what I had said, because I was full of anger. I was oblivious to her feelings. I wanted out of that house, and have nothing to do with her.So I studied real hard, got a chance to go to Singapore to study. Then, I got married. I bought a house of my own. I had kids of my own. I was happy with my life, my kids and the comforts.Then one day, my mother came to visit me. She hadn't seen me in years and she didn't even met her grandchildren. When she stood by the door, my children laughed at her, and I yelled at her for coming over uninvited. I screamed at her, "How dare you come to my house and scare my children!" GET OUT OF HERE! NOW!!!"... And to this, my mother quietly answered, "Oh, I'm so sorry. I may have gotten the wrong address," and she disappeared out of sight.One day, a letter regarding a school reunion came to my house in Singapore. So I lied to my wife that I was going on a business trip. After the reunion, I went to the old shack just out of curiosity. My neighbors said that she died. I did not shed a single tear. They handed me a letter that she wanted me to have.My dearest son,I think of you all the time. I am sorry that I came to Singapore and scared your children. I was so glad when I heard you were coming for the reunion. But I may not be able to even get out of the bed to see you. I am sorry that I was a constant embarassment to you when you were growing up. You see...when you were very little, you got into an accident, and lost your eye. So I gave you mine. I was so proud of my son who was seeing a whole new world for me, in my place, with that eye.
With my love to you,
Your Mother.

Credit: Story from joey's site: