Photography and the Spiritual Exercises
Monday, June 11, 2007 at 10:35 PM
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
Saturday, February 24, 2007 at 4:53 AM
First Point. The first Point is to give thanks to God our Lord for the benefits received.
Fifth Point. The fifth, to purpose amendment with His grace.
Thursday, February 15, 2007 at 10:48 PM
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.
at 12:32 AM
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.
Thursday, January 18, 2007 at 11:13 PM
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.
Saturday, January 06, 2007 at 10:49 PM
Credit: Story from joey's site: http://ibranch02.multiply.com/