Monthly Archives: June 2011
I just got home from a 3-day meeting. Literally, just got home because we slept over my parents’ house for the past 3 days. And for the celebration of the last day, had dinner in Amici Makati care of our spiritual director, Fr. Gustilo. He is awesome.
We got to talking today about FOUNDER and CHARISM. And how communities live by the charism of their founders. And how they struggle to figure out what their founder would do or say, if he was around today. Like what would Don Bosco say to the Salesians if he were around today? What advice would he give? What would his direction be for them?
We are blessed that our FOUNDER is very much alive and active. He has been from the start. From 1981. Every day. No holidays. Every hour.
We do not need to wonder about what he would say or do, because we can just ask him. He leads us where God tells us to go. And he provides guidance and direction when he feels we are going astray. That is awesome. I never thought of it that way. How he keeps the charism alive and in check, with his words and actions.
Other communities refuse to acknowledge their founder. And so end up arguing, jostling for position and politicking. Because then the direction is based on who is in power at the time. And when the new power player emerges, things change.
Charism is an awesome word. And it is given more meaning when you understand it in the context of Church history and founders. I am following my founder’s vision. Are you?
What an awesome, wonderful, inspiring, great, babazoomingatious anniversary! I love Couples for Christ Foundation for Family and Life!
Truth be told, I wasn’t really “into” the anniversary as I entered Ynares Stadium in Antipolo this morning. I have been mildly stressed and busy with so many other things – and one major thing – that I didn’t get much into the spirit of being festive. My team (tireless, inspiring, indefatigable team!) and I have been working on the STT June magazine, and though it didn’t come out today, it is so awesome, it is worth the wait until tomorrow. Promise. And…. it’s free.
So my family and I walked in past 9am, to reach Jepoy leading worship. And right there, I was already humbled by the fact that the day was going to be awesome. So many people already there even before me. And worshipping their hearts out. Just like how it should be.
After that, the exhibit booths were opened and we were treated to an international food fest. That was so wonderful! Tim Horton’s coffee followed me home. As well as European chocolates, and all those other yummy delicacies from around the world. You had to squeeze your way in through the crowds! At the same time, singing, dancing, and all these other fun games were going on. And the talent was flowing from everywhere.
When the band started playing songs to rouse the crowd – the crowd really responded! It was inspiring, to say the least!
The video doesn’t do it justice. But if you can imagine everyone in a packed auditorium singing I WILL SURVIVE, then you come close to the feeling being in there.
The program started and going through the 30 year history of the community was heartwarming. I got to share a bit as well, with my sister Vania. And we were able to do what so many people would love to do…. honor my parents for persevering and for keeping the charism of CFC alive in CFC FFL. It was a great privilege for us.
CFC FFL is not just a job. It is my life! My parents, my siblings, my own family, my friends… everything. And I thank God everyday for this great blessing.
The stories came, one after the other. The memories. The testimonies. Dad’s message of overwhelming love and vision. And then lifting up everything back to God who planted the seeds in the first place. With a 4-man-led praisefest, and a refreshing Mass.
There really is no word to describe today. I came in distracted, and left INSPIRED. REFRESHED. CHALLENGED. HAPPY. VISION-FILLED…. no one word. Except babazoomingatious.
Thank you God for this day, and for 30 years. Thank you for the promise of 30 more (and beyond). We will be faithful to the charism you have given us!
Yes I live in Manila. And yes it gets flooded all the time. And yes we have super typhoons on a regular basis. But I never experienced getting stuck in traffic – not moving – for hours at a time because of the typhoon.
Until last night. We finished school at about 6:30PM, with the rain battering the ground all day. We left the south, went on the Skyway and tried to exit on Makati Ave. And stayed there. One hour. Moved a bit. Another hour. Moved and passed cars with sleeping drivers. People walking barefoot in the rain. Seeing the flooded Paseo below us. Time moved so slowly. Good thing it only took us almost 3 hours to get out of the jam.
Went to McDo. And ate a Big Mac. Comfort food desperately needed.
Seriously though. We know typhoons come every year. Yet we have the same problems every year. Flooding. Rivers rising. Clogged canals. Is there really any excuse anymore? Even our President’s excuse doesn’t cut it. He keeps saying that he’s only been in office one year. And keeps blaming everyone else about the problems he is facing. Come on. Stop yapping, and start working.
If anyone had an employee who used that as an excuse “Oh I have only been here one year” or “It’s my predecessors fault”, they’d get fired.
Ondoy was a terrible tragedy. We may not stop the typhoon from dumping insane amounts of rain (like Falcon now), but we can do something to make sure the effects never happen again. I don’t want to be stuck in a car, on a flyover, in the rain for hours ever again. And I am sure people don’t want their houses submerged, nor do they want losing their loved ones and possessions, nor do they like the feeling of helplessness and fear.
We can all do our part. But it would be easier if the leader of our country was also doing his part by working….. oh no. See? Now I am copying him. I am complaining instead of working. Terrible.
My dad FOUNDED Couples for Christ in 1981 with 15 other couples (where are they now?). 30 years ago. And they have been fighting valiantly for families ever since. I joined late, in 1995 in Ateneo de Manila. I even became President of the youth group there. I went full time in 1997, and haven’t looked back.
I got married in 2006 to Des, a wonderful woman who even spent one year of her life in Zimbabwe for CFC. And now we have 3 awesome kids. Not old enough to be official members of CFC Kids for Family and Life, but who go to the assemblies and mess everything up anyway.
My best friends are here with me in the community as well. We all got married around the same time, are having kids at the same time, and hang out almost everyday – work, non-work, mission. Suffice to say, CFC is not only our community, it is our way of life.
And so, when I get emails ATTACKING us, then the protector in me springs into action. No one will attack my family and get away with it. Even though I don’t think 7 deluded people speak for their entire community, but those 7 are doing enough damage to their community, I can’t help but pray for my friends who are still there.
I could engage them in a war of words. And bring out the truth about all their wheeling and dealing over there. But then that makes me just like those 7. And I am not like them. I don’t care about position or power. And I don’t do things to be noticed. I just work. And work hard.
The best way to fight back, is to keep living the CFC charism. The true CFC way of life. Which I have found here, in CFC FFL. I will keep loving my family, and bringing the teachings of community into my family. I will keep being pro-life, speaking against those who seek to destroy families and lives. I will cement true bonds of friendship with people I work and serve with. My kids will grow up with other kids who love the Lord so much, and see it manifested at home.
And most importantly, I will keep spreading the message of God’s love to everyone. One person at a time. And this love is manifested by the lives we lead, inspired by those we see in CFC FFL. Happy 30th Anniversary Couples for Christ! We have many, many more years ahead! See you all this Sunday at YNARES GYM in Antipolo!
Last Thursday, 26 of us fulltimers went back to school. We all started on the road to a Masters Degree in Religious Studies. 3 years! And the school day is fun, but harsh. 3 classes of 3 hours each. We are in class from 8am to 6:30pm. Oh my. My 36 year old brain is in for a workout.
I am excited. I did one semester of Law ten years ago. And a couple of years ago, we did one year in Loyola School of Theology. We are just looking for the perfect fit. And we have found it now.
Our first three professors TEACH. None of that cutesy-patottsey stuff. They hit the ground running. And my hand (from all the writing) is suffering from my dependence on my laptop all these years. When did we stop writing and start typing anyway?
26 fulltimers in one class. I am 36. And I haven’t been in school for 14 years. The others are fresh out of College. I tell them that they are lucky to have this opportunity so soon in their career. To have the chance to get an MA. But I also tell them to be ready. Because number ONE is mine. They can all race to be number two. A little intimidation always helps.
Pray for us! Pray for our brains to soak up all the knowledge. Pray for our hands to write all that needs to be written. And pray for our hearts to help us live out what we learn.
We just finished the Theology of the Body Conference in De La Salle University. We (CFC FFL) teamed up with the TRED – DLSU for the whole day conference. The morning was held in the huge Yuchengco Auditorium, and it was PACKED! We had 2 speakers and a panel. All talking about TOB and current issues. Fr. Max, Fr. Joel, Dr. Angie, Atty. Chito and Fr. Dave did splendid jobs! And the explanations were varied and cut across all disciplines, so it was very fruitful.
In the afternoon, we split up into 3 workshop rooms to have 9 workshops! All with topics ranging from Parenting to Counseling to Vocations to Single-hood to Same Sex Attraction…. all topics for all types of people and states of life. Bp. Gabby, Fr. Arlo, Mimi, Francis and Debbie, Bob and Reena, Ansel, Dave, Pat all did amazing jobs as well.
And I am not being the least bit biased.
It was a great day focusing on Blessed John Paul II’s teaching on our bodies and how it reflects God’s love for us. Thank you, everyone for all the support! Here’s to making sure the message gets to more people.
I am 36 today. Though I will technically be 36 later on at 5:07pm. People still do get surprised when they find out my age. A lot of people think I am fresh out of College (seriously.). Maybe it is because of the baby fat that never disappeared. Or my naturally fresh face and good nature. They get even more surprised when they find out I am married and have three kids (well, that surprises me, too).
36 is so much closer to 40 than 35 was. And though I think that age is nothing but a number, I do feel it. I know what I want. I know how to get it. And I am making my way there. But the body is not how it was when it was 21. I am xx pounds heavier (there was a time when I was actually fit and lean, you know). But then again, health is one of those things we should all work on, no matter how old.
So in celebration of my 36th year, here are 36 things I want to do before the rapture.
1. Go to India. doesn’t everyone want to go to India?
2. Go to Egypt. Pyramids!
3. Go to Israel. And do the whole pilgrimage thing.
… so is it all “go to…”
4. Go to Batanes
5. Eat balut (yes, I didn’t eat it during the contest.. but one day, I will)
6. Ride a jeep by myself (umm ok)
7. Find those abs that are hidden
8. Have a house
9. Hug the Pope
10. Be a politician (even 1 term lang)
11. See an Olympics finals, live
12. Build up the media work
13. Walk my kids down the aisle / into the convent or seminary
14. Have a family vacation in Palawan
15. Learn how to cook
16. Bring Tim Horton’s to the Philippines
17. Join Survivor
18. Join Amazing Race with Des (that would be a riot!)
19. Bungee jump (does the Bohol jump count? )
20. Put up another International Leaders Meeting / Forum / Tour
21. Have a successful secular magazine that won’t have naked people in it… or sex tips.
22. See abortion il-legalized worlwide
23. Be a lay minister
24. See CFC FFL be in all countries in the world
25. Learn a new language (computer languages included)
26. (I’ll keep this one a secret for now)
27. Hear an apology from all those people who have lied about my family… don’t worry, I’ll accept your apologies.
28. Open a book shop / library (maybe when I get Tim Horton’s to come over)
29. Start a school (Padilla University)
30. Live long enough to celebrate Des and my 50th Anniversary (45 years to go!)
31. Swim in a cage with sharks swimming around
32. Learn Final Cut Pro and Motion
33. Go back to Africa with my family (Egypt doesn’t count)
34. Sleep over in Malacanan… either as a guest or as the resident
35. Be a better newscaster (shameless plug. No laughing allowed)
36. Never stop laughing, smiling, seeing the good in everything.
Though not for THAT reason. I’ve had BBM for almost a year now. And it is ADDICTING. Just being able to send BBMs back and forth, even pictures, files and my latest discovery: VOICE NOTES!
Now, though, I am in the USA and BBM roaming is just too expensive. It has been 2 and a half weeks, and I have 3 days left here. My hands have started shaking. I break out into a cold sweat every night. I started stu-tu-tu-tutterrr-i-i-ing. I need my BBM back.
To flirt? I guess that’s a good reason. To flirt with my wife… who just got her own BBM a week ago.
I visited the Urginos (Raffy, Josette, Joey and Pax) a couple of years ago when they were still living in Steubenville. And I was able to see the Savages at Ray and MG’s wedding.
Isn’t it amazing how one weekend can gather all of us in one place? It felt like 1997 all over again.
We had lunch, lifeguarded the kids while they swam, watched The Rite, ate again and talked and talked and talked. It’s great being with people whom your friendship is founded on faith (say that 10 times, fast). Here’s to more times to meet up. God makes ways
Now that was a cool movie.
I like the fact that the beginning they used was the same as the very first X-Men movie. It shows continuity with the rest of the series.
They picked interesting characters for the first X-Men class, not really following the comic book. But Banshee and Havok are good choices. Darwin will be back if they have a second one. He is supposed to attack Karakoa.
I like the back story of Mystique. A friendship with Professor X, and he search for love with just about everyone (which followed all throughout the other X-Men movies too). Do you know that she ends up with Azazel and their child is Nightcrawler?
The Hellfire Club was cool, but that isn’t really Sebastian Shaw’s power. He can absorb energy, but it comes out as strength and none of that blast-y stuff. Riptide is a Marauder, actually. He lived in the sewers. I think their Angel is a new character.
When you read comics and see Professor X, you forget about how painful his past would have been. This was a nice reminder. I don’t see how Moira and Banshee can end up together now that he is half her age.
Loved the movie. Is there going to be another one?