Monday, July 20, 2009

“Overcoming Credential Biases” - 14th Sunday of Ordinary Time

“Too much familiarity bridge contempt” - Jesus himself is not exempted of all biases and disdain by the people who really know Him because of His own credentials and family background. ‘Is he not the carpenter, the son of Mary?” Jesus’ experience of rejection by his countrymen would foreshadow the events that would take place in Jerusalem at the end of His earthly ministry. Jesus would experience betrayal by one apostle and denial by another. He would be mocked by His own people who could cry out for His crucifixion. All these He would endure so that we might have life and have it to the full.
Perhaps, it is inevitable that sometimes other people would ridicule or put us down because of who we are and what we have. Always remember, WE ARE NEVER ALONE! Jesus stands with us in our times of trial, giving us the grace to endure patiently with our sufferings. For him, human weakness is not so much a negative connotation but rather an avenue for God’s power to work in our lives; for whenever we are weak, then we are strong.
The gospel also reminds us to respect each individual with dignity regardless of his/her own credential.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Power Called NOW

Im back!!! Nakakita ra jud ko time nga magsulat! Heheheh… This is my first time to write my personal experience after I decided to leave the place where I love most and where I discover my passion for writing – SEMINARY. Mao ni ga-sulat ko kay gimingaw nako mag-sulat. I really miss the joy of writing my own stories even if other people may not be fascinated with it… bahala mo basta magsulat ko…bwahahaha!!! I just wanted to quench my thirst for writing… hmmp, dili lang diay BEER ang makapa-uhaw nako!!!

I am now in the ‘outside world’ trying to compete with the competition called life. Life is indeed is somewhat an Olympics. Sounds PAULINE, isn’t it?! This is very much true. Life outside the seminary is always a ‘RUSH’ and those who run fast will surely win. I tried to prepare myself for this reality when I was still in the seminary but it seems that my preparation is not enough. The life in the ‘outside world’ is in contrast with the microcosm of the seminary in which I was accustomed to live.

After I left the seminary, I had hard time adjusting my schedules and quite busy searching for a living. Now, I am presently employed as a medical representative in a certain pharmaceutical company with a compensating salary and a private car for my mobilization (sosyal nuh?!) My work right now is a great shift from my previous kind of life. From poverty to luxury…char lang! From wearing ordinary shirts and plain clothes, now wearing somewhat executive suits..basta, sosi ang dating… From giving talks and recollections to students, now meeting and talking to doctors, nurses and pharmacists. From studying the dogmas and teachings of the church now I am quite busy memorizing generic names of the products and its components. From memorizing important verses in the bible to support some theological truths and arguments, now I find myself busy computing figures as a proof of my sales each day. My present work maximizes my passion to be with the people not just to those who are active in the parish but now extended to the people working in the medical field.

The work was great and full of excitement yet very much tiring. One essential thing that captured my attention and perhaps caused me to be discouraged was the realization that all relationship in the world of marketing was all superficial and shallow. In the corporate world, what matters most are figures…sales… money. Friendships are all secondary. You have to build relationship to prospect clients because you want something from them not because you like them. It is not about relationship but salesmanship. I am totally na├»ve in this field and therefore needs bigger adjustments on my part. It is so tempting to look back my seminary days with all its comforts and joys and blame myself of refusing to continue what I have started. I could still be enjoying such privilege if I did not decide to leave the seminary. But this is not what motivates my vocation to priesthood; that is why I am so happy of having this gift of courage to decide on my own and walk the path of uncertainty. This is not only for my own sake but for my beloved diocese as well. Though I am outside the structure of the seminary, I am still hopeful to be ordained at the right time with God’s grace and mercy.

My absence in the seminary does not mean taking the opposite but rather making the best way towards priesthood. I am contented of where I am right now, experiencing the fruitful yet challenging life outside the seminary that eventually pave the way to a more mature priesthood. This is the beauty of ‘PRESENT’; a good preparation of what is to come. This is the power called NOW. †