“Anumang magaling, kahit na maliit basta’s malimit, ay patungong langit.”

We hear these words ever so often in school that somehow, it’s lost it’s meaning for me.  We sing it. We dance to it but we never really stop to think about what it really means.  Yesterday, I got the opportunity to reflect on it and I’m glad I did.  While it’s true that I was dozing off from time to time and that I was getting restless after hours of sitting still and listening to talk after talk, I also relished the experience.

First, I’m so happy to learn of all the projects that Pondo ng Pinoy has accomplished.  It was great to find out that it’s really living up to its promise of helping uplift the poor.  It’s one thing that I can tell my students tomorrow.  At least they get to find out that their money is being well-spent after all.

Second, I was touched by the selfless giving that was happening all around.  It was refreshing to see people so active and inspired by their faith.  I haven’t been able to be a part of something like it in a long while.  It was pretty funny the way we would dance at every opportunity.  On the other hand, it was very enriching to hear mass with around 3000 people all praying earnestly and reverently. The last time I was with a big crowd like that in prayer was during the World Meeting of Families.  I literally had goosebumps at certain parts of the mass. It was amazing!

Another touching moment for me was seeing Fr. James Reuter, SJ.  He was our director when we staged the play “Heart of a City” in school.  Back then, he was already old but he could walk on his own and give instructions with strength and emphasis.  Now, he was in a wheel chair and he looked visibly tired.  I could not see his eyes but I got a little teary.  I wondered how a once young and vibrant man could become so dependent and weak.  In that moment, I thought about how everyone would eventually become old and just a fraction of what they used to be.  Then, I realized I shouldn’t see it that way.  I smiled because he was no longer a picture of a great man lost to old age.  Rather, he became a symbol of fulfillment and success.  I looked at him and thought of all the lives he has touched and all the work he has done to spread God’s word to others.  Perhaps, if only I was able to look into his eyes up close, I would see happiness and contentment for living a long life dedicated to a mission that he was able to accomplish so well.  Now, I think about my grandmothers and grandfathers, my aunts and uncles who died and think about the good things they taught me.  Truly, we just pass on this earth and what matters is not how short or long we traveled but who we touched along the way. Am I being too sentimental? I guess I am but just the sight of Fr. Reuter was enough for me to realize that there should be no fear in growing old….

So you see, it was really a good experience even though I was dead tired by the end of the day. Hee.

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