kabakas 2010

It was a rainy evening and the waters started to rise in front our house. I thought I would not make it. My sister and I was off to meet the Institute of Preaching Lay Missionaries (IPLM) at Robinson's Galleria for a rendezvous with the van driver who'll pick us up for Pililia, Rizal. We're sent for a mission the following morning. to catechize among the locals.  Thank God, we made it just right in time.

The Lord heard our prayers, the sun greeted us in the morning. We heard mass at 7 a.m.. We asked for blessings for the mission we're sent to. The whole group was divided into subgroups and sent into different barrios to preach the good news. I was assigned with Ate Zabeth in the Parish Church to facilitate the free Baptism. 

Although our assignment was relatively easy as regards the environment, it was heart breaking to see how  economical, social and spiritual poverty plague the place. The people had to come from the mountains or the shorelines to avail of the "free" sacrament. Some were so poor that they had to walk for hours just to get to the church. Some were spiritually poor for not even knowing how to pray nor hear mass on a regular basis. My heart cried for these people and asked God to bless their souls even more. I pity the families who had to be baptized altogether. I thought, how in the world would these parents allow this to happen.

When the group met during breaks, we sat and shared stories and I heard far more heartbreaking stories of poverty. There would be a kid who'd exchange his loot bag of school supplies for grocery packs because his family has nothing to eat. In such a tender age, he learns (hopefully not bitter) lessons of sacrifice. Some of the kids do not have slippers to protect their feet. Most do not even go to school.

More than these heartbreaking stories, I was blessed with joy and gratefulness. I realized how far blessed I am compared to these people. I get to buy want I want. I get to eat more than three times a day. I get to study a post-grad course. I am just super-blessed, yet sometimes I feel wanting. Shame on me. 

Although, we've left the town already it has definitely etched its faces in my heart--the people, their situation and their potential. I will surely say a prayer for them in each day. I kept a small promise in my heart to go back--keep on preaching the Good News of  Love and contribute concrete actions to help each of them see and believe that God loves them and they're made to be great. Because, Blessed (still) are the poor, for theirs is the Kingdom of God.

Here are some of the snapshots from Marlon:

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