Saturday, March 29, 2008


Understanding the virtues of a Bosconian Graduate

It was already seven years ago when I first stood up on this same podium to give my valedictory speech. But now it is different, this year, I am to perform a similar act of what Fr. Eli Cruz, SDB our guest speaker then has done: and it is to inspire and at the same time to challenge.
Graduation always gives me the feeling of fulfillment, a certain sense of accomplishment that attests to years of struggling and striving in order to attain a stage of acceptance. It is true that graduation protrude to an end which recognizes what was done and finished. However it also entails a beginning thus graduation is also known as commencement which means to start.
My dear graduates this is not the last course but rather you are here to initiate a new phase of your life; another chapter of your own book; a harder journey to complete.
Allow me to delve more deeply to the theme of this graduation. “The Filipino Graduates: Celebrating Achievements, Pursuing Opportunities”
Achievements, what are achievements? Are these things confining only to the citations received from an exemplary work? Or perhaps for a noble deed that resulted for one’s advancement? Or rather these are simple things that we ought to neglect after being deceived by the allurements brought to us by pride of being an all-knowing.
As I reflect on my own personal achievements, I always look back to the three things of which I consider as most valuable.
First, are the people whom have supported and guided me all throughout my life. And I don’t mean here only those whom have helped me or who gave me consolation but also those who brought me pains that it took some time to get healed. It also includes those who have hated or calumniated me in any sort.
Graduates, be thankful of your fathers who work hard to finance your education though at times they became indifferent and insensitive because they were already tired; to your mothers who diligently wakes you up in the morning while showering you with overflowing sermons, to your teachers who keeps on scolding you on your misdeeds; to your friends who will always be at your side but resulted to be your best enemies but then it taught you the value of forgiveness; and to everyone else whom without them you will never be here. Regardless of what and how much they have contributed on your life they still played a role on your existence.
My second achievement is my Salesian Education. The preventive system I have learned from this institution is the main framework of my core values. Don Bosco’s way led me to become more vigilant on my actions, to be sensitive on my dealings and to persevere more to become virtuous.
On the other hand, the challenge of being a saint that was promoted by Don Bosco is something that should permeate from within us. What he stressed about admiration which does not only entail as mere appreciation but rather a conviction for imitation is indeed a basis for following Christ.
Lastly, what I know as my greatest achievement is my knowledge that there is a God. A Father who listens but at the same time castigates, a God that showed as that true love means sacrificing oneself for others. Indeed the Lord alone sustains everything; He completes anything that is lacking. Without God we are nothing, He perfected us and made us worthy. And I don’t think there is still a need for me to elaborate on this more.
My dear friends, gratefulness to them are vital. They are the founders of our values, the builders of our characters and our authentically good relationships towards them are our only response to celebrate these achievements. They have been our treasures and they will always be our precious. To look back won’t give us any hurts but rather this shows an exemplary trait that will aid us to pursue more the opportunities laid by destiny.
All in all, these three achievements can be summarized on one single phrase and it goes: I AM A BOSCONIAN GRADUATE; an achievement in itself. Nevertheless, this achievement will not end this way alone. It curtails proof, evidenced not just by mere words but actions that represent it.
After this graduation, how many from you dear graduates will keep attending mass on Sundays or go to confession often? How many of you will have the eagerness to pray the rosary every day making Jesus and Mary your true best friend? Moreover, how many among you will live up on struggling towards sanctity?
Opportunities are rampant and now what is asked to you is to make a choice: a choice that will make your life; a choice that will test everything that you have learned. Yes, we draw our futures and from these achievements, we can attain more.
Graduates, be proud for you are fruits of the Bosconian Spirit, be proud and stand for it.

Pre Novice Marc Will R. Lim
March 29, 2008

Monday, March 24, 2008


Understanding the value of contention
To discuss how it is to be a model is but too crucial or so much of an unreachable trait every man struggle to attain or perhaps simply say a sort of “desperate actions of those with both high ideals and morals.” However, living by example is a “must” trait and yet it remains the hardest sought virtue. And it is much avoided for nobody wanted to be questioned on one’s own comfort.
Allow me to discuss it further. How hard it is to be in positioned? Well, having been hailed as leader of different organizations and events in the school and in our small community in the past, and maintaining a profession as a CPA as well as being a seminarian I believe entails much not only of the many works it demands but also of the exemplary actions an authentic and true individual should exude and imbibe. This is difficult indeed. And yet this is for more important than the former.
All of us need to prioritize and the first one should not be his own sets of desires and needs. When we start giving within our outmost longing, satisfying it at all cost we started to forget what we should have remembered in the first place, which is, loving our neighbor.
I had just attended a seminar about “Fraud” that is committed by most managers and the speaker gave a very important point he posted a question which goes? How a manager has all its guts to mismanage?” and his sole answer: GREED. This capital sin eats all us up swallowing us whole including digesting our very own system resulting to a corrupt and self-centered system. We can never satisfy our needs and if this will be the center of our selves it will bring us down. This is the source of every misdeed that follows. The avaricious intend of mankind led us to a world of discontent that weak human as we are asks for everything because of not just mere need but now because of wanting.
St. Augustine was so clear with this. Once he said: “Seek what suffices, seek what is enough, and don’t desire more. Whatever goes beyond that, produces anxiety not relief: it will weigh you down instead of lifting you up.” And that alone is enough to comprehend.
Nowadays, our country is visibly suffering from these. There are a lot of people educated enough who forgets the importance of living by example. If only our government officials understand this. If only this is clear for all of us. If only we act and just be aware of it. If only we all live by example. It could have been a better world. And I supposed God will be more pleased.

Friday, February 8, 2008


“Love is so short but forgetting is so long”
“Mi vida est toda de amor
y si en amor estoy ducho,
es por fuerza del dolor,
que no hay amante mejor
que aquel que ha sufrido mucho”

For two days already the Gospel of our Lord repeated a word, a very important word that we should do especially at this point. LISTEN! My dear fellows we have to listen.

You might be wondering about the Spanish verses I exclaimed earlier, allow me to translate it to you in English and it goes:

“My life is consists in loving,
and if with loving I’m familiar,
it is because I’ve sorrowed much;
for there’s no finer lover,
than one who’s suffered much.”

I have been living with this principle for 6 years already. But it was until this year that I truly understand its meaning.
LOVING is just so hard to understand. All along I thought that it is but sufficient to just give yourself, enduring all the sacrifices and sorrows attached to it, but that is not love alone. Rather, it is martyrdom which is self-seeking. For this kind of love settles on the need to be appreciated, a matter of fulfillment on one’s pride.
Love should be understood as charity, a kind of love, which allows others to love in return. In addition love also entails one’s readiness to detach oneself, to depart for the sake of love.
The Lord died on the cross to save us, to redeem us, to show how much He really loves us. Salesians too suffered much on building this structure, on rebuilding Sta.Cruz, they did save us, and they did redeem us, a true showcase of love. But it doesn’t stop there. Jesus left. But before ascending to heaven, the Lord said:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold I am with you always until the end of age.”
Matthew 28: 17-20

Yes, He left us but He made a promise: “And behold I am with you always until the end of age”.
This is how a finer lover should be defined. A lover whose willingness to offer oneself lies primarily to his wanting to let others showcase their own love to their neighbors. A lover who is ready to endure the pain of letting go and he does it because of love.

Until now, I know many of you find this too hard. And I have to admit that a part of me feels the same. My heart is being torn into pieces every time I remember that after 2010 I have no more Don Bosco Sta. Cruz, nevertheless a part of me is saying: “It is finished”. The people who administers and who will administers what the Salesians left are also competent they are brothers for we only live on one same roof. And that alone justifies our resiliency. We have to give our hope, our faith to them. On his latest Encyclical, Spe Salvi, the Holy See defined hope, as trustworthy hope. He cited the Letters to the Hebrews wherein it closely links the “fullness of faith” to the “confession of our hope without wavering”. He established it clearly that “hope” is equivalent to “faith”. And this is the hope we have to give to them.
I would like to end my speech with this challenge. My dear fellows, To be known as a TRUE BOSCONIAN relies not because of this structure alone rather a TRUE BOSCONIAN is identified because of his deed, exemplary actions that permeates from within which arises from the heart because of love. We and not this structure are the living testaments of Don Bosco Sta. Cruz. The question lies on us; do we really live by it? WE ARE THE LIVING TESTEMENT AND THERE ARE NOBODY ELSE. Prove it!
(Speech delivered last January 31, 2008 during the Foundation Day Celebration of Don Bosco High School, Sta. Cruz, Laguna)

Monday, January 7, 2008

The Challenge on Work

Dealing with responsibilities provided by a job appropriately.

I am used to have a lot works, ever since. And I think my current stance will speak for it.

Before entering Don Bosco Canlubang as an Aspirant (a specific term used to describe the entry stage as a seminarian) of the Salesians of Don Bosco, I was assigned in Don Bosco Mandaluyong. I remember the very first day I set foot on that school wherein I was overwhelmed by the surrounding which I immediately felt being at home. I was well received by the priests especially by the Rector, Fr. Eli Cruz, SDB together with the whole community comprise of Fr. Demetrio Carmona, SDB, Bro. Jose Maria Ferrer, SDB, Fr. Hilario Tamonan, SDB, Fr. Martel Ramos, SDB, Fr. Ramon Borja, SDB, Fr. Jay David, SDB, Fr. Clarence Panganiban, SDB, Fr. Ramon Aldana, SDB, Fr. Eliseo Pio San Juan, SDB, Bro. Abner Santos, SDB, Bro Christian Josef Ocampo, SDB, Bro. Le Minh Luan Paul, SDB, Bro. Nguyen Hoang Phi Peter, SDB, Bro. Pham Hung Cuong Joseph, SDB and Bro. Tran Ba Hiep Michael, SDB. For that reason, I remained grateful.

My stay there led me to a lot of realizations and it includes one of my most revered. It goes: that the one who has “the CALL” is invited not because of one’s doing but rather by his own being. Such brought to existence after placing a relevant query to Fr. Eli, asking him how come he didn’t give me a specific work that entails a distinct responsibility.

Back then, I settled myself only on one of his reasons which is that he intends me to have a taste of everything allowing me to be placed on different departments in the institution only to assists. However, it remained vivid to me that such premise wasn’t accepted by my system that easy. Nevertheless, I continued to be obedient. Aside from that a statement caught my attention, saying:

“Seek what suffices, seek what is enough, and don’t desire more.

Whatever goes beyond that, produces anxiety not relief:

it will weigh you down instead of lifting you up.”

- St. Augustine

And so I felt suppressed yet patient. On the other hand, my present state here in Canlubang provided me otherwise. I have a lot of work, as a student, accountant (maintaining 2 books), youth group animator, event organizer, professor, adviser (financial and political) and most especially as a seminarian.

I cannot deny the fact that I take pride on it, for really I am. And somehow that gives much danger on it. For position provides power, and power corrupts, I have lived with this principle that is why I stay vigilant. Yet, I am not perfect because at times I fall on this trap, enjoying the many benefits the title can offer.

In line with this comes the importance of offering a work that is exemplary. “Thou shall not offer anything that is faulty, because it would not be worthy of Him.” says the Holy Scriptures. Thus, work should always be for the Lord and with the Lord. Don Bosco is very clear with this, to work with a clear intention of offering it everything for God.

Lastly, I believe that work should be understood clearly as an opportunity to serve the Lord through others. This reason alone gives justice to the claims above.

“Gaudium etsi laboriosum.”

(“Joy in spite of hardship.”)