“Finding Joy in SYA — My Extended Family, My Second Home” by Marie Tycangco

At some point in our lives we ask ourselves ‘What is it to be truly happy?’. We explore all the possibilities to find things that will give us the joy we have been longing for, but after so many tries, we still can’t seem to find the answer — not in a person, not in our work, not in the hobbies that we enjoy. So, where?

Is happiness the absence of problems?  Is it having a perfect family, having lots of friends, having a huge paycheck, being able to travel the world? Is it even possible to be problem free?

I think being happy is a decision. It is appreciating what life has to offer, seeing the beauty in everything that we do and in everybody that we encounter. It is in knowing that God is with us in every endeavor we face that we find happiness. It is inevitable that we have disagreements within our parents or have conflicts with our brothers or sisters or go through failed relationships or have problems at work. These things should not stop us from being happy.

Back in 2012, I felt that amidst having a complete family, a good set of friends, a growing business and keeping myself busy with lots of activities that I enjoyed, something was missing. Then a friend invited me to join the 23rd Single Young Adult (SYA) Weekend and without hesitation I did, with high hopes that with some divine intervention, I will find the missing piece in my life that will make me happy. True enough, my weekend experience was a starting point to becoming a better me and finding happiness. It strengthened my relationship with God, making each day thereafter a happier day to live. Now, no problem will pull me down, without being able to rise again and seeing the brighter side of things. So many things can go wrong, but with a strengthened faith, I believe that God will not give me anything that I can’t handle.

It all started with one weekend, but the impact of the experience is forever. What was it during the weekend that made me change my perspective of life and continue to serve God through this community? The talks were simple but very relevant and real. It made me reflect on who I am, my relationships with the people around me, what I have been searching for, and the things that are keeping me from growing, among others. The people I met in this community have become my new friends. SYA has become my extended family, my second home. This community has taught me what happiness is all about and what it is to be in the midst of people who share the same happiness. It has made me see things in a different light, allowing myself to live life with more enthusiasm and share the same zest for life with others.

I would then like to invite all those who are single, 21-39 years old to join us for the 27th SYA WEEKEND on March 21 to 23 (Friday evening to Sunday) at the Santuario de San Antonio Parish Center. Sign-up forms and informational brochures are available at the Parish Office. For more details you may also visit the parish website at https://ssaparish.wordpress.com/parish-mininstries/youth-of-san-antonio/sya/.

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MarieMarie has been a member of the Single Young Adults since 2012. She enjoys traveling, trying out new restaurants, and playing sports like badminton and boxing.

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