Another year has passed, another batch of students have patiently attended their CCD (Continuing Catholic Development) classes and finally have reaffirmed their Catholic vows and received the Holy Spirit through the Sacrament of Confirmation.
I still vividly recall how on the first day of the school year, I was nervous as to how to teach teenagers and make them enjoy, learn, and appreciate, at the same time, the teachings of our faith and to know God on a more personal level and understand what Jesus went through and hopefully be mature enough to understand what receiving the Holy Spirit means. How do I let these messages become adaptable to their teen years when they themselves have a lot of questions and conflicts with the many changes this age brings?
I guess, I myself had to open up to the Holy Spirit to allow the Spirit’s wisdom and grace to open my mind and heart to be able to touch these children’s lives in that one hour we have together every Sunday.
As our officiating bishop, Bishop Mylo Hubert Vergara, has shared during his homily, there are 3 things that the Confirmandi need to take with them: Pray to God daily, in whatever state or mood one is in, pray. Whether happy or sad, grateful or needy, pray. It is a beautiful habit for one to offer our daily lives conversing with our God, makes us feel closer to Him, makes Him become more real to us, makes Him work in our lives even more.
Next is to celebrate Jesus in the Eucharist, by receiving Christ, we strengthen our bond with Him and hopefully as we receive Jesus’s real body through the sacrament, we are more aware of our thoughts, words and actions.
Lastly, and I think was such a beautiful parting word was to imitate Christ. He is the ultimate role model and the best human being to walk the earth. As we are all created in the likeness of God and Christ is our brother, difficult as it may be, we have it all in ourselves to be like Christ, to imitate Him. To reflect on things we say and do and be consciously aware if this is pleasing to our Creator who at all times is watching over us and aspire to live a moral life are just some things we can do. Being kind to others even at challenging times is a real manifestation of how God loves us.
This year’s batch had 37 students all beautifully confirmed by Bishop Mylo Hubert Vergara and assisted by our new parish priest, Fr. Reu Galoy, OFM. Of course, a big thank you to the CCD Committee — Lia Te, Marivic Borromeo, Katty Qua and Nancy Gonewai, with the help of Leah Azarcon, for patiently working hard to make the whole school year a success. Special thanks also go to our Curriculum Head, Libet Virata, our commentator Karen Blanco, our Liturgical Coordinator Jojo Leveriza, our Speech and Comportment coach Juno Henares Chuidian, CCD teachers Mimi David, Uwa Tambunting, lay ministers and altar servers Jentry Arbis, Andrew Romualdez, Christie Nair and Paco Borromeo for their dedication and assistance, the Psalm 47 Men’s Choir for the beautiful music which made the event even more meaningful. Thank you also to Betta Kramer, CCD treasurer and Conifrmation Committee member together with Gina Roxas.
Thank you also to the parents who are our co-educators and role models in raising good Catholics. Most specially, thank you to my co-teachers in Confirmation, Nancy Gonewai and Yolanda Lomotan for lovingly, passionately and tirelessly teaching the students how it is to love God and live a truly virtuous Catholic life.
The year has ended, the students have graduated and confirmed, certificates were given, photos were taken, tears of joy were shed, these I will take with me as I journey again on the next path to meeting the next batch of Confirmandi. And just like in any beginning and ending, it is the journey with the new batch of students in leading them closer to our Creator that I most look forward to.