50 YEARS OF MERCY AND COMPASSION By Randy and Cecile Limjoco

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.” – Jesus Christ

When we speak of Mercy and Compassion we need to understand that both are premised on the ability to love. There can be no greater love than that of our Lord Jesus’ commandment of how to love one another.

Marriage can be compared to an arduous trek up a high mountain the peak often obscured by a myriad of distractions brought on by everyday life. There is no guarantee that newlyweds will succeed in navigating the sometimes rocky and slippery slopes to the top no matter how passionate and intense their love was for each other on their wedding day.

My loving wife Cecile and I have been scaling Mount Marriage for nearly 50 years and have had our share of challenges while hiking up that path to the top. I consider myself extremely blessed in having tied the knot with Cecile. I have always said that she is my angel who God in his mercy chose her to lead me to Him. The truth told, I had no knowledge of the Sacraments nor any spiritual formation when I met Cecile in January 1966 having just turned 19 years old. It was she who in her love for me took compassion on my young wandering soul that led me to God. As my personal relationship with Jesus Christ grew and knowledge of God’s precepts became more understood so did our love for each other. This made it possible for Cecile and I to continue growing in the spirt as we serve God in the various ministries of the SSAP.

We learned that the secret of staying together is to work on your marriage and nourish the love for each other everyday — love must be expressed, articulated and made real. Like a bright light love must be allowed to shine not kept hidden in a closet. Hence, communication, sharing our dreams and doing things together with our children and grandchildren. The best place in the world is in the arms of someone who will hold you at your best, but who will pick you up and hug you tight at your weakest moment hence a compassionate love.

Jesus did not only lay down his life for us to save us from sin, but we recognize that he is also our source of strength and peace we need in our married life thus, having experienced and witnessed what Jesus did for our journey to the top of Mount Marriage and our family, it is our desire to make Jesus known to others who may not as yet made Him their personal Savior and in doing so allow Him to work his miracle as they journey through life with God as their partner and guiding light.