Gosh, I was like “oh, oh, where have you been” upon seeing the faces of my three friends two of whom I’ve last seen almost a year ago. And to think this is the first time that they came over here at the house to visit me.
Thank God for surprises! When He tickles you with one, He makes sure that it is really something you will treasure, maybe long after the laughter, the giggles and endless smiles are gone. Yesterday was another day “worth-remembering”. That’s really my favorite line, the worth-remembering people, events and surprises in my life. There are moments when you just look up and say a prayer or two that He is giving you another beautiful day to put in the treasure chest of your memories.
Yesterday was such a lovely day spent with friends from my Catholic apostolate group, the Apostles Filipino Catholic Community. It all started about two years ago when Fr. Louie Coronel, OP created an online page at Facebook. AFCC has actually been in existence as a Catholic organization in Rome for the last twenty years. We cater to the global Pinoys and share reflections, news, ideas, and ways of strengthening our Faith and our own journeys as Catholics. We finally met some of the members in two successive gatherings last year at Bahay Dominiko, Sto. Domingo Church in Quezon City. Meeting face to face, realizing that they were not just names and pictures on Facebook was awesome. Truly, God works in wondrous ways. Forming friendship with people younger than you are, (they could be your sons and daughters) sharing their own spiritual journeys in life, sharing their own pain with you and sharing their thoughts and aspirations are clear affirmations that everything is possible when you look together and look forward in the same direction. Friendship is a lovely thing, don’t you think?
Imagine six hours of sharing and laughter, talking about anything under the sun, touching on such serious subjects like life’s travails and journeys and yes, we even touched on subjects like the stock market and how it works, life in a bank as an employee, life of a OFW, photography, faith, and places we want to explore and dream of visiting – they are an eclectic mix of topics alright.
We had a yummy lunch of grilled pork steak, roasted chicken, grilled liempo, sautéed mixed veggies and the ginataang santol which I cooked earlier. Reymon, Joan and Lilet said that this is the first time they have tasted santol cooked as a dish. It went well with the grilled meat. I jokingly asked them, “Did I pass?” and Reymon laughingly answered,“Wow, ang sarap po Mommy.” Late in the afternoon, we harvested calamansi in the backyard for Lilet to take home. It was such a joy seeing them enjoying themselves picking calamansi despite the afternoon shower which turned into a heavy downpour before they left.
Oh, the joys of meeting and hugging each other, and smiling at the thought of shared jokes remembered – what a lovely gift – having friends! And I’d like to end this blog with these words for they briefly describe what friendship is all about. It was written by Dinah Maria (Mulock) Craik.
Oh, the comfort —
The inexpressible comfort of feeling
safe with a person,
Having neither to weigh thoughts,
Nor measure words — but pouring them
All right out — just as they are —
Chaff and grain together —
Certain that a faithful hand will
Take and sift them —
Keep what is worth keeping —
and with the breath of kindness
Blow the rest away.