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What a mouthful of a title.

Yes I met those cute and smart seminarians when I worked as a student librarian at the UST Main Library. Since I was assigned at the Humanities Section where they frequented, I met so many of them. That was wayback in the 70s. Our Prefect at the library was a Spanish priest who is now in Korea. My fellow student librarians at the section and I were even invited to some ordinations of our friends. Some are now friends on FB.

I met Lovell for the first time when he graduated in Theology in 2008 but he was Nissa’s friend in UST during their college days. I remember him gifting me with a Vatican rosary when we met. He is now almost 10 years into the priesthood and is assigned in Iloilo down south. He is one of my prayer warriors and we get in touch from time to time. He calls me his spiritual mother.

Fr. Louie who is also a Dominican is the creator of The Filipino Catholic page on FB. When he learned that I am a friend of Lovell back in 2010, he asked me to be one of the co -admins of our page which I hold until now. The family met him for the first time when we went to Santo Domingo Church during our Visita Iglesia in 2011. He came back here after his doctorate in Rome and is now the Secretary General of UST. I met the rest of my Dominican friends then.

I met Fr. Rey when he was still a seminarian in UST. We are from the same province so we speak the same language. We lost touch after college graduation. He went to the US for further studies and came back here when he was ordained as a priest. He stayed in New York for a number of years and came home I think a couple of years ago. We are now friends on Facebook. We always have a healthy exchange of comments when it comes to politics.

I have been a friend of Fr. Pao since 2018 I think but we haven’t met personally until last Monday. I often attend his masses online. Met the rest of the Paulinians friends when we went to the wake of my friend’s mom.

Last 2014, my friends and I had a small gathering here at home, pot luck but I did most of the cooking. For the first time I personally met Fr. Tacky, a Franciscan and Fr. Boy, who is a Dominican. They came over too. That was a lovely occasion, full of laughter and food. I also met some online friends who are members of our page.

Funny how after all these years, we are still in touch, kumustahan once in a while. Like Fr. Lovell, they are my prayer warriors too.

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This morning I went to the wake of one of my friends’ mom. My Sambuhay Interaktib family met me there. Malou is also a member this group which was organized more than two years ago. These priests and seminarians of St. Paul created a program three years ago to share reflections and bond with other online people who attend the former’s online masses during the pandemic. It was a concelebrated mass of Fr. Pao and Fr. Baste assisted by Rev. Ed who delivered the homily. They go online twice a week and they have gained loyal followers.

Malou’s family took a one-week vacation (they live now in Australia) to attend their mom’s burial. Her son is also a seminarian. He took a video of the mass. I took some shots after the mass.

With Fr. Pao
Br. Russel and I
Fr. Pao, Marian (Malou’s daughter), Br. Ronel and Fr. Baste at the back.
Fr. Pao, Rev. Ed and I

Love those funny and precious moments of bonding after the mass and while we were eating lunch.

When friends meet, hearts warm❤🧡💜💙💚💛

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There’s that trigger again reminding me to start another blog post. I feel so lazy. I haven’t visited WordPress in a while.

I had a conversation with a friend from Canada (there were four of us when we were in college). Grace met an accident last Easter Vigil, had multiple pelvic bones fractures surgery which was not successful so she had a hip replacement surgery. Then she got infection in her gall bladder so she went under the knife again. Among the four of us, she is the only one who was not affected by cancer. All three of us had it, the two with breast cancer and me with colon cancer. Three survivors. Grace introduced me to their parish priest who also blogs about all of his homilies. I visited his site and left a few words via e-mail. He answered, how nice.

Last January, Sr. Thea, an FMM nun, told me that she was diagnosed with lung cancer this time after several years of being free from it. I don’t know about Precy since we haven’t gotten in touch for so long now. She changed her cellphone number.

Grace told me to be gentle and allow myself to grieve. Sometimes though, I still feel so low and couldn’t think of something nice to blog about. But I read, I am on my 82nd book this year. I found a book with Japan as the background during the 15th century. Just started so I don’t know yet if it is worth-reading or not.

I was laughing finding this on my newsfeed except that I no longer use a library card. I mostly read e-books nowadays and have my virtual library at Goodreads.
Another image the words of which I find provoking but it’s true. I remember a friend who told me once that the journey to life is not always a straight path.

Have a beautiful and peaceful weekend😘☺💐🌷🎉🎈🎊

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A friend who used to be an officemate also used to visit my wall at Facebook and occasionally comment on my posts here although she is not a blogger.

These last few days, I missed her words and the inspiring comments that she usually write. I had a sudden inkling to visit her wall, there was nothing there for the last four months. I tried some friends of hers who have the same surname as she has. Probably her kids? We have some common friends at Bank of PI on Facebook but I’ve never read nor heard about Minnah.

What a sad ending when I read that she passed on last July 19. We used to talk about her having dialysis twice a week before. I told her about my dad’s plight having dialysis before he died. In our hospitals here, it is not free. I wonder if that has changed now. My dad died fourteen years ago after six months of treatment. Minnah said, it was hard to put up money for her dialysis twice a week.

When Dad died, I promised myself that I would never submit to that treatment if (God forbids)I would be in that same predicament. Imagine, they drain out your blood and put it back clean, same procedure after two or three days. All the nutrients your body absorbed in those days in between come to naught.

My dad passed away because of end stage renal disease. I have chronic UTI since I gave birth to Nissa. I haven’t been to my doctor since this pandemic started.

They always say health is wealth and I agree.

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I texted Fr. Lovell early this morning to greet him on his 9th priestly anniversary ordination. Wow, we haven’t seen each other since I attended his first Thanksgiving mass after his ordination. That was nine years ago too. He is just too busy juggling between his masteral studies, office work and his priestly ministry. Yeah, he said that we haven’t seen each other for a long time. Every time he presides over special masses, I always get a text that he is offering his mass for the family too. So glad to have a prayer warrior.

It is hard to be a priest. They are humans like us. There is that big responsibility they carry on their shoulders. Much as we need prayers, they need them more.

I found this picture of us together during his ordination nine years ago.

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Someday perhaps we will meet each other again,

We’ll sit by the fire and reminisce

Those lovely days of old while drinking hot cups of coffee.

We’ll laugh how it was then,

The innocence of youth,

How insecured we were.

Trying to find that elusive thing – happiness.

We’ve gone a long way now,

Counting the grays in our hair

But the essence of friendship remains.

Ah, it is beautiful🌻

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Yeay, it’s another weekend. February is running fast.

I’ve been remissed in my blogging updates again. I talked to several friends yesterday through Messenger. I met Maria Luisa several months ago when Sambuhay Interaktib started last year. She is living in Australia with her family. She took these photos of us while we were talking. We touched on so many subjects especially our families and the political situation here in our country.

It was so really nice to catch up with friends online.

Today is my adopted son’s birthday (anak-anakan in Tagalog). Fr. Lovell is still assigned in Iloilo and he does not go online often so we rely on texts which is easier.

Got this photo from their Dominican site. A former classmate in high school saw it and asked me to ask Fr. Lovell if he knows the parents of her son’s in-laws who she thinks are neighbors with Fr. Lovell’s family. The latter confirmed that they are close friends. What a small world!

By the way, I’m done with my 21st book for this year’s Goodreads challenge. Discovering new books and gifted authors in the process.

Have a happy and fruitful weekend.

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I had a good chat with a former officemate from the bank and also a schoolmate from wayback high school. She was ahead of me by two years but I knew her because she was very popular back then.

I haven’t seen her for twenty years (since I left the bank) but we recently found each other on Facebook.  What do two good friends talk about after all these years? Several, we touched on our faith, our kids, our hobbies at the moment and the happenings in the government that we both hate. There seems to be a common denominator when it comes to our views on how this country is being run.

For the first time, I watched our Vice-President  Leni Robredo attend the Congress hearing for the budget next year. Recognizing her  inspiring role as VP since she was elected back in 2016, her achievements and projects during this pandemic to help Filipinos, both the opposition and the pro-administration legislators are seeking higher budget for the Office of the Vice-President (OVP).  She received the highest audit rating from the Commission on Audit in 2019. The OVP has the lowest budget appropriation for the last two years. The Vice President said the OVP initially proposed a P720-million budget for 2021, but the Department of Budget and Management set a budget ceiling at P679.74 million.  She was helped by the private sector in all her projects. They’d rather extend their hands to her than to…. you know who. Whatever they come up with and approve is okay with  VP Leni.

“We make do with what we have. That has always been the case with the Office of the Vice President… Of course we will be able to help more people if we are given more. But whatever is given to us, we work with that budget,” VP Leni said. She is a frontliner, not a politician.  We have this notion that VPs are only the spare wheels of the president, right? But VP Leni is doing her job well. Some call her Busy President.

 

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Today


culled from the net

“What day is it?” asked Pooh.
“It’s today,” squeaked Piglet.
“My favorite day,” said Pooh.”
― A.A. Milne

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Fr. Louie, the chief administrator of our page, Filipino Catholic is so fond of having those games online which he posts every day for his friends to answer. Sometimes, he just posts photos of sellers whose products are named and misspelled incorrectly and we just laugh. A few minutes ago, he posted some photos of our native fruits which are now seldom seen in the market nowadays. It reminds me of those days some years ago, when most members of our page enjoyed our group called Tambayan. We had those hot seats where most members are allowed to question one particular member – anything goes. It was fun.

Our page, the Filipino Catholic has been in existence for ten years now and I was appointed by Fr. Louie as one of the admins a few months after he created it. Back then, he was still studying for his doctorate degree in Rome. We are still at it until now and we have added another admin a few months ago. We are four in all taking care and running the site at Facebook. It’s one reason why I could not give up Facebook because I have to update daily Bible readings for our members. One good thing about it is that we have loyal followers.

Some of them have become my friends over the years and those who are residing abroad who are OFWs sometimes contact me and I invite them to visit me here. We always have those nice and lovely chats about their works and our families, serious discussions about our Catholic faith, food and many more. We had two previous gatherings at Santo Domingo Church – the joy of seeing each other personally and sharing our meager talents in making the events successful. What bliss!

I met a friend who used to work in the US but she has come back home and retired here. Odette is the one who regularly supplies me with those lovely favorite books over the years. She is a member of our page.

I miss seeing them personally, not just through messages on FB. I miss those days of laughter and sharing our lives with each other. Come to think of it, I haven’t ventured out of our gate for almost three months now. The number of those found positive of COVID-19 is still rising every day. May we be all spared from this pandemic.

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