Sunday, December 24, 2006

Tonight, finally we will celebrate what we have been waiting and preparing for: CHRISTMAS, The Birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.
May we accept Him in our Lives, in our hearts unlike those innkeepers who never received Him as just to give Him a room.Lk.2:7

May we experience true Peace for It is what He brings as He is Born."Glory to God in the Highest, and on earth Peace, good will toward men."Lk. 2:14

May we experience Joy so as to Thank Him for He has given us so much: Himself as a Gift. "God so Loved the world that He gave His only son." Jn.3:16

May we learn to offer this same Love ,Peace and Happiness. That Jesus Has given us, to one another.

MERRY CHRISTMAS to one and all.

Thursday, December 21, 2006


It’s a train ride from Bologna to Rome
I have traveled this route often times during the year,
But it takes a new meaning now since the year is about to end and I am going back home to the Philippines for a break.

As the train starts rolling down the tracks: passing villages, cities, mountains, hills, meadows and plains. And scenes and images come flashing at my side in variety, since it is late fall and early winter.

I took the chance for an introspection and self examination.

And it came to me. That the life that was, the whole year, and everything, they were just like this my train ride. A Eurostar experience.

The train Direction
The train is heading to Rome, going back to Rome.
While it is true that I’m sure where I am heading to and what I want to achieve, Life’s turn, just like every turns of the train, sometimes would bring you to something new and the unexpected.

All I knew was to go to Rome to study. But what I got was to finish the first half of my studies, then I was working with Filipino communities in Rome and in bologna, then I was in an American parish in New York and got to visit many beautiful places in Europe.

We never know..
I guess, what Forest Gump said in the movie make sense. “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you will get.”

It makes sense also when we are exhorted to “travel in faith” in ones life. For God has always something in store for us, often unexpected and all we have to do is to be
open to that grace.

The variety of images along the way, the different turns would create the uncertainties. Just like in life, the different experiences often also they are the ones that would give meaning and excitement in life. This is true for persons who are discoverers and explorers.

The Ticket Check

I was disrupted by the conductor to check my Bigletto.
Yes, there are times when you will be shaken and awaken to the reality of what you are doing, and where you are going, whether things are in order.
Sometimes the beautiful experiences would cloud your right goals and directions.

I am indeed awaken. All the various experiences just make me more realize what I am doing.
There were fears that all these would lead me astray.
But the more now I realize that I am here to study, then I will go back to Zamboanga and serve there till the end of my life, God willing. And that everything will eventually serve as instruments for me to be a better servant when I go back home for good.

The stops
Yes there are stops. Experiences of being low and down, when life seems to stop as if nothing happens, not running.
When I miss back home, my family, my love ones. When I don’t have anybody to run to in times of need and support. These are “stop” experiences in Life.
But these are passing experiences because eventually the train would continue and Life has to go on.

Meeting People
Face to face and side by side with passengers you don’t know and have not met before. In ones travel in Life we get to meet new friends and get to share and learn from them. This is indeed an enriching experience.

What a train ride experience I just had. What a travel, What a Life.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

I am Blessed and Truly Loved.

As I celebrate today my 39th Birthday
(Bologan, Italy)
I am reminded of how precious life is as a gift from God. This one Life, one chance to live that He has given me in this our beautiful world.
I was told by my mother how, when I was a child, I got sick and we were living then in a very remote Barrio and when she brought me to the only doctor in town, the doctor almost gave up on me. She recounted how she prayed to our Lord Jesus and how she entrusted me and consecrated me to the Lady of the Miraculous Medal, Our Blessed Virgin as her last hope and she remembered how everything started to turn for the better for me after her prayers.This story has always reminded me of the precious chance that God has given me to Live in this world and how He cares and Love me in spite of my unworthiness.
Then I look around and I feel sad when I see others not appreciating this one chance that Lord has offered.When I see some not giving others the chance to live by deciding on the life of infants or when others decide to take away life for a "reason" , and still others destroying their one chance to live through abuses and vices.
It is indeed very sad when one does not appreciate the one precious chance to live that God has given as a gift. And now I am halfway of my life and much more I am given the chance to continue enjoying, living this one chance and precious gift that the Lord has offered.
I am blessed and truly Loved by the Lord.

I am also reminded today of the other precious gift that the Lord has given that goes with my Life, that is My Vocation. The chance to make the most of what the Lord has offered by offering it in return through service for others.

And now I am on my 13th year as a priest and still with the opportunity given to go on serving, doing something good for others and for the Lord.
I am blessed and truly Loved by the Lord.
I am reminded also of the gift of friends that the Lord has given me. Yes, real friends, special persons who stood by me and remained with me through ups and downs and some of them have given a lot of themselves for me and my cause. And for this I say:
I am blessed and truly Loved by the Lord.
I am reminded today also of my family, specially my mother whom I know is praying hard for me and my intentions and that's the reason why, because of their prayers:
I am blessed and truly Loved by the Lord.
or the many Gifts that the Lord has showered upon me. I vow my head today and from the bottom of my heart.. I say THANK YOU LORD..I am blessed and truly Loved by You. Amen.

Friday, December 15, 2006

"Advent Attitude"

ADVENT is a time of Waiting and Preparing.
We await the coming of our Savior Jesus Christ. We wait for Christmas.
We wait for no one else and nothing else but Jesus Christ.
Once I asked a group of kids "whom are we waiting for this Christmas?" and they all answered "Santa Claus."
While waiting, we Prepare. We prepare things needed for Christmas and we prepare ourselves so that our Christmas, our acceptance of Jesus into our hearts, into our lives will be meaningful and happy.
In preparing there should be the right attitude and disposition needed on each one and I believe it should be that of JOY.
Yes, a disposition of happiness and contentment because even though at times we complain that life is difficult, we know that God loves us and cares for us and even though the crosses are many, we believe "we can still count on our blessings." "God so Love the world..that He gave..."

The attitude of preparing should also be that of JOY. meaning:

J - Jesus should be the center of our waiting, of our preparation, of our
attention, and of our celebration.
O - Others, to whom our generosity, care and concern should be directed
Y - Yourself or Oneself should only come last in our priority.

Come to think of it, often..we make our own needs, our priority and only then we think of others and something for Jesus..and that would make a YOJ kind of attitude.

Prepare and Wait with JOY for Jesus and our Christmas will be Happy and Meaningful.
Buon Natale.

Saturday, December 9, 2006

US Tour

Flying High in the U.S.

Friday, December 8, 2006

Thursday, December 7, 2006

"Pag-Iisang-Dibdib" sa Bologna: A Leap of Faith

I solemnized the wedding of Raphy and Kristine in Bologna. I saw on their faces as they were marching along the Isles... Yes, the joy of offering each other in marriage but at the same time the uncertainties and apprehensions of the new Life they are entering into together and the gravity of the decision they are making..I said to myself..Oh, yes..this is another "Leap of Faith."

I shared to the young couple "3" Important short messages. I said "3" so that it would be easy for them to remember and besides the number "3" is so meaningful as it stands for "I Love You", The very core of what they promise to each other in marriage.

I asked them to remember always these they they start a new life together:

1. Remember that your promise is sacred and is "made in heaven." It is a promise "not made to be broken" but one that is to be kept no matter what happens, "for better for worse, for richer, for poorer in sickness and in health till death."..Guard and fulfill it sincerely and faithfully.

2. "Be Together" "Be United".."You are two and will be made One." Be together in your plans, your dreams, struggles, joys and decisions. Work for unity in your Life, with your family and with God. We always believe: "United we stand and divided we fall."

3. Always remember to Pray. Make Jesus, the Lord always part of your life and of the family. He is still your strength, your support as you go through all the uncertainties in Life. we always say:"A Family that prays together, stays together."

It is a "Leap of Faith" these young couple are making. But I believe they will be assured of help..if they try to remember the "3 things". The sincerity and faithfulness of their promise of Love, The strength of being together, and the guiding hands of the Lord ready to catch them if they fall because they call upon Him and they are dear to Him. Amen.

Tuesday, December 5, 2006


Once I was asked to give a Baccalaureate speech to young boys and girls.
It was a group of graduates from Sangali elementary school, a rural bario in Zamboanga.
At first I found it hard to simplify my message so as to make it understandable to the kids, but in the end, with inspiration coming from Above, I discovered the word "GROW" with a message.
I inspired and encouraged the Kids by persuading and inviting them to "Grow".
I said, If you want to Succeed: "GROW"

G - Be a GOOD Person before God and others.
R - Be RESPECTFUL to your Parents and Elders.
O - Be OBEDIENT to your Superiors.
W - and Work Hard, Do not be Lazy.

To GROW is a moving forward, a progress, a change for the better. It is also a LEAP OF FAITH. And this is not true and applicable only for Kids but also for you and me, GROWNUPS.
This is a site of "Leaps of Faith" experiences and reflections. Be it Philosophical, Theological, Practical or Personal. It is also a site of Biblical reflections. But Above all, This is a site for YOU and ME.

"Leaps of Faith"

"LEAPS OF FAITH" Can be a religious movement of a person, an inner movement of belief, of trust on the greatest power of all, The Supreme being..Our Creator and Maker..Our God. They can be resolutions of a person everyday in his life to move forward, to be a better person, and to start a new life. They can be decisions of a person in times of great uncertainties, when he is not sure of what will come or happen and he makes a leap of faith. They can be steps, difficult steps that a person makes on his way to change or to start anew. Or they can simply be a persons resolve to fly, to widen his horizons, to learn more about life and to grow. These are Leaps of faith we make everyday and in great moments of our lives and they are worth considering and reflecting.