Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Loreto Parish Chapter

WESTB2C Cluster


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One-to-ones in Transformation (June Prison Ministry Service)

I would like to share what happened on the weekend of June 16 to 17, 2012. Upon waking up on June 18, I really felt like a different person. I thought I came from a retreat. The transformation from the inside has been very evident. I’ve learned in the book, The Purpose Driven Life (which I’m reading right now, and yes, only now 🙂 ), that changes spiritually and emotionally don’t necessarily mean they can only happen on retreat, recollection, powerful talks, seminars and conferences. But also through every day experiences, through a nice conversation with a person, number of persons or a group of people, through watching an inspirational show, through serving and other means.

On June 16, I attended the chapter’s CLP Talk 11 and 12. It was a very rewarding night for the speakers talked about the Mission of the Couples for Christ and the Transformation with Christ. It was also a chance to be with the CLP participants and the service team. After the CLP, Sis Cath, Bro Kimm, Bro Milo and myself headed to the house of Sis Jophine to prepare the things we will be using for the Prison Service the next day. The house was quite far, then we realized distance is not a hindrance to a person who really wants to serve, and I truly honor Sis Jophine for that and the other servants who also live from afar.

It was a nice conversation with the team and with Sis Ipay during the preparation of the things we will use for the service. What’s nice about it is the sense of maturity of everyone. It was evident that we don’t talk as girls and boys, but as young adults, men and women. What I learned from the night is that, life is not really perfect for anyone, but if one understands that life is a blessing and that everything that’s been happening has a good reason, he/she will have an optimism to carry on even if it’s hard. We have our own struggles and questions in our personal lives, in our faith, in our service and in our everyday experiences. As what was stated from The Purpose Driven Life, this life is a test of faith and a test of trust of our Almighty God. And through this, our relationship with Him will grow deeper each day. With our frequent communication with Him, I know He is smiling down on us from heaven.

After the entire tasks were done and some chit chats, we finally slept. We woke up at 5.30am to pack the food that we will serve.

Upon arrival at the entrance of Medium Security Camp, we found out that we will be serving with Singles for Christ from the chapter, West C2-B. Two different chapters but with one desire, and that is to serve, all for the glory of God.

The program for that day was the one-to-ones of the participants and the facilitators from West B1-A and West C2-B. The activity is in preparation for the Baptism the following Sunday. As the one-to-ones was occurring, the Music Ministry of West B1-A sang in one side and became the background music, which helped the participants reflect and think of the areas in their lives they want to be prayed for. The other service team became the prayer warrior and some served the lunch for the participants and service team.

The facilitators were overwhelmed and touched because of the trust given to them by the CLP participants in their one-to-ones. We all know it’s really hard to open-up what’s inside our hearts and mind. It takes guts. But the inmates willingly shared part of their lives to their facilitators which humbled the latter.

The whole service team was much fulfilled and smiles were present in our faces especially during the short sharing outside the Medium Security Camp.

But wait! There’s still more!

Bro Kimm, Bro Berl, Bro Avel, Bro Jherwin and Sis Majane returned to Bilibid the following Sunday, June 24, to serve for the Baptism. I truly honor them for their tireless effort because the night before the service, June 23, was our Chapter’s CLP Lord’s day in St. Jude. As what Sis Majane wrote in the caption of this picture, “Passion for my Mission”.

I’ll forever be grateful to God for all the experiences, realizations and learning He has given me. My life has been unfolding with every second and every minute that’s passing by. And I am just so positive about life.

Thank you SFC community for the tremendous impact in our lives. And with the power of the Holy Spirit, spiritual transformation can be achieved.

Happy Service! 🙂

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SFC West B1-A Conducted its First Ever Speakership Workshop

Through the initiative of SFC West B1-A Mission Ministry Core Team, the chapter held its first ever Speakership Workshop last June 11, 2012 in CWL Building of St. Jude Church. As what was sent in the invites through text messages and Facebook posts, “Speakers are made, not born”. We will then learn how.

The workshop started with an opening worship led my Bro. Jherwin with the music ministry of West B1-A. Sis. Rochelle served as the host who introduced the two speakers of the night. The first speaker is Bro. Nino Sison, chapter head of SFC East B5-D. Bro. Nino started with a very lively atmosphere and frequently gave jokes that made the workshop goers laugh all the time. He was able to lift the mood and created an enjoyable ambience in the workshop venue. He first discussed Communication and Public Speaking and the important facts about them. He expound the topic and added that when communicating, we have to “Mean what we say and say what we mean”. We have to speak with conviction and if we have thoughts, we have to express it. Another important thing he discussed is the Stage Fright. He said that this is just natural and we only need to pray, have an aware-accept-act approach and handle specific symptoms that might arise. In the Stage Fright, there comes another inevitable emotion: FEAR. According to him, there are two kinds of fear, the real fear (such as fear of snake, heights, etc.) and the imaginary fear (such as such of rejection, etc.). I have learned that fear is just normal and it is a God given gift. Included in his presentation is the verse from Sirach 1:12, “The beginning of wisdom is fear of the Lord”. He also gave useful tips on planning and preparing the talk. One very important advice he mentioned: If in the future, we will be tapped to give a talk, do not doubt, but instead, accept the calling because we will be entrusted with number of souls to be nourished, and that is the number of attendees present. 

The last speaker is the head of the Mission Ministry of our chapter, Sis. Majane Olores. Her discussion focused on practicing the talk and its delivery. She said that nonverbal cues like smile, eye contact, and other gestures are important to give life to the talk and to get the attention of the listeners. She also advised to have a “dress rehearsal” to know if the clothes we are planning to wear are comfortable so that it won’t affect the talk. And on the day of the talk, her advice is for us to stay confident to the Lord, greet the day with so much anticipation and do a deed that is special for us. 

And what a good way to end the workshop and the night is to do a closing worship which was led by Bro. Kimm. It was indeed a fun and information-filled night with our brothers and sisters from  West B1-A.

So… Are we now expecting many speakers from our chapter? Surely… As what Bro. Nino said, and one we will never forget… “Think of the number of souls that will be nourished”.


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Fear and the Grass Beyond the Fence

Prison Min – April Post

In the past, I’ve have been invited to serve in the Prison Ministry but all the persuasions and encouragements fell on my deaf ears. Actually, I can switch my hearing to on or off most of the times, especially in “bumili ka nga ng suka” moments. 🙂

So why did I refuse to serve in Prison in the past? The answer was just plain and simple – fear.  It is the fear of the unknown; the fear of failure and the fear of rejection.

 It is the fear that I felt when I accepted to head the Prison Ministry, knowing that I have a lot of things on my hand. It is the same fear that I felt when I first visited Bilibid Prison and saw these people with strong personalities and loud voices.  Right at that moment, I told myself: “How can I control a program with all these people?  How could my voice be heard when there are a lot of loud voices?” It is the same fear that I felt when I had to lead the talk, be a host and speaker for the first time outside of the Parish of St. Jude.

I just had no other choice but to go forward, let go and let God.

Facing those fears lead me to the other side of the fence, to explore areas outside my comfort zone. Yes, those fears are still present but something other than that fills my cup and makes the fear overflow. It is the feeling of service that is one of a kind. It is service that pushes you to the limit, physically tiring, financially draining but emotionally fulfilling. As they say, true love hurts and similarly, true service hurts in a way or another.

But I think that there is a Great Source of all of our courage and Isaiah 61:1 says it all:

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
Because the LORD has anointed me
To bring good news to the afflicted;
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to captives
And freedom to prisoners; 

This is exactly what we felt in our service last April 2012. We came at the prison service expecting to just support their program. To our surprise and due to some reasons, we became an instant music ministry, speakers and sharers. We had to call SFC friends for the lyrics of the songs for praise and worship, and have instant meeting for the morning’s program.

But everything we needed was there.  We had friends who were available to answer our calls and tell us the exact lyrics of the songs. We had a guitarist and an instant music min as some members of the WESTB1A Music Ministry were present. We had a great host in Majane. I also had a stock knowledge on the topic which I shared with the inmates. My partner also has an appropriate sharing for the talk. Everything just went well and connived for our cause. It’s like the universe conspired with us. God did provide for us.

Indeed, the spirit of the Lord is upon us. When we face our fears and trust in the Lord, all will be well. And after facing those fears, we can now enjoy playing in the grass at the other side of the fence.

Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you. – Deuteronomy 31:6

We would like to invite our brothers and sisters to join us serving the Prison Ministry this coming June 17, 2012. Kitakits!


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PUTTING THE PIECES BACK TOGETHER. (SFC West B1-A February Prison Service)

It was my first time to attend the service of the Prison Ministry.  It was Sunday, Feb 9, 2012. Call time, 7.30am in DLTB Bus Terminal in Buendia.

Being able to serve inside the Bilibid Prison, Medium security camp is something I would never thought as, possible. But God is really great in making things happen.

The highlight of the service was the activity prepared by the West B1 A Prison Ministry head Bro. Kimm. Our fellow SFCs inside the Bilibid were asked to make a dream board of how they would perceive themselves in the future. I saw in their faces the excitement in working with their dream board. One drew a house in a farm, free and living simply with his loved ones. Some made use of the pictures cut from newspapers and magazines.

They shared with their discussion group what were in their dream board.  After sharing with one another, the facilitators were asked to collect the dream board per group. Then with the instruction from Bro. Kimm, the facilitators tore all the dream board. Not only the inmates were shocked by the action but also some of us, service team who were not aware that it will be done.

Why?

All would like to know the reason why the dream board has to be torn. For sure, there must be a great explanation behind the action. It was disheartening for the inmates to see it torn into pieces.

The implication….

This was it. The inmates have visions in their mind of a good life in the future. But those dreams were destroyed because of the different circumstances that made them went inside the Bilibid. But being an SFC, and having a deeper relationship with God gave them realizations to put the pieces of their dreams in life back together, and likewise, the pieces of their dream board back together. It was a lesson for everyone. One’s life doesn’t need to stop because he/she has committed a mistake. It is not yet the end and that we can always start from where we are now. Everyone is entitled for that second chance.

Bro. Kimm’s explanation, “Sa pagpasok nyo dito, nasira ang mga pangarap nyo, pero sa pagmamahal sa atin ni God at sa second chance na binigay Nya, buuin nyo ulit ang mga pangarap nyo, at panghawakan hanggang sa paglabas nyo dito”.

The inmates were touched at the moment. That is something that ALL of us will never forget for the rest of our lives. The service team of SFC West B1-A went home inspired and blessed because of another heartfelt service done for the glory of God.

P.S. Come and join the Prison Ministry serve inside the Bilibid, Medium Security Camp every 3rd Sunday of the month. Next service, on June 17, 2012. See you there!


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Be by His side forevermore

I’ve only come to know of the worship and praise songs through the Christian Life Program. And when I graduated from the CLP, I started listening to these songs. I listen to it everyday, during travel, upon waking up and upon sleeping. And it turned out to be that they’re now my favourite songs. I’ve come to love One way, Still, Through it all, One desire, Now that you’re near, Free to dance, etc. But last Sunday, in our Prison Service, I really felt the song, “By Your side”. As we stood in front as the service team, I was looking at the huge portrait of Jesus at the back. While singing, my eyes were looking at His eyes and at His face.  And what I see is a face so kind, so comforting and so forgiving.  I was touched at the moment. Here are the lines that struck me.

Oh dear God we asked for Your favour

Come and sweep through this place

Oh we desire You

I just wanna be with You

Be where You are

Dwell in Your presence oh God

Oh I want to walk with You

And I will climb its mountain

And I step off the shore

And I have chosen to follow

And be by Your side forevermore

Tell me what You want me to do Lord God

Tell me what You want for my life

Well it’s Yours

Oh God, it’s Yours

Do Your will

Have your way

Be Lord God in this place

Oh I want your will to be done 

-I really felt this song, maybe because I was discerning in one aspect of my life. Since yesterday, I have been repeating this line over and over again, “Tell me what you want me to do Lord God, Tell me what you want for my life, Well it’s yours, Oh God, it’s Yours”.  I have plans I’ve been eyeing for, but I know if it’s not God’s will, He’ll replace it with better plans that’s way more than I ever hoped for.

A sister told me that of all, discernment is really the hardest to achieve. Knowing God’s will in our lives. But if we’ll continue to walk with Him, pray in Him and BE BY HIS SIDE FOREVERMORE, there is nothing to worry. He will reveal His plans right in front in of us in His most definite time.

Original post by:

Sis. Bernadette Solis


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IT Ministry Poll Question


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Mission Ready

by Kirby Llaban and Mike Serapio

Intro: D-B-G-Em-A (2x)
I.
D
Lord to the world we will proclaim
Bm
The saving power of your name
G
Salvation has come

II.
D
The fire of your spirit is ablaze
Bm
Consuming us with holy Grace
G
Your kingdom has come

Ref:
Em        D/F#
Every knee shall bend before you
G             A
Every Tongue confess you are the Lord

Chorus:
D
We’re ready to go for your Glory
Bm
Shouting our praise oh God almighty
G
To be salt of the earth
And light to the world
Em       A
For you Jesus

D
We’re laying down our fears and worries
Bm
Your love will lead us to our victories
G
To be salt of the earth
And light to the world
Em       A
For you Jesus