Echoes of the Mission: Philippine Province
JOURNEYING WITH THE YOUTH
The Community of Borongan in the Philippine Province was founded on May 25, 2009, through the invitation of Bishop Crispin Varquez of the Diocese of Borongan. The Sisters were invited as lecturers in Eastern Samar State University (ESSU) and to accompany the university students through campus ministry apostolate. The Sisters were housed in the university dormitory and this gave them a chance to live among them and to know them better. When the Sisters moved into their new convent in Camada, they kept the PM space in the dormitory for the purpose of proximity among the university students particularly, during the daytime.
Fr. Arturo Cablo Jr, the Parish Priest had asked a Sister of the community to accompany the group of Youth Choir in Camada. I, Sr. Charito Villanueva had the privileged to be with them.
The Camada Youth Choir is composed of young people ages 15 years old and above. Soon I accompany them during practices and I also teach them new songs. I give spiritual retreat, and formation. Most importantly, my presence is to help the young to create an intimate friendship with Jesus Christ.
The Youth Group (Camada-Maydolong) is involved in animating the Parish Sunday masses. They provide songs and music to make the Eucharistic celebration more alive! The Youth Choir group is oriented to animate Church celebrations and involve in community services that the Parish or Diocese would initiate
When Covid-19 movement restrictions were in place, our regular meetings become limited. The government imposes lockdown at different times and places. So, when our area is not on the list, we have the opportunity to meet and animate the Sunday mass while following the health protocols. Many of the group members showed interest in learning to play musical instruments and so, we are raising funds to add more musical instruments like guitars and an additional keyboard for them. Last Christmas 2020, we had organized a video caroling to raise funds, since visiting friends was prohibited. Covid 19 did not dampen their spirit of zeal.
God is the center of our mission. The young people understood that their commitment to service is a mission. The group had also started helping other young people in neighboring ‘barangays or barrios’ to organize choir and teach them to play musical instruments. They take to heart their mission of ‘young evangelizing another young’ and ‘youth helping another youth’.
It is a joy to accompany them and see the growth happening in their lives. They make use of their God-given talents in the service of the Church and are amaze and happy that they can actually do it! The presence and support of the Sisters in Marie Rivier Spiritual Center community gave them confidence. With Our Mother Mary’s and Mother Rivier’s help we continue to journey with them closer to Jesus and growing in love for His Church.
All for God, All through Holy love!