Monday, July 29, 2013

Unveiling at Vishnu's Virtues

"LOVE takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without 
and know we cannot live within." 

Two months before, a friend asked if we could talk and we did for an hour. 
It was such a riveting experience ~ it changed my life forever...

For five years, I've carried my story with me ~ and blogged about it 
but only this person has asked me such profound questions that shook the comfortable world I have built for myself...

I thank one of my inspirations for generously hosting my post for this week ~

Kindly visit
"Unveiled: My Life and Lessons as a nun"

and leave your comments there or you could write me via my email.

Thank you!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Listen to your heart: WHO Lives There? (first part)

Of all the places she wanted to be, 
it was right here on my chest 
that she found rest...


It was the little sage's turn to visit me this weekend. She wasn't used to be carried around but I did...
I held her several minutes each day to understand her valuable lessons...

My infant Jesus a gift from graziealcielo

"As I see it, 
we shall never succeed in knowing ourselves unless 
we seek to know God:
let us think of His greatness and then come back to our own baseness;
by looking at His purity we shall see our foulness;
by meditating upon His humility, we shall see how far we are from being humble."

~ S. Teresa of Avila, Interior Castle. Translated and edited by E. Allison Peers. (NY:Doubleday, 1989)38.

As a young nun, we were taught to contemplate the Infant Jesus so often. I have only come to know how by holding a real infant in my arms...

It just tells me to 'receive love.'

I felt an allergic reaction towards the concept ~ of vulnerability.

I have ceased being me ~ open, spontaneous ~ at a young age... 

The world of love and trust that was initially created as an infant was shattered.

I have realized that I have used the 'habit' as a haven to cover my femininity ~ and the 'walls' as a barrier between men and me. I had to move out of my comfort zone to start another journey outside the 'walls.'

But the vow of 'chastity' is beyond that. Love couldn't be given in parts. It has to be whole... It entails relationship with Jesus that is concretely manifested in our relationship with other people.

"Se la persona apre la sua mano, fatta per ricevere e dare, al dono, vive una relazione con gli altri molto piu' vera." ~ P. Bini
(translation: If a person opens his/her hand, made for receiving and giving, to a gift, he/she lives in a more real/genuine relationship with others.)

The promise of springtime has indeed come!

I ask pardon if I lack charity in my words and actions~ the tension between 'receiving' love and 'refusing' it comes in the way too often ~ 
but here's the catch, 
know that God holds my heart and I am capable of change with the help of God's grace.

The sage, the Infant Jesus, tells me to listen to my heart...

Who lives there?

I received a tweet this afternoon and I couldn't leave misinterpretations of what I wish to convey in this post:

"I believe nuns & priests should be allowed 2 marry,as the rest of the body of Christ."

One, I believe in the vow of chastityIt has always been a debate to make the vow of chastity optional for priests and nuns  but we have to deepen this aspect. It is not only for the religious, priests or nuns to live. It is a call to each one of us. More than a question of 'marrying' or 'not' ~ it is the question of how freely I could give this love to God through other people.

Second, one has to read the rest of the posts in order to understand the different journeys I have taken. I was a religious and I have left. My motives and vocation story has to be purified. 

Third, one is free to ask questions... the posts are meant for self-knowledge and  self-understanding. 

"You are a very brave woman!"

I understood this in this aspect, 'courage' to purify intentions, realize that and take a new road. And 'courage' to continue journeying to know oneself and Christ.

Preparation for World Youth Day 2013 
with my Satur-dates

"What are we expecting next week (referring to this time)?" I asked the kids.

"SONA!" they chorused. True, the children here in Quezon City have no classes because of the State of the Nation Address this afternoon.

"Okay... and what else?" There was silence... 
and so we began our project.

Beginning tomorrow, July 23 to 28, 2013, we celebrate the World Youth Day!
The theme for this year is: "Go make disciples of all nations (Mt. 28,19)!" 
I'm so excited to see all those young people gathered in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil led by Pope Francis to pray and be united in God's love.

Source of Logo explanation: A World Youth Day Pilgrim's Journal

Fau, my niece

Monday, July 15, 2013

Coming Out of the Shell: Braver... Bolder... Fiercer...

"Don't you want to be a Laida Magtalas someday?"
my brother 'seriously' asked me
Laida Magtalas version 2.0

I woke up light headed...
   still giddy with thoughts from yesterday ...

and the entire week...

I almost fainted in the Church yesterday, it's the first time it has ever happened to me as I already got used to my low blood pressure... and it's the first time I missed a family event in five years that I've been out of the 'walls'... 

"I can't come with you," I wistfully told my mom. 

My dad drove me home after mass and I slept for three straight hours. 

Those hours were the most quiet and relaxing... 

I saw how much I was loved by my dad that Sunday. I like those tender moments when I'd really feel 'genuine' caring. It's also the first time I didn't push that love away.

I felt my stubbornness fading away...



The Spirit whispered something about Cory and I prayed for his soul. I was actually crying last night before I slept at ten... listening to Cory's songs and finishing a movie I've been watching the previous nights...

I haven't really been into love stories lately and this 'blessed soul' (thank you!) shared a video that made me curious about it. It made me laugh at the first part and cry at the last scenes (so typical even of Filipino movies).

Here's a quote I lifted from it: "Maybe they haven't seen me through 'your' eyes."

(e.g. Like the way my brother sees me as Laida Magtalas after four years)

Maybe it's time to see people through this 'special lens'  ~ now.

I thought, how really short life is ~ and to be alive, today... well, that's really something to be grateful about.

One more day of loving... one more day of seeing our loved ones... one more day of forgiving and being forgiven... 

"If you love those who love you,
what reward will you get?" ~ Mt. 5,46 NIV
My little niece Audrey and I, 13 July 2013

"There's something different about your posts ~ you're coming out of your shell now," a friend I've been journeying with for over a year  and who I've been emailing my posts told me last night.

"You're healed," my soul sister Rimly wrote me...

*After all these years...I received an SMS from the one person I wish to forgive...

and he was the first to say, "I'm sorry..." (assignment from Restoring Broken Relationships with Rick Warren).

*I received my Japan visa for a conference in August  (more of this Law of Attraction and Vision Board in my next post~faith and letting God be God).

*I gave away the rice we were supposed to eat to hungry kids...and the next day, the Lord provided us with food more than we could eat (Divine providence and trust).


Wholeness~Faith journey 
It's the road I'm still treading ~ 
it's still a very long way to the heart... 

but I know God walks with me all the way.

How about you? 
Where are you now in your journey?


joyful...(this song sounds triumphant)

*Of the songs in the movie, I loved this. It takes another meaning in Tamil as a love song... but Hosanna (Aramaic הושע נא ~ save/rescue ) for us is an expression of adoration, praise or JOY

I Love You Lord... tantissimo!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Lessons from the Young Sage

"Brother ass does it again...," I called out to my mom as she frantically knocked on my door... 

I overslept...

Dazed, I got up quickly, took a quick shower and went off...

After deciding to have a month break from Rick Warren's The Purpose Driven Life, most of my days were filled with assessment of articles for our next issue, completion of requirements for visa application, going to and fro hospitals, and media coordination in preparation for the Diabetes Awareness Week Celebration. As much as I enjoyed it, my blood pressure tells me to slow down a little...

Hearing myself saying this, I sensed that I was going back to my old pattern of losing myself to work 24/7. My boss must have seen how 'alive' I was with my 'new assignment' ~ amazed that she placed me in that field when I don't even watch  television...

There was no official invitation from the "Retreat Master" (my bro) but I knew I had to return to the 'young sage' to learn a few more lessons from her and my mom supported her ideas...

"Lord I'm stepping out
from the comfort zone
Letting go of me,
Holding on to You..."
~Center of My Life, Hillsong

As the day drew to a close, I realized how much time I actually have to do the things I wanted and should be doing...

I live in the creative tension of 
being 'here' and 'not being here' all the time. 
I know how my online presence and increased visibility in the field and social media creates impact...


the sage, in her 'silence' taught me many many precious things...

Who do I wish to make the center of my life?

  Strike the balance...
Surrender ALL...


The night before I left, my kids asked me if we will have our date the next day, I told them I'll have a quick retreat and we'll be seeing each other the succeeding Saturday. I left them a quiz in our FB page using polls. 

My Satur-dates Quiz:

Lessons from last week (Part 1): Luke 1, 26-28 ~ The Annunciation 
Tools: Free Bible Images ~
                                             Luke 1:39-56  ~ The Visitation
Tools: Free Bible Images ~

Quiz posted in our FB page, Saturdays with Jesus: