“Why are you here?” Br. Michael Cua FSC, Vocations Coordinator, asked during his mini-recollection on the Recollection-Planning-Recreation (RPR) program. It was a very deep question, but I was prepared to answer since I was expecting that this type of question would come up.
I didn’t join in order to be with my close friends or due to a recent heartbreak. I wanted to discover more about myself and my future. I would always think to myself, “I wonder if I could be a Brother in the future?” I know that this thought might change due to the fact that I’m still young and I have a lot of things yet to discover, but it’s an interesting prospect. I felt that the RPR with the ABCDs might help me kick-start my journey to discovering myself.
The activities during the first day of the RPR focused more on self-evaluation which is signified by the first R in the RPR – recollection. We were given the chance to reflect on why we joined the RPR.We were also tasked to give a little role play on how we will introduce La Salle to the uninformed kids. After that, we were given the opportunity to reflect and to fill out our personal annual plans (PAP). I could honestly say that this was one of the best moments of the entire program. I was able to ponder on my priorities and my plans for the future, which would help me towards my goal of self-discovery. The group sharing of our PAPs made the moment more intimate between the ABCDs as we got to know more about each other.
The second day of the program gave more emphasis towards the remaining letters, P and R, which meant planning and recreation. The day started with a morning prayer led by Kuya Edwin, an aspirant, in order to give us the strength to perform the activities for the day. Br. Mikey reminded us of the question he asked during his mini-recollection and he tasked us to create a ‘mission statement’ on why the Iligan ABCDs exist. After a few minutes of debating and brainstorming, we were able to come up with the following statement, “We, the Iligan ABCDs, exist to answer our curiosities about the life of the Brothers by building community in fulfilling the Lasallian mission with faith, zeal for service and communion, guided with the principles and virtues of St. John Baptist de La Salle.”
I was able to ponder on my priorities and my plans for the future, which would help me towards my goal of self-discovery.
For the recreation part of the RPR, we had “Dagan Iligan,” an Amazing Race-esque activity where we were tasked to finish the challenges done around the city with a budget of Php400. The game tested our strength, determination, will and faith. Personally, one of the highlights during the activity was when we were tasked to order halang-halang, which served as our lunch. I never ate halang-halang before so it was an extraordinary experience for me. I felt so proud of my fellow ABCDs as we were able to complete each challenge without much difficulty. As we went our separate ways, I smiled to myself and said, “The path for self-discovery begins here in the ABCDs.”
I know that my quest for self-discovery is not yet over and I’m yet to face hardships and difficulties. Nevertheless, I feel confident that I will be able to survive the trials with the guidance of my fellow ABCDs. The light that was once put out due to troubles has been re-kindled for I have once again felt solidarity with a group of people who share the same interests with me.
By Mark Francis S. Basan II