The Richness of Simplicity
Our common study on the mission with the Dominican Family, has given us the opportunity to go to Dagat-Dagatan, Pampanga, a place surrounded by garbage, to experience the lifestyle of the indigenous people.
Through this small mission exposure we are able to experience how to live as a Missionary, following the example of our Founders Msgr. Ramon Zubieta and Blessed Ascension Nicol. Both mission places remind us of our call to embrace our vocation as a precious gift of God. As we journeyed to the mountain of Tarik we fell many times and felt pain but we did not give up.
Dagat-Dagatan is the urban poor area where people live in real poverty. They are simple people who are full of love and care for one another which always keep them in harmony and unity. Living in a peaceful environment they are satisfied with what they have like living in a house made of bamboo, scarcity of water, using a common toilet, lending place for cultivation, etc. Inhabiting in this situation we believe is hard yet they take life as a blessing instead. Their right to live a dignified life has been rejected by the government. They are like many other people who want their voices to be heard.
This encounter has challenged us to go back to our own life stories. Sometimes we forget about our identity of where we come from. Due to our selfishness we turn our backs to the needy. It is important for us to live in simplicity than to possess many things and to have love for our desperate sisters and brothers.
After living with the indigenous family in Pampanga and the urban voiceless people in Dagat-Dagatan for four days, we appreciate the attitude of these people towards life. Despite living in poverty they are united to face their realities. We feel that they have integrated our call and our missionary vocation in their life; they practice the call to discipleship as service and not to be served.
We are grateful for these unforgettable experiences, staying with the people whom our society consider as inferior and poor. Our experiences taught us that the real poverty is to deny our identity, and not to love what we have. Our foster families are our great teachers, from whom we learned simplicity and honesty. We will always value these experiences because they helped us not only in the realization of our origin and our root, but also in the work of the mission, especially in dealing with the voiceless and innocent people.
First and foremost we are grateful to God for giving us this inspiring experience. We also thank our sisters and our benefactors who gave us this opportunity to have this life learning experience.
Novices of Asian Continental Novitiate Philippines