Cor Jesu Seminary holds its annual intramurals with a one-week opening. Declamation and Balak are the first contest to spark up the week. The CJS community was divided into 5 BEC’s; Thales, Heraclitus. Anaximander, Anaximenes, and Democritus (the new BEC). The alagad of Democritus had chosen me to be the competitor in declamation. At first I was hesitant of accepting the offer, yet at the end looks like my alibis didn’t work (gulp).
I was the 2nd contestant (sweatdrop). I told myself to calm down and relaxed… Prove you’re worth Khim!
I feel that this is the most challenging and most significant problem of our country today… Christian values.
It cannot be denied that our family units are the basic foundation of our value formation- especially Christian values.
The family has always been the vital unit of our society- like all other societies. The units of family exist today even when you go out into the whole structure of the country. People think in terms of families here. The top people who own a great amount of wealth of the country belong to a very limited number of families.
Think of business enterprises, or even government programs and economic development, and you will find they are grounded upon family structures. Then, have you thought that the worst enemy of our society is ourselves?
How do we vanquish the enemy? My friends, if you want this country to progress, we have to declare war on our enemies- war on ourselves. But it is not enough to feel passionately about ourselves. It is very important that we must have a will to sincerely change- an ideology embedded within us: an ideology spelled out clearly to be accepted by all our people; translated into simplest terms so that we can feel the entire nation to rally behind this ideology! Not rally on the streets, with sticks and stones and even guns and goons! Not rally on big companies, on government enterprises or on private offices with bombs and grenades- because we do not have food on our table or tuition fees for our children.
We have the most beautiful; so to speak, government on earth- a government “of the people, by the people, and for the people”- would you then aim for the destruction of this ideology?- “a destruction, without realization, this government shall perish from the earth?” We are an instinctively ambitious nation- embodied by a driven society. However, should we take a pause and think? Are we ambitious for the right reasons? Are we driven to progress by the apposite values?
The Filipino family in general considers children as blessings given to us by God. We look upon them as gifts and at the same time, as God-given tasks. I would like to think that for every normal family, each child is a precious gift that is welcomed with joy.
At times we think of the school as the only agency that can successfully educate our children in faith. After all, they have religion or catechesis and they have priests and nuns to minister the sacraments to them. But the school cannot replace the Christian family in the field of education in instilling in the children Christian values- Christian values in the light of our faith- Christian values modeled by our parents- Christian values actualized by the members of our family. Indeed, the school and even the church are effective avenues in the facilitation of values formation. However, the core of the entire dynamics of values is, undeniably, the family. Now, I believe, that it is irrefutable.
The task of giving education is rooted in the primary vocation of married couples to anticipate in God’s creative activity: by begetting in love and for love, a new person who has within himself or herself the vocation to growth and development. Parents by that very fact take on the task of helping that person effectively live a fully human life; a life anchored on Christian values!
The right and duty of parents to give education is essential; it is connected with the transmission of human life; it is original and primary with regards to the educational role of others- on account of uniqueness of the loving relationship between parents and children; it is irreplaceable, inalienable, and therefore incapable of being entirely delegated to others and usurped by others!
Every society hopes and expects that children will grow up to be capable and responsible citizens who will contribute to the well- being of their communities. Yet, around the world, children are denied the rights that would enable them to survive, to develop fully, and to participate actively. Children, whose basic and fundamental rights are robbed from them because of the lack of Christian values, cannot be expected to change, to mature into caring, productive adults- adults who will respect the rights of others. Its an unfathomable reality, but as the quality of the family disintegrates, the individual, the child is sacrificed.
Rights violations are not only cause of personal sufferings, they also sow the seeds for political and social unrest! It is ironic how we are trapped in a cycle that we have created. But come to think of it, we can entangle ourselves from such deterioration because we, in fact, have caused it. It is not an impossible feat. Christian values need not be scholastic but rather pragmatic.
Therefore, can you, as adults become the instruments for change? Can you, as adults, sow the seeds of Christian values to our children? Can you, as adults, in our beautiful yet faltering Filipino society, serve as the epitome of values to the young?
These questions, my august audience: I challenge you!
After the contest, I was ranked 4th, because one of the judges commented that my presentation is for oration (whhaaaaatttt?). But it’s Ok- nobody goes defeated all the time (wink). Winning is great, sure, but If I can pick up after a crushing defeat, and go on to win again; I’m going to be the champion someday! (grin)
“Regardless of how we feel inside, always try to look like a winner. Even if we are behind, a sustained of control and confidence can give us a mental edge that results in victory”