Into the Mountain: One Week Exposure

Nowadays there are many new technologies coming from different countries. The cultures are fast changing, some taboos in the past are now considered as natural phenomena. Mass media is one of the big factors that contribute to our changing world. A single change affects the community, the family and the person itself. Most of the youths are having parties left and right and spending money for buckets of beer and going home late at night. Children are on to play station, computer games and game boy and the parents are busy doing their work. This picture tells us that everyone has its own work to do. The kitchen table with its bounty of food is only surrounded by empty chairs.

Year 2011, November 5-13, one week exposure in the mountain. The Claretian postulants had an opportunity to live in the mountain where there were no malls, hotels, game boy, and computers. Everyone has its own work to do but in time of meals they gather as a family thanking God for the graces they receive. Youths also drink but they drink as a community. Life in the mountain is very simple.

All of us were excited to go in different areas but of course we were quiet nervous. We were excited to meet new people and to live with them and a little nervous for we do not know what to do there. There was no assurance where to live and we don’t even know if we can eat three times a day.

We were divided into eight areas namely Pagluksuon, Hampig, Riverside, Cabingtan, Gaas, Maglahug, Barukan, and Liberty. We were exposed to different people and situation. There are communities who only have few Catholics, communities where politics are always in the mouth of the people, and communities where we really have to work hard and going back home without any food in the table. All of us learned how to adjust to the different situation and in spite of the challenges we learn how to live there.

The people in the areas became our inspiration in our vocation journey. A tiring week is a treasure that helps us develop and nurture our vocation. This is a week of our life that we will never forget. We won’t forget walking in the mountain barefoot, eating exotic foods like “pakra” (frog), and “halo” (bayawak, monitor lizard), and working manually for almost the whole day and most especially we will not forget the innocent smile of a child, conversation with a true person, a community that shares and a precious life of every person there.

All in all, our journey is a dialogue of life and faith with the people in the areas. And at the end of the tiring and challenging exposure we still can say with the people of Ormoc that God is good all the time!

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by Earl Narazabal, claretian novice

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