This Gathering’s Gift

In May 1976, we were so young. Some of us were 12 years old, others 13. Most of us have never been away from our family, from our home. We barely understood the meaning of vocation and commitment. For some it was a personal decision. For others, it was a parents’ decision. For whatever reason, our paths converged, even briefly for those who did not persevere in the period of painful adjustment.

On December 2005, five months shy of our 30th anniversary, we will gather once more, not only to recollect but also to confront the ghosts and come to terms with our past.

The wide chasm of time is incomprehensible. And many things happened in between.
Three of our classmates have returned to their Creator--Cecil, Leodegario, and Samuel. One has remained missing, Ramonito.

Three were ordained priests--Glenn, Socrates, and Jeff. One took the vows as a Jesuit novice but left, Manuel.

Three migrated to the US--Jess(a medical doctor), Dennis (an aeronautics graduate) and Raymund (a supervisor in a retail shop). One settled for Canada, Marc (an engineer in Alberta). And another opted for Japan, Ram (an economist based in Tokyo).

Three worked for the government--Roy (with the COMELEC), Al (with the Provincial office), Cris (with leagues); he was a year ahead in HS but joined the class in college.). One had worked against it, Prisco.

Three found employment in private companies--Arnold (an employee of SMC), Loel (an engineer), and Raul (an engineer). One found fulfillment tilling the soil, Hector (a farmer in Ubay).

Three ventured into the area of politics as Councilors--Mario (of San Miguel), Nick (of Duero), Jun (of Bilar). One made it to the topmost position of the province, Rene. While many tried to get by doing odd jobs, one succeeded in the business of sending talents to other countries, Rolando .

Life dealt different cards to each one, even though we started on the same footing. We never knew what was in store for us back then when we first entered IHMS. Now, from hindsight, we look back and wonder where the turning point in our lives was.

The gathering this Christmas season affords us the time to recall those times and revisit one last time those dreams that we have set aside. And perhaps learn to come to terms with ourselves and hopefully muster acceptance. That would be the best gift this gathering can offer. A fitting gesture this season. So don’t miss this occasion.

We hope to see you there. (nox arcamo)