The sun that warms these Asian shores begins to set as we pull up to Manila Airport to board the 14 hour flight back to shores which I know so familiar to be home. An extensive flight is ahead & while I look forward to returning to my busy ministry and life, I can’t help but take a look back on these past 12 days for it’s been a trip that I’ll always cherish in my heart!
The Catholic is a sacramental disciple! He uses his senses of touch, sound, and sight to encounter the living God. This is the very DNA of the Filipino. At many of the churches visited, I found myself saturated in the flavor of this beautiful culture, I’ve learn to taste and see God’s goodness found in the kindness of the Filipino people…. while in their venerable churches, their colourful streets, or their table at home filled with food for plenty and overflowing with love.
I must honestly say that because it was God’s Will and through the great generosity of my friends who introduced me to these beautiful islands… I am filled with deep and profound gratitude for the gift of discovery and wonder.
Wonder in that regardless of poverty or wealth the Filipino people are truly a blessed people because at the core of our joy is the family! The family that prays together, the family that sings, the family that cares for each other beyond many generations.
When I land back on US soil, I will have greater appreciation for who my parents are to me, their sacrifices which have paved the way for who my sibling and I are today… To connect with the Philippines is to connect with them.
The sun will have fully set when we arrive in San Francisco … Ironically as if we never left for it’ll be the same time of our departure from the motherland. Ahead of me is my ministry, my work, and my journey to the priesthood. As I move forward to my little part of the world, I carry with me the enormous love of the Philippines as my heart can’t hold back from its tears for it is a place I have come to love …. and call my home.