“Agents of Justice and Social Transformation”
“The mercy of God is not an abstract idea, but a concrete reality through which He reveals His love as that of a father or a mother, moved to the very depths out of love for their child,” Pope Francis writes. Marked on the calendar, the dates scheduled for the exposure trip to Damas de Filipinas, located in Paco, Manila, began last 14th of January, 2016. The trip mainly aimed to encourage the students to be “The Face of Mercy” and be agents of justice and social transformation as the school believes in such a thrust. The goals of the Religion Extension Program, also known as REP, had been proudly achieved! The main goal of the REP was to form the Scholasticans into socially aware agents of social transformation.
“Founded in 1913, Association de Damas de Filipinas, Inc. is a child-caring facility for the abandoned, neglected, orphaned, foundling and dependent who are categorized as Children in Need of Special Care…..”, a simple, but striking introduction found in their website. It is a great place for growing Scholastican to enjoy an eye-opening and heart-warming experience with the kids who have indeed big hearts. Based on the program proper, the Scholasticans got to organize recreational activities and affairs, like storytelling, art class, and a party. This exposure trip was not only for the benefit of the children, but for the Scholasticans as well. Some would only think that what they are doing are only for the kids and not for themselves, but from an analytical angle, there is a mutual relationship as the assigned kids for each student gets to enjoy what they have prepared while the student gets to realize and be aware of this generation’s social issues. This certain issue is conspicuous and in fact, must be given attention, for our dear Pope Francis is calling all of us to be “Merciful like the Father”. This supports the idea of the exposure trip to Damas being a great place to visit.
Being first in line, 7- Hospitality fancied the simple, but memorable experience. According to the students of the said class, they have realized lots of things. They felt very welcomed when they first set their feet upon the establishment. Furthermore, they realized that they are very fortunate to have their parents by their side. Also, they learned that experiences like this would be very helpful and sad to say, come only once in a blue moon, so moments like those were not good to allow to slip past.
Positively believing that children should be nurtured, guided, and loved, Damas de Filipinas continues to provide quality care essentials to the orphans in the hope that they will be able to implant the child’s minds what is vital and righteous the soonest possible. Indeed, this is reminder and call to physically and emotionally aware of the social issues in our country, or the world rather. Simple gestures, time, genuine love, care, respect and a big heart are more than enough for the kids to experience.
By Ysabelle Julyana G. Panganiban, 7-Hospitality