How can I have learned so much already, in just two months? I have been learning through children.
A first time for everything
“There is always a first time for everything” is a sentence I have used a lot in the past two and a half months. It’s the time I have been in the Philippines, learning new things, meeting new people; and experiencing different things, all of them wonderful and many of them challenging.
It was the first time I saw the most amazing scaffoldings ever, made of bamboo!
The first time I learnt the two most important words in Tagalog: “lamok” (mosquito) and “mainit” (hot).
I rode a tricycle for the first time.
For the first time I brought rice for a pack up on a trip (instead of a sandwich).
I tried balut for the first time (you can look it up for yourself and decide if you would try it).
Preparing children for First Communion
And it was also, the first time I helped prepare children for First Communion
With the help of the sisters, and a few young people, we prepared the catechesis each day: songs, activities and teachings
We needed to explain the basics of our faith to children, so I was able to refresh some teachings of the faith for myself. And it was wonderful to see them through the innocent eyes of the kids.
Every day we would ask them to tell us what we did the day before and their answers were always unexpected. For example, they would remember the game we played, or the song we sang.
But when we asked again, and went deeper, they were aware of the teachings they had received: that God the Father is the Creator; that Jesus performed different miracles etc.
This led me to reflect that I am the same. In the middle of my busy life my heart can forget that God is present or I can simply not recognize Him. However back at the sisters’ house at night, we gave thanks to God with them for our day. It was a way of going deeper for me, thinking over my questions and seeing how Jesus had been present throughout that day.
I have been learning through children. Some of them have difficult situations in their families, and this is one of my biggest challenges in the Philippines; yet they are still happy to come to Catechesis, and eager to learn about Jesus.
Let us pray for all the families in the Philippines, that God’s accompaniment can give them strength.