SPU Manila celebrates Christian Formation Week

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Contributed by Elvie Manalansan

Date: October 1, 2017Posted by: Marionette Martinez

First Day–Mary’s Nativity, Social Awareness, and Involvement

Inspired by the Philippine Church’s Pastoral Priority on Communion of Communities, St. Paul University Manila celebrated Christian Formation Week from September 8 to 14, 2017 with the theme, “Pamilyang Paulino: Nagbubuklod at Namamalasakit sa Pamayanang Pilipino.”

The week-long event started with a Mass in honor of the Nativity of Mary, whom Paulinians fondly address as their “Mother and Model.”

During the Eucharistic celebration, Fr. Enrico Gonzales, O.P. underscored that each person’s destiny is written not in the stars but in the womb, right from the moment that the person is conceived by his/her mother. Like Mary, who never doubted God’s plan for her when she was chosen to give birth to Jesus, each and every one is encouraged to be faithful as well to God’s destined plan for all.

Before the final blessing, Sr. Jesusa Taccad, SPC, Vice President for Christian Formation, officially opened the Christian Formation Week festivities.

Right after the Mass, SPU Manila formally expressed its support for the Catholic Church’s campaign, “Huwag Kang Magnakaw.” This campaign aims not only to raise awareness on matters related to social issues but also to uproot the culture of stealing, within the person, family, classroom, and society in general.

The campaign started in 2014 and will end in 2021, which coincides with the celebration of 500th year of Catholicism in the Philippine Church. In addition, a “Huwag Kang Magnakaw” tarpaulin was displayed in the Pedro Gil lobby, together with the freedom board that contains pledges of the SPU Manila Community to start putting an end to stealing in any form. A number of students, faculty members, and non-academic personnel wore the “Huwag Kang Magnakaw” statement shirt.

To make the event more engaging, various activities for the students, employees, and partner communities were organized.

Catequiz Plus. Thirty six Senior High School students from 12 sections (with three student-representatives per section), participated in the Catequiz Plus, a quiz bee competition, where questions were derived from the basic Catechism of the Church. The winners were from the following sections: St. Andrew (1st place), St. Dominic (2nd place) and St. Benedict (3rd place).

Film Viewing. The indie film, Diyos-Diyosan, is about all the ills (political system, individual and collective sins) of Philippine society, which contribute to a government marked by all sort of moral evils that can be pinned on a single problem, the lack of religiosity. Despite all the Church’s efforts to effect change in the society, everything becomes useless because many people are self-centered, as they have stronger faith in themselves than in God.

Through the Religious Education (RED) subject, all college students were required to attend the film screening. They were asked to submit a reaction paper after the viewing and had it discussed in their respective classes.

Poster Making Contest. Themed as “Buklod at Malasakit,” the on-the-spot poster-making contest was participated in by 11 Senior High School students. Illustration board, pencil, and crayons were the only art materials used by the contestants. Josh Stanley Mateo of St. Andrew got the 3rd place while Kristia Kate Dato-on of St. Blaise bagged the 2nd place. The 1st place was won by Ian Carlo Garin of St. Jude.