It’s a Sunday morning and rain isn’t falling. I’m not in bed sleeping in (of course, I’m writing). I ‘m at work since there are tasks that can’t be done at home like organize files which have rested sweetly in my drawers over the years. Now that the institution will be audited, I need to dig in my files to show proofs that this institution has indeed done its job of educating the young based on its high standards. I have no doubt about that.
I have been in this institution for years and this is where I spent the best years of my life. Fresh from college, I came here with my ideals intact. I was burning with the passion to teach and inspire young men to be highly intelligent and morally upright- based on the norms of the Filipino society and, more importantly, based on Christian doctrines. The way of life I found here impressed me-rooted in Christ and inspired by the charism of its patron saint whose name I only got to read on a college bulletin board under the title: Teaching Jobs.
I got to know more of the patron saint as years went by- teachers and staff here get a daily dose of indoctrination until this patron saint’s life becomes our life as well- until his faith and mission become ours as well. We sing his prayer in the morning, pray the Angelus at noon and at 6 p.m.,sing the act of consecration to the Blessed Virgin Mary at 3 p.m. We attend quarterly formations and we get sent to the provincial missions which happen to be in some of the remotest parts of the country.
Our patron saint was a missionary who went to far flung places to evangelize. He never got tired. When I would hear stories about him I would have a picture on my mind of a poor missionary walking alone, carrying only his Bible-with not so many possessions aside from a fearless heart, hopeful spirit, and a fervent faith.
I’ve spent so many great and trying times at the same time in this institution. I’ve participated in numerous faculty meetings, conferences with discipline heads, meetings with the principals, department meetings, general assemblies, level assemblies, programs, field trips, examinations, exposure trips, immersions,etc. I, together with the other teachers and staff here,have taught thousands of students. I am confident that these students will someday become the best ones of their generation-they are the best ones of their generation.Thanks to the parents who have made the best decision of entrusting their sons to the care of this institution.
Looking at the files that I have now, I realize that I still have certain reports to finish. There are tons of workloads in front of me right now. And I have three classes to teach every day, teachers to supervise, special classes to monitor, daily and weekly reports to finish, lesson plans to check, classes to observe,and the list could go on. And my files for graduate thesis are accumulating dust in my drawers back at home. My tasks are like mythical monsters that grow two heads whenever I get to chop one off. But this is why I have chosen to come back here after my stint as college instructor. Life was easy for me during that one school year in college. I came and went to the faculty room with only certain people noticing me.Here, when one gets inside a room it’s hard not to be acknowledged-to be greeted and to be given more tasks. Either way, one’s presence and potentials are valued here. And there is a strong sense of community.
Today is Sunday, I’m alone in the office. But tomorrow, the faculty room, classrooms,corridors,and offices will be bustling with teachers and staff who are loaded with tasks which all aim to shape the hearts and minds of our students-the future of this country. These people won’t stop and even with some discouragements along the way, just like our missionary patron saint, we will continue to fight the good fight - against ignorance with evangelization as our rod. Just like our patron saint, we come to school every day with not so many possessions aside from a fearless heart, hopeful spirit, and a fervent faith. At this point in my life, Claret is no longer just a name of a saint on a college bulletin board looking for teacher applicants.