Yes, I went to Naga City this weekend, despite the comfort issues. It was a fun weekend, although it was a lot different from the Davao ILC last year. Because of its differences, it merits a two part entry in this blog. :)
So Thursday, I fixed my things and my mom (I love you!) dropped me off at the meeting area. As I said, I was nervous because I have no idea who I will be with. I met some of the people who arrived who are basically my “younger generation” since they all came from my chapter. The other people came, and it was time to leave. I rode a jeep together with other people in my chapter, some Napico kids and the SIGA who I was supposed to watch over together with Tita Precy, their couple coordinator.
Can I just say that it’s a LONG ride to Naga? As in LOOOOONG. Since we were riding an aircool jeep with not-so-soft seats instead of an airconditioned bus with cushioned seats, the ride was well, butt-hurting. Plus the wind was constantly in our face and hair that I know it all accumulated several layers of dust during the travel. Traveling at night time is even different: it’s dark and cold. We all had to figure out ways how to be comfortable without messing with the other riders and to stop your butts from hurting from sitting because of the 10-12 hours of travel. It was a fun because people actually lied down on the floor to get some sleep, while some of us bundled ourselves with jackets and blankets so we won’t freeze.
Twelve hours later, we got to the Naga Sports Complex. Then we went to Penafrancia Resort to meet with our sector and to get our IDs before heading to the accomodations. We got there, saw some people and our cluster-mates who were staying in the resort told us we could take a bath there before going to our accomodations. So bath we did — thank You Lord!
After that, we went to our accomodation. Us girls were staying in a school classroom, and HALLELUJAH, THERE WAS A BATHROOM! It wasn’t as posh-looking as I wanted it too — it’s actually a bit diry looking — but it is a functional bathroom with water! Praise God!
We went back to the venue for lunch, then since we’re not doing anything, we went around the venue for a while. We checked out the booths, saw some people we know and took pictures (of course). I was looking for the Campus people, so we went around the field to look for them but ended up taking more pictures. :P
Since Globe is our major sponsor, I just had to take a picture with this!
For those who know where I work, this is a total hoot. :) I want to make this a wallpaper at the office. :P
Anyway, around 3, we sat on the field to save our space for the night’s sessions. Took some more pictures, watched some practices, bought GK 1MB CDs where my friends Greg and Ivan were. There were some politicians spotted: Joker Arroyo, Manny Villar’s wife (who is also a member of CFC), Koko Pimintel, Noli de Castro and Mike Defensor (who Niki got to embrace). There was the oh-so-funny GK Haka, which Fr. Paul (is that his name?) made which was so funny to see especially when the politicians were doing it. :P
Niki and I went around after a while because Prince texted me and told me they were already there. A little while later, I finally saw my beloved YFC-DLSU people! I swear, I missed these people! I saw some Central C ((formerly South A)) people too, such as Tita Malu and Aiza. I was so happy to see them that I started crying! I missed them that much!
After greeting everyone, Bung and I went outside to buy water and talk for a while, and we saw some more people we know and then we went back inside because it was already dinner time. I went back to my group and then came the presentations and the talks.
The talks, as always were amazing. I kind of had a feeling that the talks won’t affect me in a personal way because it’s more on GK and nation building, but boy was I wrong. Kuya Luis’ first talk, Lupang Pangako, ((Read: Promised Land)) talked about how much YFC has been blessed, and how we can strengthen the community more. I found it funny when he talked about God’s plan and how we should hope in Him and when God calls, just say YES. I was especially hit when he said:
Plan your careers based on God’s plan. Plan your career where you have enough time to help…if you just plan to earn and earn and then help, then you’re not right soldier for the army.
Sponge Cola played that night, much thanks to Globe. We went back to the school to sleep and rest. The next morning, I woke up and opened the door to Ate Cherry, who was my other SFC sister who would help us with the SIGA. I was the first one who took a bath, which I really thank God for because after the second one finished taking a bath, we ran out of water.
We got breakfast, ate and then headed over to Naga City Market to buy souvenirs and pasalubong. I got lots of pili nuts and a slipper for Bea. We went back to the venue for lunch, and the other kids went to their respective workshops while Tita Precy, Ate Cherry and I rested and talked. The other SIGA joined us later and we had a food trip with them (fish balls and kwek kwek!) and a little while later, I met with Prince and we talked before going down for the mass.
We went back to the field to get read for the mass. While I was there, Gigie texted me and said she’d join me, and we met later on and heard the mass together. After the mass, we went outside to buy food (my treat) where we saw Bung, ate more food and then joined YFC-DLSU for dinner. I missed this girl so much! :) Look, we’re even wearing the same color. =)
After that it was talk time. Last year, they separated the high school aged YFC from the college aged. This year, they separated the brothers from the sisters. We had an all-sister worship and session. The talk was entitled Dakilang Lahi ((Read: Noble Race)) and the speaker looked just like Bea. :P She talked about how us sisters were made for greatness, but right now we are not living in that greatness because we have been unfaithful. It was a girl-power talk…wait, let me change that: it was a very Godchicks talk. :) It made me wish for the nth time that Tuesday and Bea were there. Hay.
The next talk was Bayanihan ng Kabataan ((Read: Heroism of the Youth. There’s no exact English word for Bayanihan, so heroism should do it, I guess)) by Kuya Cocoi. This is where he removed the focus from ourselves, the greatness of the work of GK and how everything about GK is great and pointed it to the right One who deserves all the praise and glory because without Him, none of the work would even be possible. He redefined bayanihan not only in GK means, but also as a YFC: to be a hero is to be holy, because when you are holy you go out of your way to serve other people and isn’t that what heroes do?
After that was a praisefest and then the last talk by Kuya Butch, Rebolusyon ng Pag-asa ((Read: Revolution of Hope)). This is the start of the revolution of hope, and to do so, we must Spark, fuel and live hope. He said some changes in YFC, and how the next years will be. It was an empowering talk, and it inspired me to really do more than I am doing right now. More for God, more for others. :)
There was the final worship, which cost me all my voice, then it was time to announce the winners and formally close the ILC. And guess where the 15th ILC is going to be? TAGAYTAY! I change my mind, my last ILC will be on the 15th; I want to go to Tagaytay with YFC!!!
After that, there was Rocksteddy brought by Smart, and after watching a few songs, we set off to go home. There was an accident with our kids (which I will talk about in the next post), and after a lot of tears, we ended up going home (without baths!) at 6:00am. I got home at 5:00pm, and we still had to fetch my mom from the mall. Then I rested and extended my rest until today, which is why I’m on sick leave. Yahoo.
Message-wise, the ILC was amazing as always. Though I can’t help but compare it a bit with the Davao ILC, this one had a different kind of charm with it — not exactly my kind of charm, but still a charm and lots of lessons that I think everyone in the community must learn.
So it’s not exactly the best weekend ever, but I got my share of lessons. I’m pretty sure I matured for this weekend, and that’s always good, right?
Part 2 would be more serious, if not somewhat…er, angry. Okay, make it disappointed, a bit. But it’s good; after all, real faith is never comfortable, right?
Now to rest my hands, which has been typing since this morning. :P