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How a Hug from This Man Changed my Life

By on Sep 27, 2012 in Honoring | 3 comments

I can still vividly remember the first time I stepped into Victory Greenhills. My wife (girlfriend back then) were going through tough times and she convincing me to attend a “service” in Music Museum on Sunday. Going to a place and interacting with people I didn’t know made me uncomfortable. I was very uneasy about the idea because believe it or not, at that phase in my life I was very anti-social. I was very jaded about friendship and had trust issues. Anyway, I parked the car and we started to walk towards Music Museum. I can still remember thinking to myself that it was just 1 hour and I’d just have to go through it once. Boy was I wrong. When we entered the Music Museum lobby, a fairly old man approached us with a bright and warm smile. I had no idea who he was but it felt like I knew him since forever. He went up to me, shook my hand firmly, and then gave me a hug. I almost broke down in tears. It was as if a sledgehammer hit the stone wall around my heart and mind and made an opening wide enough that made me receptive and open to the preaching later on. To make a long story short, the message of that day was about relationships and at the end of it the pastor did an altar call and we gave our lives to Jesus. I eventually found out that the man who gave me that life-changing hug was one of the volunteer ushers and he was called “Uncle Delfin” by a lot of people. Sunday after Sunday he would go and greet people coming to church with that trademark smile and hug of his. I can’t count how many times I felt reassured of God’s love each time he’d come up to me and give me that hug and I’d feel as if a huge weight was lifted from my shoulders. Sadly it’s been a while since I last saw Uncle Delfin though because he moved to Victory Fort and I stayed with Victory Greenhills. Last Sunday during the Sunday service, Pastor Dennis Sy said that one of the volunteer ushers was in the hospital battling it out with cancer and that he was dying. Despite how sick he was, the man kept on saying that he wanted to keep on serving Jesus as much as he can. That he wanted to get up from the hospital bed, go to service, and keep on serving as an Usher. I had a bad feeling when I heard this. Fast forward to today. I just found out from Abijov Ong that Uncle Delfin is the usher Pastor Dennis was talking about and that he was dying from pancreatic cancer (click to read Brix Briones’ account of his experience with Uncle Delfin as shared by Abijov). As soon as I read the update my heart broke and I found myself in tears. Just like Brix, I never really knew Uncle Delfin but I felt God’s love through him. I’m writing this because I know that a lot more people have been touched by Uncle Delfin’s kindess and love. Even if you haven’t met him I hope that this short entry will give you at least an idea of how great this man is. Please do say a prayer for his complete and total recovery. Uncle Delfin is proof that random acts of kindess can change lives. He changed mine. Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. – Psalm...

Statement of Senator TG Guingona in Opposing Cybercrime Act

By on Sep 21, 2012 in Honoring, My Stuff, Random Remarks | 0 comments

In 2010 I campaigned for several candidates who I thought were truly deserving of being in the Senate. One of the senators I campaigned the hardest for (next only to my Tita Toots of course hehe) is Senator TG Guingona. Today I can say that I am happy and proud to have campaigned for him. He’s the only Senator that actually opposed and voted against the Cybercrime Act. Here’s his full statement. EXPLANATION OF SEN. GUINGONA IN OPPOSING THE CYBERCRIME ACT I opposed the passage of the Cybercrime Act because when I stood up to question this law on constitutional grounds, I was concerned about prior restraint. First, some parts of the bill clearly attempts to legislate morality and penalize people if they breach our standards. I feel that as legislators, we have no right to dictate what people should or should not see. Unjustifiable prior restraint is an archaic policy that should not be in our statute books. Furthermore, the law that was finally approved has the following problematic provisions: Transplanting the Revised Penal Code definition of libel without specifying who is liable exposes the owner of online newspapers, blogs, sites to liability. This is problematic because in the case of online communities, people are encouraged to actually participate (make comments, re-tweet, repost on facebook). With this law, editors and owners of these sites will be forced to lock down their websites and prevent people from commenting. I believe that editors can regulate the works of their writers but if you gag the general public, surely the Constitutional right to freedom of expression is threatened. This Act is a prior restraint on the principle of the freedom of expression and freedom of speech. This law sets us back. We cannot legislate morality. The Spanish inquisition has long been disbanded. I do not know why we are reviving it today. -END- A news item already came out earlier today saying that Senator Guingona will be challenging the Cybercrime Act by bringing it to the Supreme Court or tackling it in the next Congress. In whatever way I can, I will volunteer and support TG on this...

For Reporters and Journalists during Floods

By on Aug 11, 2012 in Family, Honoring | 1 comment

The country is still reeling from the devastation brought about by the recent storm that I’ve come to call “Voldemort” (He-who-cannot-be-named). Just like in previous disasters, social media played a major role in information dissemination and spreading hope. Of course netizens are quick to point out how invaluable technology and the Internet is during times like this (I’m one of them), but if you think about it more than 70% of the population don’t have regular access to the Internet. In crisis situations it’s much less since majority of Filipinos still get their Internet fix from school, office, or internet cafes, all of which are inaccessible during floods. At times like this TV and radio play a crucial role in delivering information to the whole country, but more than that, they’re also a beacon of hope for a lot of our kababayans. The stories of heroism and bayanihan that are shown during the news not only inspires, it also prompts people into action. Most of the time we give honors and tributes to the heroes shown in the news. For this blog entry I’d like to shine the spotlight on the people who bring you the news. Note: If you guys don’t know, I’m married to a reporter. More after the break If there’s one thing that struck me hard during the last flood, it’s that reporters and their crew (including the camera man and the driver) share the dangers of the subjects they’re covering in their work. When storm signals hit level three, people don’t go to work anymore and just stay at home. That’s not the case for reporters. Regardless of how strong the winds are or how high the floods reach, they have to put on their boots, wear their jackets, whip out their umbrellas, and go out to get the news. It’s literally like a soldier going to war, except that instead of guns they have cameras and microphones. The reason I’m writing this is because I think a lot of people don’t appreciate how hard these guys work. We take them for granted because we see them everyday on TV delivering the news in an effortless manner. Heck, they make it look ridiculously easy. However believe me when I say that they make a lot of sacrifices. I know this since I’m married to one. From what I observed with my wife, journalism is a calling and not just a profession. This is because reporters give much more than what they receive. I am very proud of my wife but at the same time I can’t help but be worried when she goes out during calamity situations. And I’m sure the spouses of all journalists feel the same way as I do. There’s some sort of helplessness. I almost threw a fit when I found out that the boat my wife was riding to cover a flood in San Juan almost capsized, lol. Despite what I feel though I still firmly believe that it is God’s calling for my wife to be a reporter. Ever since she was in High School she already knew that she wanted to be one. God planted that seed in her heart and now it has blossomed into a thriving career. And what tells me that it is her annointing is that she does it for a higher calling than just appearing on TV or making a living. I remember talking to her when she was still working for another station about what’s so interesting about business news. She told me then that it’s her responsibility to dissect and break down all the numbers so that people understand why the GDP matters or why gas prices are going up/down. Let me repeat that… she feels and knows she has a responsibility to the people who watch the news. Amazing. When you see a reporter and his/her crew doing their work on the field, I humbly ask that you approach them and just say “thank you”. If you can, include them in your prayers, especially when calamity strikes. As for me, I take comfort and joy in the fact that my wife is doing what God wants her to do. Of course I’ll still be worried but I will always pray for her and make sure that when she comes home, she will feel that she IS home. That, I think, is one of the best gifts a spouse can give to a reporter. To make her forget about the day and just give her love and energy for tomorrow. And maybe some corny jokes like the one below, hehe. To end, let me just share two bible verses that I think reporters can pray and hold on to. This are the verses I turn to when I pray for my wife. For strength, courage, and protection: The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him. Psalm 28:7 For when you’re tired, sad, and almost on the verge of giving up: My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word. Psalm...

Bu and Lyka

By on May 15, 2011 in Honoring | 1 comment

Around 3 years ago Mich and I responded to an altar call at Victory Greenhills (Music Museum). We surrendered our lives to Jesus right there and then. What’s even more amazing than the initial encounter was that God sent us two individuals to keep us on the right path. Bu and Lyka were total strangers. They didn’t know us and yet they started a relationship with us. God worked through them to bring us closer to him. Matthew 5:14-16 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Bu and Lyka, thanks for responding to God’s call. Through you our lives were changed. We love you and we’ll always be here for you! 🙂 PS: They’re getting married this...