Posts Tagged ‘wsc2012’

Daring to Do More and Live More

Written by kuhbelarmino on . Posted in Sharing

By Cathrine Chalupka
CFCSFL Europe

After going through tough times – physically and mentally, I finally managed to graduate successfully. Then, I prepared the stuff I needed for my trip to the Philippines. I was so looking forward to immerse into the different areas of fulltime pastoral work in the community. I truly could not believe how time flew so fast before this travel plan. Surely, after all those challenges of the past months, the promise of an experience to encounter God again made it all worth it. My “passion” experience cannot compare to what Jesus Christ went through.

So i arrived in the Philippines and found myself in Cavite for the World Singles Congress. The first impressions were amazing. The atmosphere was so lively, bubbly and full of positive spirit. I really missed this. Europe is a busy place where people give themselves so little room for happy times except when they “treat” themselves. People laughing, mingling, getting to know each other, praying – wow!

Just like in past events, I never set expectations. I just ready myself and observe the activities. I open myself and my heart, emptying myself so Christ can refill it. I wanted so much to make this a true encounter with Christ. I listened attentively in session per session. While I could relate to the theme of the sessions, I really did not feel anything in the beginning. But then again, do we always have to “feel” something?

My moment with God came during the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on the 2nd night of the Congress. Fr. Arlo showed us a video. This was the encounter I was waiting to happen. The video told the story of an Olympic athlete who trained really hard and qualified for the competitions. When the race started, there was a really good chance for him to actually win the race. He gave everything and ran as fast as he could. Suddenly he felt something twitching in his leg: he was injured. He fell down while all the other competitors passed him and he started to cry. After all he has been through he wouldn’t be able to finish the race. He told himself “NO! I will finish this race!” In pain, he rose again and started limping. He was going to finish the race no matter what. It was breathtaking – the audience watched the limping runner go after the finish line when a tall man fought his way from the audience through the security to the racing track. He made his way to the runner. As this tall man touched the shoulder of the runner, the runner broke down on the tall man’s chest crying, asking why this was happening to him. The tall man just replied, “Son, you don’t have to do this. You don’t have to finish the race”. “ “I have to, dad. I have to finish the race” the runner said. “Then, son, we will finish this together. We will finish this race together.” So the runner put his arm around his dad’s neck and both continued the way to the finish line. As soon as the runner saw the finish line, he let go of his dad and limped into the finish line. He was able to finish the race after all.

This true story really struck me. I could identify myself with the runner so much. After all the stress I went through these past months, I often found myself awake in the morning praying to the Lord begging for strength to “survive” the day. I felt so burned out. And this video expressed what I felt while I was going through this tough time – God carrying me and saying “we will finish this together”. I felt so blessed. It was an experience that kept me in constant reflection.

On the last day of the congress we were asked to think about what our Dare-to-Live convictions. At first I wasn’t so sure about my convictions. I’ve always tried to live my life to the fullest. Because of my job, I learned how to value and appreciate every moment in life. So I started reflecting about my “DARE-TO-LIVE conviction”. I might be one of those people who needs days until they realize things for themselves because I did find my conviction statement after all: Dare to LISTEN.

Since I am a dominant person, I am used to just listen to myself and what I think is best even when I know that I should actually listen and pray more to God. After all, He is going to be the one to carry me when I am weak, when I am hurt and most especially when I feel like the world falls on my head. But this “Dare to LISTEN” conviction doesn’t only mean to listen to what God wants to tell me in tough times. I think what’s most important is that, despite being surrounded by all the commotion around me, I will try to seek the Lord in the midst of all those. I will seek the Lord in the soft breeze. I often tend to forget that. One should always come back to oneself and reflect, seeking the Lord in the soft breezes. He would tell me to trust Him more, to let Him be in control of the things around me instead of me trying to control everything. He would also tell me to pray more, to share my insecurities and my fears and hurts with Him so He can be the shelter for me, so He can console me because He loves me, because He wants me to be happy, because He is Love and HE wants the best for me. If I listened more, I wouldn’t be scared of certain things. I would dare doing more, and live more, that is, more than the way I am living this life now.

And so this year, I will DARE TO LISTEN for this dares me to LIVE MORE.

God’s Perfect Timing

Written by kuhbelarmino on . Posted in Sharing

By Maria Kristina Comoro
CFCSFL Laguna

I am Kristina/Kring, an SFL from San Pedro Laguna. I am currently actively serving as a Music Ministry member.

Originally, I decided not to attend the 2012 Congress because I kind of felt lukewarm towards everything that’s happening in my life. Prior to the WSC, I have made up my mind of again, become inactive in the community and lay low for a time. But something just pushed me to attend the WSC. I was very auspicious that something special is waiting for me and thank God I followed my bliss. The Dare to Value workshop was meant for me. I believe that during the workshop, I was at the right place, right time and everything just seemed perfect. You know the saying, “It will all happen according to God’s plan and timing”, that was what I felt. I was teary-eyed and I was aware that I had goose bumps all throughout the sharing of kuya Pat Oconer but I didn’t know why. I had no tinge of an idea why I am so moved and dumbfounded. Ever since I graduated from the Christian Life Seminar on December 2008, I’ve been asking the Lord to bestow me the gift of discernment so that I can recognize what am I really called for. God answered my prayer and I experienced His affirmation during the WSC 2012: Dare to Live Congress.

Right now, I do believe that I am being called for the Life of Charity and just what our theme “Dare to Live” implores, I am now willing and daring to take a shot on being a KFL Misionero and a volunteer for Work with the Poor Program. Every time I write or share stories like this, God always seals it with a whisper–Jeremiah 29:11.

For all of this to God be the Glory!

Dare to Listen

Written by kuhbelarmino on . Posted in Sharing

By Berna Escoto
CFCSFL Pasig

I remembered an unpleasant experience in my first WSC that I really did not think I would attend another SFL conference again. But somehow, God led me to experience a second WSC this year in Cavite. Honestly, the only reason why I convinced myself to go was because I super love to dance, and if only for dancing, i was willing to make a sacrifice and go to the WSC.

The experience turned out to be very unexpected for me. In one “first impression” activity, I did not think I would get a feedback that “malaki ang problema ko,”, but I did. That was hilarious and disturbing at the same time! I did not think I would learn about my friends’ challenges and how they chose to face them despite the difficulties, but I did. I did not think that I would hear what I needed to hear in order for me to face the struggles I was dealing with, but I did. I ended up being physically tired and yet emotionally energized. The WSC 2012 experience turned out to be more than I had hoped for. God had a hand in everything that happened, through the people I encountered and the meaningful turn of events. So ask me if I’m attending WSC again next year. I think you know by now what I am going to say. Definitely, I am going to WSC 2013, and it is not simply because of dancing.

IN HIS HOLY PRESENCE

Written by kuhbelarmino on . Posted in Sharing

 

By Mary Grace Morta
CFCSFL Novaliches

It has been five years since the 1st WSC at Alpadi and the Lord has never failed to show me things beyond my imagination. The challenge is to share the goodness He showed in my life. To write about it is challenging because I am not a writer, but for the sake of the Lord, I am daring myself to do this.

ON A HIGH. It was the 1st World Singles Congress for us SFLs and it was my first time to be at Alpadi. The place and the weather were conducive for us to enjoy the silence, away from the noise of the city. The highlight of the event was when in one worship, one of our sisters prayed in tongues. It was my first time to experience that kind of worship and I really felt the Lord’s embrace at that moment. We were all on a high in spirit before going back to the real world.

SO BE IT. From the hills of Alpadi to a mountain top experience in Baguio. I had no plans to attend the 2nd WSC because of financial difficulties, but the Lord provided more than what I expected. As we went up Baguio, I felt so excited because it was also the Panagbenga Festival. I was hoping we can see the parade, but things turned out differently. In the end, I chose to stay at the venue and never lose the opportunity to hear God’s message. The Liturgical Bible Study workshop was an eye-opener for me and made me more in love with the Scriptures. The Exposition of the Holy Eucharist on Saturday night lifted up my spirit so that I held on to His promise of having a purpose-driven life.

THE ALMIGHTY. To the green pastures. Excuses cannot be acceptable this time. I cannot miss WSC especially as it was just a few kilometers from my workplace! So I went and I never regretted a single moment of it. It was my first time to sleep in a tent with a freezing cold weather in the evenings. But the loving embrace of the Lord warms us up until the last day of the WSC. At the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, I was crying like I never cried before. I was so deeply disturbed of the calling and I did not want to pay attention. A wretched person like me has nothing to offer to go on a mission. But the Lord said “Go”, and let Him be the light of the path I am going to take. To say “YES” was like having thorns being pulled out of my heart. I thought the “yes” was the end of our conversation, but He further affirmed it with a brother’s prophecy the next day. With much confusion on what to do next, I know in God’s time, everything will fall into its own place.

STRONG GOD. Jesus rocks. With my “yes”, I have become a mission volunteer under the MV72 Program, with the privilege to serve God and His people. There are times I catch myself in awe that I have truly become an MV. This is it! There is no turning back. All I have to do is step forward and let the Lord lead the way. This time, I was no longer simply a WSC participant. I am grateful to have been given the opportunity to become part of the service team. Holding on to His arms is the strength that sustained me throughout the whole event. He truly uses the weak to anoint His people. This has left a mark in my heart. God’s plan is so much better than ours.

DARE TO LIVE. Living the life with Christ. “What is living a life to the fullest?“ Dylan, our WSC speaker asked. We have the same answer: living a life with God and for God. It is easy for us to say it, especially during WSC. But will we still say it after the WSC? Being a good Christian is a big challenge, especially when we came back to the reality, with all the oppressions and hardships, the negative and unlovable people, and evil. How are we going to overcome it? Jesus always goes up to the mountain to PRAY. It is His favorite place of prayer because the spirit is in high position, ready to lift up everything to God.

A lot of surprises happened to me that WSC weekend. I was not feeling well to begin with. I had tonsillitis, dry cough, and stomach problems. I do not know how my body found the strength to move. It must have been the grace from the little sacrifices I did before the Congress that sustained me. During the Exposition of the Eucharist, I was staring intently at the Blessed Sacrament on the big screen. Then unexpectedly, I saw something. At the center of the host was an image of an Infant wrapped with white cloth that was shining so brightly. Truly, the Lord is ever present in the Blessed Sacrament, in the Holy Eucharist. It was so timely that the Gospel that Sunday was about the Transfiguration.

Walking on to the way of the cross is difficult. It is only Jesus who can make it to the mountain top. All we have to do is to take up our own crosses and lift our crosses to Him. My life has never been the same again. Being a Mission Volunteer has helped me in my journey of healing and experience providence, forgiveness, peace, surrender and grace. The promise of having a purpose-driven life is in full view. My God is a constant God who has loved me long before I was conceived in my mother’s womb. I dare to live a life with Christ because He dared to do it first for us.

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