One day in a seat that wasn’t supposed to be mine made me realize three things: one, eating food that is supposed to be someone else’s doesn’t taste as good as I thought; two, it’s difficult to do somebody else’s job, especially that you know that you’re not “there” yet; three, well… my favorite realization of all: the best things in life are free.
Panulaton 2015: a venue where great minds gather together to exhibit their talents and skills in writing. Attended by a whopping 500 participants, Panulaton is considered to be one of the biggest events in the lives of wannabe, could-be, supposed-to-be and soon-to-be writers.
I was there. I wasn’t supposed to be there. But, I was there.
It’s been ages since I involved myself in a competition. I missed the adrenaline, the nausea, the pressure, and most of all, the glory. However, I was seated in that seat that wasn’t supposed to be mine in a totally different point of view. That day, I was a teacher.
That moment when Ma’am Maryan asked me to critique one pupil’s paper, I was dumbfounded. Yes, I know how to write, and yes, I’m really good at it, modesty aside. But, teaching writing – creative writing, to be exact – is a whole different story. That one pupil looked at me with anticipation, waiting for me to share my bits of wisdom, and there I was, in that moment I’ve always dreamed of, clueless.
“Eloquentia et sapientia.”
This seems to be the Ignatian ideal that that the debaters of Ateneo de Iloilo-SMCS High School took by heart when they clinched the championship trophy in the recently-concluded 4th Sangguniang Panglungsod Inter-High School Competition.
The blue-and-white team—composed of Vincent Carlo Legara, Gianina Ng, and Mikaelo Lorenzo Bombeo—won against the formidable squad of University of the Philippines Visayas (UPV) High School in the final round held August 24, 2015 at the SP Conference Hall inside Iloilo City Hall. The motion was “This House believes that marijuana is good for the Philippines,” with UPV as government and Ateneo holding the opposition stand.
FACULTY and administrators of Ateneo de Iloilo-SMCS got a taste of the latest encyclical of Pope Francis on the “Care for our Common Home” in a talk held Thursday afternoon, August 20, at the school’s Audiovisual Room.
Facilitated in by Agnes Gatpatan of the school’s Campus Ministry and Social Involvement (CMSI) office, the 40 Atenean teacher-formators flicked through the “Laudato Si” document that generally speaks of the pontiff’s call on the “preservation of the environment and the dignity of the poor.”
The discourse was carved up in three segments. The first one was the playing of the three episode-talk of Luis Cardinal Antonio Luis Tagle on the pope’s official letter to the Catholic faithfuls covering all the six chapters that the Vatican manuscript contains. The 187-page encyclical was then condensed by Gatpatan in the context of the participants as formators of the school, followed by a short open forum.
Latin “Laudato Si,” literally “Praise be to you,” is taken from the invocation of St. Francis of Assisi in his “Canticle of the Creatures.” It reminds everyone that the earth, our “common home,” is “like a sister with whom we share our life and a beautiful mother who opens his arms to embrace us.”
It was said to be a fitting “Laudato Si” dialogue since the school is currently fortifying its zero-waste management and Blue Spoon Feeding outreach drives. This is also in response to the continued call of the Order of the Jesuits to all its mission schools and institutions—Ateneo de Iloilo and Santa Maria Parish in Iloilo included—to focus on concrete and more inclusive efforts to preserve Mother Earth.
SIDE BY SIDE with the best singers in the country, Ateneo de Iloilo-SMCS Batch 2007 scholar-turned-theater-actor Victor Robinson III wowed the crowd with his rendition of Journey’s “Faithfully” during David Foster’s Manila concert Tuesday, August 18, at Smart Araneta Coliseum in Cubao, Quezon City.
Victor, who started showing signs of artistic excellence as a singer-actor during his high school days in the Iloilo Jesuit school, was specially picked by the “Hitman” himself to jam with him in front of the deafening crowd. Right after the first notes, the Canadian musician Foster pulled Robinson from isle to the top of the stage to complete the first refrain of the chorus-less power ballad.
“Wow…that was really good. Wow, nice voice,” the multi-awarded Asia’s Got Talent judge said after the Ilonggo singer serenaded the audience in his casual jeans, tennis shoes, and striped tee.
FIVE PUBLIC schools, covering about 200 students, in Iloilo City will be invited to watch for free the internationally-acclaimed independent film Nono set August 28, 2015 as part of Ateneo de Iloilo-SMCS’ celebration of the Buwan ng Wika.
Spearheaded by the High School Filipino Program, the participants are yet to be identified but likely to be those who are neighbors of the school, including select students from Mandurriao National High School and Jaro National High School. They are to watch the Japan Film Festival Special Jury Prize-winning movie at the school’s Multipurpose Room taking turns with the Ateneo seniors.
Grade 6 Ateneans and high school students from University of the Philippines are also set to watch the 115-minute film at SM City Iloilo Cinema on the same day.