Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sign of the Covenant

12 And God said, "This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth."

17 So God said to Noah, "This is the sign of the covenant I have established between me and all life on the earth." (Gen 9:12-17, NIV)

Repost: Impt Contacts to Help Typhoon Ondoy Victims



UPDATED LISTING OF HOTLINES (Feel Free to use the comments to add more) : Typhoon Ondoy Emergency Hotlines and Relief Operations

Rescue Operations

1. National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) (+632-9125668, +632-9111406, +632-9115061, +632-9122665) Help hotlines: (+65 734-2118, 734-2120)
2. Red Cross (143, +632-5270000)
3. MMDA (136)
4. Coast Guard (+632-5276136)
5. AIR FORCE (+63908-1126976, +632-8535023)
6. Senator Dick Gordon (+639178997898, +63938-444BOYS, +632-9342118, +632-4338528)
7. Senator Manny Villar (+639174226800. +639172414864, +639276751981)
8. Bureau of Fire Protection Region III (Central Luzon) Hotline: (+63245-9634376)
9. Go to GMA Facebook page & post complete addresses and names of people in need of immediate help.

Rubber Boat Requests, 4×4 Trucks

1. NCRPO (+632-8383203, +632-8383354)
2. Private citizens who would like to lend their motor boats for rescue
please call emergency nos: +632-9125668, +632-9111406, +632-9122665, +632-9115061)
3. You can also text (+632917-4226800 or +632927-6751981) for rescue dump trucks.
4. For those who are able to lend 4×4 trucks for rescue: Please send truck to Greenhills Shoppng Center Unimart Grocery to await deployment, Tel No. (+632920-9072902) .

Power Supply

Meralco (+63917-5592824) If you want service cut off to your area to prevent fires and electrocution.

Relief Aid and Donations

1. Victory Fort is opening its doors to those affected by the typhoon. Call 813-FORT.
2. Clare Amador (+639285205508) or Jana Vicente at +639285205499) . Drop off for relief donations is at Balay Expo Center across Farmers Market Cubao.
3. Miriam Quiambao drop off points: One Orchard Road Building in Eastwood, or messagehttp://www.twitter. com/miriamq for more details.
4. Donations for Ondoy Victims to be distributed at the Philippine Army Gym inside Fort Bonifacio or GHQ Gym in Camp Aguinaldo starting now.
5. Team Manila stores in Trinoma, Mall of Asia, Jupiter Bel-Air and Rockwell shall be accepting relief goods (Canned Goods, Ready-to-drink Milk,Bottled Water and Clothes) for distribution by Veritas.
6. Relief Goods: Caritas Manila Office at Jesus St., Pandacan Manila near Nagtahan Bridge (+632-5639298, +632-5639308) or Radio Veritas at Veritas Tower West Ave. Cor EDSA (+632-9257931- 40)
7. Donations of any kind for Payatas communities affected by Ondoy accepted at ARANAZ stores in Rockwell & Greenbelt.
8. Simbahang Lingkod ng Bayan Task Force Noah, a disaster response arm of the Jesuits, is accepting donations. Please drop it off sa Ateneo Cervini Dorm.
9. Red Cross Load Donations: Right now the easiest way to make donations from the seat of your chair is via mobile phone load. The Red Cross Rescue and Relief Operations. Text: REDAMOUNT to 2899 (Globe) or 4483 (Smart)
10. Ateneo is now accepting donations for the victims of Ondoy. Donations can be dropped at MVP Lobby. For those stranded/those who need help: To all students who need help or know of people who need help. Please text the name, location, and contact number to (+6329088877166).
11. Papemelroti stores at 91 Roces Ave. / Ali Mall Cubao / SM City North EDSA / SM Fairview / SM Megamall / Glorietta 3 in Makati / SM Centerpoint / SM Southmall are accepting relief goods (canned goods / milk / bottled water / clothes – NO CASH pls.)
12. TXTPower now accepts donations via SmartMoney 5577514418667103, GCash 09179751092 and Paypal 3GvuN

Media Outfits

* ABS-CBN Typhoon Ondoy Hotline: (+632-4163641)
* Jam 88.3: (+632- 6318803) or SMS at JAM (space) 883 (space) ur msg to 2968

People Tracker (using your phones, get your friends and family to turn on their finderservice for you)

* FINDERSERVICE. For Smart, text “wis ” to 386.
* FINDERSERVICE. For Globe, text “find to 7000.

Monday, September 07, 2009

For the Confusions Around Are Mere Reflections of...

I do not know if it is because of my profession that I attract conflict, but I have noticed recently that everywhere I go, there is conflict, and more often than not, the issues are complicated and even heavy. I almost envy the people whose standard reply to the question of "How are you?" is "I'm bored, thank you."

Boredom is an unfamiliar feeling to me, as my days are more characterized by stress, sometimes panic, and at worst, fear. This, coming from a Christian. Which brings me to the question that got me started writing this particular blog entry. I wanted to ask God something, "Why, Lord, can't I experience peace for a prolonged period of time? Like maybe a week?"

Is it a matter of perspective, as in I choose to look at the problems of life rather than focus on the calm surface? Is it a matter of personality; do I aggravate the situations around me so much so that I bring out conflict wherever I go? Is it a matter of profession, in that because I'm a lawyer, people tend to spill their innermost problems to me even though we hardly know each other? Is it a matter of perception; do I just have the knack for looking at things beyond what is visible?

I would like to know, because I need a break. I want to work and not be judged for every little thing I do that do not always have anything to do with my job description. I want to serve and not be the subject of negative talk. I want to be free from these distractions.

The world may be full of conflict, really, but just once I want to be shielded from the chaos. I have just found some inner peace and quiet. Then bang. I received disturbing news, and I cannot sleep again, and I cannot focus again. I am trying, by blogging, to rid myself of these thoughts. I tell myself that it's not a big deal, what I learned today; that it's not really my problem; and that it will solve by itself without me having to lose sleep and change my routine over it.

I treasure my friends a lot, and I put my trust in people 100%. I work hard, and I am aware of my flaws. Still, at the end of the day, it is not reputation that matters, but my conscience. If my conscience is clear, and people still choose to talk, I can only close my eyes, and go to that quiet place where only God can hear me, and ask Him to protect me from reacting negatively, or worse, from giving in, and becoming the person some people paint me to be.

For obvious reasons I cannot write in detail what I'm going through here. There are multiple things, actually, and I have tried to make sense of them all, quite unsuccessfully so far. It is all an invitation to prayer, as my Cenacle spiritual directress would say.

This too shall pass.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Great Books and Teachers

I try to attend the Catholic Formation series in our parish as much as I can. It is adult catechism at its finest, and in-depth bible study given by our parish priest that always leaves me wanting to learn more about our faith. My classmates are mostly nuns from the four congregations who reside in our neighborhood, and a growing number of lay people. Make that lay women. But still.

I received the handouts and saw the series topic: The Moral Life. Pretty. Heavy. Stuff. Tonight's topic was a concise version of St. Thomas Aquinas' writings on the Seven Basic Human Goods. My background in civil law helped, but only slightly. For I have a confession to make: I have, to this day, refused to read the great philosophers' and thinkers' original works. I have mostly survived on hearsay, actually, for I have been more comfortable reading other writers' interpretations of what the great ones have written. For a lawyer who "always reads the cases in the original", I should be ashamed of myself.

My father has tried to influence me, for he is a product of UST education. He has all the books. I have just picked out the lighter ones from his vast library, and those were mostly fiction. Even my choices in fiction have been influenced by one major standard: entertainment value.

And so I have only read the "Primer for the Catechism of the Catholic Church", but not the real thing. I have read several books about saints, but not their actual writings, except for St. Therese of Liseux. I have read that Social Science II reference book, the title of which escapes me now, the one that comes in two volumes, but not the individual books that comprise it. I am lazy, I know.

Age has caught up on me, and I no longer can afford to wing it. My Bucket List of Books has to be dusted and reviewed.

In many things, I have felt what growing older means. I'm not necessarily wiser, but I now try harder. Reminds me of this passage that was taken from the only "serious" book that I read everyday, the holy bible:

When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13: 11-13, NIV)

I do hope to put childish ways behind me, to reason like a woman, to someday "see face to face", to know fully, and to be fully known.

I also need to be more consistent in applying what I read and study to reality. Starting with the lesson for this month, "The Moral Life". I'm glad that my classmates, who are religious, agree with me that it's a tough subject. I thought I was the only one who felt like her nose was bleeding while trying to grasp the subject matter. The nuns smiled at me, and their smile told me that they were one with me in my desire to learn more and my struggle to do so.

How do I make a moral decision? I asked a priest when I was faced with the greatest moral dilemma of my life. He simply said, "Take away your emotions, and then make a moral decision. You can't let your desires rule your life."

I asked the same priest tonight if he was referring to Aquinas' teachings when he gave me that piece of advice. He nodded. I said I still found it difficult. He said, "I never said it was easy."

I cannot take shortcuts anymore. In reading. In life. In decision-making. Time to face the big ones. The great big ones.

Faith, hope and love.