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In the past few weeks that we had been busy preparing for the March Filipina Entrepreneurship Summit and dinner-forum, we didn’t realize that we are already welcoming the month of April. It feels like it was only a few weeks ago when we were looking forward to the year of 2015 and now we are on the 4th month already.
We start this month at the height of the Holy Week. Today is Maundy Thursday, and we all reflect on what the Holy Week means for all Catholics. Coming from a Catholic family where my mother always reminded us of our spiritual duties, I am deeply aware of the value of this season for us. Every year, we make sure to do the Stations of the Cross and attend recollections as we try our best to internalize the Grace given to us and how our Christ had to suffer and die so that we may live and have eternal life after. This tradition is, in way, a regular part of our Holy Week which we wish to teach our children and the next generation.
From all the day-to-day pressures in our business and work-life, it is always a challenge to develop our spiritual life. But that is a challenge we just have to overcome. Reflections must actually be done at all possible time, at the least a few minutes a day. A daily dose of teachings, with the Holy Bible and other readings for reflections, serve as our daily guide.
Looking back on the month of January, we were blessed to start the year with the visit of Pope Francis who shared the values of “mercy and compassion” which he sought to teach all of us. His four-day apostolic visit reminded us of many Christian values that we must continue to practice until now. One of the traits of Pope Francis, who Filipinos also call Lolo Kiko, is the compassion to help and serve others. We are reminded that despite the different status the society dictates, we are one in the eyes of the Lord. And that was clearly seen during Lolo Kiko’s visit. All devotees, men, women, young and old, privileged and underprivileged, held hands and joined in prayer. I personally saw the Pope during his visit and I witnessed how he is with the kids, the sickly, poor and elderly. This is the same example of Lord Jesus during his earthly stay which we must all learn and practice.
As we continue our family traditions such as going to confession, I am reminded of all the things that I have done in the past. I would often tell my wife that I have already forgotten the sins I committed, but she would insist that my confession is a must. And we must all understand the importance of confession. Through our confession, we recognize that we as humans are sinners. We understand that we are not perfect and that we need His guidance for us to make the right decisions. Also, through confession, our bad habits are corrected and our conscience is cleared and purified. We undergo the cleansing and with renewed spiritual health moving forward.
Since the modern Holy Week now entails three R’s: reflection, relaxation and recreation, we must prioritize the most important R: reflection. So before we head to the beach spots in the country or travel abroad and spend time with our family and friends, let us all have a peaceful time for personal reflection and repentance. We must value the sacrifice God has done for us in order for us to have a meaningful life.
Part of having a meaningful life is being able to share our blessings with others. For us entrepreneurs, part of our success is our ability to extend our hands to those who dreams to be like us. It is the same as being a Good Samaritan to those aspiring entrepreneurs. As an example, Alice Eduardo, one of the staunch advocates of Go Negosyo, shared her blessings with many, including an aspiring entrepreneur from Leyte–Marivic Quiero. Through our summit, Alice met Marivic and extended her help. She guided her on how to start anew after her business was destroyed by Typhoon Yolanda. She mentored her and taught her about business. Today, Marivic is one happy entrepreneur who is blessed to have Alice as a mentor.
Entrepreneurs must acknowledge their source of their success. We may have not reached our successes today, if not for Him who has supported us and guided us throughout our journey. Let us strengthen our faith and live a God-centered life and do our share in being a blessing to others.
And for the 10 years of Go Negosyo, I continue to pray that we will be able to inspire and empower more lives in the decades ahead.