21 August, 2013


August 20, 2013

As the storm Maring and the Habagat Monsoon hang around for days, there was nothing else to do inside the house but to observe what these two weather disturbances will bring.

It was raining hard and it woke me up at around 2am.

At 8am, the rain showed no signs of stopping.

View from the second floor of our house.

View from the second floor of our house.

we put up a screen to prevent the floating garbage from entering the house

all the cars in the street left for higher grounds except for these two. we cannot find their owners.

CECE (the dog), our friendly neighbor, feeling comfy while watching the flooded street.

Hip-deep waters

few centimeters more, the water will come up the floor of the house

snails showing up, climbing on the gate

Children collecting plastic bottles and sell them on to junk shops

Relief efforts (canned foods) done by some barangay officials

11 August, 2013

St. Lorenzo Ruiz


Lorenzo Ruiz was born in Binondo, Manila, between 1600 to 1610. Living under the same roof with the Dominican priests, he served as a sacristan at the convent of Binondo Church in his younger years. There he learned from them not just the Spanish language, but most importantly, the Catholic Church’s catechism. Several years after, Lorenzo earned the title of “escribano” or notary. He also became an active member of the Confraternity of the Holy Rosary—an organization devoted to the Blessed Virgin.
Lorenzo later got married and had three kids.

In 1636, a murder was committed in Manila. The Spanish authorities conducted a manhunt for the perpetrator and Lorenzo was considered one of their primary suspects. Knowing that Lorenzo was innocent yet could never escape being incriminated, some Dominican missionaries who were bound for Japan urged him to join them. He denied their invitation since he did not intend to leave behind his wife and children. Assured of their return journey when the issue has died down, Lorenzo embarked on a long journey to the distant land.

In those times, however, Japan decreed a massive persecution against Christians. One of the severe forms of punishments for those caught was the "hanging in the pit" on the hills of Nagasaki. This severity entails that the prisoners be induced with pails upon pails of water before their feet are tied to a horizontal beam, with their bodies hanged upside down and their heads occupying the amount of the pit filled with human wastes. Lorenzo went through this agonizing punishment when he refused to
renounce his belief in Christ Jesus. When he asked to abandon his faith that he may be freed from this torture, he answered: "I'm a Christian and I will remain a Christian even to the point of death. Only to God will I offer my life. Even if I had a thousands lives, I would still offer them to him.” 

Novena to St. Lorenzo Ruiz.. Read more

Prayer Petition to St. Anthony

(To be prayed everyday during the Novena)

O Holy Saint Anthony, gentlest of Saints, your love for God and charity for His creatures made you worthy when on earth, to possess miraculous power.  Miracles waited on your word, which you were ever ready to speak for those in trouble or in distressed.  Encourage by this thought, we implore of you to obtain for us…(mention the request)

The answer to our prayer may require a miracle, even so, you are the saints of miracles.  O gentle and loving Saint Anthony whose heart was ever full of human sympathy, whisper our petition into the ears of the sweet infant Jesus, who loved to be folded in your arms, and the gratitude of our hearts will ever be yours.


Glorious Saint Anthon, God accompanied you I your childhood with a ray of heavenly light and gave you the grace to resist from every sensual attraction.  Come and help us to control our senses so that we may not be deceived by earthly delights.  Despite our promises how half – hearted we still are!  With all God’s goodness to us and with the many proofs we’ve had of his love, how often we hesitate and doubt Him.  Please procure for us some of your steadfastness and determination to resist evil and do good.  Help us to give up our desire for power and control.  Keep us from a merely intellectual faith and may we be totally dependent on Jesus as you were.  Let us know clearly all the other benefits which are hidden so that we may seek Him in all things and find Him as the only joy of our lives.


Good St. Anthony servant of God, You were inflamed with the desire to sacrifice your life for the cause of Jesus’ message.  The Lord made the Scriptures a glowing flame in your mind and heart.  Your sermons were filled with the words of the Lord.  May we listen to the same Lord speaking to us in the Bible with the same reverent openness as you had. Let the same flames of your love set our hearts ablaze and cause tears of repentance upon listening to God’s Word.  May we feel the presence of Jesus in the Scriptures just like the people of your day when you preached that word of God to them. Let the fire of your tongue inspire our cold hearts and embrace Him who gave His life to us.


Dear St. Anthony, seraph of love and extraordinary example of Christian life, help us to be strong like you.  In search of God’s infinitely sweet presence, you often lived in solitude and silence to enjoy a foretaste of paradise.  Our special protector we are often discourage in this valley of tears.  In our continuous struggle against our passions vain desires, come to our aid so that we too may enjoy that serene and sweet inner peace which is a reward for Christian living and powerful invitation to seek union with all of God’s saints in heaven.


St. Anthony, glorious light of the Franciscan Order, your wisdom, inspired by the Holy Spirit was always clothed in humility.  You did not display your gifts in pride.  But inspired from high, you set an example of Christian learning for the Glory of God and the instruction f his people.  O most faithful advocate obtain also for us a spark of that divine knowledge which can enlighten our lives, lead us to experience eternal joys and, fix our attention on Our loving Saviour.  May we never grow proud because of the gifts of God bestowed on us. Let us use them for the benefit of our neighbor and for our final reward in heaven.


St. Anthony, you raise the cross before sinners and saints to be a sign of the price God paid to show us His love to be our only hope of salvation and to give us salvation and to give us courage in suffering.  You always preached penance a turning away from anyone and anything that separates us from God, even slightly. You put the First Thing First, the dying of Jesus given to us that we might enter into His spirit as he died and His resurrection , which He wants to share with us.  Help us to die to sin large and small and by this dying to be lifted up in grace once for all as we die and many times throughout our days.


Glorious St. Anthony, through your holy life, you merited to have our prayers heard and answered by our Lord and Saviour.  Through your intercession, may our prayers be heard and answered by Him frequently and for long hours you were intimately united with Christ in meditation and contemplation.  Neither earthly joys nor human honors could satisfy the longings of your heart set aflame by the infinite beauty of Christ’s glorified humanity.  Our heavenly patron may your powerful intercessions obtain an answer to all our prayers.


Sweet Anthony, your innocent love merited for the singular privilege of holding the Infant Jesus in your arms.  This unusual favor was your foretaste of heavenly glory.  Since we are unworthy to be blessed with a similar gesture of Christ’s love help us to see and love Jesus in all the poor and suffering of the world.  Move us to clothe, feed and help Jesus in all unwanted, abused and abandoned children and people.  Lead us, for the sake of Jesus who became a child like one of us to respect, protect all human life from its beginning to its end.  Help us to live in such a way now that we may be worthy of Christ’s embrace in the heavenly Jerusalem.


Oh St. Anthony, we marvel at your enthusiasm you were a light in the Church through your teaching, enlighten our souls and open it to the divine truth.  You said, that not many hear the Word of God willingly.  The reason for this rests, in the fact that the doctrine of Christ does not play a melody of adulation it does not flatter the sinners and it does not promise earthly goods instead it severely warns and teaches to mortify the flesh  and despise the world. We pray that our devotion may awaken our cold hearts full with the creature comforts and distractions of or day.  May the spirit of your teaching inflame our hearts that we may live the gospel faithfully and be living witnesses of His Kingdom here on earth.


St. Anthony, during your life you imitated St. Francis of Assisi in his love for Gospel poverty and for the poor.  While you desired little for yourself you were constantly alive to the needs of the poor and little people of the world.  You shared what you had with them and demanded justice for them.  We ask now, in your name that we may not be overly desirous of wealth or possessions.  May we share what we have with other less fortunate. Make us always instruments and voices for peace and justice in our world.

(To be prayed after each Novena prayer)
Gracious Father, we thank you for giving us St. Anthony to be our model who lived the gospel faithfully.  We thank you father for the blessing we have received through the intercession of St. Anthony of Padua.  With complete trust in You like our saint, may we always seek your face in our brothers and sisters that we may serve and love one another and build the heavenly kingdom here on earth where You live and reign with your Son and the Holy Spirit forever and ever.  Amen.

 (Source: The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Manila)