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My Struggle in the Making of ‘Gabay sa Pagnilay’

It was middle of 2009, in one of our monthly WWP core meetings, that Rene Evidente (our WWP ministry head) suggested the idea of publishing a daily bible reflection guide for our beneficiaries. I was receptive to the idea since this will literally bring the ‘good news’ to the poor. So the targets were set. We should be coming out with the booklet by December of 2009 in time for the start of the New Year 2010.

But it was hard to start this new project considering that the CFC-FFL community has yet to come up with something similar. I realized this was spiritual warfare. Oppressions came our way. One was ‘negative enertia,’ as Rene calls it. Something like your mind says you like to do it but your body does not feel like doing it. Thoughts like, “it is a difficult task and it will take so much time and effort, so, I won’t do it anymore.” I realized that being the only fulltime worker in WWP, I would be tasked to spearhead the project. I realized that if I will give in to these thoughts, the devil will be victorious. December 2009 came and no prayer guide. I just continued to pray for guidance for the project to materialize.

Early in January 2010, I was convinced by my wife and kids to join the social network Facebook. I started getting messages from friends. After a few weeks, I received a post from other fulltime workers about an online Bible. I went to the link and saw that it has a Bible in downloadable word format. I realized this was the thing I needed to facilitate the project. After downloading, I immediately got hold of the Ordo (the Catholic liturgical guide) and got the needed bible verses for the 3rd quarter of 2010. This was our new target date for the project. I spent the next week or two copying & pasting the needed scripture readings.

By February, I was ready to distribute the scripture readings to selected writers for their reflections. In our core group meeting that month, we already decided that Rene Evidente, Jett Reyes and Ave Veran will take charge of a month each of scripture reflections. Due to Jett Reyes’ business responsibilities, I had to take over his assignment. What I did was to farm out the scripture reflections for the month to the members of my household. But for one reason or another, no reflections were submitted to me. One member was hospitalized, another was busy doing mission in the province, and another had personal problems. I just saw these as obstacles to this project, so I did the one-month scripture reflections myself. Fortunately, my assignment coincided with the Holy Week, and so it was a very good opportunity to go into deep reflection. After writing the reflections, Rene and I had to sit down for one whole day to rewrite some to make sure that the message for the day was properly explained.

In due time, the reflections were complete. It was now layout time. I was not worried because my eldest daughter, Bianca, is one of the layout artists of the Philippine Collegian at UP. She ‘obediently’ volunteered to do the layout. But when she was about to start work on the layout, my laptop that she was using broke down. She transferred to our PC at home but it, too, broke down. I just thought it was a ‘satan-sent’ virus stopping our work. Repairing the computer was not part of our planned expense because enrolling our children in school was our priority at that time. But we did not give up. Instead, she did the layout together with her presswork at UP. We did the editing at the home office using EFI’s laptop but we had to schedule it because they were also using the laptop to layout our Sound The Trumpets magazine which also running on a deadline.

By end of May, we were finally ready for printing. Rene Evidente had reservations on printing when we received printing quotations submitted to the Home Office. The beneficiaries may not be able to affordthe book. I looked for other options. The Lord led me to Recto St. in Manila, to a printer with a brand new risograph machine, delivered only a week before I came. This meant that we can get a clear risograph printing job at a less cost compared to the cost of an offset printing job.

By first week of June, the printed ‘Gabay sa Pagnilay’ copies were already with us at the Home Office and the CFC-FFL Shoppe. By God’s grace, we overcame the obstacles. We have done our part and answered God’s prodding.

I pray that the CFC-FFL general membership will also support this project. The purchase of one copy will help subsidize a copy for our poor brethren in our Restoration & Mission Villages.

Praise be to God.

A personal sharing of:

Isaias ‘bonjie’ Bonjibod
Fulltime Pastoral Worker
CFC-FFL Work With the Poor

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