Day Three of 2014, I was invited to celebrate the First Friday Mass of the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals (BCBP) – Talisay Chapter. I have journeyed spiritually with this community for quite a while now. In some of their gatherings, I have joined and interacted with them. I know some of them at different levels of closeness; I recognize most of them as familiar faces. They are an enthusiastic group striving to follow closely in Christ’s footsteps. Their passion for Jesus is worth replicating. In season or out of season they gather. Rain or shine they stick together for study or worship.
At the start of the Eucharistic celebration, I was given a covenant card. It was my copy to lead the community to a “re-commitment.” What a beautiful way of starting the year, I thought. They want to start it with a strong and decisive note. Making a new year’s resolution may have become passé. But responsibilities and commitments will always stay. Through our winning, losing and trying moments, our duties give stability to our life. Owning those life-tasks is the keystone to a focused and fruitful living.
I noticed that their basic tenets are anchored on three core values: love for God; love for community and country; and commitment to the Lord’s work. No doubt, love for God takes on the highest priority in their hierarchy of values. Each member’s deep and personal relationship with the Lord will determine the quality and strength of all their other relationships and undertakings. This is to be lived out concretely by leading a consistent prayer life, regular Scripture reading, faithful observance of the Sacraments and practicing an orderly life. The conviction of every BCBP Community member is that he or she has been uniquely called upon by the Lord to bring about the visible transformation of the marketplace. Hence, their goal is the transformation of society through the gospel values lived-out.
Recommitment is important. It serves as a reminder. We have promises and we need to keep them. We break them because we forget or choose to forget. The greatest danger in life is losing our memory. Some years back I read a thriller fiction novel written by Robert Ludlum “Bourne Identity.” It was also made into a movie. It’s the story of Jason Bourne, a spy with remarkable survival abilities, who suffers from amnesia. Through an action-packed journey of conspiracies, Jason has to piece together the dangerous puzzle of his missing past. Indeed, losing one’s memory is tragic. Without it, we lose our connection. We lose our grounding. Metaphorically, one gets lost in space. It is only when we remember our stories and our history that we become fully human.
Recommitment allows us to return to our original fervor. As we journey on through life, we get tired. Sometimes we merely survive. Excitement is lost in the routine and doldrums of our existence. But once we realize that life is a gift every day, we can be filled with a sense of wonder! Such is the outlook of Elena, my grade school batchmate who is afflicted with a brain tumor. She is a bubbly and vibrant personality. Family and friends are amazed that she does not look sick. She continues tutoring and mentoring kids. Life has been good to her and she can still afford little luxuries in life. But the unwanted guest in her brain gives her racking pain at night.
Doctors do not recommend surgical operation. Besides being expensive, a high degree of risk is present because the growing mass sits on a very sensitive artery on her frontal lobe. Instead, the doctors advised her to pray and prepare. She could go anytime. Every night she goes to bed with the thought that it could be her last. When she wakes up, she feels excited for another 24 hours of extension. She lives one day at a time; seizing each day with gratitude and a brand new vigor. Tomorrow may not come. Daily she chooses to have a positive outlook. Her only hope is in God alone.
We can start the New Year with a personal act of recommitment. It is our way of remembering, not only our promises, but also the faithfulness of God who has been journeying with us. Year 2014 has been declared as the Year of the Laity. In his pastoral exhortation, Archbishop Socrates Villegas gave this reminder that “the first and most important truth about you Filipino Catholic Laity is not your poverty but the greatness of your dignity. This dignity derives from God’s unmerited choice of you to belong to God’s holy people. That grace came to you with your baptism which is a true rebirth to eternal life.”
Now I see the reason why the BCBP Community is passionate about Jesus. They have understood what their baptismal commitment means. It has set their hearts burning. Not to lose the steam, they re-launch themselves with greater zeal. They make a recommitment to love Jesus more!
Disclaimer: This section of the website is a personal creative writing of the author and does not necessarily reflect the official views, opinion, or policies of the Salesians of Don Bosco – Philippines South Province. For concerns on the content, style, and grammar of this piece, please contact us.

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