Table of Contents

Jonel Bryan Reyes- Lopez, Quezon Philippines (English)

During 3 day program on Ecology in Center for Ecozoic Living and Learning (CELL), Silang Cavite last May, 2017

I am Jonel Bryan Mascardo Reyes. I just turned 36 years old last Dec. 3, 2017. My friends call me Jonel. I am from Lopez, Quezon Philippines, located in the southern part of Luzon island. Our town is near the coast of Lamon Bay, beside the Philippines Sea. I am the eldest of my two brothers. I love to listen to classical and pop music, swim at the beach, climb a mountain and to travel anywhere. Now, I’m currently connected with Student Catholic Action of the Philippines (SCAP), the National Secretariat of which is located at Tagaytay City, Philippines. I have been in the office since 2014, but I’ve been in Student Catholic Action from my 1st year of high school. My task in the movement is to coordinate and monitor schools with SCAn and to update them on the activities and program of the movement. I am also in charge of the SCAP database and administer the Bahay SCAn Formation Youth Center in Tagaytay and the satellite office in Far Eastern University-Manila Campus.

My daily activities start with a prayer or a minute of silence, thanking our creator for again letting me see  the beauty of the world and the people who make my day colorful. If I am in Manila with my parents and I am not in a hurry going to the office, I make sure to have breakfast and chat with them before I go. But if I am in Bahay SCAn and I have time, I walk around the city or jog in the running field of Tagaytay (if I didn’t wake up early, I do it in the afternoon, before the sun goes down). Sometimes I cook breakfast and lunch after my morning walk in Tagaytay. My working hours are not fixed, I have to meet people virtually and physically. If I stay in the office, I do administrative work and have virtual meetings with different people. If I am outside the office, I visit our member schools, meet with our partners and collaborators.

Visita Iglesia (Church Visitation) during Good Friday 2017 in Tagaytay. Our family visits 7 churches during Holy Week. We start at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. We do the Way of the Cross in each church. (left to right: Me, Jonald, Daddy Mon, Mama Vi and Jordan)

I was born and raised as a Catholic. During my primary education, my parents sent me to a Dominican school where the Catholic faith is very strong. Because I stayed more time on campus during my childhood, I religiously follow the teaching of my moderators and spiritual advisers about Catholic practices. But when I entered secondary education and went to a nonsectarian school, my Catholic practices needed to adjust to people with a different view of faith and religion; I am thankful enough for Student Catholic Action of the Philippines (SCAP) for introducing me the methodology of Cardinal Joseph Cardijn, the See-Judge-Act or Review of Life. In that process, I learned to understand other people with other beliefs. It’s taught me to study life situations before reacting.

I am also thankful for the AVP workshop I attended, the two Basic AVP trainings held in Tagaytay last 2014 and the recent AVP workshop I participated in the province of Bohol last March 2017 (AVP Basic + Trauma Healing + Discernment). Because of the AVP workshop encounter, I realize more about caring for myself, others, and environment. The workshop reminds me to affirm and acknowledge the goodness of everyone.

We can find peace if we can see the goodness in everyone, in every person we encounter, especially with friends. That’s why I value and treasure friendship in my

Happy faces during the graduation for the AVP Workshop in Bohol, last March, 2017 (from left to right: Kins, Valerie, Ludwig, Me, Nadine and Sha)

life. If we treat all human beings as friends, maybe there will be no war on earth and we can have a good relationship with everyone and we can give a big SMILE to each other.

My life is meaningful because of the people I encounter and am involved with. My family is my avid supporter; they are always there for good times and have never left me in bad times. My friends are always there and can understand me and guide me if my life is not going in good direction. I also value the strangers who are always there if you need them, especially in an emergency situation. I believe we create imperfection and have differences given by our creator so we can support each other. I feel hopeful about creating a peaceful place on earth because there are people who believe that there is a peaceful place on earth.


December 2017