Today was Immersion Day for participants in the Systemic Change workshop in the Philippines– a special time of encounter with the community members of the Southville Relocation Site in Cabuyao, Laguna, a place which has become very much a vital part of Adamson University.
Everyone was excited and on time for the 7AM assembly time at Adamson University. The trip there takes approximately 2 hours. Upon our arrival, we went to the Livelihood Center for welcome remarks and orientation from Ms. Wenifreda Esguerra (community leader of the Adamson University Integrated Community Extension Services/Vincentian Corporate Social Responsibility Program). After picking the name of the family to be visited and receiving a lunch pack to be shared with them, we proceeded to look for their houses.
Varied emotions of surprise, joy, eagerness, apprehension, uncertainty and awkwardness marked the beginning of the interaction but with sincerity and openness, a genuine encounter occurred – listening, sharing stories, breaking bread together. Time simply flew and then it was time to gather together again at the Livelihood Center for processing and integration. A few hours earlier we had been strangers to each other but we parted as friends. God intervened in our lives in a very real and visible way. It was indeed an experience of grace!
Ana Maria Escaño