St. Candida’s Youth: Beloved, Gifted Empowered

1.PGYA1INDEXA great opportunity was given to the Hijas de Jesus schools in Panay and Guimaras, as they manifested the congregation’s living out of the shared mission in this year’s PGYA 2019, hosted by Colegio de la Inmaculada Concepcion in Pototan, Iloilo on December 5-7, 2019.





The 156 delegates coming from St. Candida School in Estancia, St. Joseph School in Guimaras, St. James Catholic High School in Maasin, Colegio de las Hijas de Jesus in Iloilo City , and Colegio de la Inmaculada Concepcion in Pototan gathered at the CIC ground in the early morning of December 5 to open the youth assembly with a foot parade around the Poblacion of Pototan, led by the CIC drum and lyre corps. The big crowd of energetic and enthusiastic young people were inspired and enlivened by the heartwarming message from the Provincial Superior of the Indico-Pacific Province, Sr. Emilinda C. Falsis, F.I. read to them by Sr. Lorna U. Yu Liat, F.I.


 The first day was indeed full of energy coming from the delegates as they shouted out loud their cheers and yells in introducing their group, and this was made more alive by the opening salvo and welcoming dance number from the delegates of the host school.  The games in the morning of day one  truly  revitalized the youth and at the same time strengthened the unity and camaraderie among them.

 3. PGYA

The presence of Mr. Bryan Eric Cerebo who talked on the topic “Beloved” was a very impressive and enriching experience for the children of St. Candida, because it affirmed them that “everyone is loved for no one deserves to be unloved.”  This belief was further clarified in the mini recollection facilitated by Sr. Jeck, F.I., which surely inspired everyone to understand  the various aspects of life.  The participants’ energy never slowed down on their first day of the encounter from morning till dusk, and this was proven by making the CIC campus filled with the harmony of music through the musical composition contest and the intense team building activities. 

  The second day of the assembly was even more exciting for the delegates.  They actively and enthusiastically responded to the early morning wake up call at 4:30, and prepared for the “Hataw Ehersisyo”.  Their eager faces for what are in stored for them in three days was a manifestation of their unwavering quest for a “holistic” formation. One significant activity for this day was the talk on “Giftedness” given by Rev. Fr. Joel Eslabra. One vital learning the delegates got was that “it is of no use to compare oneself to others for each person is unique and gifted in the eyes of Jesus Christ.”  This statement brought the assembly into silence and in deep thought as each one seemed to have been greatly struck by this realization. 

 Something spectacular about this year’s  PGYA was the differentiated activities composed of pastry making, card making, towel making, and soap making.  These are generic manual engagement, which they enjoyed so much, despite the fact that these young people belong to the ε-generation.  Another noteworthy experience for the delegates was the “clean-up” drive conducted  at Pototan New Market. This was  fun-filled as well as learning-filled activity.  It was also very satisfying that they were oriented and trained to give first aid

 December 7, 2019, Saturday, was the last day of the assembly which was  equally exciting because it was an occasion for the youth to gain  life experiences which each one could never forget.  The last talk given by Miss Japhet Moleta focused on the topic: “Empowered”.  She made the  delegates realize that in finding one’s  worth and potentials, they become agents of change in themselves and in the society. This  inspired them to become the best of themselves. 


 The youth had an outreach activity to the Pototan Distrcit Jail in Nanga which houses 112 female inmates. They had mixed feelings and thoughts, however, their confusion and anxiety melted when they had their one-on-one encounter with the inmates, a heart-to-heart talk with one another.    The PGYA Youth were able to let the inmates feel their importance as persons, considering the fact that some of them were never visited by the relatives and loved ones, as they were there to fill a vacuum of love and care.  In return, the inmates shared their feelings with the delegates, that their present state in life does not mean that they are that worthless, because they are normal persons with feeling and living equally with those people who are freely living their lives.   This wonderful experience for the young people of St. Candida was concluded with a Mass and the words of gratitude from Sr. Nilda Genovate, F.I., the Local Superior.


  As St. Candida’s youth parted ways, they were able to make a promise to think, to speak, to act, and to feel in harmony with the God’s will, according to the example  St. Candida. Indeed, this year’s PGYA had confirmed that the youth of today are beloved, gifted, and empowered.