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“I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly"  (Jn 10: 10.)

Just twenty-five days after my arrival in Dumaguete City, it is with great joy that I share with you all what I have been witnessing since I have been here, in the Philippines . In this short period of time, I have been able to enjoy a little of the beauty in this part of the world, with its enchanting landscapes, welcoming and cheerful people, while noticing the great cultural differences in the way of living and organizing themselves in the hustle and bustle of city life. Beyond the natural beauty of the country and the immense wealth of Philippine culture, it is quite visible the stark reality of a pervading dire poverty, a consequence of unjust social and economic policies preventing most people to live with dignity, according to God’s will.

In recent years, as we know, our SFP Congregation has been seeking to minimize the sufferings of some of the victims of such injustice through several social Feed 04programs. On July 29, I have had the joy to participate in the opening ceremony of a new social program – The Feeding Program -- also funded by the Congregation.

This program is being implemented in a local elementary school, to provide meals to them three times a week for a total of fifty (50) children from socially vulnerable families.

The expression of joy and gratitude from the children, leadership and staff was evident in their words, gestures and chanted slogans.

I see this successful program as a result of our careful listening to God’s call in the realities where we serve with the certainty that everything we do for the poor we do to Jesus himself, as we were told by the Gospel, in the same charism lived by Blessed Frances Schervier:

“I recognized my divine Lord in the poor and suffering as clearly as if I had seen him in them, with my own eyes.”

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Dumaguete City, July 30, 2016

Sr. Thalita Pereira Lima


Published: September 6, 2016