Pandemic of Joy

by: Ofelia G. Fausto

My first encounter with the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters was when Sr. Marigladys came to the Philippines to take charge of the formation of the postulants.  She was looking for someone who can teach the girls some arts and crafts as part of her holistic approach for their training module.  Since I had just concluded a livelihood program for the parish which somehow resembled an artistic project, my name came up and Sr. Marigladys lost no time in locating me.  If I was not mistaken, she met up with me the very week she flew in from Panama!

Despite our language barrier — she, speaking mostly in Spanish and me with my crude Spanish from my college years, we were able to schedule some art classes which resulted in better student projects than what the teacher taught.   That ended my career as an art teacher.

This brief introduction with the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters impressed upon me on how well-rounded these postulants will be when they finally become full-fledged nuns.  It is no wonder that in the ensuing years, I would feel the presence of the Capuchin Sisters in practically all the facets of my parish life.  They are involved with the choir, as Lectors and Commentators, the 2,000 Hail Marys, catechism, feeding program, etc. 

It is the Capuchin Sisters’ sincere personal interest in others that urges them to reach out.  Their strong rapport with the community enables them to link up people in need with people who care and are willing to share. 

One peculiar trait I observe with the Sisters is how they always find joy in little things.  They are always cheerful and keep on smiling.  Their sense of joy is truly contagious.  I guess, if you keep seeing God in every person you meet, you too will experience this special joy!   I hope the Sisters can turn their sense of joy into a pandemic and change this world into a better place.

Forgiveness in Fraternity

Sr. Myra Grijaldo,tc

We are called by the Lord to form a community who love, serve, and support one another, making on earth an image of the Triune God who has that sheer bond of relationship with one another.

We are a community of sisters with three members from different nations – Colombia, Korea, and the Philippines.  The differences in language, culture, family upbringing and personality greatly affect community living.  In addition, our age gap.  Though called for the same purpose and mission, each of us has our own perspective.  We may have some things in common, but in others, we may vary in view and opinion.  But, when it comes to community matters, we always come up with one result, one decision, and one agreement that the three of us become responsible for it. 

It cannot be avoided that in some instances we come across misinterpretation and argument.  Each one has her own belief.  This conflict, sometimes, leads to offending and hurting others.  At times, it takes some moment to process the event.  It entails grace from the Lord to humble oneself, and rather than justifying, the acceptance of what had happened is necessary.

“…and forgive us our sins, as we forgive everyone who sins against us…” Luke 11:4

Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother who sins against me? Up to seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, not just seven times, but seventy-seven times!” – Matthew 18:21-22

Every day, we are praying the Lord’s Prayer and in it, we beg pardon for the offenses we made. If one experiences the forgiveness of sins and feels how it is to be truly redeemed, these will lead to the consequence of forgiving others as well.  God has forgiven me of my sins, so I want to forgive others the way God has forgiven me.  One needs grace from the Lord to do this, and every day is a patient practice in doing so.

No matter how many times one feels offended, the Lord is inviting us to forgive again and again.  More so, it is important to pray for those who offended us, and to let go of grievances. At times it is difficult to forgive when we are caught in a situation of hurt and pain, but the grace of God accompanies us to do so and to let go. 

Jesus forgave His offenders and prayed for them when He was nailed on the cross.  We commit ourselves to follow Jesus, and this includes forgiving and praying for those who offended us.       

Attached to this beautiful experience of forgiveness is the renewal of commitment to love and care for others.  If we are true to our promise to love and serve the Lord, there will always be a place for forgiveness and letting go. More than being hurt, we have the capacity to transcend.

Srs. Yolanda Idarraga, Myra Grijaldo, and Anastasia 김영선

Journey with God

by: Sr. Kim Young Sun Anastasia 

When I look back on my own history, it becomes clearer that the desire to seek God is inherent in every person, Christian or non-Christian, from the moment of creation.

Born into a Confucian family in a small village in the countryside, I had never seen a place called a Catholic Church from afar until I went to high school. From a young age, I enjoyed reading books or playing imaginative games alone at home rather than going out to play. When I was in middle school, I started to search for the reason why humans have to live a short life after being born and then die like the dew of dawn and they dry up and disappear in the rising sun. These unanswered questions disappeared into the background as they were pushed to study and work life, and to survive in a fiercely competitive society, I just lived day by day, doing more and trying to learn more than others.

In these busy days, one day, a question I had forgotten about all of my existence again enveloped me. Why do humans have to be born and die? Without an answer to this question, life is meaningless.

As I was wandering in search of the answer to this question, I happened to pass a church near my house while walking immersed in thought on my way home from work. Passing through the statue of a woman standing in the middle of the yard of the church, and entering the church with the door open, a man named Jesus was found hanging helplessly on the cross under a dim light. With the vague expectation that this weak-looking man named Jesus would give me answers to my questions, I went to the church a few weeks later and expressed my desire to become a believer and after receiving the catechesis for a year, I got baptized. Before I was baptized, I bought all kinds of spiritual books through a Catholic bookstore and started reading them. The nuns invited me to a vocational meeting and started attending such meetings even before I was baptized.

However, after I was baptized, the Holy Spirit led me to a new desert called China. I quitted my job and volunteered in a Chinese leprosy village for 5 years. As I shared the joys and pains with them, making the wounds of their bodies and minds mine, I started to ask again what God really wants of me.

“God, do you want me to spend the rest of my life here with these sick people as a lay? Or do you want to follow the path of Religious Life?”

I waited for five years for an answer to this question, and when I let go of my will, God showed me the way He had prepared. It’s the religious life, a simple and humble way of living, like that of the life of Nazareth.

That humble way of life burned like a fireball in my heart, and I found through the internet, the Capuchin Sisters living the spirituality of St. Francis, a minor saint, and God brought me into contact with the Community in Bucheon, Korea.

On my first visit, on that very day, I was convinced that this was the order I would live in, and after three visits, I decided to join. I was given the homework to convince my non-religious family, but I did the preparations I had to do, trusting that God called and He would take care of it.

“I believe when God calls, He will take care of me.”

Contrary to my worries, my family respected the path I wanted to take, and now I am living as the first Korean religious in the Bucheon community where I had my first vocational meeting. There is no point in resisting if you have felt the call of God. What I can say with more certainty after making my final vow is that He provides the best for us. What we humans can see is but one point in His plan, which is bigger than the universe. So, once you have heard His voice, it is the wisdom of life to surrender to Him and do the best you can. Then, with the five loaves I own, God will provide enough for 5,000 people to eat.

There is no death in life. The death of the body only changes the form of life. So, there is no need to ask any more questions.

With the question of “the meaning of life and death,” God led me to seek Him even before I was baptized and called me to where I am today. I live that calling. That is important, and that is happiness.

“We are Called to Love and to be Love”

by:Jumayma M. Maranduque, RSW

I am thankful for this opportunity to share a testimony of my life with the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters of the Holy Family; at Holy Family Home-Bacolod Foundation. I was referred to Holy Family Home when I was nine years old.

I am grateful that finished my studies and became a Social Worker, with the Sisters who were very supportive to me. One of my happiest experiences in Holy Family Home was doing the Outreach Program. We were conducting feeding program and catechesis to the children. I cannot explain the joy I felt when despite my nothingness and brokenness, I can still be of help to others.

Graduating college was one of the best days of my life. I couldn’t believe it. I remember all of the sufferings I went through and I thank God because He was with me every step of the way. Before, I felt like rubbish. I felt like the ugliest person ever. But after holding on to my Diploma, I felt dignified. The sisters helped me in my healing process.         

I left the home in 2011 after fourteen years of living with the sisters. I felt so ready to face the world. After I graduated, I had the opportunity to be part of the Holy Family Home Junior staff, educator, and assistant social worker for three years. I helped manage the home and watch over the elementary and high school girls. It was of great help for me, but I have to be independent, I have to go and face another journey of my life far from the sisters who I used to be with. I had been so used to living with the sisters for more than a decade, I made a lot of adjustments, outside, I became anxious but at the same time, even prayerful. I am grateful for all that I have experienced in the center, it has been my guide.



Living with the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters for fourteen years is a big influence in my Christian Life. I am thankful to them, they taught me in my prayer life; attending Mass, praying the rosary and because of it, I learned to forgive those people who hurt me deeply. Honestly, though sometimes I feel lazy to pray and not attending the Mass, God never abandoned me and I feel that He is always protecting and saving me from harm. I have learned to trust and believe also in God because, despite all the hardships I had before, He sends me people, who are instruments to help me be healed, become a better person, and be a blessing to others.

What I am now, I owe to God and thankful to Him because He loves me so much most especially for the blessings, family who loves me, friends, the sisters, and my work. The symbol I can think of myself now is bamboo. The blowing of the wind might have taken me to different phases in my life, but I had learned how to dance along with it. I become firm yet flexible. I stand still and continue to grow taller and taller amidst the storm and the rain.

I would like to end with these words… “Let us continue believing, to do our best, NEVER GIVE UP whatever obstacle we may have in our daily lives. In every darkness, a brighter future is always waiting for us. Be OPTIMISTIC!



by Sr. Editha Lani Dellosa,tc

     Deep in every person is the need and longing to love and be loved. It is a need that has to be satisfied to find true peace and joy in one’s life. It is a love that accepts the preciousness and peculiarity of a person who has her/his own strengths and weaknesses, a love that recognizes the giftedness of the person and the many possibilities that she/he can explore given the opportunity and motivation, a love that heals wounds and brokenness and restores one’s wholeness and dignity, a love that guides and corrects and a love that brings the person back to the source and giver of her/his life.

     Holy Family Home Makati Foundation Inc. (HFHMFI) was founded by the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters of the Holy Family for this mission handed on to us by our Father Founder Venerable Father Luis Amigo: to share the joy of loving and being loved. As collaborators/helpers (zagales) of the Good Shepherd who had experienced first the love, care, and compassion of Jesus, the Good Shepherd, we are sent to do likewise especially to the marginalized in the society.

     Aside from providing shelter and protection to the indigent, neglected, abandoned, orphaned, and street girls and youth from the manipulative and corruptive environment of the streets, Holy Family Home offers a family environment that leads to spiritual and personal growth as well as a healthy social co-existence and prepares them to return to their families and to society. It focuses on the personal, educational, and social companionship of the youth in an atmosphere of freedom, responsibility, and trust.

     Most of the girls and youth who arrived in Holy Family Home were plying the streets of major cities in Metro Manila due to poverty and usually large families, limited access to basic social services, breakdown of family structures, and the shift from traditional values that tend to be consumeristic and materialistic. When they experience family problems, hunger, neglect, and domestic violence, they escape from their homes and live part-time or even full-time on the streets. To survive, they resort to begging, scavenging, petty theft, etc. They are very vulnerable to maltreatment, sexual abuse, and exploitation.

   When they arrived in Holy Family Home, they were generally malnourished and anemic, many of them physically and intellectually stunted. Some suffer psychologically from undue family pressures, abuses, and neglect. Very often they have low self-esteem. They are usually aloof, distrustful, and “fighters”, accustomed to bullying and being bullied. Many have not received the sacraments of initiation and have no knowledge about religion.

     It is a big challenge for the Sisters and the staff to let them feel that they are welcomed and accepted. Each has to be known in her individuality, knowledge by way of the heart.  It is only in an atmosphere of personal approach, confidence, and security that the girl or youth show her real face, open up about her real feelings, fears, difficulties, and problems. The attitude of listening is very important, where the girl does not feel judged or condemned but understood and loved despite what happened to her or in whatever circumstances she is in. She is given an opportune time to be healed and to move on especially as she is introduced to a God who is love and whose presence is manifested by the faith and witness of the people around her. She is encouraged to dream and aspire not necessarily for material wealth or power or fame but to be a woman of dignity and values. The process has no short cut but every manifestation of accompaniment with dedication and love leaves an indelible mark in the life of the girl and youth.

Love can move mountains it can generate growth and transformation in a person. When you experience being truly loved, you cannot remain merely a recipient but also a giver… a generous and joyful one.        


By: Mrs. Espectacion Toledo

As Lay Amigonians we are happy and grateful to be part of this family, it teaches us the value of faithfulness and live our life with the charism of Fr. Luis Amigo. We had a lot of experiences with our different activities and projects to help other people, like marriage enrichment, visiting the sick and praying with them, rosary every week with the community of Cabug, an outreach program by giving food packs and toiletries to the poor people of Purok Malipayon , visiting the jail in Handumanan, to bring food and have  bible sharing with them, we have also monthly adoration where we are nourished with the Word of God, listening to Him as we pour out our concerns with our respective family.

In order to have funds for our other activities, we are having caroling every December. We had also special project (kiosk),as our venue for our weekly meeting, part of our activities is recreational like outing together with our family in other place.

However during this pandemic, we cannot have all the activities that we used to do before, we need to adapt the new normal of the pandemic. But it doesn’t mean that our being together as a group stops. We continue to be nourished in our faith in spite of the distance. And this is the true identity and profile of being a Lay Amigonian.

   During the pandemic, some of our members were able to participate in the webinar offered by Anugraha Institute in India about “FAMILY ENRICHMENT WEBINAR”. It was a meaningful experience for them to receive insight and be able to impart it to others esp. this time of the many challenges within the family.

    Around November last year, we resumed our activity and weekly meetings little by little with the accompaniment of Sr. Antonieta. We had our Advent recollection, Christmas gift-giving, etc. and we are so happy to be back again wherein we can share and grow together in our commitments as lay Amigonians. And we are looking forward to our coming activities this year like Lenten recollections, preparing for holy week, going to confession, and organizing weddings with couples who did not yet receive the sacrament of matrimony.

              We are so grateful to the sisters who accompany us on our journey. We are trying to live the true spirituality of being a lay Amigonian as Fr. Luis dreamed for us. We are laity who are called to holiness with a proper secular mission, we feel drawn by the life and spirit of St. Francis and Luis Amigo, we are builders of fraternity, simple prayer and lifestyle, living our commitments and contribute to the freshness and renewal in the church. It is then that we the Lay Amigonians can transform the world through our simple way

Am I qualified?

by: Sr. Jovelyn Magbanua,tc

When we talk about religious life, one of the common questions is “Am I qualified?” or the famous line is “I am not worthy”. But I would like to begin this with a quotation from 1 Corinthians 1:27-29 “God doesn’t call the Qualified He qualifies the Called”.

When we look at the apostles, none of them were qualified at the beginning but what can inspire us is that they persevere in their calling (except Judas Iscariot). Maybe some of us would ask if Jesus committed mistakes in choosing Judas Iscariot as one of the apostles? For sure Jesus did not commit mistakes, they persevered in their calling with the grace given to them.

Recalling my own vocation story, it was not in my option to become a religious sister. Just like any other young girl who is studying in college, I was full of dreams, dreams of my own. It was not a bad dream (to finish my studies, to look for a good job, to build my own dream house and to travel to many places, if blessed enough I may find my perfect man) but then everything changed when I felt the deep call within. A voice whispered to me “Why am I here, what is my purpose in life?”. Then I realized the dreams that I had for myself were not in line with the plans of God for me. God has always a greater plan for each one of us than what we think of.

It is really the Lord who called me to walk in this path. I am not also qualified and even worthy in this calling but with the grace of God, He continuously works on me to become qualified. As I remember one of my fears is what if I’m not qualified for this life. Like anybody here on earth, we are all the same yet at the same time, unique. The same in the sense that all of us are not perfect yet we desire to be perfect as the Father, we all commit mistakes, we have our own limitations and weaknesses but it’s not an excuse not to respond to our vocation. All of us were given unique gifts for His glory. When God calls the person, He always accompanies it with His grace. The grace to perseverance only happens when we allow ourselves to be molded by Him. When we enter the convent it’s not because we are already Saints, rather we desire to become little saints with all our lapses.

It is always good to put importance to the Caller not the Called because the caller is the one who always sustains the Called. And it is God who is our ultimate caller. Indeed “God doesn’t call the Qualified He qualifies the Called”.

Are you also willing to be qualified? The answer can be found in the deepest desire of our hearts.

The Power of Prayer

It was the Fall of 2004 when we first met the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters. As our child entered middle school, we decided to volunteer, but we did not know where to do it, so we contacted the Diocese of Jeonju and asked where we can do our voluntary service. They led us to the sisters who take care of girls and young ladies in a group home called “Amigo Home” and from then on, we started volunteering.

We went to visit Amigo Home and seeing that there were children, so as we run a chicken restaurant, told the sisters that every month we will give the chicken to the children, and the sisters joyfully accepted our offer. It has been sixteen years since we come in contact with the sisters and the girls of Amigo Home.

We believe that a place like Amigo Home is necessary for our society right now. At a time when there is a shortage of institutions that lovingly protect children with nowhere to go, Amigo Home is truly a facility that society needs. Of course, the children who come here are very difficult, but I believe that the children who come here have been blessed by God. It is true that it is difficult to take care of even our own children. But taking care of these difficult children with greater love than that of a mother is impossible without “the power of prayer” as the Sisters said.

Once, when one of the girls of Amigo Home was admitted to the hospital, we saw the sisters taking turns in taking care of her, we thought, that no one would do the same even to one’s own child.

We wish there were more facilities like this and that the children could stay with the sisters until they grow up and become adults until they can make their own decisions and take responsibility for themselves. When we first went to Amigo Home, we were unaware of the need for such a facility, but now we believe that such facilities are essential for the safety and growth of children.

It is so humbling that the sisters consider us as God’s gift to them. We hope the sisters are always healthy and would take care of themselves so they can continue to take care of the most vulnerable and needy children, as their Father Founder, Luis Amigo asked of them.

We are thankful to God for the opportunity that He had given to us to share the little that we have. And thanks to the Capuchin Sisters for welcoming us as part of the Amigo Home Family. Indeed, we are also truly blessed as God called our youngest daughter to Religious Life.



We are One

I am called to dedicate myself to God in this environment of common life. Here, I have met people coming from other parts of the world, not only in my country but also elsewhere, which I have never known. Although we have different in languages, cultures, customs, homelands, we are gathered together by the call of Jesus. From here on, we can form a new family, sharing many things together. Despite our differences, we still live together and consider each other as a family. Maybe we are different in age, education, position, job, but there is not anything more valuable than the other. Here we live as a family, where everyone cares for each other, can ask questions, share and help one another and most of all pray for each other.

My impression is that each time we recite the prayers, have our adoration, eat a family meal together are beautiful moments of our time in community. I feel happy and at peace. The sisters’ corrections and sharing motivate me to be drawn closer to God. Each Sister is a unique gift of God for me. I love my present life here, and I cherish each member of this family. I always pray to God for them. I am grateful to God for the joy and peace we share. In this small flower garden of the Church, I feel happy to be one of the lovely members of this family.

Aspirant Teresa Trần Thị Mến

For a fresh graduate who is facing life’s many choices… I am most grateful to God for He has been taking care of me and for guiding me in this journey until I began finding my vocation in the Religious life and decided to enter the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters of the Holy Family. 

New life – changes, challenges, difficulties, cultural and language differences in each member of the community, but all these worries were completely gone when I started to live here. Since I live here, my relationship with God became stronger. I am closer to Him, to meet Him every day.   The hours of prayer and adoration help me to be more united with Him and helping me to have more strength to steadily take steps forward. I am thankful to the sisters for my spiritual life is supported and is much better than before. I feel the peace which I haven’t found when I was outside. Living here is like a family that one feels the kindness and help, the simplicity in every meal and work, the joy in sharing everyday stories.  My experience of living here is the joy and simplicity in everything bearing the Franciscan spirit.                                                            

Aspirant Martha Trần Lam Kim

My Journey Towards God

by Lihrod Aviso

I am an Accounting Technology graduate of Far Eastern University. At present, I work as a Finance Analyst for a Global Company. All were just a distant dream until I become the scholar of the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters.

“You make known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy in Your presence, with eternal pleasures at Your right hand.” – Psalm 16:11. This verse is beautiful, isn’t it? Did each word give you assurance of God’s love and eternal promise?

Thanks to the Capuchin Tertiary Sisters, I found God and felt His immense love. Decades before, God was nowhere to be found in my life and didn’t know His existence until I became a scholar of Holy Family Home Makati Foundation. My years of living in the foundation has surely equipped me with a lot of valuable skills, but more than the educational support the sisters were giving, I believe it was the spiritual formation that gave the most profound impact on my life.

Children might learn technical knowledge the books are teaching, but there’s no replacement to the kind heart the Bible is creating.With the help of God, I have learned how to sacrifice for others without asking for anything in return, learning to be selfless. His love keeps me moving forward in this life despite countless instances where I wanted to give up and cease. It is His mercy that makes me believe in the goodness of other people letting me appreciate the little things life has to offer. It is Him that provides peace and beautiful silence in my life. Everything I am is all thanks to Him who never stop to show and make me feel that I’m loved even at my lowest and most undesirable state. It is also thanks to the sisters that never gave up on me and believed in me.

The journey of finding Him isn’t easy since there are several distractions along the way. But through the guidance of the sisters I came to know God in a way that is deep and profound, changing my life for the better.