Celebrating the Gift of Bonifacia (Loreto Hostel, Papua New Guinea)

Preparation: June 3-5

Three days before the feast day, it has been the tradition that a Triduum is done at  Loreto Hostel. It consists of a three day period of prayer and preparation. This is important as it equips the young ladies to come to learn and understand the significance of the celebration.

On the first day of the Triduum, Saint Bonifacia Rodriguez was introduced as the Faithful Follower of God’s Will. Both the Catholic young ladies and the interested Christians came to learn the essentials of being a faithful worker, and having endurance in both good and bad times – as did our mother St. Bonifacia.

On the second day of Triduum, there were certain important virtues that were introduced to the young ladies. It was basically about love, compassion and humility that can be shown and shared amongst young ladies; thus bringing out the goodness in people. Thus on the first day and the second day of Triduum, many young ladies were amazed by the life of St. Bonifacia and her virtues during her time of work as a young woman.

On the third day of Triduum, the virtue of TRUST was emphasized. St. Bonifacia stood firm in her trust in God. A prayer answered has brought about changes in attitude, values and relationships. The power of trusting God in the daily prayers we make will eventually come to pass as they are answered. As quoted by Miss Patricia Madiu, “The fact that as often as prayers are made, most people take the prayers that are answered for granted and not many give back thanks to God. This makes me sad. We ought to give God our loving Father all the praise and thanksgiving He deserves until our last breath here on earth. ” As shown to us by our Mother, Saint Bonifacia Rodriguez, she has accepted her calling in the simple and plain work that she does – with her trust focused on God alone. She has endured all the challenges in life and had an impact on many young working ladies to have the virtues that were once hers to teach.

Quotes from the Hostel Residents during the Triduum

“I have learned that in order to bring people to experience His love, mercy and humility, God uses his children such as young ladies- through their good acts in life- to be a better influence on other people. This is how God brings people to experience His strength and His power.”
Ernestine Kilalang

“I admire the virtues of St. Bonifacia which are patience and persistence in work. The need for patience is significant if we want to endure difficulties and conflicting relationships with people we encounter in our life. St. Bonifacia is a role model of enduring all dilemmas encountered and still persist her daily work. The significant virtue of St. Bonifacia was her courage not to give up on her calling but to lead her Congregation through thick and thin.”
Bridgitte Turalir

“I learned through the experiences of St. Bonifacia the good impact the Saint has on people’s lives, especially on the lives of young working ladies. St. Bonifacia has a good and positive influence on people. And what is most admirable in her is the fact that she took the initiative to help young ladies from all walks of life to grow in God’s love and mercy.”
Mary Kelo

“I admire the effort she put in her work. For me, it portrayed the love of God. Her generosity and care had a good impact on those that needed her help, especially the young working ladies. She took the initiative and accepted the responsibility to guide young ladies to know the values, purpose and potentials in life as an individual woman worker.”
Maryanne Sikas

Mass Celebration – Feast Day of St. Bonifacia: June 6

The Mass began at 6:30am in the St. Bonifacia Hall of Loreto Hostel. This was presided by Fr. Angel Sanchez, SDB and participated by the Talleres de Nazaret Training Center  (TNTC) Staff (Korobosea) staff, Lay Josephines and aspiring Lay Josephines, ASAC Skills Training Center Staff, Loreto Hostel Staff, Young Ladies, Residents of Loreto Hostel and the SSJ.

Claire Ayong, a hostel resident, welcomed the congregation inviting them all to come together with one heart and one mind to appreciate and celebrate the Feast Day of our Mother, St. Bonifacia. A brief introduction was given about the birth and the heroic virtues of St. Bonifacia.

Fr. Angel, SDB pointed out in his homily that St. Bonifacia was a faithful woman of prayer, so kind and caring for others. That in spite of the many good things she did for the congregation, she was abandoned and rejected by her own sisters in the community. He also quoted what Pope Benedict XVI told of the saint in his homily during her canonization. "Be of single mind, one in heart. If we are to be experts of one, it is to bring about communion. This brings out the idea of how a community is called to promote unity and peace rather than division and rejection."

The mass brought about renewed paradigms among our young working ladies. Most ladies came to appreciate the virtues of St. Bonifacia and grew an interest in the spirit of togetherness as sisters to one another.

Outing at the Adventure Park (Port Moresby. 14 mile)

After the Mass, everyone did the immediate preparation for the outing at the Adventure Park in 14 mile. The group made their way to Adventure Park on the city big bus and arrived there at 11:30 a.m. Interactive activities were done like the creative introduction of each group (Create-a-Name inspired by Bonifacia). Loreto Residents introduced themselves as the Loyal Angels of St. Bonifacia. TNTC Staff, comprised of seven ladies, announced that particular day was also the birthday of one of their group members while ASAC Skills Training Staff announced that St. Bonifacia is a role model to them; they do their work through sewing and cooking, by which they believe their work portrays God’s love and mercy in doing so, so did Saint Bonifacia.

The Lay Josephines, comprised of six ladies, presented themselves by introducing the admirable virtues of St. Bonifacia such as Trust, Silence, Faithfulness, and Humility. 

Finally, our dear SSJ Sisters presented themselves by welcoming all the groups that make us one team and taught the song, Little by little every day, Little by little every way…. Jesus is changing me….someday perfect I will be.

There was a Bonifacia Footstep -picking contest, an Apple-eating contest, and a Dance-Freeze contest. The fun began as the participants went sight-seeing and did photo shoots and the ASAC Staff with the Lay Josephines took lead in the BBQ while the SSJ sisters were the entertainers for the hour. The spirit of togetherness prevailed, all differences set aside, all groups came together as a team and cooperation was established all throughout the day. Where one couldn’t go on, another stepped in to complete the task. Appreciation of help was noted.

Lunch was served at 12 noon -2:00 pm. The food shared was contributed by each group. After lunch, the adventure continued as the participants went back to sight-seeing and photo-taking. Some even went water-sliding with small children- by which they eventually made new small friends for the day. Laughter and shouts filled the air. It was all fun and excitement, a day to cherish by the entire team. It all came to a halt when all was winding down to prepare for departure by 3:30pm. A closing prayer was made as all team stood together.

Claire Ayong, 2015      

Claire Ayong, 26 years old, resident of Loreto Hostel for nine months, graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at UPNG in 2014. Her mother is Anglican and her father is Catholic and she goes to both churches as a baptized Anglican. She was employed as an Inventory Clerk of the Inventory Department at RH Hypermarket, Vision City, Waigani. One week before the feast day, she received her promotion as the Supervisor of the Inventory Department. Her favourite subjects in UPNG were Politics and Literature. She discovered how words can have an impact on other people’s lives and this is how she developed interest in communication through poems, argumentative essays and articles. She volunteered to do this write up on the Feast of St. Bonifacia.

3 comentarios:

  1. Thank you publishing this. When Claire saw it, she was really very happy and appreciative! She hopes that this inspires young ladies who read this and know that there are other young ladies out there that are inspired by the life led by Mother Bonifacia.

  2. Thank you publishing this. When Claire saw it, she was really very happy and appreciative! She hopes that this inspires young ladies who read this and know that there are other young ladies out there that are inspired by the life led by Mother Bonifacia.

  3. Thank you for publishing this. God Bless