Tuesday, July 26, 2011

MMC 2011: Stronghold

MMC or the CFC-Singles for Christ Metro Manila Conference is a yearly event attended by most of the SFCs in the Metro consisting SFCs from Quezon City to Pasay, from Rizal to Manila. It is being held every July in different places in Luzon but outside metro Manila.

I am an SFC from Guadalupe Makati and this year was my 3rd MMC. Two years ago was in Baguio and last year was in Tagaytay. This year, it was held in the province of Pangasinan specifically Dagupan City (CSI stadia).

I wasnt able to join my chapter mates in going to the venue early Friday (July 15) morning as I was still on shift, doing straight 2 shifts just to be able to attend the event. I dunno, there's a different feeling I get when I attend events like this. It's like refreshing, revitalizing and renewing.

Luckily, I was not to travel alone as some friends also opt to travel in the afternoon. We started our trip past 3 in the afternoon. Af first, I was still trying to really get a sleep because I need it but sleep was very elusive that my eyes keeps wandering on every things they see on the road. There were 3 stopovers making the trip longer. After, the 2nd stopover I finally was able to sleep (of course, not a deep one). The trip took approximately 7 hours.

When we reached the venue, we were reunited with the whole delegation of our chapter and was able to witnessed GLorEE (like the famous TV show GLEE but of course the SFC version). It was nice! SFCs really are talented. We had some photo ops before finally hiring a jeep to our accomodation. I fell asleep in the jeepney ride to the lodging house as it was about 15-min ride. When I felt the jeep had halted, I looked around and saw a classy establishment/hotel (Luxor hotel in Arellano St. dagupan City). I thought that's where we were staying but I thought wrong. hahaha

We were housed in the adjacent inn (Nel-Ars Traveller's Inn). It's affordable for around 150 per night. It wasnt as elegant as the opposite hotel but that was what we could afford. The beddings are clean and there is an airconditioner in the room. Every room has 2 occupants but could accomodate 3 to 4 people. It was okay except for the CR that dont flush well. Anyways, it was manageable. And so i got a real sleep.

Day 2. July 16, 2011 is workshop and talk day. We went back to the venue 7am to claim our breakfast (it's part of the registration fee of the conference which by the wayis 900 for the early birds like and 1100 for not). The food was care of Jam Sweet Jam of Dagupan, and I highly recommend their food. All were delicious, one of the amazing things in the conference. Sadly, they only have one branch and that is the one in Dagupan :( .

Then we have our first session talk by Kuya Aids (Adrian a CFC full time worker). His talk was about how we are wounded, tired and weary of the battle we have after the ICON 2011 and that we are there to rest, to have our Stronghold. The second Session was about Grace as told by Ate Rhea Santos. This session was so full and heavy as she told us her life story and that every thing, trial problem or blessing that we responded, that's grace. In the afternoon, we proceed to our workshops, mine was "Grace ubder Pressure". Our speaker was Kuya Voltaire. For me, he is an ideal father and it was nice listening to him. After the workshop, I realized I was under deep stress and pressure physically that I really need to go back to running.

In the evening, we had mass and then our dinner. The 3rd talk was from Fr Francis of the CBCP. That was light, I mean his talk was just full of laughter at the same time learning. His talk is actually embracing God, Jesus as our stronghold of grace. All the opening workshops and praisefests really were powerful to the nth power. Two new songs were taught "All for You" and "God of All Grace" and I really like them.

Day 3: We were instructed to be at the venue at 5am. day started with a worship and then Kuya Rob started talk 4 about Moments of Grace. We clained our breakfast but not to eat them yet. Then Kua Rob instructed u sto go to our household and share our moments of grace at breakfast. It was really happy experience for me to see my new household members in circle being in MMC for the first time and the discussion was happy, we were graced.

We had our mass after the sharing and then kuya Rob continued the talk to wrap it up with us praying over the sector and cluster heads and full time workers and lastly our chapter heads. Then we have the most powerful worship where I really cried out and cried out I did when the song "to the Cross" was being sang. It's like I was really embraced and that all sorrows, disappointment and hurt in me was released. Amazing!

In the afternoon, we payed for an afternoon tour just to be able to see the places in the province and we're glad we did. We went to the Capitol Building in Lingayen and able to get inside the Governor's office, had a look from afar on the 100 islands from the rooftop of the capitol building. Then visited the Sison auditorium, it was world class for me. The chandelier was extravagant, the CR's inviting and of course the guard, British English speaking. I forgot his name but when I remember it, I'll update it here. He was really amazing though, as in great diction. Trivia, the auditorium was supposedly our venue for MMC nut due to the huge number of delegates for aroung 3k while the auditorium can only accomodate 1500 - 2000 people. Nonetheless, CSI Stadia was a good venue too.

We were also able to buy some bagoong and alamang and some treats for pasalubong at the Malong building still at the capitol grounds. We were able to visit FVR's (ex president Fidel V Ramos) museum. That was their old house,it was simple but beautiful. Then we have a River cruise in the rivers of Dagupan. It's similar to Loboc River cruise as the concept itself was taken there. But the project has just started yet so no floating restaurants yet just the cruise on th boat and it was around 45 mins.

Then finally, back to Manila. til next time.

x.o.x.o rosehyacinth