DWCU Retreat prepares Faculty and Office Personnel for the coming School Year

Before the start of classes this 6thof June, the teachers and office personnel of Divine Word College of Urdaneta attended a 3-day retreat in Baguio City last May 31-June 2, 2011. The Retreat is an annual event that the DWCU holds exclusively for its employees, giving them the opportunity to unwind and reform their spiritual lives.

Fr. John Paul Miranda, OC

Fr. John Paul Miranda, OC served as the Retreat Master of the said event. He took the time in guiding and facilitating the DWCU employees in their spiritual healing and renewal of their vows to serve the students, their fellow Divinians, and the community.

On the first day upon arriving in Baguio, the employees were given ample time to attend to their own businesses, such as strolling around the city or doing some other personal matters. It was an opportunity for them to unwind and relax before they face the challenges of the coming school year. After having that chance of relaxation, the main part of why the employees came to the city started. House rules to be followed inside the retreat house were given especially for those who were not familiar with it. Fr. Miranda gave a brief introduction on the purpose of having a time for retreat then ended it up with an activity wherein the employees were divided into groups. The purpose of the activity is to have the members of each group share their positive and negative experiences. However, the real aim of it is to give time for the employees to listen and received ‘gifts’ of knowing deeper their colleagues. The activity ended before the Mass. For the evening session, Fr. Miranda and the DWCU employees watched an inspirational movie that teaches the value of perseverance.

The following day, June 1, the session started with a “big group sharing” wherein each group chose one of their members to impart to the whole group something about their positive and negative experiences in life. The employees had moments full of laughter for the funny life events shared but they were also saddened to know some unhappy episodes in the life of their colleagues. Before the morning session ended, an activity of “getting to know each other” took place. It was a time for the group to know each one of their colleagues especially the new members of the DWCU family. For the afternoon session, Fr. Miranda emphasized the importance of God’s blessings and how it has to be shared with others. The session ended with the ‘tying of the thread’, wherein employees were given threads that have to be tied to their colleagues that they want to thank or apologize to. The activity for this day ended with the Socialization Night. Each group presented a skit that represents the DWCU Four Core Values (Evangelization, Integrity, Social Responsibility, and Academic Excellence) that have been assigned to them. It was a night that have shown the talents of the teachers and administration staff and a night for their bonding.

The last day, June 2, started with the final session of Fr. Miranda. He pointed out the value of commitment as a teacher and the importance of “teaching by example” not only to the students but to the community as well. For the Final Mass of the retreat, Fr. Gil T. Manalo, SVD the DWCU president, and Fr. Tanisun Sunico, SVD the  DWCU Campus Ministry Officer, joined Fr. John Paul Miranda, OC and the employees. During the Mass, some of the employees gave their insights on what they have learned or attained from this retreat. Fr. Gil and Fr. Tanisun even gave an inspirational message to the teachers and staff and they took that opportunity to thank Fr. Miranda for giving his time for the retreat.

The DWCU Faculty and Staff take their pose with Fr. Tanisun, Fr. Gil, and Fr. John Paul after the final Mass of the Retreat

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