When I was in elementary, some of my teachers offered paid tutoring sessions to the students, and these were usually done after class. These sessions helped the teachers augment their finances. Two of my teachers then seemed to be quite fond of me and usually invited me to stay after class hours and join the tutoring sessions – free of charge. According to them, they asked me to join so that I could grasp the lessons better and maintain my academic standing. At times, they would even give me notes that they have written themselves on yellow paper so that I can still review them at home. One teacher would even send her nephew to deliver the notes to our house.
Whenever I recall that experience as I grew up, I always tell myself that when the time comes and if I become an educator myself, I would repay them by doing what they did. After finishing BS Pharmacy, I was offered a teaching position at the university where I graduated from. We had an institutional program known as LAP (Learning Assistance Program) where teachers are encouraged in their generosity to conduct review/remedial sessions for students who find it hard to understand the lessons. I grabbed this opportunity to be of help. Whenever there was a chance, I enthusiastically conducted LAP sessions to aid students who needed further academic assistance.
As a seminarian today, I am once again receiving assistance and nurturance from the Church, through our formators, professors, community members, benefactors, family and friends, and lay collaborators. It is my ardent prayer that when the time comes, I may be able to return the favor by giving myself entirely and engaging actively in the ministry. The Gospel reminds me to be always grateful to those people who have helped me through various means. It challenges me to reciprocate their kindness by doing the same to others. For without cost I have received, and without cost I must give.
By: Sem. John Paul Toting
Jesus said to his Apostles:
“As you go, make this proclamation:
‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
Cure the sick, raise the dead,
cleanse the lepers, drive out demons.
Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.
Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts;
no sack for the journey, or a second tunic,
or sandals, or walking stick.
The laborer deserves his keep.
Whatever town or village you enter, look for a worthy person in it,
and stay there until you leave.
As you enter a house, wish it peace.
If the house is worthy,
let your peace come upon it;
if not, let your peace return to you.
Whoever will not receive you or listen to your words–
go outside that house or town and shake the dust from your feet.
Amen, I say to you, it will be more tolerable
for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment
than for that town.”