Once in my life, I dreamt of becoming a member of the Religious of the Good Shepherd (RGS). Hooked by their mission and charism, I underwent several sessions of discernment and exposure to the ministry. Until one day I realized, I can also share in their mission without becoming a nun. God has given me a different vocation to be a lay mission partner of the RGS.
I was in high school when I first met the Good Shepherd Sisters. I was chosen as a Christian Children’s Fund – CCF beneficiary, the scholarship helped me in my education until I finished College. After college, I joined the teaching force of St. Bridget College, High School Department. I have been with St. Bridget College for 21 years now. I have such a deep love for the institution that I stayed. I have received, so there’s nothing I want to do but to give back.
In my experiences with the Good Shepherd Sisters and the lay mission partners, I saw the hand of God at work. It was a journey from selfishness to selflessness, from being self-centered to being others-centered. ‘Luceat Lux Vestra’ is the motto of the institution which I believe could be a way of life because every situation in one’s life is an occasion to let one’s light shine. Even simple incidents can shed light for others.
St. Bridget College is our mission field. Our mission is our students. How can we bring Jesus to their lives? How can we teach them compassion? How can we influence them to be persons for others, to be of service to others especially to the poor and needy, to children and women, to work for justice and peace, to take care of the environment and to be agents of transformation in the society.
Being a lay mission partner is not an easy task and does not happen overnight. It took me long years of formation and experience before I can say that I am a mission partner, beautifully honed with a heart of a shepherd
One of the best experiences I had with the Good Shepherd Sisters is when I became part of the preparatory committee for the provincial chapter. It was a journey to the unknown but definitely a very significant encounter with the sisters. I had the chance to meet almost all of the sisters and the chance to visit some of their ministries and houses all over the Philippines. It was a very awakening moment when I realized that the lives of the sisters are not boring, but rather complicated. With the enormous task that they have to face, they really need us - the lay mission partners. The mission is not only for them, the mission is also ours. The mission is given by God to all, to us, to me. We need to be faithful to the mission. We need to risk for the mission.
‘Once a shepherd, forever a shepherd.’ We are formed that way so that the shepherding spirit is something we continue even outside St. Bridget College, in our own family, in our neighborhood and even in the wider community.
Comprehensive overview from the GSAPP team - how Good Shepherd Partnership for Mission is developing in this region
Caroline Price and Jane Ng represented Asia Pacific in a Congregational Spirituality meeting in Angers France in May 2014