Romantic love cuts across differences in ethnicities, gender, political beliefs and religion.
On February 14 2018, two important occasions will be celebrated countrywide--- Valentine's Day and Ash Wednesday. It is very rare to have these occasions fall on the same day. While it may be considered as a mere coincidence, it sends a unified message that love comes in many forms and from many sources.
Romantic love cuts across differences in ethnicities, gender, political beliefs and religion. We have seen Christians and Muslims fall in line with each other. We have seen men and women fall in love with their same physical kind. We have witnessed how love has brought bitter political rivals together.
While the celebration of Ash Wednesday is unique to Catholics, the belief in a Supreme Being and stories in relation to salvation are common among many religions. The sacrifices endured by popular religious figures are considered as great manifestations of love, which until today serve as a great inspiration to religious followers.
As a predominantly Catholic populace and given our penchant for telenovelas, Filipinos are known for being hospitable, accommodating and loving. This is why I find it ironic that ¼ of our population remains poor, families are breaking up increasingly, and criminality continues to persist.
Loving our partners and God (Supreme Being) can indeed be quite challenging in this day and age because of so many negative influences and distractions. The failure to love faithfully has been so evident in society today with many broken families and marriages. The level of discontent and dissatisfaction has never been so high because of distraught values and actions that run contrary to our faith e.g corruption, crimes, abuses. Perhaps, if many of us were more faithful to our love with our partners and God (Supreme Being), none of these would have been grossly felt in our country today.
Nevertheless, I still believe in the universal language of love. I still believe in the kindness and loving nature of Filipinos. Valentine's Day and Ash Wednesday, celebrated in one day this year, are occasions which remind us that we are capable of loving our partners and God (Supreme Being).
As extravagant and/or reflective as our celebrations would be on 14 February 2018, our daily words and actions would validate whether we are fair-weather lovers or genuinely loving as individuals and as a people. The daily grind and external environment will always push us to unlove and hate. Be that as it may, we must remain loyal to our love for our partners and God (Supreme Being).
Everyday presents a living opportunity for us to “repent and believe in the gospel and love.”
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