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Acts of Kindness

Updates from the LDS mission of Kathleen O’Reilly as she serves in the Philippines. Click “Subscribe to Blog” and be notified immediately of all new posts, photos, and articles.

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Aug. 26, 2013 - National Heroes Day & 1 Nephi 23

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August 26, 2013 - Monday -  Today is another national holiday here in the Philippines.  That makes four in the Month of August.  I kind of wish the holidays were spread out just a bit more.  The month of September is going to seem long as I am told there are no holidays in September.
Today's holiday is called National Heroes Day.  I am supposing it is for much the same reason we have Veteran's Day.  To honor our national heroes and those who have fought and lost their lives in serving our country.
National Heroes' Day is a national holiday of Philippines, celebrated to pay homage to the National Heroes of the country. Every year this day falls on the fourth Monday of August.

Initially National Heroes’ day was celebrated on 30th of November as it was the birthday of Andres Bonifacio, founder of the Katipunan*. Later this day moves to the fourth Monday of August, to pay tribute to all other known or unknown men and women who sacrificed their lives for Philippine freedom.
*The Katipunan was a Philippine revolutionary society founded by anti-Spanish Filipinos in Manila in 1892, whose primary aim was to gain independence from Spain through revolution. The society was initiated by Filipino patriots Andres Bonifacio, Teodora Plata, and Ladislao Diwa, and others on the night of July 7, when Filipino writer Jose Rizal was to be banished to Dapitan. Initially, the Katipunan was a secret organization until its discovery in 1896 that led to the outbreak of the Philippine Revolution. The word "katipunan," literally means 'association,' comes from the root word "tipon," a Tagolog word meaning "gather together" or "society." Its official revolutionary name is Kataas-taasan, Kagalang-galang Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan.

Philippines achieved its identity due to the noble deeds made by numbers of people, known as National Heroes. People of Philippines celebrate this day with a great enthusiasm. This is a perfect day to remember the life and work of all these great people.
The following is from one of the national papers here in the Philippines:  HONORING HEROES - President Aquino walks behind soldiers carrying flowers for Monday’s wreath-laying ceremony commemorating National Heroes Day at the Tomb of Unknown Soldier Monument (Libingan ng mga Bayani) in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City.
Calling them unrecognized heroes, President Benigno Aquino III on Monday lauded veteran soldiers and those on active duty for serving the country well. He also promised to look after their welfare.
In a speech marking National Heroes Day at the Libingan ng Bayani in Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City, Mr. Aquino saluted the soldiers for playing a big role in ensuring the peace and order in the country. He also paid tribute to those who had given up their lives the in service of the country.
“In our gathering today, it’s only right that we emphasize and praise their heroism,” the President said in Filipino, thanking the military men for doing their duty and sacrificing their lives for the people. 
This year’s theme of the heroes day celebration was “Bayani ng Bayan, Gabay ni Juan sa Matuwid na Daan,” which according to the organizers “highlights the importance we give to our heroes who struggled for our democracy.”
In his speech, the President also thanked the soldiers (sundalo or kawal) for being the partners of the government in its bid to take the country down the right path.
 
“The government is behind you to help and respond to your needs,” he said. The President said that through the Philippine Veterans Affairs Office, the government had improved the health services for veterans by accrediting them with almost 300 hospitals. He promised more government programs for their benefit.
As for the soldiers on active duty, Mr. Aquino said the government was doing its best to provide them with skills and the equipment necessary to improve their capabilities.
“We are trying to make good our dream that when you say Filipino soldier, he is known and respected by the whole world,” he said. President Aquino also said he was taking the opportunity to talk to civilians to help the government achieve change for the betterment of the nation. “I am ready to be the first to sacrifice,” he said, but added that he could not do this alone. “The country doesn’t need a superman to resolve all our problems. What we need is the heroism of Juan and Juana de la Cruz. (This like saying John and Jane Doe) We all need to take part in solving the problems,” the President said. It is in these instances that “a true hero—those who are not asking to be recognized in history, and who stand by their principles even if no one knows—is born.”
I watched some of the ceremonies on the television. The ceremonies were followed all day long on the television with showing President Aquinos speech, the honoring of the unknown soldier etc.  It was very ritualistic and pleasant to watch.  Although, at the same time, all over the country, there were demonstrations and riots regarding Pork Barreling which is a term used to describe a situation where the government spends monies which were intended to benefit constituents of a politician in return for their political support, either in the form of campaign contributions or votes.   It's just another form of corruption. It's all very messy and confusing.
Another good reason why the Philippines, along with every other nation in the world, needs the gospel among the people and the government (pamahalaan).  Imagine what governments and people would be like if everyone everywhere truly embraced the gospel, it's teachings, and lived up to sacred covenants.  It would be a far better world. Right now, that's what we need.  A far better world.
I am feeling a little bit better this evening.   I really do not love being ill.  I think this heat exhaustion thing has been harder on me that I originally I thought it would be.  I just do not do well in the heat. I hope my body will adjust soon.  It's dementing to feel so yucky so much.
I have to work tomorrow and I hope that my little bit of training on the computer last week will come back to me.  I feel so dumb having to start over every time I have to do anything to re-learn the program.  It's not an easy experience. I appreciate all of your prayers in my behalf about this challenge.  You are such good friends (kaibigan) and I love and miss you.
Today is my grandaughter (apo) Rebecca's 16th birthday.  She is my son Adam's second child and second daughter.  She is a beautiful girl who is the only one of my grandchildren even remotely like me.  She loves to sing and dance and perform.  She is going to try out for her high school musical (Hillcrest High in Midvale).  They are going to do Legally Blonde.  I know she will be a great asset to the show and will have a wonderful time.  She is very committed and will work hard. I wish I could be there to see her perform.  In her heart, I think she knows I am there in spirit, and to quote Hannibal, "it's the spirit that counts."

READ ALONG WITH SISTER O’REILLY

Read along with me - 1 Nephi : 23
After Nephi quotes Isaiah, the brothers seem as confused as I am.  They want to know what it all means.  Nephi explains to them that it's all about understanding spiritual things.  He tells them that all the things Isaiah speaks of were manifest by the voice of the spirit as are all things made known unto the prophets.
Nephi tells them that the things which he has read are pertaining to both the spiritual and the temporal and that it appears that the house of Israel, sooner or later, will be scattered all over the earth and among all nations.  Also that they will be scattered and lost and hated because they will harden their hearts against the Savior.
Nephi expounds further by telling them that the Gentiles (of which we are a part) will love and care for the Savior and that because they will embrace his teachings, a mighty nation will rise up among the Gentiles and that these Gentiles will scatter the descendants of Nephi and his brothers and then the Lord will do a mighty work.  He will gather Israel together into the arms of the Gentiles and all the people of the earth who are righteous will gather and will be blessed as they all will know the Jesus Christ is the Savior and Redeemer of the world.
Now watch out Satan and the wicked of the world for you are in serious trouble. Anyone who fights against the righteous will fall.  The time will come when the fullness of the wrath of God. (I Love the word wrath, which means rage, anger and fury all combined into one) will be poured out on the wicked of the earth.  YIKES!!! Sound right scary. They will burn as stubble(short stalks left in the ground after a grain crop has been harvested).  Now here is the good part.  He will preserve the righteous by his power even as he destroys their enemies by fire.  Let's see now.... how hard is it to decide which side you would rather be on?
Re-read verse 26 -  And because of  the righteousness of his people, Satan has no power: wherefore, he cannot be loosed for the space of many years; for he hath no power over the hearts of the people, for they dwell in righteousness, and the Holy One of Israel reigneth.
Nephi asks his brethren to consider carefully the things which were written because they testify that a man must be obedient to the commandments of God.  Be obedient and endure to the end!! An thus it is!
New Tagolog words for today

  • kaibigan = friend
  • pamahalaan = government
  • sundalo or kawal = soldier
  • tipon = gathering or assembly
  • apo = grandchild (boy or girl)

Hope your week is wonderful and that you will find yourself in the service of the Lord and of others.  I love you and thank you for your kind words and sweet messages.  Please feel free to write at any time.  I will answer each note I get with a grateful heart.  Be good and be happy.
Love Miss Kate
Love,

Sister O'Reilly

"Blessed is the influence of one true, loving, human soul on another." -- George Eliot

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