Mini Course to Discourse
by Edmar “Kingkong” Quirante
St. Alphonsus Collegiate Formation House
Artistic talent is a gift from God and whoever discovers it in himself has a certain obligation: to know that he cannot waste this talent, but must develop it. These are the words used by Pope John Paul II to address the people about their talents.
In this creative world we often talk about “what’s your talent?” because people assume that our talent somehow defines or describes us as person. It is a skill that someone naturally has to do something in order to acquire it; yet there are also abilities that are innate or inborn to a person. But whether it is inborn or acquired we must effusively use it. It is a gift from God, and by using it properly it becomes our return-gift to him.
It is especially more pleasing to God when these talents are used at the service of God and his people like what Saint Alphonsus Maria De Liguori did. Alphonsus had many gifts. He was a great composer, an artist, painter and a writer in his time. These talents of him are being used during his mission days in the rural poor area. For which he composed songs, painted an Icon, wrote many books and preached the Good News vigorously to the poor and most abandoned.
Since Saint Alphonsus Collegiate Formation House has just celebrated its 50 years of existence of forming young minds and hearts to become a Redemptorist missionary, the formators of the said formation house made a new activity for the formands, which is called “mini course.” The program is inspired by St. Alphonsus which aims to help the seminarian learn, develop, enhance and excel not only in the field of academics and spirituality but also in some artistic talents and manual works.
The said program consists of different sessions every month. There is a session for arts, which has an objective to make use of Arts in evangelization and mission. There is also a session for culinary arts, carpentry and healing therapy or massage. It also intends to teach formands the basic skills in cooking, carpentry, electrical, gardening and animal husbandry. All is envisioned to help us in our future community life and missionary activities.
Finally, this “mini course” program that is being applied in the formation is somehow related also to the formation year theme: “Formation for Mission.” This shows that every formand is being formed and equipped intellectually, spiritually, emotionally and physically not for future profession but rather for future mission. With the aid also of the acquired talents and skills, the formands are helped to become productive and effective missionaries someday. So that the gifts of God will not be wasted instead it will be nurtured by spreading the Good News.