Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Give a Shot at Moral Regeneration Through a Family Christmas Tradition

You might wonder why this post that deals with Christmas as its springboard topic has to come in February. Well, my dear readers, I'm giving it a distinctive form and substance with the main meat- dealing most profoundly with values formation. I pray, though, with your indulgence, that this little twist will not bore you as you go along with me.  My previous post about social transformation through moral regeneration will be dealt with throughout this article.

Since Christmas defines at its peak the true spirit of brotherhood and goodwill, my daughters and I believe that Christmas is a timely occasion to reach out to the least of  our relatives in our hometown for a good cause. True to my patriotic pledge for my country's moral regeneration, I lead my 2 daughters in a year-round shot in values formation to strengthen family values to eventually improve our clan relationship with my cousins in both my parents' sides , with their children and grandchildren who live below the poverty line by the national statistics standard.

Our traditional Children's Christmas Party is now on its 5th year since my 2 girls landed on their jobs. Influenced by my father, Tatay, who never missed celebrating Christmas within and outside of our family no matter how poor we were then, and by me and my husband who always helped our neighbors in need,  my daughters saw the importance of bringing these together in an event that would stay in the hearts and minds of the young ones in the community.

Today, we try to host it annually in December at any opportune date on or after December 25. It's a 2-day fun and bonding that sums up our  year-round efforts to be closer with our growing kins. This tradition grew from just eating together with the kids in the community, to sharing our blessings by giving away cash, rice, or groceries, and now it became a venue for these children to show their talents through games, dances, and songs they themselves prepare with their parents...

until their parents started to show their own presentations, too. This year, the young Mommas of the clan did a number of beautiful dance presentations to their hearts' desire.

And the young couples enjoyed games like the apple-eating contest and more games!

Planning and preparing our annual family tradition entails a long-range objective. It carries with it the hope that people, especially kids, are reminded of this special day, of having God and thanking God for His love, and that this love is what we are sharing more than the material things.

It also carries with it a covert mission- to give a shot at redirecting values not only among the young but among us elders, as well. My unorthodox rule is- whosoever among my relatives creates trouble of an unacceptable dimension during the year, will loose his privilege to participate in the activities. Training the young ones on values is easy this way. It helps them to take responsibility for their mistakes and so try to change for the better in the future. In my observation, it becomes more achievable and meaningful with the support of all parents. Twenty-seven families working together to keep the peace is indeed a nice share in my mission for our country.

This year, our family tradition had branched out to my 7 other siblings and their families living far. My eldest sister, Atchi Edith, a balikbayan, led her children, especially Jovy and family as well as my brothers Kuya Cesar, Kuya Ben(+) through wife Atchi Rose,  Mario, and my sisters Nela, Lina, and Edna, with their families, in full support bringing in more cash, rice, and groceries(from abroad)! Those abroad who didn't make it with us,  like my niece Diana (living in Abu Dhabi), and Evelyn (living in Australia), sent cash to augment our giveaways.

Everyone among the least of our relatives knows better what to do. Their visibility is usually documented! They are all happy to cooperate in doing their part in the steering committees they form and also in all the activities. After the occasion, we give away DVD's of the 2-day celebration for free. Their mere watching themselves on their TV monitors, the year-round, gives them the feeling of belongingness to the clan, which money can't buy.

I hope this tradition will live on as our family legacy. With God's providence, we will survive all adversities within our midst and at the same time keeping our clan in better shape. Isn't this an amazing way to achieve social transformation through moral regeneration within our clan?

With this new twist of full support from my other siblings, Atchi Edith, Kuya Cesar, Atchi Rose, Mario, Nela, Lina, Edna, and their families- achieving this humble goal of values regeneration for social transformation in small scale might spread out to others who may want to adopt our technique. How about giving it a try, readers?

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