by Nathaniel E. Carampatana | December 9, 2022
Silliman University celebrated the University Christian Life Emphasis Month (UCLEM) with the return of the face-to-face Galilean Fellowship on Nov. 15 and 17 with the theme “#GLOW: Grow as Learners, Obeying the Word”.
After a two-year absence, the University Spiritual Life Council (USLC) partnered with the Religion and Peace Studies Department (RPSD) in facilitating the Galilean Fellowship.
Galilean Fellowship Head Facilitator, Paean Taripe, stated that the reason behind the partnership was for easier mobilization and dissemination of deliverables and activities.
“The RPSD was a big help especially…in requiring students to participate because they really need to have that as an experience,” he said.
Taripe also added that banners displayed near the amphitheater were a part of their requirement for the students’ Reading and Interpreting the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures classes.
Aside from making banners and joining the discussions and services, the UCLEM and Galilean Fellowship served as an appreciation and application of the spiritual message.
He also said that although the UCLEM has a religious aspect, it does not limit non-believers from celebrating the event and invites them instead.
“This will really become an inspiration to you as a Sillimanian, especially since our university promotes whole-person education and part of that is the spiritual aspect, the spiritual health,” he said.
Nicole Villarin, one of the attendees, commended the efforts of the USLC in successfully organizing the fellowship.
“For two years, there were no physical gatherings for the Galilean Fellowship. It was as if Silliman lost one of its trademark events of the year. Now that it’s back, the team behind it deserves recognition. There is nothing more fulfilling than seeing students gathering and discussing the word of God,” she said.
Moreover, Shay Du, another attendee, stated that the Galilean Fellowship gave her the chance to share her thoughts on her faith and learn about others’ spiritual experiences.
“Regardless of our individual beliefs, we were able to connect to each other on a more personal level through our varying experiences of faith. Not only did this help me build relationships with other people, but it also gave me an idea about what the wider Silliman community is like – one that strives to help each of its members in their own personal struggles,” she said.
Taripe then advised Sillimanians to not be intimidated by the church and instead, embrace the opportunity and be more active, especially during the UCLEM.
“You don’t need to be converted to Christianity or believe in our faith, but we should at least appreciate and involve ourselves in the religious activities of the university,” he said.
The USLC will be organizing another Galilean Fellowship in the second semester and will focus on the senior students of the university.