by Allianah Junnice Bolotaulo | February 18, 2023
In his message during Silliman University’s (SU) second semester’s first all-colleges midweek prayer service titled “Standing on the Rock,” Atty. Joshua Francisco Ablong urged students “not to worry too much.”
He said that while worrying can be good because it “pushes us to do the things we need to do,” too much can be counterproductive.
“Instead of being able to function normally…we end up becoming paralyzed.” he added.
The service was held on Feb. 8 at the Claire Isabel McGill Luce Auditorium as part of the University Christian Life Emphasis Month (UCLEM) celebration.
Ablong shared statistics stating that over 3.3 million Filipinos suffered from depression in 2019.
He further added that the number of cases went even higher at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“People are having a hard time, perhaps accentuated by the current and unique circumstances of our time, [and] here is the clincher, hardships have always been a reality, and will always be the reality as we move along with life,” he said.
Ablong reminded students to be still and have faith in God, especially when facing difficulties.
“Faith is what moves us forward regardless of the circumstance, it is believing that you can do it and trusting that God will carry you through,” he said.
He ended his sermon by saying, “Let us continue to trust and to believe and not to worry because out of our difficult experiences can emerge beautiful stories.”
The UCLEM celebration started on Feb. 5 with the theme “Be STRONG: Stand for Truth in Reverence, Obey, and Nurture our Faith in God,” following the scripture readings Matthew 7:24-27 and Joshua 1:7-9.
The students who attended the celebration were from the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Education, Medical School, College of Performing and Visual Arts, Graduate School, and College of Mass Communication.
The rest of the colleges are also scheduled to have their own prayer services, while the School of Basic Education will continue to attend convocations throughout the bi-annual celebration.
This semester’s UCLEM will end on Feb. 26 with a culmination worship service for the Silliman University Student Government and other registered organizations.