The Impact of Columban Formation on My Life

By Jose Isagani Flores

This is an extract from the sharing of Jose Isagani Flores, PhD, from Kabankalan City, Negros Occidental, a member of the first group of seminarians to enter the College Formation Program of the Missionary Society of St Columban in Mabolo, Cebu City, in 1994. He is on the college faculty at Colegio San Agustin, Bacolod City, where his wife, Jo Ann A. Flores, PhD, RN, is Dean of the College of Nursing.

When asked to share at our Homecoming on ‘The Impact of Columban Formation on Our Lives’ I felt both nostalgic and hesitant.

It was through the Columbans that I learned to live in a community where there is friendship and love. The Columbans taught me the importance of caring for those who are in need, whose rights are not respected and are trampled upon.

It was through the Columbans that I allowed myself to return to my childhood days to reminisce and to treasure affirmations through awards. In return, I gained self-confidence and acceptance of myself. And the Columbans helped me realize that I am well-loved by my brothers and sisters, by my nephews and nieces especially through their fervent prayers.

The Columbans taught me the importance of Family Life. The family is a place of refuge, where each of us is accepted as a person, where we get the energy, meaning and strength to get on with our life. With the Columbans I learned the true meaning of love, especially for my wife, Jo Ann, and her unfading love. She is one of my greatest blessings from God. Her love is a gift that I am thankful for everyday.

Amigo Columbano, a group of former Columban seminarians, in their Alumni Homecoming 2016, Cebu City