St. Paul Global Reunion - Paulinian Global Foundation
“Paulinians Care...Paulinians Share
Caritas Christi Urget Nos”
St. Paul Global Reunion
Marriott Hotel of Tysons Corner, VA
May 25 - 26, 2012
Hark! Daughters of the great St. Paul
Come listen to his call.
O, children of this loved school,
The loving nurse of all.
Rejoice in God, do work and play,
Be true from day to day.
Beloved school of mine,
My pains and joys are thine.
My childhood’s early dreams
Are closely linked with thee.
The hope that heaven brings,
Thou dost unfold to me.
Thou dost unfold to me
Sweet are the days of girlhood
With friends we love and care
Those golden links of childhood
Whose sympathy we share.
Do stay and while the hours away
With us in work and play;
And when we leave, our dear old school
These mem’ries we’ll recall,
These mem’ries we’ll recall.
We Give Thanks
By Sr. Gloria Schultz
There is no way that I can share the whole experience on paper. No matter how much I write or talk, it would be
impossible to share the riches that we gained from the experience in VietNam, the Philippines and the Council of the
congregation. My heart is filled with thanks to all those who made this experience a treasure to hold in my heart as
well as a treasure that I will try to share. So, I extend a gigantic thanks you to all of the Sisters in Vietnam and in the
Philippines for the depth of their sharing and their longing, friendly welcoming spirits. They have shared their rich
cultures and as a result, we share a bond that is deeper. We thank God for the unity that is ours and ask you join us
praying for more vocations to our Congregation so that our Congregation, which has been in existence for 310 years,
will continue into the future.
On October 20, 1904 seven of our Sisters
set sail from Saigon for the Philippine
Island of Dumaguete in the diocese of
Iloilo. They were responding tothe invitation
of the American bishop, Monsignor Rooker,
whose jurisdiction extended over 8 large
islands, and 200 smaller ones with a
population of over
The story of over 100 years of the
Philippine Province has all the flavor of an
Their beginnings were lowly and in total poverty. Add to that the daring venture of coming to this nation just after the
defeat of the Spaniards when the Americans were seeking to impose their language as well as their authority. Only one
of the Sisters knew how to speak English. But the Sisters were spurred on by the great apostolic project: help the
Philippine people to remain faithful to their Catholic faith.
Dumaguete, Vigan, Tuguegarao, Manila, Quezon City the St. Paul Colleges, then tiny swarms, today hives humming
with activity. They now reach out to the poor to provide catechesis and education.
The hospital of Iloilo was founded on nothing but the strenuous work of the Sisters and the generosity of kind-hearted
Today many SPC hospitals serve the people of the Philippine Islands, especially the poor.The Island of Culion saw the
Sisters come as exiles to open their hearts to the 4,000 lepers who had been banished to its shores. There was a
Novitiate right from the start and it was amazing to see how the number of candidates steadily increased.
Then came the great hour of testing with the war of 1941-1945, bringing battles, ruins, endless fights, woeful efforts to
escape from death. In spite of it all, life continued to smolder. After 1946 the flame spread unimpeded.
Our Sisters serve in education, nursing, social, pastoral services, and ministry to the mountain tribes who have
remained for too long on the margins of the life of the country. Human development and evangelization are the aim of
the Sisters and a group of lay missionaries are their collaborators.
PAULINIAN GLOBAL FOUNDATION INC.
May 26, 2012
Sr. Zeta Rivero
Board of Trustees
Sr. Magdalen Torres
Sr. Nieves Cueto
Sr. George Siriban
Mary Ann Sanciano-Miranda
Greetings and welcome to this First Annual Paulinian
Global Foundation Gala night here in Virginia. I am happy
that you all are able to join us tonight. This evening promises
to be full of fun and nostalgia as we reunite with our fellow
Paulinians coming from several SPC branches.
I am proud to be a Paulinian. Seeing all of you here assures me that you
share my sentiments. Fellow Paulinians, it is time to give back! All of us, in
one way or another have been touched by the service of our beloved nuns, our
teachers – many of whom are now elderly and in need of our assistance.
Tonight and in the years to come, let us seize the opportunity to share our time,
talents, and blessings for the benefit of our aging mentors in the Vigil Houses
back in the Philippines. Proceeds from this evening’s event will benefit the
Vigil Houses in the Philippines.
I would like to thank our special guests who took time from their
busy schedules and flew all the way from the Philippines to be with us
tonight. Ms. Marionette Ocampo-Martinez, who chaired the St. Paul
University Manila Centennial Steering Committee, and Ms. Sherry LaraAlingod who is presently the President of the St. Paul Manila Foundation, Inc.
We are also blessed to have with us tonight three Sisters of St. Paul of
Chartres headed by Sr. Gloria Schultz, Sr. Nenita Leonardo, Sr. Estella
Garcia and Sr. Francis Mary Mortola.
I would like to acknowledge the hard work of several Paulinians who
have made this event a reality. Thank you all for your generosity and
commitment. There are so many of them (and you know who you are) but I
would specially want to give credit to an energetic and dedicated Paulinian,
Ms. Virna Lisa Loberiza-Mananzan. She is our overall chairperson for this
evening’s gala. Special thank you also goes to the Mainspring Band for
providing us with superb music tonight.
On behalf of the Officers and Board Members of PGFI, I once again
thank you for coming tonight and your continued support of our alma mater.
Your presence proves once more that wherever the Paulinian is, she will never
forget what is etched in her mind and heart: Caritas Christi Urget Nos.
Soledad Balda-Ilagan, SPCM HS65
77-226 Ho’oka’Ana Street, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
SISTERS OF ST. PAUL DE CHARTRES
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”Even though our physical being is gradually decaying, yet our spiritual being is renewed day
after day. And this small and temporary trouble we suffer will bring us a tremendous and
eternal glory, much greater than the trouble. For we fix our attention, not in things that are
seen, but on things that are unseen. What can be seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot
be seen lasts forever” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
What do the nuns of St. Paul do when they retire?
A St. Paul sister cannot stop being God's instrument as they age. To the Sisters of St. Paul, there is
no greater vocation than to do God's work. Retirement is not only 'doing', but also 'being'.
They find new ways of being with the Lord in prayer and solitude as they prepare their soul's
journey to the Kingdom of God.
As with old age comes age-related chronic illnesses such as failing eyesight, hearing loss, osteoporosis, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes or Alzheimer’s.
Aging nuns do not complain. The Sisters approach their living and their dying in the same way
with discernment, "if it is God's will" or "the Lord will provide".
But with the high cost of health care for the aging, funding poses a challenge.
While the congregation helps to finance the care of its elderly nuns, it cannot cover the full cost
of medical care.
The Lord needs a little help sometimes.
Let us help them.
We would like to thank our
Dado & Concepcion Cariaga-Banatao
Angelito & Soledad Balda-Ilagan
Richard Leander, Jr.
SPCM HS Class ‘75
Fred & Delia Alladin
Dr. Dominador Genio, Jr.
Edgardo / Rani Hernandez
Dr. RJ Masakayan
Dr. Cristina Garcia-Pamaar
Danny & Lulu Pantaleon-Clark
SPCM HS ‘65
Michael & Maureen Marcucci
Congratulations to the Paulinian Global Foundation, Inc for their untiring efforts in
helping the ailing and aging sisters of St. Paul de Chartres. More power to you
from the St. Bernadette Filipino Choir
Come join us on our monthly Filipino masses every third Saturday of the month. For the complete
schedule, please visit our website at www.FilipinoMinistry.catholicweb.com
Coordinator: Ed Tiong (703) 403-5624
Request for mass sponsors and special mass intentions:
Rolly & Tess Saldana (703) 569-1054
Joy Karaan (703) 589-7836
Ditas Oliveros-Miranda (703) 924-1018
Vivien Ante (703) 451-2733
I Thank Thee!
Virna Lisa Loberiza-Mananzan
SPCQC High School ‘82
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the Paulinians and
friends of Paulinians who helped make this reunion a successful one. Despite
the late nights of Saturday meetings, heartaches, and headaches, there was still
plenty of laughter. All I can say now is “We did it!”
As John C. Maxwell said in his book and I quote, “Leadership is inﬂuence.
That’s it. Nothing more, nothing less… He who thinketh he leadeth and hath no
one following him is only taking a walk.”
I am privileged to lead this remarkable group of folks in helping the Sisters
who played a signiﬁcant role in molding us and making us who we are today.
Allow me to acknowledge the following Paulinians who made this all happen:
Joy Karaan, Marge Castro, Carole Evangelista, Toeﬀey Taganas, Lorenzo De Vera, Desiree
Gilman, Theresa Castro, Elizabeth “Bebot” Tata, Clarissa Valdez, Patricia Roldan, Bambi
Manalang, Dinna Chua Rivera, Maricel Yap-del Rosario, Nenette Arroyo, Nina Reynoso,
Orson Battad, Rica Sunga-Campos, Carisse Chua Hontiveros, Mela Ramos Almeda, Lorna
Teves, Diana Letki, Janet Harmon, Alma Silos and of course from Kona, Sol Ilagan.
And how can we forget the Paulinians in spirit:
Rolly and Tess Saldana, Deejz Alfaro, Ed Campos and the Mainspring Band
Nenette Noriega Arroyo
SPCQC High School ‘79
I did not get a loyalty medal when I
graduated from high school. I came
to St. Paul College, Quezon City as a
freshman from another Catholic girls’ school. In
1975, I was an awkward thirteen-year old, insecure
about everything thirteen-year old girls are insecure
about, and I did not know anyone in my new school.
The girl seated in front of me introduced herself
right away. She had an open, easy manner, and a
quick smile that put me at ease. I could join her for
recess, she said, and she would introduce me to her
friends. I breathed a sigh relief and gratefully
accepted. It was my first encounter with the high
sociability quotient that I would later recognize as a
There was one thing I wasn’t worried about. I was an
excellent student, with a natural aptitude for books
and learning, and my grades were consistently good.
The word “nerd” hadn’t quite made it to the
vernacular yet, but that’s what I was. I felt sure that
in this new environment, I would at least do well
academically, and derive comfort from that. Little did
I know that my comfort zone was about to be blown
St. Paul was like a foreign country compared to my
old school, which I loved and took great pride in.
Where I came from, there were two main areas of
achievement: academics and sports. I was at least
good at the former. There were music and art
classes, and other activities in my previous alma
mater as well, but somehow I looked at them as
peripheral to my development. At St. Paul, everyone
seemed to have some expressive talent. I’m sure it
wasn’t the case for everyone, but it seemed to me at
the time that Paulinians were more comfortable
performing in front of an audience than most girls I
knew. Many of them sang beautifully, or played a
musical instrument with skill. Or both. Or danced
gracefully. Or all of the above. It was a creatively
charged new world that both excited and intimidated
me. Until that time, I never really had to think of
what I was good at, besides knowing most of the
correct answers on a test. Slowly, I discovered that I
was more than the sum of my scores.
I had a talent for organizing, and for motivating
people toward a goal. At St. Paul, I started by helping
to put together little skits for class, starring my
thespian classmates. In our little theater, I loved
what happened behind the curtain as much as what
played out onstage. I’ll never forget the first play I
directed for the annual drama fest. It was a farce set
at a funeral, featuring a large cast of characters on a
stage whose main prop was a coffin. (I don’t
remember how we got one, but we did!) The long
rehearsals, the light and sound tests, the costume
and makeup trials . . . it was like potent wine, made
even more intoxicating by the fact that we won first
I continued to evolve as a Paulinian, which meant
managing an ambitious schedule of academics and
extra-curricular activities. Songfest practices were
lined up alongside quiz competition drills, next to
debate match prep and sports tryouts (well, I didn’t
exactly find my inner athlete, but I did join the
cheering squad). All this happened against the
constant backdrop of lectures, assignments, class
projects and exams. I didn’t realize it then, but it was
excellent training for the work-life balance I would
later seek in the outside world. I know now that high
school was where I learned to lead, to follow, and to
collaborate for success within a team—skills that
have served me just as well as any textbook exercise.
I received these lessons not just from my teachers,
but from my Paulinian classmates, who challenged
me to find new breadth while preserving my depth,
to find my creative as well as intellectual edge, and to
find the joy in all of it.
Most of these classmates have remained my closest
friends. As young girls, we were happy and sad,
fearful and brave, foolish and wise together. We have
been bridesmaids at weddings and godmothers to
children. We are part of the recovery team after an
illness, and the support network after a breakup. We
have cheered each other on through teen angst and
mid-life crises. I don’t know what lies ahead, but I
know I’ll have good company on the way there.
So despite not getting a loyalty award, I did reinvent
myself as a Paulinian, without losing who I was
before. I’m still the one people turn to when
Jeopardy is on. They depend on me to know my
science and history, spelling and grammar. But I am
a Paulinian, and therefore am also current on art and
music, literature and popular culture. I realize this
means I’m still a nerd. But because I’m a Paulinian,
I’m just a little bit cooler.
Congratulations to the
Paulinian Global Foundation
1160 Varnum Street, N.E.
Washington, D.C. 20017
For appointments, call
Sheryl Lyn Reveley
Major Insurance Plan Participation
Aetna US Healthcare
Blue Cross Blue Shield of MD/VA/NCA
MAMSI (MDIPA, Optimum Choice, Alliance)
Sisters of St. Paul run 60 houses in the country with 39 schools, 11 health care
facilities, 10 pastoral centers and 9 houses under the Provincialate.
ST. PAUL UNIVERSITIES (6)
St. Paul University of Dumaguete - 1904
St. Paul University of Tuguegarao - 1907
St. Paul University of Manila - 1912
St. Paul University of Surigao - 1926
St. Paul University of Quezon City - 1946
St. Paul University of Ilo-ilo – 1946
ST. PAUL COLLEGES AND SCHOOLS IN LUZON (22)
St. Paul College of Ilocos Sur - Vigan, Ilocos Sur, June 5,
St. Paul School - Aparri, Cagayan, May 13, 1924
St. Joseph Institute - Candon, Ilocos Sur, May 1930
St. Paul's Novitiate - Quezon City, 1930
St. Williams Institute - Magsingal, Ilocos Sur, May 19,1945
St. Paul College of Parañaque - Parañaque,
Metro Manila , June 11, 1945
St. Paul College of Bocaue - Bocaue, Bulacan, June 12,1945
St. Paul School of Makati –
Makati, Metro Manila, Sept. 4, 1945
St. William's School - San Marcelino, Zambales, June 1, 1955
Mount Saint Paul - La Trinidad, Benguet, April 19, 1959
Mount Carmel High School - Polilio, Quezon, May 15, 1962
St. Augustine's School - Iba, Zambales, May 23, 1962
St. Paul Academy - Goa, Camarines Sur, July 5, 1966
Carmel Academy - Palauig, Zambalez, June 8, 1968
St. Paul School - San Antonio, Nueva Ecija, June 17, 1969
St. Paul School - San Rafael, Bulacan, May 27, 1970
St. Paul College of Pasig - Pasig, Metro Manila, July 7, 1970
Our Lady of Peace School - Antipolo, Rizal
Gabriel Academy - Caloocan, Metro Manila, 1980
St. Paul College of Manila –
Malvar, Metro Manila , June 7, 1981
St. Vincent Academy - Candelaria, Zambales, May 22, 1973
St. Paul College - Island Park Subdivision,
Dasmariñas Cavite, June 2001
ST. PAUL COLLEGES AND SCHOOLS IN VISAYAS &
St. Michael College - Cantilan, Surigao, 1932
Purisima School - Tago, Surigao del Sur, May 28, 1954
St. Paul School of Medellin - Medellin, Cebu , June 27, 1967
St. Anthony High School - Manticao,
Misamis Oriental, June 7, 1969
Sto. Niño High School - Gitagum,
Misamis Oriental, June 19, 1969
Holy Trinity Academy - Buug,
Zamboanga del Sur, June 9, 1970
Notre Dame of Surala - Surallah,
South Cotabato, June 25, 1970
St. Michael College - Cantilan, Surigao del Sur, May 1982
St. Paul Convent Claret School - Sunrise Village,
Isabela, Basilan, August 4, 1971
St. Paul School - Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo, June 21, 1972
Notre Dame de Chartres Hospital - Baguio City
St. Paul Hospital - Tuguegarao City
St. Paul Hospital Cavite - Dasmarinas, Cavite
St. Paul's Hospital - Iloilo City
Perpetual Succour Hospital - Cebu City
Julio Cardinal Rosales Memorial Hospital - Dalaguete, Cebu
Maria Reyna Hospital - Cagayan de Oro City
DLSU Medical Center - Dasmarinas, Cavite
Our Lady of Peace Hospital - Paranaque City
St. Joseph Southern Bukidnon Hospital –
General Santos Doctors Hospital - General Santos City
Culion Lepers Sanitarium -Culion, Palawan
Bicol Sanitarium - Sipocot, Camarines Sur
HOME FOR THE AGED
Mere Monique Home - Iloilo City
SPC Vigil House - Taytay, Rizal
Our Lady of Peace Mission - Coastal Road, Parañaque City
St. Paul's Convent - Nueva Era, Ilocos Norte
Sta. Cruz Mission - Lake Sebu, South Cotabato
Sisters of St. Paul of Chartres Convent –
Timuga, Pagadian, Zamboanga del Sur
SPC Medical Clinic and Pastoral Center - Bagac, Bataan
SPC Pastoral Center with school - General Natividad,
SPC Pastoral Ministry Center - Palatiw, Pasig City
Mount Saint Paul Retreat House - Pico, La Trinidad, Benguet
Saint Paul Center for Renewal - Alfonso, Cavite
703-924-5686 – Direct
703-934-6610 - Fax
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The Birds and the Bees and St. Paul
Regina S. Fernandez”-Clooney”
Class of '86 - St Paul College Pasig
No, not the actual saint, Paul, who may be furiously
rolling his eyes and groaning in heaven – “Arrghh!
That infernal Pasig Batch ’86 AGAIN!” -- but the young
and lovely hormonal lasses of said high school batch,
to which yours truly belongs. Like any responsible
writer, I embarked on a bit of research before sitting
down to compose this: I posted a survey on Facebook
asking my approximately 220 batch mates (a) if they
had made out with their prom and/or ball date(s); and
(b) what, eherm, “experiences” they may have had of
a sexual nature in high school. Eight ladies responded:
five along the lines of “Nene ako nung panahong iyon,
walang kamuwang-muwang . . .” (I was young and
naïve, and have absolutely no idea what you are
talking about, you maniac, for those of you have
forgotten the language, tsk-tsk), one confession to
having been a wallflower, one LOL, and Selma’s story.
According to Selma, she and her prom date did go to a
hotel after the event to, *gasp!* eat ice cream. After
the senior ball the following year, her rather more
daring date offered her a sip of diluted vodka tonic,
after which he promptly got dizzy and they had to
head home. (Way to go, Selma’s ball date. Hope you
can hold your liquor better now: Selma does.)
Maybe I worded the survey questions wrongly,
focusing too narrowly on the actual Wham!* and
Bam! of it, mistakenly encouraging my batch mates to
call up very specific, for most of us specifically nonexistent, memories. As I remember it, the birds and
the bees did lurk in the classrooms and the corridors.
How could they not? As early as fifth grade, our
bodies had begun the transition to Womanhood,
thanks to our functioning pituitary glands. Our sixthgrade Science teacher Mrs. D deftly explained this to
Rm. 38, employing a shampoo ad jingle to make sure
we understood that: Youuuuu’re gooooonna swear . .
. ! You’ve got more hair! . . . And you know where! I
don’t know about the other sections, but with all the
11- and 12-year old giggling, guffawing, and chairbanging, that was the loudest, rollicking Science class I
have ever attended. In seventh grade, this creeping
ninety per cent
of the batch
must have read
Book One, P.S. I
Mariah and Paul. An unexpected highlight of that
book was Mariah’s observation of Paul’s Adam’s
apple – sexy. By this time, as well, some of us had
decided or been destined to play for the other team.
There were fascinated whispers about girls who were
“mag-on;” this seemed to be as close as we could get
to a whiff of scandal then.
In sophomore year in high school, Biology class was,
had to be, more explicit about the reproductive
system. Our young, unmarried Bio teacher Miss N
prefaced the lesson with much brow-creasing and
hand-wringing. “Girls,” she said . . . well, I don’t
remember exactly what she said, but it was to the
effect of, “I feel fearful you will go out and
experiment with your newfound knowledge and, oh
dear, will I be responsible for that – PLEASE DON’T!” It
might have helped sweet Miss N to know that in
freshman year Mariole brought several issues of a
publication called Sexology and passed them around
Room 6. A few of us read these issues from cover to
cover during vacant periods (as when the teacher was
absent), intently and with great focus, without
guffawing at all. She must not have known either that
we had learned the word “concupiscence” in
freshman Religion class, and that we had to look up
its definition ourselves, as our beloved Sr. E blushed
deeply and turned mute when Juliet, reading the
word from our textbook, asked her what it meant.
Perhaps most crucially, Ms. N must not have found
the right shampoo ad jingle with which she felt she
could make us laugh and think sensibly and stay safe. I
have heard that she has since joined the nunnery, and
wonder if this particular Biology lesson had anything
to do with that decision. You have been rescued now,
Ma’am. (And, as far as I now, China did not illustrate
your body parts while you stood in front of the class,
as she did Miss L’s hanging bosom and Mr. Y’s, um,
As it happens, Ms. N’s worry came true. One of us –
someone in her own advisory class -- did experiment
and discover that very school year that her
reproductive system worked perfectly well. (Two
years ago, Bebs’s daughter conceived in our
sophomore year became a mother herself, making
grandmothers of all of SPCP Batch ’86, a title and
privilege we claim in this age of Grannies With Asim.)
While Bebs embarked on motherhood, we embarked
on . . . mobhood. How can I describe this? My
batchmates and I inundated certain males who had
the (mis)fortune of inspiring positive (fanatical)
emotions in us. These mobbed men included retreat
masters Fr. DJ , who rode a motorcycle (sexy), and Fr.
Rico Mambo, whose morning wake-up anthem was
“Male Curiosity” (I wonder if the nuns knew about
this?), even though he did accuse us of being
“Sakkkim!!!” Also, celebrities: Keno and, of course,
Jojo Alejar, known to recent generations as a verylate-night-show host with a strange sense of humor.
Listen up, kiddies: during the Renaissance, the
grinding of Jojo Alejar’s hips to the beat of Michael
Jackson’s “PYT” had us swooning and screaming.
Picture this: when he visited the school, we
surrounded him and, all clumped together, traveled
down the corridor like a hysterical beehive, carrying
him along in the middle, as he tried to exit the
There are a couple of other incidents I can recount,
juicier confidences, but time, a forty-something
memory (Though, keep in mind, “Forty is the new
twenty, with somewhat more knowledge about uric
acid.”), and fear of revenge-posting of pictures of me
in high school deter me. I can say I feel quite happy
about the sweet days of girlhood I spent with my
classmates and batch mates, including the nene-ness;
we were almost cloistered on that hill, we were cared
for, we followed rules, we broke them, we were
insecure about our bodies, excited about boys, we
were eager to leave and break out into the world; we
were lucky: we were exactly as adolescent girls should
Many of us in Batch ‘86 have since discovered that
our reproductive systems work fabulously well; some
of us have shed the adolescent “t-bird” orientation,
some bring vampy girlfriends to the gatherings; a
good number of us ably wield our power as Woman,
directing corporations, household staff, children, and
the men in our lives; a few of us can conduct our own
Sexology seminars! So we have traveled a bit further;
it started when we were 11 or 12, in St. Paul, where
the birds and the bees did hover, though we barely
*Not to be confused with the Michael George-Andrew
Ridgeley duo; a whole other essay.
All names of members of SPCP batch 1986 in this
article have been changed to protect the writer.
Except for mine, of course, my name really is Regina
S. Fernandez,”-Clooney” pending George’s response
to one, just one, of the 1,796 proposals I have sent
him via Twitter, Facebook, e-mail, snail mail, Jessica
Soho’s “Reunions,” carrier pigeon, telepathy and LBC.
And, yes, I am actually a writer, one who, I assure you,
when viewed at certain angles, or under a bit of
duress, is definitely sexy as hell.
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BEST WISHES TO
PAULINIAN GLOBAL FOUNDATION, INC.
ST. PAUL COLLEGE, MANILA
High School 1965 & College 1969
ST. PAUL MANILA—MY SECOND HOME
Our classrooms are on the
Georgia (now L. Guerrero)
side of the campus, those of
the high school on the Florida
(now M. Orosa) side.
chapel is right in the center of
the campus as Christ is right
in the center of the Paulinian’s
life. Most students run up the
stairs to the chapel before
going to class (ah the joys of
having strong bones!).
It is 1948. The war is over, and
people are picking up the pieces of
their lives. My family has moved
back to the city after spending the
war years in our hometown,
Bacoor, in Cavite. Our parents,
Florentino and Stella Ocampo,
have looked for a school not too
far from our house in Pasay, and
have brought my sisters, Amelia,
Florella, and me to St. Paul College
of Manila. I am seven years old,
but because I was accelerated
twice in the province, I am now in
Grade Five. Like eidelwiess, I am
small and white (read “pale”),
clean (at least in the morning) and
bright (though not discernible yet).
St. Paul College of Manila is just
recovering from the ravages of the
Liberation of Manila, which practically razed it to the ground. The
Chapel of the Crucified Christ was
almost completely destroyed, but
the façade, with the life-like statue
of the Savior on the cross,
remained intact, as if to proclaim
that the goodness of God will
triumph over the rampage of the
We have regular confessions,
first Friday holy hour and
benediction, first Saturday
Mass for the Blessed Virgin in
the chapel, whose wooden
floors are kept shining by
Madre Victor and Mang Gregorio.
There are acacia trees all over
shade and the comfort of
green, but they are also home
to “higads” which periodically
fall and cause a lot of itch and
We have physical education
classes in “the shelter” and we
wear big ugly black bloomers
as we walk on balance beams
to the tune of “Glow little glow
-worm, glimmer, glimmer.”
Our favorite game is playing
tag while jumping on the
stone benches beside the
grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes.
She must be watching over us
for no one has fallen from the
slippery benches. After class,
we look curiously at the
Sisters’ starched cornettes
drying on iron sheets outside
the laundry. We wait for our
“sundo” at the Tennesse (now
Romulo calls out our names.
It is 1952. The Administration and College building is
Our waiting area
has been moved to the
Herran (now Pedro Gil) side.
The school is beautiful.
There are acacia trees sheltering the statue of Jesus and
St. Margaret Mary Alacogue.
In front of the statue is a fish
pond, with pretty goldfish
fronds, and all around the
circular driveway are flame
trees adding a burst of color
to the scene. We sit on the
front steps of the new building and wait for our cars entering the driveway. It is
1953. St. Paul has hired a
speech and drama teacher for
the high school—a young
Pagsanghan. He is a fireball,
a dynamo, and he infects his
students with his zeal and
passion for the stage.
from Shakespeare, Poe, and
the like. Since I am such a
pipsqueak, still small and
white (read “pale”), he cannot give me anything dramatic. He gives me the humorous “Casey at the Bat,”
for which (surprise), I get the
Castañer (Ponce Enrile) gets
the gold for her interpretation
of Lady Macbeth’s sleepwalking scene (no surprise). To
this day, in my old age, Fr.
James B. Reuter, SJ, still calls
me Casey at the bat.
The St. Paul Glee Club is making
waves in the musical scene. I
join the glee club (mainly to
avoid home economics) and
remain all the way to college (as
a forgettable soprano two).
It is 1957, and we are saddened
by the realization that progress
has a price.
Auditorium is built, and the
acacia trees, the goldfish pond,
and the flame trees are gone,
the statue of Christ and St.
Margaret moved to another location. We are privileged to be
the first college batch to
graduate in the auditorium, but
the excitement is not without a
tinge of regret. For many years,
I have watched graduations in
the quadrangle, and I have
dreamed of going up the stage
and delivering a speech with my
toga fluttering in the warm
March breeze and the stars
twinkling naughtily in the night
I am delivering a speech—the
Address of Thanks—from a new
rostrum in a new auditorium,
but part of me wishes I were
fluttering in the warm March
breeze and the stars twinkling
naughtily in the night sky.
It is June 1958. In February,
Mother Socorro and Mother
Gabriel called me to their office
and asked if I wanted to teach
in St. Paul. I said yes of course
for I had taken Bachelor of Arts
and Bachelor of Science in
Education, and teaching in my
alma mater seems just right. So
I am facing my first class, first
year high school, teaching them
English grammar and composition. (These students are now
I take my master’s in English
literature in the Ateneo on Padre
Faura, walking to the school
with Mila Usi, a co-teacher, and
feeling very self-conscious as we
pass outside a whole corridor of
between classes and “watching
all the girls go by.”
Nineteen sixty-two is the golden
jubilee of St. Paul Manila. We
have an international fair in the
quadrangle, with booths of different countries selling food and
drinks and souvenir items to
hundreds of Paulinians, their
families and friends. There are
rides too, the most popular of
which is the ferris wheel. It is
located right in front of the
chapel, and when the cars stop
at the top of the wheel, one
looks into the eyes of the
crucified Christ and forgets any
Soon, I am moved up to teach in
the college, and at this time,
drama in St. Paul Manila takes
wings and flies—nay, soars--to
unprecedented (and unrepeated)
heights. It is the age of the
annual plays in SPCM: Miracle
Worker and then, the Broadway
Brigadoon, Carnival, Thirteen
I am a
teacher now and my involvement
is mostly on the side lines—
diction coaching, publicity, executive production.
It is 1972 and I have just been
designated Dean of Liberal Arts.
Despite the turbulence of the city
outside (and the rest of the
country), St. Paul Manila remains
a happy place. Loyal Paulinian,
great teacher, and prolific writer,
Estelita G. Juco, keeps the
community informed of social
and political issues but we help
keep the students on an even
Some do go to the
extreme, a couple going up to
the mountains, but as a whole,
SPCM rides the storm.
It is EDSA I. My husband and I
go to EDSA, and when it is safe
enough, we bring our three
children (Stevie, Rina, and Anna)
there too—so they can feel the
pulse of the nation and become a
part of the history that they will
read about in the books in the
St. Paul taught us to
believe in ourselves and
that’s how I discovered my
self-confidence. The college
prepared me for the opportunity that would open the
path to my dream.
During my senior
year, I was asked to work
with top noontime hosts Orly Punzalan and Bert Marcelo for the Lunch Date variety
broadcast live from the
Fleur-de-lis Auditorium. I
accepted the offer without
hesitation because, early in
life, I was influenced by my
parents to get interested in
the entertainment business.
I was happy with
what I was doing and I was
so proud of the other Paulinians whose talents we
The school, that big
break, and my fellow students inspired me to continue improving on my talents.
Thanks to my mentors, I
learned how passion and
hard work can help me all
the way to my career today.
I will forever be
grateful that I went to St.
We are all proud of June Keithley and the role
she has played in the revolution. It is the March
1986 graduation and we invite June to honor
her for her achievement. I give her a copy of
The Little Prince, in exchange for one she gave
me when she was my student in high school and
on which she wrote “To Miss Ocampo… for you
have drawn me a sheep.”
Nineteen eighty-eight. I have come to a difficult
decision: to stop teaching (in St. Paul and elsewhere) and to move to Colegio San Agustin Makati (but not to teach). The decision came when
I found myself peering at my class record from
all angles to decipher the grades I had written
on those small boxes. I love teaching; I love
being in the classroom with 40 or so different
personalities, different minds, reacting differently to what I say or do not say, what I do or do
not do. Teaching is, to my mind, one of the
most exciting professions in the world (violent
objections anyone?) But now, I have to end my
After I receive my award for 30 years of teaching, I give my speech of thanks, and when I get
to the rostrum, I realize that this is the same
rostrum, where 30 years ago, I gave my valedictory. Now I am again giving my valedictory
(except that no one knows it is that).
For the next 14 years, I am in Colegio San
Agustin Makati, first as Director of Research and
Human Resources, then as Institutional Communications and Public Relations Officer. It is a
different culture, a different kind of work, but I
easily adapt and learn to love the school, the
people, the job. Of course, the fact that my
children are studying here counts a lot too. I
miss the daily classroom teaching, but I am given many opportunities to teach—teachers, office
staff, maintenance personnel, students (for
School policies dictate a retirement age. I am
extended for a year, but I do retire in 2002.It is
2008. I find myself back in St. Paul Manila, now
St. Paul University Manila, having been invited
last year by the President, Ms. Wynna Medina (who
was my student—HS ’68, AB ’72) to help in institutional communications and alumni relations.
I have come full circle. I do not know what feng
shui experts will make of it, but to me it is simply
serendipitous: coming to SPCM for the first time in
1948; graduating in 1958; retiring in 1988; and
coming home in 2008.
On many occasions, I have been asked to emcee
major programs in the Fleur-de-lis Theater (then
called Auditorium), and whenever I stand behind
the rostrum, a wave of nostalgia comes
unbidden. It is the same rostrum I stood behind in
1958 and in 1988, for my two valedictories. I have
indicated to Sr. Lilia Thérèse Tolentino, SPC, University President, and the other Sisters that if ever
they decide to “retire” the rostrum, they could give
it to me, as a remembrance of the long and colorful life I have had in St. Paul Manila—truly my second home.
SPCM High School 1954
SPCM AB-BSE Summa Cum Laude 1958
The year was 1956; I was in second year college. Eons ago? Maybe, but
not in my mind. I very well remember the first time I found myself in St.
Paul College of Manila. I was then studying in UST when, one day, I
thought I wanted to be a nun. I “shopped around’ for congregations. A
dormitory mate and good friend who knew of my desire asked me, “Didn’t
you study with the Sisters of St. Paul? Why don’t you just join them! I’ll
accompany you. My cousins are studying there.” So she did and off we
A poet once said something akin to this: Days and events we do not
remember, but moments are forever etched in our memories.
Sister Maria Theresita (whom we called Sister Tita), of happy memory,
brought us into the campus, I was “struck dumb” and in awe by what met
us; for as soon as we stepped out of the lobby I happened to look up.
There in majestic splendor of white, standing tall, was a cross and the
Crucified Christ! I felt like I was being engulfed by the enormity of the
sculpture and getting lost in it. It felt like a summons to me. I stared at it
and would have stumbled had not my friend held me.
And so, in June 1957, I enrolled in St. Paul College.
A Paulinian from
Aparri, Cagayan since kindergarten, I felt like I was coming back home;
St. Paul became a home away from home. Sister Michaela, whom we
called Big Mother, was truly a mother to us, boarders. I felt a bit of a
stranger in the beginning but because of the warmth and the family spirit
of Paulinians, I adapted quickly. The acacia trees and their spreading ever green branches (It is sad that they are no longer there.) added to the
homey atmosphere in the campus. Then there was the joyful demeanor
of the SPC Sisters, which was always a welcome sight, and the gentle
laughter that wafted out their refectory, a revelation of their being human. There were about a hundred Sisters then, I think, in the community. There were a good number of young Sisters and there were some
from other countries.
I still relish my student days in St. Paul College. One of the things that I
enjoyed very much was our early morning walks to the public school
nearby to teach catechism with Sister Tita
And the sculpture of the Crucified Christ?
Whenever I needed some comfort I would
look up and I would always find solace.
For us, boarders, the area in front of the
Chapel of the Crucified Christ and the steps
below became the setting for our nightly
recreation games and story-sharing time.
May the Crucified Christ continue to bless
Paulinians wherever they may be.
Sister Mary George Siriban, SPC
SPCM BSE 1959
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE
PAULINIAN GLOBAL FOUNDATION, INC.
CONTINUE WITH THE GOOD WORK FOR THE
SISTERS OF ST. PAUL OF CHARTRES!
DOMINADOR D. GENIO, JR., M.D., FAAFP
Joy Velasco-Wycoco …you sang this song that goes like
this…….. “You and I will travel far……….”
Rowena Cosuco Somar …when the maid…yaya stayed
up late at night finishing the hemline stitches of a
project for the sewing class of Ms. Gumawid… kung
feeling mo KJ sila Sister kasi bawal and colored clips, no
chemise, no ankles showing and skirts above the knee
Rani Hernandez … you sneak out and not get caught by
Mr. Sunico! .. and a Denman hairbrush sticking out of
your skirt pocket…
MeAnn Villanueva… you collect demerit slips due to
reasons like “scattering pakwan peelings on the floor”
by Ms. Gumawid although deep in your heart, you are
laughing hard because you know its wrong (it’s butong
pakwan” which is supposed to be “watermelon seeds”)
… when you are thrilled of the idea to go ghost hunting
late at night while being so intrigued on the news about
the morgue next to the annex building
Eva Anastacio …. Malayo ka pa sa kasalubong mong SPC
Sister, nakangiti ka na from ear to ear, sabay sigay ng
Nina Santos Santos.. when you remember wearing the
St. Michael’s socks, kung butas butas parang knitted na
socks or the pompoms socks.
Romella Malig… you know Sister Angela Barrios
Marissa Cruz… you wore kung fu shoes or Greg’s shoes
Angelica Aban… when you have “two seets of one
fourth” for Mrs. Domingo’s quiz..
Adin Martin Villanueva… if you have played “agawan
base” using the campus trees as “BASES”…
Araceli Frauendorff Salomon… if you’ve gone over the
bakod at 3rd Street
Toeffy Taganas… you have won the heaviest
pile/weight for the newspaper drive!!!
Anne Kliatchoko Gayanelo.. you are wearing the skirt
version of a chef’s pants
Virna Lisa Loberiza … getting handcuffed and jailed
during school fairs
Mari Marella… when you eat “chicharon” with catsup
instead of vinegar! …and when you eat corn with
mixture of calamansi and salt!
Maristela Umengan Piscano… when you know Mr.
Cabrera, Aling Toyang, Ms. Baker occupy the same 2- ft
radius space from the main gate on Gilmore….or you
peak under the veil of sleeping nuns in the chapel… and
your first skateboard were your Greg shoes gliding
through the corridors… when you know barbecue sticks
and red phone machines meant free calls!
Carisse Hontiveros.. you request for a bull session
instead of a class.. and you know you’re a Paulinian
teacher when you say Yes!
Veronica Alcaneses Pantig.. you see a Fleur-de-lis
design or symbol, nothing else comes to mind except
Margarette Castro… or seeing a black and white
checkered skirt and a sailor blouse with tie, instantly
bringing back memories of your school days..
Soledad Ilagan… you memorized the lyrics of the
Paulinian song “Hark Daughters!”
Cheryl Quino.. ma-ingay kung nagkikita-kita sa reunion!
Ooohhh… what fun
Jing Yao Ortiz-Luis.. if you sit on the floor like a pretzel –
Chris De Leon… if you played Chinese garter in the
Virna Lisa… and Chinese jackstones..
Nina Cruz Paz… if at some point in your HS life, you
witnessed the 3rd Street exhibitionist… Or…if you
crossed Aurora Boulevard with your friends to eat
banana split with barquillos at the Magnolia Ice Cream
Malou Fajardo… if you sneak out for Burger Machine
Mini Round Cakes
Pan de sal