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Saturday, February 26, 2011

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 38

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 38 The Man of Faith

CHRIST: MY CHILD, My loyal follower is not rebellious at the unpleasant things which I permit in his daily life. He is a man of faith, that is, he believes My words and follows My teachings in his daily life. He sees My wisdom guiding his life at all times.

2. This supernatural faith helps him keep his peace of soul, even when humans seem to complicate his life by their meddling and interference.

3. What I send is not always easy to understand. It may even seem unjust or foolish to those
who are living only for this world. The man of faith takes all from My Hands, knowing that
I plan all things for the best.

4. Do not depend on your natural judgment alone, but learn to consult Me and My Church
in all matters of importance.

THINK: I must be a man of faith, with a bright vision of God in my daily life. He is ever near, ever interested, ever helping me. With such an interior vision I will not be disturbed by the sayings and doings of those around me. The supernatural man is not fooled by external appearances. He knows only too well that what looks good may sometimes be wrong, and what seems undesirable is sometimes the only thing to do. He sees clearly that God sometimes chooses the foolish things of this world to confound the wise.

PRAY: Father of wisdom and goodness, my God, when will I see things with Your glorious, eternal outlook? Let me not be influenced by the wrong standards of worldly people. I will dare to be different when the humans around me disagree with You. Though they may mock and criticize what You have commanded, give me courage and strength to follow what You want of me. Your wisdom will conquer the foolish wisdom of this world. The folly of sin will one day be condemned and put to shame. Let me hate what is wrong and fear all sin in my daily life. Amen.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 37

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 37 Invitation to Holy Communion

CHRIST: MY CHILD, often ponder My words "Come, all you that labor and are burdened, and I will refresh you." These are My words, and you ought to receive them gratefully and faithfully. They are Mine because I spoke them; but they are also yours, because they were spoken for your salvation. Receive them joyfully from My lips. Let them be deeply carved upon your heart. In these holy words, you see My loyal and tender consideration for you. Do not let your conscience stop you from rushing into My arms. I know how unworthy you are of My friendship, but I love you in spite of that.

2. In spite of your nothingness and your sins, I command you to approach Me with confidence. It is actually My Will that you should receive Me, the Food of Immortality. Through this heavenly Food, which is truly My own Body and Blood, you shall gain unending life and eternal glory. I say, "Come, all you that labor and are burdened, and I will refresh you! " These are consoling words in the ear of a sinner. I, your Lord and God, invite poor and needy you to receive My holy Body. Do not say, "Who am I, that I should presume to approach You?" I command you to come and receive Me, for without Me you are lost.

3. Prepare your soul with confession, if necessary, and with prayers. Then approach My altar with confidence and with a burning desire to please Me in your daily life.

THINK: God is so powerful, so great, so perfect, that we are as nothing compared to Him. The angels and saints in Heaven see God face to face and realize how very, very small they are in His presence. As a result they feel a deep indescribable respect for Him. Yet God, in His goodness, loves His creatures beyond all telling. He did many things to convince us of His love. He even sent His beloved Son to show His love in a human way. After living and dying for love of us, Jesus invented a way to remain with us in the Holy Eucharist. In this wonderful Sacrament He makes Himself the Food of our souls. Lest anyone refuse to receive Him in Holy Communion, He commanded that we should do so. It is His express wish that I receive Him in Holy Communion.

PRAY: Lord, why are You so gracious to me and so concerned about me? You know how full of defects I am. I offend You so often by my faults and my negligence. How dare I welcome You into my heart? I have often been selfish with You in spite of all Your generosity to Me. The angels and archangels stand in deep respect before You. The Saints and the just have a holy fear of You. Yet, You say, "Come to Me." Were it not You that say this, Lord, who could believe it, and who would dare approach this holy table? At Your loving command I will come. I will think of Your Will and forget my unworthiness, and I shall eat the Bread of Angels. Amen.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

"Dancing La Vida Edna" Business World Article by Sam. L. Marcelo

Posted on January 27, 2011 06:10:13 PM

BY SAM L. MARCELO, Senior Reporter

Viva la Vida


Dancing La Vida Edna

Jan. 29, 8 p.m.
Aliw Theater, CCP Complex, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City

History will be made on Saturday night when the country’s three leading dance companies will share the stage for the first time. Ballet Philippines (BP), Ballet Manila (BM) and the Philippine Ballet Theater are performing together in a fund-raiser that will benefit dancer and choreographer Edna Vida and Artists Welfare Project, Inc. (AWPI). The event, Dancing La Vida Edna, features excerpts from Ms. Vida’s signature roles and choreography.

"I’m so glad they decided to dance together at last to bring back our attention to the bewildering world of dance. People forget that the theater feeds the soul," said Ms. Vida in an e-mail interview with BusinessWorld. "Filipino dancers are considered to be among the most beautiful in the world and here they are, right in our own backyard."

The night is set to be a nostalgic one for Ms. Vida, who will see, among other things, reprises of two classical pas de deux from Black Swan and Diana and Acteon. "[These] are very difficult roles that I still can’t believe I managed to dance. But that’s the joy of performing, you never know what you can do until you huff and puff and try it, after which there is so much fulfillment like giving birth to a baby," she said. "In dance, nothing is impossible when you want it so bad. So to be able to do these difficult roles you have to want them bad."

As one of BP’s principal dancers, Ms. Vida is best remembered in Armin Wild and Denisa Reyes’s Firebird; Alice Reyes’s Carmen, Amada and Itim-Asu; Norman Walker’s Songs of a Wayfarer and Season of Flight.

Each role and work in Ms. Vida’s celebrated career has a story behind it. The excerpts from her choreography reflect particular stages in her life as an artist: passionate, introspective, rebellious, or just plain crazy. BP’s repertoire includes her Filipino Nutcracker, Ensalada, Pagsamba and Peter Pan.

"Working with each company was most significant because the dancers brought out something inside me that was unique," said Ms. Vida. "Their bodies, their style of dancing were all different and so very challenging to mold and create from. Working with them made me grow as a choreographer."

BM founder and artistic director Lisa Macuja-Elizalde is dancing Summer’s End, which, until 1988, she performed with Nonoy Froilan (Ms. Vida’s life partner). This concert will see Ms. Macuja-Elizalde dancing with Rudy De Dios, who will be coached by Mr. Froilan.

"I think it’s amazing that more than 20 years later, this beautiful pas de deux by Norman Walker is being revived," said Ms. Macuja-Elizalde, who added that the ballet is made "extra special" since Mr. Froilan and Ms. Vida also danced in it together in the past.

BP artistic director Paul Alexander Morales, meanwhile, is looking forward to the finale -- a scene from Ms. Vida’s Peter Pan involving all three companies. "She is a master of creating works that survive the passage of time," he said of Ms. Vida, adding that he was "star struck" when he saw her as Sisa in Cora Inigo’s ballet.

The praise goes both ways. Ms. Vida admitted that dancers can do much more now than they did during their time. "When I watch these dancers I am awed by their technique and artistry. This is the way I expected it to go and I’m seeing them evolve right before my very eyes," Ms. Vida said. "Dance in the Philippines used to be more of a hobby, something a young person tried for fun or because their parents forced them to. Now it’s a full-blown profession, a career."

Still human

Dancing La Vida Edna is not just a celebration of Ms. Vida, although her achievements are many. Ms. Macuja-Elizalde describes her as brilliant, while Mr. Morales calls her an icon and a member of true Filipino dance royalty.

The gala is a reminder that Ms. Vida, despite these accolades, is still human, as are all other artists. Aside from supplementing Ms. Vida’s medical funds, the proceeds from the gala will go to AWPI, an organization that assists artists with health care, housing and financial management.

"Artists are always too busy to think of things other than their art. The pressure is just too immense and there is hardly time to think of [these things] until it’s too late. Very few of us save enough money to buy basic needs, much less have funds for old age and retirement," said Ms. Vida. "We are usually at the lowest rung of the ladder in government allocations and programs."

The AWPI, she added, helps them plan ahead and think 50 years from now instead of just next year.

"It’s about time someone brought together all three ballet companies for a great cause," said Ms. Macuja-Elizalde. "To quote Edna during our telephone conversation about the concept of Dancing La Vida Edna: ‘If my getting sick will bring all three ballet companies together, then it’s all worth it.’"

(Tickets to Dancing La Vida Edna range from P500 to P2,000. For more information, call 832-3661 and 832-1125 loc. 1620/1621 or e-mail ccptanghalan@yahoo.)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 36

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 36 Frequent Communion

CHRIST: MY CHILD, you should come often to Me, the Giver of grace and divine mercy, the Fountain of all goodness and holiness. In this way you will gain greater control over your passions, faults, and defects. In Holy Communion I will make you wiser and stronger against the temptations and deceits of the devil.

2. When I come to You in this Holy Sacrament, I offer you interior fight and strength. These gifts are known only to my faithful ones. They are not enjoyed by unbelievers, nor by those who love sin. In this Sacrament, the soul receives the grace to regain lost virtues and the beauty which was lost by sin.

3. The blind desires of man tend to evil from his youth. Unless this divine Medicine assists him, he will quickly slip from bad to worse. Holy Communion withdraws you from what is evil and strengthens you in what is good. You need Me. Make full use of the wisdom and strength which I offer you in Holy Communion.

THlNK: To fight sin, I need a strength greater than my own. Jesus promises to give it to me in Holy Communion. I must not pass up this marvelous invitation. As often as possible I will go to receive Him. I will lay before Him my hopes, plans, and ambitions. He will give me the strength to do what is best for me.

PRAY: Lord, this heavenly gift is certainly necessary for me. I become sluggish so easily, and I fall into sin so quickly. I need to be spiritually refreshed, cleansed, and inflamed once more by frequent prayers, confession, and a loving reception of Your Sacred Body and Blood. By staying away too long, I may fall away from my good intentions. Make me wise enough to come to You as often as possible, so that I may have Your grace to work for eternal life. Amen.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

"Dancing La Vida Edna"


Ballet Philippines, Philippine Ballet Theater and Ballet Manila perform on stage together for the first time. They will perform my works and the roles I danced in, with the special participation of Steps Dance Studio.

Date: Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011

Venue: Aliw Theater (beside CCP).

Time: 8 pm

Ticket Prices: P2,000 (with cocktails at 7 pm); P1,000 and P500.

Reservations: Call CCP Box Office tel. # 832-1125 loc. 1405 & 1406 or Ballet Manila tel. # 832-3713

Administrator, Chris Millado; Directed by Monino Duque; Lighting Design by Katch Catoy; Project Coordinator, Jimmy Villanueva

I would love to see friends and all the artists I've worked with throughout my career. Let's have a fabulous reunion!

Ticket holders get a Ride-All-You-Can pop tag at the Star City after the performance courtesy of Lisa Macuja-Elizalde. Proceeds go to the Artists' Welfare of the Philippines, Inc.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 35

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 35 Variety In the Spiritual Life

CHRIST: MY CHILD, not everyone can make use of the same spiritual exercises. One devotion suits this person, while another suits that person. At times a change of spiritual exercises will do you good. Some devotions will help on ordinary days, and others will be more helpful on holy days. You may need one type of spiritual activity in time of temptation and another in time of peace. A man likes certain thoughts when he is sad, but in time of spiritual joy, he prefers other thoughts.

2. Variety in your spiritual life will help you live a richer life and a holier one. Make your spiritual goals and your resolutions according to the spirit of the different seasons of the church calendar. Plan your interior life as one who is eager to give Me better service. Live as one who looks forward to Heaven.

3 . Think of death as the gateway to Heaven. Learn to look upon your earthly life as a great opportunity to make a worthy preparation for Heaven. If I have not called you yet, consider that it is because you are not yet well enough prepared to receive the heavenly glory which is being reserved for you. Then plan how to prepare yourself for that heavenly reward. Never forget the words: "Blessed is that servant whom the Lord shall find watching when He comes. Indeed, I tell you, He will place him over all His possessions!"

THINK: It is so easy to fall into a routine and stick to it. Many go on day after day, doing the same old things in the same old way. Variety makes life interesting, yet too few have the ambition and energy to put variety into their daily lives. In prayer, I shall try to learn various methods in case I should need them to avoid the dullness of routine. I can read the lives of the saints and see where I may make a few changes in my own spiritual life. My spiritual director can give me ideas on how to freshen my zeal for God's glory and for the
help of my neighbor.

PRAY: O Holy Ghost, my God and Sanctifier, grant me light to see how I can make my daily life more fruitful in doing good. Let me not fall into a rut and stay there. Life is a glorious opportunity to do great things-to become more like You, my God, by the good and love which I can give to others. Help me to see more ways of increasing the good in my daily life. Give me the unselfishness and strength to do good for Your sake. Amen.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Watch my Peter Pan fly!


MANILA, Philippines - November 4, 2010 - Sprinkle some pixie dust, play some swashbuckling music, and fly to the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) to witness Ballet Philippines' dance retelling of the beloved children's classic, Peter Pan.

Delighting young and old for more than 100 years, Peter Pan is based on the tale by Sir James Matthew Barrie. The story revolves around the boy who never grew up and his magical, fun-filled adventures with the Darling children - Wendy, John, and Michael - as they meet Captain Hook, Smee, Tinkerbell, Tiger Lily, the Lost Boys, and the other denizens of Neverland. Edna Vida, one of the country's best choreographers, will restage her version with music by Mark Charlap and Jule Styne. Flying by Foy from America will be bringing in special flying machines which will have Peter and Wendy soaring in the air, enthralling all audiences. These special flying machines make their Philippine debut in this Ballet Philippines staging.

The role of Peter will be performed by principal dancer, Jean Marc Cordero, a semi-finalist in the 2010 International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi.

Performance schedule at CCP's Main Theater (Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo) follows:
December 2 (Thursday), 10 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
December 3 (Friday), 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
December 4 (Saturday), 10:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m., and 8:00 p.m.
December 5 (Sunday), 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
December 7 (Tuesday), 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
December 10 (Friday), 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.
December 11 (Saturday), 10:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m., and 8:00 p.m.
December 12 (Sunday), 10:00 a.m.

Ticket prices are at PHP200 to PHP1,500. Discounts are at 50% for students and 20% for senior citizens. American Express Cardholders can also enjoy 10% savings by using their card.

Tickets may be purchased through the CCP Box Office (832-3704) and Ticketworld (891-9999). For group sales and inquiries, contact Ballet Philippines (551-1003 / 832-6011) or visit:

Saturday, November 20, 2010

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 34

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 34 Helps and Hindrance to Holiness

CHRIST: MY CHILD, there is one thing that stops many from making spiritual progress and keeps them from improving themselves. It is a fear of the difficulties or of the work required by their effort. The people who rise highest in holiness are those who are brave enough to fight against whatever holds them back from Me, no matter how hard or disagreeable the effort may be. The more you try to master your feelings and blind desires, the greater are the graces which I offer to you. If you keep on trying, you will gain as much success as I desire of you.

2. Different men have to face different obstacles. Yet, a diligent and zealous person will make greater progress in virtue, even though he may have to fight more defects than others. Some people have fewer defects to overcome, and still they do not advance in holiness because they are less fervent in the pursuit of virtues.

THINK: Many are frightened by the thought of changing their ways in daily life. Yet the way can be quite simplified if only they will make the effort. First, they need a spiritual director to guide them along and to help them see themselves without prejudice or fear. Second, they must be honest in striving for the virtues opposed to their main faults. Third, they must realize that their feelings and blind desires will go on rebelling and making their daily efforts more difficult. Lastly, they must learn to gain spiritual profit from all occasions, imitating the virtues which they see in others and avoiding the defects of their neighbors.

PRAY: Holy Spirit, my God and Sanctifier, grant me the light to see what a glorious opportunity 1 now have of beginning a better life. Help me to take whatever steps are necessary to purify my soul by a sincere daily effort. You will not deny me the strength which I need, if only I will try to develop the virtues which I need most, in my daily life. Amen.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 33

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 33 Necessary Care of Oneself

CHRIST: MY CHILD, everyone must take a reasonable care of himself. In time of temptation arouse yourself, warn yourself, guard yourself and avoid idleness. No matter how much you do for others, do not neglect yourself altogether. Beware of too much talking. Whenever possible, try to be alone with Me. Take advantage of My presence. Every moment of your life is lived in My presence. You possess Him Whom the whole world cannot take from you. I am worth more than everything else put together.

2. If you neglect yourself, you can lose in a short time the spiritual strength which was acquired slowly and with great effort over a long period. Reflect often on the eternal purpose of your earthly life. You have to be spiritual to reach this goal. I tell you through My Church how to live this earthly life. There is no other way. Examine your progress each day. In a short time your present life will be over. If you have been faithful, you will never again know fear nor sorrow. For the little labor which you do on earth, you will gain a glorious reward and unending joy. I shall not fail those who have been faithful to My Will.

3. The man who has learned to pray and reflect, looks on self-perfection as his first and highest business. One who studies himself honestly, finds it easy to be silent about others. Learn to hold your tongue about the affairs of others unless your duty obliges you to speak. Fix your attention on your own faults and do something about them. If you are a true man of God, the doings of others will not make you worse than you are. If you can remedy a bad situation, do so. Many times, however, you can do nothing but pray over the misdeeds of others. Do this as one sinner praying for another, not as a superior being, praying for inferiors. When you have learned to fix your attention on your own affairs, you will find great peace of soul.

THINK: As far as I can, I should strive to help others. In many things however, I can help only by prayer, good example, and silence. Prayer gives grace to me and others. Good example reminds others of what they should be doing. Silence prevents the spreading of scandal and the flaring of tempers. Minding one's own business is a great virtue. My first task is to save my soul. As far as I can, I must also try to help others live a holier and happier life. Many things, however, are not in my power. After I have done what I can to help matters, I should leave them in God's hands.

PRAY: Lord, give me the courage to look at myself, the honesty to admit my faults and limitations, the sincerity to try self-improvement, and the love for You that will keep me at it for the rest of my life. Let me not be concerned about matters that are beyond my control, except to petition Your help. For the rest, let me really live the words: "Thy will be done." Amen.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

My Daily Bread Book 1 Chapter 32

Book One: The Way of Purification
CHAPTER 32 The Predominant Fault

CHRIST: MY CHILD, I give strength to those who make an honest effort in fighting against their faults. The harder they try, the more will they advance in virtue. The self-control which I give is a man's greatest glory because he approaches closer to My perfection.

2. No two men have the same combination of faults, nor have they the same amount of grace. I give more grace to those who make good use of what they have already received.

3 . As you make progress against your main fault, you will find your other faults easier to control. Once you are the master of your heart, you will be the master of your life. Your intelligence will be guided by My grace and your will, will follow My wise and holy law.

4. Begin at last! Attack first your most frequent fault. When you fall back into that fault, instead of becoming sad and discouraged, prove your sorrow by beginning again. You will find selfishness at the bottom of every fault. Your feelings will rebel, but you must fix your eyes on Me, and let your will stand firm on My law.

5. Prayer, penance, and My sacraments will help you to see Me near, and will give you the strength to follow My Will.

THINK: Every man has a predominant fault, that is, an outstanding one, because of which he commits most of the sins in his daily life. Conquering that fault means overcoming many different sins. This fault will not die easily, but a sincere and continued effort will weaken it more and more. Our Lord will not let me fight in vain. He will give me strength to make true progress against this fault. I need only to continue trying, doing whatever is necessary to overcome this fault.

PRAY: Lord, make me wise in using the means which You have provided for my spiritual victory. Let me never become careless or lazy in following the guidance of Your Church, nor in frequently using Your sacraments. The victory of this daily battle will bring me eternal glory in the wonderful life of Heaven. The reward which You have prepared is far greater than my effort can ever deserve of itself. Let me never become tired of fighting for Heaven. Amen.