by Pastor Maricel Monceda-Osias
“We want you to make KKFI your home away from home.” This is the phrase we usually say to the students and reviewees upon entering KKFI dormitories. These words are one way of telling them that we are family; that they belong to a family. And families do care for one another.
This is why KKFI, through the Pastoral Concern Department (PCD), make sure that students and reviewees who stay in our dormitories, as part of our family, are taken care of. We strive to achieve this through the following programs:
- Care Group
Care Group is done from Tuesday to Friday every week. At least one group (2-5persons) meets every day. Groups include both resident students (regular residents) and reviewees (those who are staying for months for board exam reviews). Care Group session involves reading of the Bible together, letting the Bible speak to them, sharing their life-experiences, struggles, goals in life and so on. The more frequent the group meets the more the group’s members become closer to one another.
The sense of having a support system is very much appreciated by members of the care group. This is also a venue where they will be able to express who they are without bias and prejudice. It is in this group that they will not only learn how to receive care but also to give care to some struggling members of the Care Group.
Some of them get to meet Christ here in KKFI while some strengthen their relationship with Christ here. Mitzi Ann Fornez, a Care Group Leader who just passed her Physical Therapy Board Exam at Guam, USA last December, said: “Care group changed my life. It is here in KKFI Care Group that I got to know Christ better. I might have gone through a lot in life but I realized that I became stronger because of these experiences.”
The Chaplain’s office provides counseling to struggling students and reviewees staying in our dormitories. As they share their life’s struggles during Care Group meetings, we talk to them individually, providing them with emotional and psychological care based on their situation.
I remember Adrian Alima, a seaman from Zamboanga City, who was very thankful for the counseling given by the KKFI. He was a hostage survivor when his parents and members of the family were shot dead before his very eyes by armed men in his hometown. Upon leaving KKFI he said “Salamat kaayo Pastor, nakaginhawa ko gamay” (Maraming salamat Pastor. Nakahinga ako ng kaunti.)
- Broadcast Ministry
Scheduled every night (5:30-6:00 p.m.) Broadcast Ministry tries to bring students for a moment to God through evening devotions and prayers aired over KKFI’s paging system. The chaplain together with the dormitory “mommies” (dorm assistants) take charge of the said ministry. This program provides an ample opportunity for the students to hear the word of God speaking to them despite being busy with their daily activities.
Leo Buscaglia rightly puts it when he said: “Too often we underestimate the power of touch, a smile, a kind word, or a listening ear, an honest compliment or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
Indeed, KKFI is trying its best to turn someone’s life for the better by doing the mentioned acts above. By God’s grace, we will continue to do so.