“A Certain Kind of Voice”: Youth’s Perception of an Authentic Servant-Leader


Cocooned inside the four corners of solace, we, the modern Filipino youth, could barely see ourselves making a change. But each time we exit the realms of our comfort zones, only to find a chaotic land, we know immediately that we must not shut the world out again. We realize for a fact that our country needs a certain kind of courage to speak—to speak without a trace of reluctance, to speak not to dishearten but to encourage, to speak not of hatred nor indifference, but of love.

What we need is a certain kind of voice to break the silence or to silence the noise.

A certain kind of voice like Nick Joaquin’s.

Nick Joaquin Photo courtesy: lookingforlola.wordpress.com Nick Joaquin
Photo courtesy: lookingforlola.wordpress.com

“By your dust and by the dust of all generations, I promise to continue…”

And then these words were all that mattered. Wholly enamoured by his passion for writing which melted…

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25 Pieces of Literature and of the Arts You’ll Need to Color Your Life Up

Must Reads (and see for the theatre plays)


You know how you live life everyday over and over and over and you feel like you’re doing the same things forever? Or when you think that the world has nothing left interesting to offer to you. Well, literature is here to help and bring some spice to you and your hungry thoughts. Here is our list of highly recommended pieces of art and literature. Enjoy!


1.) Forbidden – Tabitha Suzuma


“How can something so wrong feel so right?” Forbidden, a novel that tells us that love is neither a choice, nor is it forever, yet we hold on to it while it lasts. They say that certain bonds build us, strengthen us, and define us. But what if that same bond became too strong that it became forbidden? How come loving someone can be such a crime? A lost cause, a battle over before it began.

see full…

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originally posted in theinnovativejournal.wordpress.com

by: playwrightphanatic and Thelostlabyrinth

Agitation and excitement- these two emotions enveloped the Philippines when the news of Pope Francis’ visit to the country was first disseminated to the public. It easily became the talk of the crowd. Everyone was concerned despite the diversity present in the country’s religion. All of us knew that everyone has a role to play in this and that it is not something that is to be taken for granted. This event clearly posted a big challenge to the country; classes in Manila were cancelled, roads were closed, people were briefed and were asked to cooperate and the country’s organization was tested. The Papal Visit became the week of a differently dressed Philippines.

THE PEOPLEpope-francis-philippines-luneta-20150118-043

The Pope has already touched the heart of many all around the world even before his visits to various countries. He was unfailingly adored by the public and became an icon. This is where excitement comes in. Filipinos are utterly enthusiastic and the delight in the faces of many is quite very perceptible. With this, mass hysteria has been long expected when it comes to meeting him. Others even say that the treatment given to him by the mass is the same as of the treatment given to rock stars. People wanted their picture taken with the Pope, be in the same area as he is, touch him, be blessed by him or even just have a short second glimpse of his holiness. Some could not quite contain their emotions during the events. Many were crying and overwhelmed with the simple pleasures of being able to wave at the Pope. Throughout the week of the Pope’s stay, the crowd was always there wherever he went. From the pa1461453_10152684055511288_1899528477955860035_nrades, the youth encounter in University of Santo Tomas, the Holy Masses in Manila Cathedral and in Luneta and his visit in Tacloban, people showed up. Notwithstanding the consequences or danger of competing with the crowd and the blows of nature, the undying support and will to go were still there. The number of volunteers was undeniably impeccable too. In majority of these events, it seemed like the crowd behaved well and showed discipline and character. Most looked surprisingly committed. The guidelines imposed by the authority were clear enough for the safety of the people and the Pope although others failed to obey and stick to the rules. Not all were strong conformists specially when the need to look over one’s necessities took over. Not every rule was followed correctly and not everyone tried hard enough to let everything planned fall into place. Some were too eager to think about the others around them. The hype and the surroundings created such tension although there were minimal reports on hurt people, but there was this casualty wherein a volunteer died after a scaffolding fell on her in Tacloban. When we compare it to the 1975 visit of Pope John Paul II, clearly this time, the enforcement of the measures needed for an orderly event became more intensely strict to avoid any happening that might destroy the peaceful ambience. Fortunately, it reflected upon the outcome in the events for there were no major stampedes and nothing harmed the Pope. Moreover, the country, we could say, was prepared for the awaited Papal visit. Performances were polished, streets were furnished and the people were asked to be ready for it. On the good side of the string, we were more than ready.


 It is not a secret that the Philippine politics is one dirty dirty game of manipulation and simulation. There are these affairs that our politicians fail to deal with very genuinely. To the amusement of many, it appeared quite funny how they all looked very angelic and sanctified when they were before the Pope. They all looked very convinced withpope-francis-philippines-malacanang-20150116-001 the messages of the Pope about doing away with all corrupt methods and revitalizing the real essence of public service. In most of the instances, there is hypocrisy written all over their faces. The best that everyone can hope for is that they would really live up these messages from the Pope for the betterment of all things. Nonetheless, the authorities did well with making the country look beautiful and alive. The people were safe and the Pope was happy after all. But, we think that it was unnecessary to hide the poor people from the Pope just to create a desirable environment. The Pope came here to this country to give hope and visit the needy and this diminished when the people he came to visit were hidden from him. There were lots of news articles saying that the squatters were kept out of sight from the Pope and it is just sad to think that there were lots of people who deserved to meet the Pope, but were unprivileged of doing so. In our opinion, bias really is a force that can never be demolished.


Roman Catholicism is not the only existing religion in the country and everyone knows that. When the Pope came, there were those who were not so happy and excited about it. There were those who could not care less. Even so, it is quite nice to know that the feuds on religion were quite minimal and were not overly emphasized. Of course there were still those who emerged as complete haters who love to lambaste others and think of themselves as superior. Nevertheless, the number of people who exemplified respect prevailed over the ethnocentric ones. In our opinion, the meeting of the leaders from the different religions sparked up hope for a complete, incorrigible unity among everyone. It might not be instant, but at least it is a start. The meeting looked very sincere as what was wanted.   Not everything that was planned went on too well, but fortunately, there were only little distortions. Pope Francis’ visit to the Philippines surely is one for the books and an experience worth telling in the future. Things like this one do not happen everyday. Learning transpired through the cooperation of the people and that is what was important. The value of mercy and compassion upon the hands of Christ was the main point that the Pope highlighted. What we are hoping for is that for these values and learning to last.

Photo credits: Rappler, Abs-cbnnews and The Varsitarian

Poetry as an Enunciation of Lasting Inspiration : A Critique Paper on SIR WILLIAM ERNEST HENLEY’S INVICTUS (1888)

originally posted in theinnovativejournal.wordpress.com


Sir William Ernest Henley’s classic works of literature have undoubtedly transpired through generations and generations. These works went on further through the tapering halls on the path of universality and excellence. Until today, they continue to thrive as they prove what permanence is all about. Among these works, Invictus soared greatly and perhaps, the highest among his works. It possesses certain elements that one simply can’t find through all other poems of the same goal. Its success on making its way to be etched in the hearts, minds and souls of many marked the continuous flame for the importance and influence of poetry. This poem is known to be a part of the inspiration that moved a lot of notable people- heroes, artists, humanitarians. Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela are just two big names to identify.

This is what poetry is – succinct, methodical, striking, intense. It was written for everyone, every single one. It only has four simple stanzas, each with four short lines and yet it screams of refinement and sophistication. It speaks of a lot of things that lead to what every individual needs in the midst of wild ridicules: inspiration and hope. If these two abstract concepts (hope and inspiration) were real people, it is as if they have breathed life into Invictus to counsel people one way or another.

It empowers and encourages as it talks about how one coward, damaged soul is able to find a way out of a despairing night. No matter what a person’s problem might be- be it with insanity, education, health, inner conscience or with the nuisances concerned with love, I am sure that this poem can spark up something deep within that person for it is written in the light of clarity, but also with depth. It is an invitation to the readers that whatever obstacles there may be, we can brave it without succumbing to the thoughts that we are weak and helpless.

It is that type of poem that talks to you in your darkest hours and tells you to never give in to the wistful moments and life pressures. When you feel like your life is one big joke and everyday is like waking up to a nagging sun and grumpy, dark clouds, reading it a couple of times can do the job. This is where its relieving side enters; it is a pacifying catalyst for low self-esteem. When you feel like it is not your life anymore because others try to dictate to you what you should do, who you should be, how you should dress or walk or laugh or love, just remember the last two lines of the poem:

Screen_Shot_2013-03-15_at_6.17.22_PM_7b89c5dc-f2fd-4e1d-b6bf-356cbd80532b_large“I am the master of my fate,

I am the captain of my soul.”

The hint of rebellion in those last two lines only made things even better and only made the poem’s purpose even stronger. It reiterates the struggle of controlling life. Why “struggle”? The truth was not hidden nor recreated in the poem. It did not complement nor praised how great life is because the poem technically said that life is no fairytale, but we can fire up the desire to live it in the best way possible.

Many have dared to do the same, they too have written majestic poems in the mission to move people and they have done it emphatically, but there is nothing I can compare to how Invictus touched my poor, pained soul. Invictus is the world telling people to be unafraid, be daring and never let anything or anyone conquer you.

Photo Courtesy: tumblr.com and etsy.com



By Bernadette A. Pamintuan (aka Kira Mona; *theangelicvixen.wordpress.com*)

Photo credits: mhmtheatre.com Photo credits: mhmtheatre.com

Oliver! is a musical inspired by Charles Dickens’ novel, Oliver Twist. Lionel Bart’s 1961 London and Broadway production hit glossed over some of Dickens’ more graphic passages but managed to retain a strong subtext to what was essentially light entertainment. It is a masterful job of telling its story almost exclusively through song and dance.

 “Oliver!” is a story of a nine-year old orphan who managed to run away to the busy streets of London where he met a gang of boy thieves run by a wizard of pickpocketry, Fagin, with influences from a menacing thief, Bill Sykes.

The first scenes of the play narrated how Oliver lost his mother and was sent to a workhouse where he experienced early hardships in life. He knew how it felt to be hungry and to beg for more food…

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By Kira Mona

_80354807_80354640 Photo courtesy: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-30875645

More than a pilgrim’s most exhilarating encounter with the Holy Father, the recent papal visit proved to be one of the largest media spectacles yet. As early as October 2014, right after the official announcement of the Holy See, the local government began series of preparations—from the beautification of the city to the training of our armed forces. Every eye was keenly fixed upon the personalities who took charge of the major physical improvements of the streets and of the venues listed in the papal itinerary. Likewise, every mass rehearsal was documented and a number of dry runs were conducted.

As the days neared to the actual affair, each television station had their own themes of broadcast. ABS-CBN had “Thank You sa Malasakit: Pope Francis sa Pilipinas” while GMA had “Ang People’s Pope sa Pilipinas” special news coverages. Furthermore, radio and print affiliates of…

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