Thursday, November 26, 2009
Thanksgiving and PMAAI Medical Mission 2009
As we near the time of year when all our families reconvene and all our energies are focused on fellowship, camaraderie, and turkey, let's all be reminded that to be thankful is to appreciate the people and enormous blessing connected to us.
This year, perhaps more than any in recent memory, has taught us that nothing is more necessary to a fulfilled life than being around our closest families and friends. In a year when many of our countrymen have seen their life savings swept away - whether by typhoons in the Philippines or by a stock market meltdown on Wall Street - we are truly reminded that the love of family and friends transcends any hardship that may cross our paths.
When a deluge ravaged Manila, it was Filipino camaraderie that carried our countrymen through the heartbreak. When the worldwide financial crisis left many of us without adequate means, it was the necessities of our immediate family that kept us going.
We, as the Philippine Masonic Association of America, Incorporated [PMAAI], may know more than anyone what it is to have a brotherhood whose reach crosses geographical and cultural boundaries. We understand what it is to have a support network when the going gets tough and to whom to turn when we seek help.
So, Brethren, this Thanksgiving, hold your family and friends closer than you ever have - and reach out to someone who may not be as fortunate as we are to have such a close brotherhood. It may make a difference to them more than we may ever know.
In light of this wonderful American tradition, please allow me to share the success of our recent PMAAI-sponsored Medical Mission held in Barangay Bagong Ilog, Pasig City, on November 2 - 5, 2009. We were humbled to serve 1,700 needy countrymen in the four short days we were in Pasig.
The remaining medicines and medical supplies were officially donated to Bagong Ilog Barangay Health Center on Friday, November 6th. And due to Mayor Robert Eusebio's(of Pasig City) delight with the Mission, he likewise donated a brand new, much needed, Dental Chair to the same Health Center just a few days later.
I am forever thankful to all of you, my brothers and sisters, for your support. To Brothers Phil Caliolio, Louie Decena, Jim Klinefelter & Fred Magsino and Sisters Faye Decena, Rose Magsino & Charrie Caliolio, thank you for helping me represent our organization in your presence. To the rest of my PMAAI brothers who took time out of your hectic Philippine vacation to visit and assist the Medical Mission in any form or capacity, thank you very much.
I would be remiss if I fail to mention the following who were also very instrumental in the success of the Mission; Memphis Mission of Mercy (Mr. & Mrs. Noli Zalamea-Founders), MW Bro Peter Lim Lo Suy, brothers & sisters from the Grand Lodge of the Philippines & its medical volunteers, Officers and members of Silanganan Lodge #19 under the leadership of WM Bro Willie Reyes, Kagitingan Lodge, VW Bro James Olayvar for his perseverance, VW Bro Elpedio de Chaves, WBro Rick Fulgencio, VW Bro Emil de la Rosa, Pasig Medical Society, Nueva Ecija Medical Society, Philippine Medical Association (PMA), Dr. Dollie Barawid-Prado for shouldering the most difficult task of all, being the Coordinator; to the brothers and sisters of my local chapter, PMATI (Memphis, TN Chapter), to my PMAAI brothers and sisters who have remained behind the scene; for your moral support and prayers and for believing in this vision. Special mention also to the Councils and staff of Barangay Bagong Ilog, Pasig, under the leadership of Captain Ferdinand “Bing” Avis, and finally, to Pasig Mayor Robert C. Eusebio for welcoming the volunteers to his city with open arms.
To the rest of the membership, please allow me to share the pictures during the Medical Mission thru YouTube. Please click on the URL below.
My family and I greet you a Happy & Safe Thanksgiving!
May the GAOTU bless us all.
Sincerely & fraternally,
Bro. Dandy Barawid, PM
2008 - 2010