Monday, March 2, 2009

Cring-cring: A Happy Birthday To You

Today is my cousin's birthday, Cring-cring. She's almost a year younger than me. We've got a special bond that binds us together through thick and thin.

Cring and I in a coffee shop.

She has this classical Filipino characteristics that makes her different from teens her age. The Filipino culture is very big on respect, and here are some of the gestures that she is still lively use in this modern age:
  1. "Mano po" - (pronounced mah-noh poh) is a Filipino tradition of a physical gesture of taking the hand of an elder and bringing it towards your forehead. This is a sign of respect for the elder and is usually done at the point of greeting or farewell. She makes it a point to do this gesture to her elders.
  2. "Kuya" or "Ate" - the older an individual is, the more they call for respect. The term 'kuya' (pronounced koo-yah) refers to an older male person; it means 'big brother.' Its verbal usage indicates that you respect the older male and recognize the difference in age. The feminine form is 'ate' (pronounced ah-teh) which is directed towards an older female person; it means 'big sister.' Children are encouraged to use these terms with their older siblings. It simply demonstrates a form of respect for the older individual.
Aside from these Filipino customs, she also has the value of being generous to others. The kids outside the Redemptorist Church, which she is also very active as a voluntary reader and Sunday-school teacher, would somehow ask her for food and she would not hesitate to give what she has got in her bag. Additionally, her personality has won her so many friends from different walks of life, age, gender, and race.

Being religious and close to God, she's the one who has greatly influenced me most to serve God. She did not force or push me in some way to be nearer to God. I have studied in different Catholic schools all my life, but since my focus was to study, I didn't have the opportunity to meditate most of my life. But because of Cring, she has shown me and reminded me of Jesus through her actions and words. She loves kids, gives generously, prays unceasingly, respects her elders, loves her parents, and most of all, loves God, Jesus Christ, and Mama Mary above all. Surely, she also has some negative attributes as a human being. But her goodness and her love to God, our Father, makes her stand out from others. Moreover, I was amazed with her answer when we were talking about our dreams.
"Ate, you know what, my dream is to build shelters or a townhouse for people or families who do not have shelters. I am not sure if I can make this happen, but, hopefully time will come that this will be done."
After she said that, I was wondering how can I help her with her dreams. Still, I'm very much blessed to have you, Cring, and I am thankful to have a cousin like you.

Happy Birthday, Cring! I love you always! :)

The author, Cring, and Baying (our cousin) in Cring's dress shop.


  1. Wow beautiful ladies.great blog learned 3 word of Filipino. again a great blog.
    what happened thought you were on my followers but you changed your mind did I do or say something wrong.

  2. The power of Christ is always best shown when we live Him. Seeing Him makes it personal and that's what a relationship with him is all about.


  3. For Mr. Jesseb: Thanks for the compliment. I already replied in your blog under "If God be for us". Good day to you. :)

    For Mr. Matt: True. Living through His words and prayer deepen our relationship with Him. God bless you too. :)

  4. I love your blogs but this one especially reminds me of my cousin. We are very close except she is 9 years younger so more than a sister she is like my daughter. We have spent many many happy times together and we both love the Lord and try our best to serve Him. I just wanted to say thanks for bringing back some happy memories for me. Being a Child of God is one of the greatest gifts there is but having loved ones to share it with is also a gift. God bless you.


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