God’s Gift to the RVM Congregation

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Saturday, August 30, 2014

Mother Ignacia del Espiritu Santo (Foundress of the Religious of the Virgin Mary)

ANYTHING given is a gift which has to be motivated by love. Such love expresses itself in voluntarily presenting something to another whom someone regards with esteem to some extent. A supreme example of this is God the Father’s stupendous generosity when He sent His only begotten Son to save the world immersed in sin. In his discourse on God’s love, John puts it thus in Chapter 4: 7-9:

“Dear friends, let us love another because love comes from God. Whoever loves is a child of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. And God showed His love for us by sending his only Son into the world so that we might have life through him. This is what love is, it is not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the means which sins are forgiven.”


What a marvelous gift is Jesus to us all! We can only turn to the Father with deep gratitude and ask Him to teach us how to love Jesus. Such love impels us to imitate Him not only in words but more so in our actions. We have to open our hearts to Him discarding anything that displeases God.

There should be that self-emptying of our whole being. No amassing of wealth, honor, fame or power for with all of these, the loving Lord will not be free to dwell in us. It is imperative for us to seek Jesus and let Him remain in us. Having Him in us will spur us on to imitate His ways of thinking, talking and acting.

Similarly, if God has given Jesus to the whole world, He has also given Venerable Ignacia del Espiritu Santo to the members of the Congregation of the Religious of the Virgin Mary commonly known as the RVM Sisters. To these RVM Sisters, Venerable Ignacia is a God-given treasure. With the establishment of the institution that started with a few women who were attracted to the life of their Foundress, the membership gradually grew in number, looking up to her leadership not only in living their formal prayer but also in the apostolic works towards those who need their services.

Venerable Ignacia is an amazing token of God’s love to the RVM Sisters. In her, they see the beauty and wonder of life itself. She is richly endowed with many blessings and graces that make her spiritual daughters look up to her with deep affection and respect, moving them to thank God for the gift of her person. Aptly has Mr. Nick de Ocampo written of this valiant women referring to her thus:

“By her deed, Mother Ignacia not only belongs to the history of the Church but also to the history of the Filipino nation. By being a religious vanguard at the time when religious was the all-defining force in native society, Mother Igancia is at once a patriot, a pioneer, a nationalist, a leader, a feminist, a visionary, a strong heroine! She embodies what is best in the Filipino soul: dignity, freedom, courage, spiritual maturity.”

With these glowing remarks as tribute to her person, her spiritual daughters can only raise their minds and hearts to God in a paean of thanksgiving, in a song of joy, triumph, praise, acclamation. God in His glory has to be extolled by the RVM Sisters for the gift of Venerable Ignacia del Espiritu Santo.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 30, 2014.


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