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Christmas is about family, memories, and passing on a legacy

Ed and I have been active members of our community for 35 years. Hence, we have become Ninong and Ninang to so many children (both baptism and confirmation) and couples (matrimony) in CFC.


And we take our Ninong and Ninang duties quite seriously. After all, isn’t that what being godparents is all about— to stand as second parents to our inaanak? As members of a Christian community, we really strive to reach out to them despite the distance and time.And so every year, we make it a point to invite them over, sometimes for Halloween, most often for Christmas.


Ed and I always discuss what to give each of them within our budget. Most of the time, I bake or if Ed approves and gives me the money, I shop for gifts.The gifts need not be extravagant, but small gifts, something practical or something nice to have or something consumable. At one time we gave away golf umbrellas that said “You are covered by the love of the Davids”.


As a family, we do the Advent wreath prayers, attend “Simbang Gabi” as husband and wife, put up the Belen and Christmas décor, put up Christmas photos of when our children were younger and of those family members who are away from us. We hang Christmas stockings for all members of the family which get filled up during the feast of the three Kings, attend Christmas Eve Mass, pray before Noche Buena, open gifts on Christmas Eve, visit elderly relatives, prepare apple dumplings as gift. We also share rice harvested from our small plot in the province with families, buy simple gifts for loved ones and people we are close to, and for those who have served us. We give gifts to around 200 people. But like I said, the gifts are sim-ple and prepared with love, and are meant to let everyone know that we are thinking of them.


I am thankful that our children have also taken on Christmas activities like holding a tiangge for ANCOP, or visiting a hospital for sick kids. My eldest daughter’s family prepares food for Noche Buena and goes around after our own Noche Buena to visit a few homeless families to share food with. 


We have passed on the advent wreath to the  family of our eldest daughter and passed on to the others some of our meaningful ornaments.Ed and I also started a Christmas tradition for CFC fulltime workers of ministries we were involved with— teachers, Tekton workers, and ANCOP employees. Instead of buying them gifts, we share our blessings to add to their Noche Buena budget.Why do we do these? Because Christmas is a season of love, and we believe in building memories with all the people we encounter. We may have learned the value of being men for others from our own families, or from school, but this value has been strengthened by teachings we receive in CFC.


Gift-giving is not exclusive to Christmas. It is a year-long mindset . We share our time, talent and treasure. Time - which we have more now of; talent- which we hope can still be used; treasure— even though it is less now since Ed’s retirement.It may be a cliché, but we have always believed that it is better to give than to receive and that the smiles of the people we share our blessings with are priceless. We are also firm believers that God will take care of our family as we serve Him.


This Christmas, we are hopeful that we will still be able to continue the traditions we have started. We also hope that we can explore new and creative things to share with others. (Lina David, as told to Andrelene Veloso)


Editor’s Note: Ed and Lina David joined CFC back in 1982. Aside from the usual service track, they have also served as KFC Head, YFC Campus-Based coordinators, and provincial area head. Ed started CFC in Zambales and was its first PAH 27 years ago.

Added on Monday, January 15, 2018


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