05312024.Web.Banner Fr Mars P Tan SJ

Message to XU Junior High School Administrators & Faculty on Teachers’ Day


Good morning, my dear colleagues in the Junior High School, administrators, teachers, staff, and students!

Thank you for this opportunity to speak to you and share with you my message of gratitude and appreciation for your persons as educators and second parents to our students and your labour and dedication for their education/formation.   

Ever since I graduated from college, I’ve always believed that teaching is one of the noblest professions, and in fact, a vocation to some. This conviction led me to apply for a teaching job in the forested mountains of Compostela Valley as a Jesuit Volunteer. Those were two years of hard living, cooking your meals, washing your clothes, fetching water from the spring, crossing rivers, and hiking mountains to visit homes of my students, and always in fear that the NPAs or the military would come at night. But those were years also of joy and adventure together with my students and fellow teachers. 

This time, you may not have the same hardships I had in the mountains, but certainly, the challenges you have now are as significant and even more crucial than mine. The Junior High School is much, much bigger, more complex, and more sophisticated. There is always the endless challenge to deliver the quality Jesuit education to our students, to keep up with the intellectual quest of the brighter ones, to push the underperformers, to courageously face the extra-ordinary demands like the PAASCU surveys, and to constantly avoid the health and safety threats brought about by the Covid pandemic. 

So you see, educators and teachers are not only about teaching but a lot more. The university counts on you to continue delivering quality Jesuit education to our students, especially during this time of the pandemic. I hope that despite the hardships we all are going through, you continue to teach and support the education of our students as administrators and staff with Magis and cura personalis so that they are formed and trained to become students of competence and compassion and conscience. May you also discover the joy and freedom in giving yourself to your greater desires for the greater good. 

Thank you for guiding and taking care of our students. Thank you for sharing your best with them. May God bless us all and the work that we do together. Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam.