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As the Religious of the Assumption (RA) Sisters prepare to conclude their presence and ministry at Xavier Ateneo by June 2024, the university, led by the Office of the President, honored them with a heartfelt tribute gathering. This event, held on 23 May 2024, was a gesture of gratitude and appreciation for the sisters’ 41 years of dedicated service and partnership in the spiritual guidance and pastoral care of Xavier Ateneo college students.

A Celebration of Gratitude and Appreciation

The gathering was marked by heartfelt messages of gratitude from their Jesuit and lay colleagues. Fr Ismael Jose III Villarino Chan-Gonzaga SJ JD, OIC-Vice President of Mission and Ministry and Rector of the CDO Jesuits; Dr Danikka Rose M Fabela, Director of Campus Ministries; and Dr Maria Rosario Mosqueda, Dean of the College of Agriculture, on behalf of Dr Juliet Q Dalagan, VP for Higher Education, delivered heartfelt messages of thanks.

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They all expressed deep gratitude and admiration for the hard work and humility of the sisters in fulfilling their duties as formators and ministers during student recollections and retreats. They reminisced about their friendships and happy encounters with the RA Sisters during their college years. Additionally, they recognized the positive impact of the sisters’ life and work on the spiritual life of the university.

 Special Message and Recognition

On behalf of the university, Xavier Ateneo President Fr Mars P Tan, SJ delivered a special message honoring the RA Sisters, highlighting their invaluable contributions to the university community. Further, he added that the sisters’ departure may be a loss for the university, but a gain for the next community they will serve. He then presented the RA Sisters with a Plaque of Recognition, symbolizing the university’s deep appreciation for their four decades of dedication and partnership.

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Fr Mars P Tan, SJ presenting the plaque to Sr Mary Francis C Talampas RA, Local Superior – CDO

Fr Frank Dennis B Savadera SJ, incoming VP of Mission and Ministry, and Fr Amado T Tumbali Jr, University Chaplain and Chairman of the History Department, also graced the tribute for the RA Sisters.

Reflection from the RA Sisters

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Sr Mary Francis C Talampas RA, Local Superior – CDO, expressed her heartfelt gratitude to Xavier Ateneo. She reflected on the mutual formation experienced through their work with the university, emphasizing the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius as a significant aspect of their journey. Sr Mary Francis shared, “One of the sharing of the sisters struck me so much, finding God in all things marked the lives of many of our sisters because they find a relationship of the quotation of St Ignatius to the quotation of St Marie Eugenie which goes this way: to see the good side of others is a great gift.”

The tribute was not just a farewell but a celebration of the RA Sisters’ legacy of compassion, commitment, and spiritual guidance that will continue to inspire the Xavier community for years to come.

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