An Open Door: 300 Youth Sojourn

By Vernon John L. Oro

Earlier this year, some members of the Lasallian community went through a journey that was, in their words, memorable and priceless—an experience that they will never forget.

Mr. Arvin Macahiya, Joseph Andrei Natal, Karl Hans Phodaca, and Princes Catequista of La Salle Green Hills (LSGH) participated in the 300 Youth Sojourn that took place on January 11 to 26 in different La Salle schools.

                300 Youth Sojourn is a 16-day journey that guides its participants in tracing the ministry life of St. John Baptiste de la Salle through a pilgrimage to 16 La Salle schools across the islands of the Philippines.

                A total of 51 Lasallians composed of 15 teachers and 36 students participated in this year’s 300 Youth Sojourn, and four of which are Sir Arvin and Joseph Andrei from the LSGH Junior High School Department, and Karl and Princes from the LSGH Adult Night High School.

Group photos of the 300 Youth Sojourn delegates. Photos are from Joseph Andrei Natal.

                “Aside from visiting different La Salle schools, the goal of 300 Youth Sojourn is for us to get to know the founder [St. John Baptiste de la Salle],” Sir Arvin said in an interview, “For each and every school, for example in La Salle Green Hills, we needed to let our co-participants know that it is an all-boys school, and to make them realize that LSGH is also an institution that is not only for the rich,” he added.

                Sir Arvin, a Bookkeeping and Entrepreneurship teacher in Grades 9 and 10, is the only faculty member from LSGH who participated in the 300 Youth Sojourn this year.

Portraits of Sir Arvin were taken by Luke Portento.

                For Joseph Andrei of Grade 10B, he participated in the 300 Youth Sojourn to discover the milestones of St. John Baptiste de la Salle, and to get to know the entire Lasallian community.

                Sir Arvin and Joseph Andrei shared similar sentiments regarding their visit in De La Salle Araneta University- Salikneta Farm where they encountered some farmers and heard of their stories that are sad and heart-breaking. They realized in that experience how valuable the work of the agricultural sector is.

                The hike at the reflection mountain to get to St. Jaime Hilario School de la Salle Bataan and the festive welcome party in La Salle University Ozamiz were other memorable experiences for the LSGH delegates.

                “Before, I was hesitant to go. But now, I feel so blessed that I went through the journey,” Joseph Andrei said. Sir Arvin advised that if given the chance to participate in activities like 300 Youth Sojourn, one should say yes.

Portraits of Joseph Andrei were taken by Luke Portento.

                “This once in a lifetime experience was priceless. The fact that you said yes to something means you’re opening the door. It is already one step forward to being ready and willing to experience everything,” Sir Arvin shared, “If you say no, you’re closing the door. Where’s the learning in that? Nothing,” he ended.

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