I had life-changing experiences in Lestonnac Youth Center for four years. Lestonnac Youth Center is a retreat house run by the Sisters of the Company of Mary. The mission of this Order is to lend their hands through education to those students who deserve and want to finish their studies yet their parents cannot afford to send them to school. There are few students only who can avail of this opportunity to become a working scholar.
The ODN sisters helped me to create a new life. Through their mission in Lestonnac Youth Center, they helped me to become a professional teacher. They helped me to become a well-rounded person. Well-rounded because they did not only make me professional but they helped me to develop my social, emotional, economic and most of all my spiritual aspect in life.
Although I experienced some trials in my studies such as financial, emotional and others, the sisters were always there to help me and guide me. They were always there to support, guide and encourage me to continue my journey. They helped me on how to handle my problems and how to be myself and to realize that I should be proud of myself because in the eyes of God “we are equal”. We are unique individuals and whatever may happen, no one can replace me.
In Lestonnac Youth Center I learned on how to live with other people especially with my companions. I lived with three co-working scholars. They were my companions all throughout my stay in the center. In addition to that I had another three companions; they are the regular workers of this institution. They are the ones who stood as my parents while I was a working scholar.
There are so many unforgettable experiences that I have while staying in Lestonnac Youth Center. Through the sisters I was able to visit other places. I was able to go to Jasaan for our outing. Then last summer, April 2011, we went to Camiguin. We visited almost all of the hotspots there. We went to Mantigue Island, Walkway and the most enjoyable was the hot spring. I really loved it and if given a chance I would like to go back there.
This last January after Sendong, we had our outing in Jasaan. I’m thankful to experience that together with the sisters and my co-scholars and workers. I am so grateful to have them in my life. I don’t know how to say thank you for all the things that you thought for and gave me.
Furthermore, the sisters are the ones who completed me and molded me to what I am now. Through them I was able to reach the stars that I wanted to reach. I am also grateful to the staff of LYC. They were the ones who accompanied me throughout my journey.
It is very pleasant to recollect my experiences during my college and Lestonnac days for more than four years. These years for me were not enough to learn all the things that I need in life. Yet, I know that the sisters did their best to give all what they have to help me. This long period was associated with pleasant memories of various kinds.
In short, my experiences in Lestonnac Youth Center with its staff and with the Sisters make me rich. Through them I became a well-rounded person and these experiences of mine will serve as my treasure in life. No one can steal this from me. How I wish they can help more people, especially those poor yet deserving students. What I can say now is thank you very much and more power to all of us. (By Myrna Libugan Tin-awan)