Netizens of The Word

First Letter of Butch to the Exodians

Posted by exodians on February 14, 2008

writing.pngFrom Uganda
Butch’s letter

Darbs… Wow, I almost forgot that you were indeed called by that name when I was still with high hopes of becoming a priest, 20 years ago….My apologies for not getting back immediately… I was called up by our country office for a meeting… and as usual, after meetings, there are just million things to do… I am in a mission area here in Uganda, about 6 hours from the capital. I got no permanent internet connection so I just decided to write something and attach it tomorrow when I get a chance to visit an internet café… yah and maybe I will have more time to surf the site…

fr.elie…Indeed, the idea of having a reunion is great and I am sure people will just flock and have a great time. We got around 5 years to organize it and maybe, try to evolve something out of the exodus that we had 20 years ago.

To the Exodians

I am sitting here in my house listening to African music all over my place and I can’t help but ponder on the fate of the Exodians… our beginnings… the struggles… the different stories of falling down and of course the getting up and pushing further… and getting the important lessons in the process.

I am really thankful for your taking the initiative and the effort of taking on the task of preserving the essence of the event that had made us what we are now… I can still recall the long talks we had in 2002 when I was still with UNDP Manila… your plans on how we can move on… and somehow we got lost and now here we are again, probably more stable and be able to plan and do what we can…

Offhand, it might be good to start the ball rolling with something like what we discussed last week… EXODIANO… 20 years hence… or something to that effect… I can still recall what we had before… EXODIANO, Asa ka Padulong?… that was the big question, maybe not only by me but also by a lot of us… now 20 years later, perhaps a lot of us still have the same question… but perhaps some of us have already started to have a clear grasp of where to go, moulded by the 20 years of experience… of trials, of the lessons from all those…

I think if we can jump-start it this way, we can slowly shape and evolve the Exodians into something… I am just thinking that we got to move on from that exodus to expand our coverage to where we are now… but always holding on to that link that we have… the exodus and what we stood for… we have to always remember that as we evolve and try not to lose but further strengthen that resolve… I can still vividly picture out the ‘shout’ that we had before… the ‘we love our vocation, we have to fight for it’… thinking out loud, I guess one way forward for us is to take the 5 years of our preparations for the reunion to slowly evolve ourselves and redefine what we are by what we have become without losing the essence of the exodus.

We move forward… by recognizing the injustice that happened to us before… but standing up to that challenge and become what we are now… serving the same humanity that we once dream of serving but perhaps in better capacities… or in different capacities yet not less effective and efficient. Think of this… Exodians all over the world flocking back to the place common to us all to reminisce all the joys that we all shared… to share the successes that we have in our different worlds… and still continue to fight for the vocation… not necessarily ours but of those who are young and who have dreams of priesthood, like we once had.

Roughly, the following might be the outline of possible direction and activities:

  1. Year 1 – take stock of the 36 Exodians… where they are, contacts etc… build on the existing forum and discuss what we are now and what our direction will be…
  2. Year 2 – Expand… touch others who shared the experience in NDAS… or those who was once had the dream…
  3. Year 3 – regular fora, exploring ways to support vocations and influence formation, if possible
  4. Year 4 – Start planning for the grand reunion… the themes, programme, support etc.
  5. Year 5 – Drum up the reunion, invite friends, plan for logistics and details… and of course the reunion itself

Try to look into this and if people are interested, we can slowly build up… I am sure we can build the momentum in no time…

Till here… will surely be in touch.

Warm regards,



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