Sister Regina ‘Inday’ Bernad celebrated her Golden Jubilee in the city of her birth, Ozamiz, Mindanao, Southern Philippines on May 2, one week after Sisters Laetitia Talanay and Mercedes Ventenilla celebrated theirs in San Juan, Manila.
Sisters from San Juan travelled from Manila to Ozamiz for the celebration among them Sr. Mercy Ventenilla (another jubilarian). Sister Kim Miwha Carolyn came from Language School in Davao, East Mindanao, to be with her community for the day. All the Sisters assigned in Mindanao, those in Ozamiz, including Sister Patria Daomilas, on vacation from Manila, as well as Sisters Kathleen Melia and Patti Adonaire from their mission in Midsalip were on hand to welcome their visiting Sisters and other guests.
The Archbishop of Ozamiz, Most Reverend Jesus A. Diosdado, was chief celebrant of the Jubilee Mass in San Lorenzo Ruiz church, Columban Drive, a short distance from the Sisters’ house. Concelebrating with him were Columban Fathers, Michael Sinnott, Don Kill, Oliver McCrossan and Pat Baker together with diocesan priests, Rev. Timmy Ruben and Rev. Joven Lustre.
|Sister Inday had chosen a special liturgy for this joyous occasion. It included such highlights as the Welcome Address given by Sister Salvador Oyzon and a review of Sister Inday’s fifty years as a Columban Sister, given by Sister Inday;s sister, Columban Sister Teresita Bernad, at the request of the Archbishop. The Archbishop added his own account of Sister Inday’s life; he knew the Bernad family and praised the work which Sister Inday had accomplished and for which she is well-known in the city.
|Before the Mass ended, Sister Inday thanked all present: her family and friends, the benefactors of the Columban Sisters, the parish of San Lorenzo Ruiz and everyone – groups and individuals – who had helped to make the celebration the great success that it was. She did not forget anyone, not even a former student who had travelled all the way from Lingayen, Pangasinan, the place of Sister’s first assignment, to be present at the jubilee.
|Lunch was served in the church and, as it was a gathering of relatives and friends, some of whom had come from distant cities and provinces, it was hard to bring it to a close, even at mid-afternoon. The Golden Jubilarian had barely an hour’s rest before it was time for another memorable occasion – the blessing of the Sisters’ new chapel, built as an extension near the front porch of their house.
|Despite the seasonal unpredictable weather the clouds held back their rain and the sun shone brightly for Sister Inday and added a special dimension to her celebration. Nothing could dampen this golden day that Sister Inday had looked forward to with much hope and gratitude. So now… she is ready to begin her next fifty years!