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KateA glimpse of SFC ICON 2013
Posted by Kate Deiparine on 2/18/2013 5:13:20 AM



Be “friends” of Christ. Be “singles” for Christ.

“I would like to express my gratitude to the Singles for Christ for inviting me to be with you on this annual conference.  I cannot but bring joy to priest and especially with Bishops to be with young people.  With young people I am always reminded by the statement of our hero Jose Rizal, ‘Kabataan, kayo ang pag-asa ng Bayan.’ (The youth is the hope of the Fatherland.)”  This was the first statement of Bishop Bernard Cortez as he celebrates the first Holy Eucharist at the 20th CFC Singles for Christ International Conference.

Bishop Cortez reminded the singles about the message of the late Pope John Paul II when he visited the Philippines during the World Youth Day 1995, “Dear young people of the Philippines, I would like to compare you to rainwater.  You are like rainwater that accumulates after days of praying at the mountains.  And once it accumulated, it would be regulated, disciplined, guided and controlled, that water could generate electricity for the development of people that could produce food for the country.  But then if that rainwater could not be controlled, it would rush into towns and cities that could flood the city and bring tears and disasters to people.  What do you want to be?  That rainwater that would bring development and progress or that rainwater that could bring tears and disasters to the people? Then, be friends of Christ.”

Bishop Cortez reiterated the words “Be friends with Christ.”  He told everyone, “Be SINGLES for Christ. Be that rainwater who is controlled and guided that could bring progress to your country.”

They will fast

The conference also falls to the season of Lent.  Bishop Cortez reminded everyone to fast so that all will be free.  ”You need to empty yourselves with the things that could not bring you to Christ.  We are here in this conference, make use of all your energies for something that is good.”

“Dear delegates, from all places in the Philippines and other countries, be like that rainwater, inspired, controlled, guided so that it could bring growth to your community, to your country and to yourself. God bless you all.”  Cortez added.


The Invitation

“More than a celebration, this weekend is also an invitation to the Eternal Union with God,”  missionary JQ Quimpang said as he gives the first session entitled “The Invitation” of the SFC 20th ICON.  ”Our Ultimate destination is heaven,” he added.

The Invitation is about our intimate and constant exchange of love with God.  This union is a heavenly marriage wherein we are called to embrace our earthly journey as a transit to our final home.

We respond to God’s invitation through our vocation and our conviction to choose Him every time.

Union is the image of a vine and it’s branches.  The best image of union is Marriage.  And it is the best representation between God and His relationship  His children.  The marriage between Jesus Christ and the Church.  We are the church.  But this relationship is not easy, we will encounter a lot of sacrifices and hardships.  As SFCs, as we finish our CLP, and as we go out of our venues, we face a lot of temptations.  But then let us remember that we have the Holy Spirit in us, to guide us and to be with us.  It is our decision to CHOOSE God every moment.

The Wedding in Cana is a great reminder for us of the invitation of God in our lives.  Through our vocation, and through our SFC we journey and live out our calling.

Our Vocation – Our great reason to continue this journey is to live out our VOCATION which serves as the blueprint to fulfill our ETERNAL UNION with God to whom our heart truly belongs.

This is our HOPE and our consolation.  The pleasures of this world are foretastes or icons of the infinite joys that awaits us in heaven.  Let us thank God for inviting us to partake in this beautiful plan.  The Bible begins with the matrimony of Adam and Eve and ends in the eternal union of Christ and His Church.  This is the invitation that God is raring for us to accept.

The whole session was given through a “LiveLoud” session of praise and worship.


Believe. Trust. Obedience.

This day is more than just listening, it is about learning to apply the Word in our everyday lives. SFC members start day 2, in Ninoy Aquino Stadium, 8am, in order to be empowered through the workshops. Adrian Enaje prepares the heart of the people, through the worship.


BELIEVE (Faith of the mind)

Most Rev. Bishop Bacani starts off the second day of SFC ICON by enriching the minds and hearts of our brothers and sisters on the meaning of Nicene Creed, seeing this as a symbol of our Catholic Faith. Through this, people can see that we are strongly Catholic. In order to properly embrace the faith that we have, Bishop Bacani starts to explain what it means to have Catholic Faith.

“Our creed is not just recited it is a concrete PROFESSION OF FAITH, starting with the words “I BELIEVE”. To say I believe means one accepts it to be true.” Through using the participation of the crowd, Bishop Bacani effectively points out the three ways of knowing, zoning towards the third way of knowing which is BELIEVING.

“We all have an option to believe. However when it comes to God, God is always believable. We know the truth not because of evidence, not because of reasoning but because God says so. Our senses and our mind is nothing compared to power of His Word.” Bishop Bacani explains.

To clearly explain it further, He ends this part powerfully by saying “Is love seen? There are indications seen but more than this love needs to be believed”

TRUST. (faith of the heart)

“Faith is also Pagtitiwala. Trust and Confidence.” Bacani demonstrates the essence of trust through a trust fall. Amusing the entire audience, Bacani points out the trust we ought to have in God, stating that God is all powerful and loving. Thus, we have no reason not to trust.

“God will make sure that if we trust Him and we put our lives in His hands, He will not let evil win over us”. Through this, Bishop Bacani passionately affirms the crowd to relentlessly trust God with the totality of our lives. This is a concrete profession of our faith through the value of trust.

OBEDIENCE (faith of the hands of hand)

Starting from the faith of the mind by believing, and going next to the faith of the heart which is trusting, Bacani then moves to the most essential part of faith which is the faith of the hands and feet, which is by OBEYING. “It is nothing to believe for even the devils believe. It is important that one must obey.”

“When you have faith, it means ‘Lord I give myself to you – mind, heart, hands and feet, body and soul’ “. This is faith. To have faith is to be SINGLES for CHRIST, not only through our lips but with our lives. To have faith means to live our lives knowing that we belong to God.

Coming from the Nicene Creed, Singles for Christ ought to realize that this is more than just a profession of faith with our words, but an expression of faith through our lives.



Are you a joyless Christian?

MANILA, February 16, 2013 — What is worse than being a sinner? It’s being a “joyless Christian”, this is according to a lay Catholic speaker who gave the SFC International Conference’s second workshop today.

“The most powerful argument against Christianity are joyless Christians,” according to EWTN head for Asia Pacific region Edwin Lopez, who gave the “Witness” workshop this afternoon.

8,000 SFCs listened to Lopez who explained how — even with the challenges posed by the new evangelization — so many Christians have become like the salt that has lost its taste, as described in Scripture

“‘Yun ang tinatawag na asin. Nasan na ang asin na ‘yan? (That’s what you call salt. Where is that salt now?),” he asked.

According to Lopez, Christians lose their “saltiness” when they avoid the Cross.

“You run away from the cross, you run away from Christ…The cross and Christ are inseparable,” Lopez explained further.

The afternoon workshop, “Witness”, was held at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium.


PASAY CITY, February 16, 2013 — Being “empty” is a universal experience, but is also often misunderstood. Rob Escaño, who gave talk 2 of the 20th ICON, talked about how being empty is really a longing for God that we often try to satisfy with all kinds of things.

What is emptiness?

“Emptiness is not about a jar or filling up. Emptiness is the space between the heart of God and our hearts,” he said.

Following a Glee-inspired creative, Rob explained the following points about emptiness:

- Emptiness is really a longing for love. “God is love and love is God. Our hearts long for God,” he explained. This makes perfect sense, since our identity is founded on our being created in God’s image and likeness.

- Emptiness is a longing for God. It can become a good thing because it can be an opportunity for us to choose God again. We realize that a life that is empty of God is empty of Love. “Material things, recognition, achievements, they are not bad. They are not just enough,” Rob added.

- Emptiness is not a punishment. We should not think that our gift of free will is in conflict with God’s will. “No matter what choice we make, He still loves us,” Rob explained. Even if it sounds cliché, love is really the answer. It is the way to break out of emptiness.

In ending, Rob stressed how important obedience to God’s ways is.

Obedience is the moment of truth and it is difficult to obey when guilt still stains our hearts, he said.

“The fullness of our mission is the fullness of our obedience,” Rob said in ending.

With God, even emptiness can be turned into a grace. How God’s blessings abound!

Water into Wine

PASAY CITY, February 16, 2013 — In 1984, Melo Villaroman Jr, CFC Executive Director doesn’t have any idea about evangelization. Probably, he says, there is no CFC Singles for Christ at that time. “Looking at you, 8,000 of you tonight, I can declare how blessed are you to be in CFC Singles for Christ.”

“Many of us have forgotten that our greatest lover is Jesus Christ,” Villaroman said as he gives the 3rd session of the SFC ICON entitled “Transformation.” He reiterated what Fr. Robert Barron said, “We try to satisfy the hunger for God with something less than God.” We became empty jar, out of wine with all frustrations and dissatisfaction.

Hedonic Threadmill

In our lives, as we continue to work and ran away from God, we will always feel empty. God did not intend for us to be empty and thirsty. The Lord invites us but not force His power. God still allows us to freely choose our response. The farther we stray away form God, the more we will feel lonely.

Because He is Love

Jesus’s Mother gave us a very important tip. “Do whatever He tells you.” This is to fill our jars with water. These are:

Humility / Humble Emptiness. Letting go of some of the habits and mindsets that drives us to pleasure, wealth, honor and power.

Obedience. Before wine overflowed in Cana, there was an overflow of obedience. The obedience of the Blessed Mother as she prompted her Son. The obedience of Jesus to His Mother. The obedience of the servants. Jesus could have done the turning into wine Himself, but still allowed the servants to do it so that they could also feel the victory. Same with us, until now, Jesus still allows us to do things for Him so that we could share in His victory.

Filling the Jars

We become more efficient. Not only in our service but also in our work and in our family. There are many examples of miracles and transformations that has been preceeded by obedience.

Our ultimate example of humility and obedience is no other than Jesus Christ Himself. SFCs we are called to obey this year and the coming years.

“Can you be obedient unto death?”

“Therefore, God has highly EXALTED Him…” from Philippians 2. If we continue to obey God, God will highly exalt Jesus Christ in our lives.

Key Messages

Jesus is the only wine that could truly fill our jars of clay. Wine enhances the fullness of our meal, but the wine of Christ is more immensely nourishing because it is His blood that runs in the veins of our lives that transforms us completely.

“Lord change the water of my own jar of clay, of my own body, into the wine of your love, so I can share your wine to refresh the world.”

Second key message, the Lord uses servants, people around us, as His instruments for our own radical, continuing transformation. Always put God first in your life. Our service makes God happy.

The transformative love of our Lord Jesus Christ is in you.


Learning how to listen to God’s voice

PASAY CITY, February 17, 2013 — Many voices compete for our attention, but how do you know it is God’s voice? During today’s mass, Bp. Pablo Virgilio David gave us some tips on how Jesus listened to God’s voice.

Listening, more than hearing

“Not all who hear listen…It is always a struggle to listen especially to the word of God,” Bp. David said during the last Holy Mass of the 20th CFC – Singles for Christ International Conference at the World Trade Center.

According to Bp. David, Jesus showed us how to discern God’s voice when He Himself was tempted in the desert.

How to know God’s voice

Bp. David gave the following tips:

- You know it is not God’s voice when it is teaching you to make shortcuts. For example, you are offered quick opportunities to get rich. “When you hear that voice, you can be sure it doesn’t come from God, it comes from the evil one,” Bp. David explained.

- When the voice is projecting a desire for power and self-importance on you. Bp. David said this is a common pitfall, even in the Church. Bp. David reminded the delegates, the antidote to power is to give back the glory and honor to God. “Never allow yourself to replace thine with mine. [Like us saying], for mine is the kingdom and the power and the glory,” he explained.

- Do not grow stubborn or reckless, testing God. Bp. David cited a modern example of people who do not want to quit smoking because they believe, “hindi naman ako pababayaan ni Lord (The Lord will take care of me).”

No wimps

In ending, Bp. David said, temptations are ultimately a sign of God’s love.

“For whom the Lord loves He tests…The Lord does not want us to grow into wimps,” he explained.

Trials also help us master the art of discerning God’s voice, so we will learn how to listen, he added.

“Para hindi makahirit ang demonyo (So the devil won’t have anything on us)”, Bp. David added.

In closing, the good bishop, who also heads the Episcopal Commission on Biblical Apostolate, said, we can also trust that God will never abandon us, even in the toughest trials.


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Dito ko natasgpuan ang lahat ng kasagutan na gumugulo sa isip ko sobrang thankful ako sa taong nag sponsor sa aki, but anyways gods really wants na makaattend ako dito that is why he use people para masaksihan ko ang kabutihan ni god sa akin.. great great so see you again for next ICON`14 @CDO.. but we see u 1st MMC BAGIUO!!! GOD IS GOOD ALL THE TIMES.
Posted 4/22/2013 7:17:02 PM
Yes the great Lord has showered us with his mighty power and grace towards SFC...as we continue to obey and witness how great is our God in our lives may we bring others to see and feel the faith that we have in him toward other single Filipino and let them experience Christ and its transformation into their lives.Long live SFC C1B Talamban Cebu City as we bring more single men and women in our Christian life Program this coming march 9, 2013...I am always be in Christ forever Witness!
Posted 3/7/2013 11:21:38 PM
My second ICon since I joined SFC. The best and most amazing ICon ever! You`re really a Great God Lord! Priceless experiences and very fruitful and touching ang mga talks and story ng mga sharers.

Thank you Lord for the experience! To God be the Glory! =)
Posted 2/24/2013 3:42:16 AM
what an experience w/ Christ..it`s my first time to attend ICON..9pm n q dumating dat friday..sobrang pagod sa biyahe, pero pag pasok q palang sa WTC grave ang dming SFC ,all were praising and worshiping God..pinangilabutan tlga aq, ang nsbi q nlng "wow, ur so great tlga God, sobrang priceless then my tears was flowing frm my eye`s feeling q God was hugging me and saying i miss you my child."

I am Peachy Arche and I Am a WITNESS :)
To God be the Glory...
Posted 2/22/2013 10:07:17 PM
Niña Elaine
Niña Elaine
It`s my first ICON and really enjoy it,,although bago pa lang ako sa community but I can say there`s a lot of changes in my life. Thank u LORD for being a part of this wonderful CFC-SFC family!!! May GOD Bless us always!!!
Posted 2/21/2013 8:59:40 PM
truly amazing and best ICon ever...
tumpak na tumpak ang mga sessions, sharing, worhip and Homily...
its my 7th ICon, amazed how God bless and use CFC- SFC community to proclaim His greatness and allowing us to spread HIS love and let the world to experience Christ...
Congrats and job well done sa lahat ng service team..
may God bless you hundred folds!
All for God`s Greater Glory!
i am a witness!
Posted 2/18/2013 10:25:21 PM
Happy to be part of SFC ICON2013
Posted 2/18/2013 9:12:12 PM
Bro. Edwin Lopez reminds of the time when I became cOnfused with what I believe, t O the pOint that I wanted tO be cOnverted in bOrn again Christian, but I am lucky fOr the HOly Spirit never stOp wOrking tO make me a witness Of GOD`s pOwer, & never ebding lOve. I can prOudly say that I am a Roman CathOlic frOm wOmb tO tOmb & i can defend my religiOn in wOrds & in deeds. TO GOD be the glOry always! i am a witness!
Posted 2/18/2013 8:51:11 PM

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