Sis Karol Joseffe Borja, Grand Worthy Advisor, Grand Assembly of the Philippines, International Order of the Rainbow for Girls, and Sis Kimberly Tandoc-Borja, Grand Mother Advisor, Grand Assembly of the Philippines, invited Hon. Edison Abella, Grand Master of the Supreme Council, Order of DeMolay, as its Guest of Honor and Inspirational Speaker during the General Assembly of the Philippines of the International Order of the Rainbow for Girls, hosted by Perla Assembly No. 1, held on July 21, 2018 at the Scottish Rite Temple in Malate, Manila.
The General Assembly was attended by the Rainbow Assemblies of Luzon and the main theme for the gathering was “A Tribute to Fathers”. The following is an excerpt of the speech delivered by Grand Master Edison on the stated occasion:
“One of the seven cardinal virtues of the Order of DeMolay is filial love. We are exhorted to give importance to the family by respecting and obeying our parents. Our traditional Flower Talk refers to filial love as “the virtue that has been given first place among the jewels adorning the Crown of Youth”. Also, our Code of Ethics commands us to honor womanhood. As we realize the important duty of honoring our mothers and women, we young men of DeMolay also recognize the value of honoring our fathers, the pillars of our home, ang haligi ng tahanan. In our Father’s Talk, we pay tribute to our fathers as the source of our strength, the persons we want to emulate, the men who guided us when we were growing up and molded us to become good sons and better human beings.
Although our official Father’s Day was last June 17th, I firmly believe that every day is an opportunity to celebrate Father’s Day as we continuously thank and appreciate our fathers for the love and care we receive from them. To our Rainbow girls and sisters, some of us fathers may seem too busy or look strict, but our hearts melt when you remember to text or PM us to ask if we already ate lunch, or give little notes or cards thanking us for your allowance, or leave a stuffed toy on our desks to let us know that you are thinking of us. These are ways to show your appreciation for the nights that we worried that you were late coming home; or for waiting in the car while you were having fun at your J.S. Prom; or for forgiving us for raising our eyebrows when you first introduced your boyfriend.
I would also like encourage each one of you to pray for the fathers in your family every morning when you wake up, whether he is your father, brother, father-in-law, brother-in-law, grandfather or step-father. Thank God for their life, love and sacrifices, for their leadership, integrity, instruction and discipline. Ask God to grant them wisdom, protection, favor, strength, good health, wealth and happiness. Sa aming mga tatay, malaking bagay yung simple gestures na ito at siguradong matutuwa kami at makakatanggal ng pagod sa araw araw na pamumuhay.
Do you know what the Fifth Commandment in the Bible is? The Fifth Commandment is “Honor your father and mother; that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” Can you recall the other 10 Commandments?
First, “You shall have no other gods before me.”
Second, “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.”
Third, “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.”
Fourth, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.”
Of course, the Fifth, “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.”
Sixth, “You shall not murder.”
Seventh, “You shall not commit adultery.”
Eight, “You shall not steal.”
Ninth, “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”
And finally, the Tenth, “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.”
Note that the Fifth Commandment links the first four Commandments with the remaining five. The first up to the fourth Commandments teach us how to love and respect God while the fifth to the tenth Commandments instruct us on how to love and respect our fellow man. We can learn to obey the sixth to tenth Commandments only when we abide by the Fifth Commandment to honor our parents, for our parents are our first role models in establishing social relations with other people. It is also the first Commandment with a promise: “Honor thy father and thy mother: that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” God promises a long and prosperous life for those who respect their parents.
In closing, I would like to commend all the fathers who are present here and even those who were unable to come. Thank you for leading your family and directing your children in the ways of the Lord.
To our Rainbow girls and sisters, always obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Pay tribute to us, your fathers, by pursuing your dreams and finding your passion and purpose in life. Honor us by honoring yourselves as women. Show us your respect by ensuring that the young men in your life show you respect. Believe in your heart that we love you for who and what you are, with an unconditional love that celebrates your uniqueness, appreciates your efforts, rejoices in your accomplishments, empathizes with your disappointments, encourages you to try again, laughs at your jokes, forgives any wrongdoing, and sees you as the most beautiful, precious gift the Lord has given. No matter what the rest of the world may say, know that this love will never change.”