Friday, January 13, 2012

21st National Lasallian Leaders' Convention

In 2004,  I had my first taste of La Salle when I went for the 14th National Lasallian Leaders' Convention (or NLLC for short). John Baptist de La Salle was a priest, educational reformer, and founder of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He is a saint of the Roman Catholic church, and the patron saint of teachers. After the convention, I went back to Kuching with a passion, to be an inspiration to those around me and to uphold the Lasallian Spirituality of Faith, Service, and Community.

 St Michael's Institution, the beautiful school where we had some of our activities

It's been 7 years since then :)

Last December, I was invited yet again to be an Organising Team (OT) member for the 21st NLLC. This time, it was different for me as I was invited to chair it with two of my fellow conventioners (who happen to be from the same year that I was), Pui Yi, and Tsu Chong.

Program Director Mr. Isaac Stephen delivering his opening speech

Yumin giving his thumbs up :D

Planning for this convention started very early, since July, where all of us OTs met for our first OT Meet of the year to think of the theme, the convention objectives, and the different sub committees that will take care of each section of the schedule of the convention itself.

The OTs having fun with our rendition of Oyster and Crabs :p  The delegates were dumbfounded when we presented this, but we were having the time of our lives xD

OBK - Operasi Basah Kuyup. Where we brought buckets of water to splash the delegates after the games session :p oh yes and we look like we were on some serious mission :p

This here is Mike Stand, one of the comedians in the OT :p Just recently got a gf, also from convention, so who's to say you can't find love in NLLC ;)

The theme this year was Youth Powering Change. We live in a surrounding that is uncertain and impaired – economically, socially, environmentally, and politically. Concerns like poverty, discrimination, climate change, and human rights violations are not new, but still continue to stifle the lives of many. Youth are fast becoming agents of change. With the advent of social media, information is widespread; and organizing and mobilizing youth is easier and more effective.

Our heritage play, where we act out the life of La Salle, and bringing home the challenges he faced. On the right is La Salle (played by Joshua), with Nicky (playing Brother Gabriel) and Gabriel (playing Brother Nicholas) lol :p

The journey of organising this convention itself was fraught with challenges, where we had to meet deadlines, coupled with the fact that all of us had work and study commitments. At the end of the day, for me, the important thing was that each one of us banded together for that particular five days, and worked together to get it off the ground.

 OTs giving out lunch to delegates :D this is a little culture whereby us OTs will give out food to the delegates, thereby giving us time to bond with them, and maybe punish them with less food is they kacau us :p

 Games session, that's me with my group members :D being sick didn't hamper me from having fun!

Delegates with Doreen, one of the workshop facilitators

It is always uplifting to come back to the Lasallian process, and see so many newcomers, and old timers, all passionate about the same thing, and all believing in the process. You get to see people from all walks of life, from different faiths, working together to make the convention a success. If one OT falls sick, other OTs fill in to take that person's place, without complaints, or grudges.

 Do you trust me?

Bang!!!! Kopi-O Tarik satu!!

One more thing that struck me this time around was the participants (or delegates, as we normally call them). Their maturity and level of thinking awed me, and I realise that we are now living in such a globalised world, that there is really nothing that we do not know about (unless of course, we are just plain ignorant). There were many issues on social realities that were brought up, and the way they handled the issues made me realise how ignorant I was in my younger days, and I am proud to say that our delegates are not like that.

Solidarity Lasalliana

Me posing with my Josephians from Kuching :)

 Can you spot the pretty lasses?

Looking back, I'm glad I took up the  responsibility of being an OT member for the 21st NLLC. I have learnt many new things from my fellow OTs and delegates, and as always, I come back feeling refreshed and having a better understanding of why I am still so active in the Lasallian movement.

Finally, one for the album :) The participants of the 21st NLLC 2012!

P/S: All photos credited to Alex Morris :)


Simple Person said...

I was from SMI... and all the buildings, structures bring back my memories.......
Back that time we have a lot of conventions .. gee ... I miss my school times .. muahahahahaha

choulyin.tan said...

hey, thanks for your comment! :) yup, our alma mater always brings back memories of our school days when we were younger :)

biscop said...

Hi choulyin! I am so proud of you! I was, i am and will be! You are a role model of a true lasallian. Keep up with the good work! Keep the spirit with you! Yes, viva lasalliana. ;-) pn stella.

choulyin.tan said...

thanks Pn. Stella!!! :) You're also an inspiration to me, being the main driving force behind the lasallian movement in St. Joe. You are one of the reasons why I still remain so active in lasallian works even when i'm in KL :)