Sacrifice and Dreams

By Melvin Catarroja Jr.

After watching the life story of St. John Baptist de La Salle, as portrayed in the movie, Who are My Own, only one word comes into my mind which is “sacrifice.” Nowadays, it is hard to live by this virtue particularly in our country where majority are minimum wage earners who could not even afford to have a decent living of their own, let alone aspire to help other people.

Enough to share

But considering the wealthy background of St. John Baptist,  he had enough to share.  Hence,  one can assume that he was able to help others because he is rich. The answer is yes,  but not entirely. Let us relate this idea to our current political condition.

You see,  if the previous assumption was accurate,  then maybe, we as a country are not supposed to be this poor. The big difference of St.  John Baptist with our political leaders is that he shared what he had to a greater extent that he became poor himself.

I cannot think of anything more relevant to this story than our current political situation, and anyone could not talk about Philippine politics without discussing about the single word that consumes our society and causing our government to fail. Corruption is what we normally call it.

Just a portion

Moving forward, let’s say corruption is inevitable and it is already imbedded to our culture as Filipinos, but imagine if they will just get a portion for themselves and the rest is given for the country. Imagine millions and even billions of pesos going to infrastructure,  schools and shelter. Mass transportation will be well funded to help taxpayers on their daily commute.

What I don’t understand is how these people amass such wealth and never be contented. Billions of funds just going to the pocket of a single politician. I am very sure they don’t need that kind of amount if their sole purpose is to raise their family well.  I cannot think of having such wealth while looking at your people scrambling just to get food.  But this is the reality.  This is how evil we have become.

The idea of hope

The story of St. John Baptist de La Salle somehow gave me the idea of hope. There is still a possibility that time will come that a powerful and wealthy individual with all his money and influence will use these attributes to create change for our country. Maybe not today, not in the coming years or decades but someday it will happen.

God has a manner of turning impossible things and making them possible. I have personally felt and experienced that in my existence. We just have to believe that he times it differently with our expectations and wishes. Most of the time it happens when you least expect it.

St. John Baptist de La Salle’s story reminded me that fighting corruption for the welfare of our country and its people is not a hopeless feat. Sometimes, one just needs to have hope in his heart for everything that God is capable of. Yes, even the impossible dreams.


The author is an MBA student at the Ramon V. del Rosario Sr. College of Business, De La Salle University.  This article is part of his reflections for the course Lasallian Business Leadership with CSR and Ethics.  Visit his blog at


The views expressed above are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official position of De La Salle University, its faculty, and its administrators.

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