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posted @ 6/10/2005 10:45:00 PM - 0 comments - share your thoughts

Honoring for Rommel, June 10, 2005 (5th Anniversary E-Night)
MAB Hall, Ground Floor, Heart Center, QC

By: Ted

“You are the salt of the earth; . . .you are the light of the world.” (Matthew 5:13, 14; RSV)

To be called “salt of the earth” and “light of the world” in the days of Jesus was to be greatly honored. So we honor a man who has, in the past three years, been salt and light to Lingkod QC. Tonight, we honor our Branch Leader, Rommel Escoto.

There are three distinct qualities to salt. It cleanses. It preserves. It flavors.

In all these ways, Rommel was salt to us during his three years as branch leader.

Rommel was salt to us because he cleansed and he preserved us. In the days of Jesus, salt was used to cleanse food as well as preserve them. With his astute insights, his brotherly but firm correction and feedback, his inspired teachings, Rommel, in his own distinct way, cleansed us and allowed us to become better Christians. In the same way, he allowed us to preserve our relationship with God. Through his leadership and through his brotherly care, he allowed those of us--at least those who would allow him--the opportunity to grow and mature as Christian men and women, as leaders, and as servants. Rommel was never preachy but he was always a good teacher, not only by the words he spoke but by the life he leads. By example and by inspiration, Rommel gave us a clear picture of a Christian man, a Christian leader and a true Servant of God.

Rommel was our salt also because he gave flavor to the branch. He established an identity for himself totally distinct and separate from his predecessor and he established an identity for the branch. During his watch, Lingkod QC bloomed and grew; under his leadership and his care, Lingkod QC not only took on a specific identity as a branch of Lingkod but managed to acquit itself well as a vital part of the larger community that is Lingkod. A large part of the flavor that is distinctly QC’s is because Rommel has, in turn, flavored QC in his own distinct way.

Rommel was also light to us in many different ways and on many different occasions. Those who have had the pleasure of serving with him in various Service Councils (SECO), Governance Teams (Govteam) and now the Branch Council will attest to his wisdom and to his maturity in the faith. On many difficult and challenging situations, when passions ran high and emotions overflowed, Rommel’s would be the voice of sobriety, of compassion, of wisdom, of restraint (when needed), and of aggressiveness (when warranted). In ways that no brother or sister could argue with during his three years as branch leader, Rommel has illumined the many dark recesses of our faith with his wisdom, his maturity, his care for the brothers and sisters, his leadership and his service. “Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16; RSV) By allowing Jesus’s light to shine in his own life, Rommel glorified our Father in heaven and allowed us to see what joy it was to serve our God and to glorify His name.

Rommel, as you step down after three years of serving us as Branch Leader, allow us to honor you and thank you for being our salt and our light. Thank you for serving us humbly, lovingly and very well indeed. Thank you for being an inspiring example of a Christian life well led. Thank you for allowing the Lord to lead you so that you could lead us. Thank you for responding to the Lord’s grace with humility, boldness, courage and selfless love. Thank you for truly going beyond your own personal comfort zones, for conquering the many giants that you encountered along the way.

We know that we were never easy to love; nor were we easy to serve. But you continued to do so–with great love. And for that, we thank you. It is no joke to have men and women of various colors and stripes look to you for a moral compass and it is to your great credit that you allowed the Lord’s light to shine in your own life so that our way could be lit in many different ways and on many different occasions.

On a very personal note, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to serve with you and to learn how it is to be a Christian man by the example of your life. I have honored you in the past by calling you a great man; and so I honor you in the same way tonight. I have honored you in the past by saying that you are a man I would gladly follow; and so I honor you in the same way tonight. I thank you for honoring me (and Gay) with your trust--by entrusting the branch to us. I pray that you will continue to be “salt and light” to many generations of men and women whom the Lord will call. I pray as well that you will never lose your flavor and that your light will continue to shine brightly in the years ahead.

Thank you bro and God bless you in the days ahead.