the 50 years that I have been involved in countless Upsilon fellowships and
reunions in the
and the USA, I don't remember having been to one in which I did not enjoy
myself. Renewing old fraternal ties and making new ones; reminiscing our
neophyte days; campus politics and rumbles; campus romances and crushes;
scholastic achievements and failures; adventures and misadventures; cavalcades
and summer stocks; and so on and on, combined with good food and libation,
jokes, dancing and singing - simply having a good time with brothers and
sisters. Truly it's hard to imagine how we can improve on such a proven form of
socializing in the Upsilon tradition.
Yet, in my gut I hear the question, "Hanggang dito nalang ba?"
I don't know about you, but with me the reason why this question nags me is
because I believe the
Credo demands more from us than just enjoying ourselves at fellowships and
reunions. What about our obligations and responsibilities toward our other
brothers, our Alma Mater, our country, and the world?
Since we are so good at having fellowships and reunions, maybe we can use these
activities as one more vehicle to address our other obligations and responsibilities
and, thus, fulfill ourselves as "tried and true Upsilonians".
YES, let us have more fellowships and reunions, as many as we can organize them
anywhere - anytime. BUT let us have them not only for our own enjoyment (which
is a good thing), but ALWAYS to benefit our other brothers, our
Alma Mater, our country, and the world. HOW?
What if we set aside a percentage of the total cost of the fellowship or reunion
for projects designed to benefit our other brothers, our Alma Mater, our
country, and the world? Call it a "tong", "tithing", VAT or whatever, but first
set aside something according to our generosity and/or social conscience for a
noble purpose other than our own enjoyment. We can practice charity from our
substance, rather than from our excess. Then we can go ahead and enjoy ourselves
at the fellowship or reunion. Now, we have reason to celebrate and be merry
because we have addressed our Credo's weightier demands. We will also have
something more meaningful to discuss instead of retelling or rehashing our old
What's the downside? Maybe less food and drink (it's healthier anyway) and maybe
a more modest venue (who needs conspicuous consumption?).
Example #1 Four brods contribute $50 each to entertain a visiting brod. They
allocate $50 for a Special Account to help pay the medical bills of a needy
brod and spend $150 for dinner and drinks for fellowship.
Batch '55 Fellows budget P1,000,000 for their Golden Anniversary Shebang in the
Philippines. They allocate P200,000 for Gawad Kalinga and designate P800,000
for their celebration.
Example #3 12 Brods plan a 4-day golf outing at a cost of $600 each. They
allocate $1200 to help fund the UP Faculty Lounge Project and $6000 for their
We can go big or small while consistently pushing on. I hope this can be a new
For More Meaningful Fellowships –by Rafael S. Francia ‘55