Magic #21: Why they teach

One of the world’s greatest mysteries is why state university teachers stick it out with their employers.

Is it really the prestige of the university? Is it the company of friends? Is it a perhaps-not-so-naive belief that they are teaching the nation’s future leaders?

Because for sure they’re not there for the salary. I learned it can come late by a few months.

Not are they in for the school’s infrastructure: department offices cramped in the building’s attics, rusty railings, unkempt hedges.

So — why?

Let me hazard some guesses.

Maybe they simply love teaching bright kids whom they think will definitely make a dent in Philippine society.

Maybe they don’t look so much at the bad things these kids might end up doing (hah! there seems to be an equal number of famous and infamous alumni in prestigious, nationalistic state universities), but on the good things that they can surely seek to do. That is, these teachers are realistically optimistic.

Maybe they don’t mind the crappy place, the less-than-professional look of the halls and gardens, but they do mind the seriousness of their responsibility as molders of minds that may be greater than theirs.

Or maybe it’s the prestige after all. Who cares if it’s a low-paying fugly place, but you’re getting the attention of your counterparts from other institutions simply because you teach in this school? Your research is also going to get at least a second look when you submit it for publication, right?

Maybe it’s also circumstances too personal that our imaginative brains cannot be imaginative enough, only because it takes heart and not brain to find out that there simply is a thing as loving…in all its grand, maddening, and multifarious forms.

Seeing the faculty evaluators amused during my teaching demo only bolstered my admiration for them.

I applied for a teaching post in the university.┬áHere’s to madness and to love!

Magic #8 – St Josemaria’s miracle

I’ve been asking the intercession of St Josemaria Escriva for various things for several years now, and he has never failed. The latest miracle I received was the most striking of all.

Knowing that his feast will be on June 26, I started a novena to him last Tuesday, asking for the job that God wants for me (I used this particular novena). Of course, I had already been sending job applications and gone to several interviews, yet all ended up either stymied by some incompatibility or a lack of feedback.

St Josemaria Escriva

St Josemaria Escriva

But I knew my favor was granted when three days later — yesterday — I received a job offer from an NGO that has all the adventures I was seeking (even the pay seems good). Today I accepted their offer and later on they emailed me details of my employment.

And then the clincher: they said I will start working on June 25 — the day before the saint’s feast day.┬áTurns out St Josemaria is more excited than I am. Thanks be to God!