Pink was the color of the day when a thousand SFC sisters came flocking in at the Miriam College Auditorium for the Princess Diaries conference held last April 27, 2008. The conference started with a mass celebrated by Father Boy who gave a very inspiring homily that spoke of how we, as women, are God`s princesses, called to serve and are loved by the King, Jesus Christ.
Shortly after the mass, the SFC sisters were welcomed by two lovely emcees who were in character and were wearing gowns that made them look even lovelier. Sis. Bambi and Sis. Maan introduced sisters from other sectors who opened the first session. Wearing their gowns and their career attires, the sisters walked across the stage--confident, beautiful, and captivating -- simply what a true SFC sister ought to be.
When the applause for the sisters died down, Sis. Wenks Pasimio gave the first talk entitled "Heart of a Woman." She retold the creation story and the highlight of which was the creation of woman, Eve. From that alone, it was very clear that God intended woman to be very special. Sis. Wenks emphasized that the creation of women was not an afterthought, and that we are the Crown of Creation. She also shared stories about how she became the woman that she is now and much to the delight and "kilig" of the sisters, she focused on the three desires of women which are 1) that women long to be romanced, 2) that we long to unveil beauty, and 3) that we long to play an irreplaceable role in a shared adventure. These desires were planted by God in our hearts so that we may feel how God is pursuing us and how He wants to romance us with the love that He has reserved just for us. He created the things that we like because He knows that we would love them. "Do you know why God made pink? God created pink because he knew you`d like it," Sis. Wenks said. Such a thought was enough to make every woman feel flattered because a great God did everything just for her. Three sisters shared their experiences about how God romanced them and how He proved that He is our greatest lover. As we discovered how God longs to love us, we also discovered how God wants us to love Him and be closer to Him.
If the first talk was about the affirmation that we are beautiful and the desires of a woman`s heart, the second talk dealt with the pain that women go through and the things that cause women to have "pierced hearts." These pains stem from the fact that the three desires were not met. Sis. Cech Escaño gave the talk discussing the lies that women grow up with as a result of the things that other people say or do to us. Pierced hearts are caused by these lies: that we are not worth pursuing, that we are not beautiful enough, and lastly, that we are not needed.
In a world that constantly tries to confuse us by its changing notions and standards of beauty, it is very easy to lose our way and feel ugly and insecure. This insecurity leads to a woman being either dominant or desolate. Women compensate for their insecurities by pushing people away and trying to prove their worth or by being very clingy and allowing themselves to be abused. This is the goal of the evil one. Sis. Cech said, "We must not let the evil one triumph by dwelling on the pain." It was very emotional as two sisters touched the heartstrings of the delegates with their personal sharings.
Women as relational beings are called to unveil each other`s beauty. We must build up each other`s confidence. We are not destined to stay in pain. Jesus the King loves us and we must renounce the lies in His name.
The third talk was very solemn. Entitled "New Heartbeats", this talk by Sis. Joy Katigbak started with a narration and discussion of the story of the Samaritan woman by the well and of the fact that we can never hide anything from Christ. Just like the Samaritan woman who was ashamed of her life, we long to ask Jesus, deepin our hearts, how He sees us. Are we still lovely despite the scars? Do we captivate our Lord? The SFC sisters got the answer to this question as Sis. Joy led us in prayer and healing followed by prayover sessions by the Sector and Cluster Couple Coordinators. She then led us all to an intimate Dance with our Lord, which moved many to tears of joy. At the end of the talk, we were assured that Jesus will reveal out true selves to us and that He will forever be captivated by us.
The last talk was given by Sis. MK Guaño. Having spent the day learning and hearing about how beautiful we are, the last talk was for us to be strengthened and to live our lives as women "Powered by Love." Jesus continues to heal us and He will continue unveiling our beauty. We are now called to play our roles well and we can do this by keeping our relationships a priority and by staying princesses powered by love by being nurturing, prayerful, and faithful. We can thus play our irreplaceable role as we carry on saying our simple "yes" to God. As we were led in prayer leading to the Praisefest, all the sisters were wonderfully surprised by the coronation ceremony. Everyone was crowned to symbolize her being a princess. It was a very royal experience and it was lovely to see a thousand women smiling, waving, wearing their crowns, praising and glorifying their King.
This experience has truly made me feel very beautiful. Growing up, I was always teased as the ugly duckling and the odd one out because I don`t look much like my sisters. I would always hear people, some of my relatives included, that I was probably adopted or something. This has hurt me more than I can explain and until now, I suffer from the pain. But after experiencing the Princess Diaries conference, I am now assured that I am beautiful and that I am captivating and no one can tell me otherwise. I am loved by a great God and He desires my happiness. Who needs the Dove self-esteem fund when I have my God with me? I am His princess and I am royally grateful.