After our hectic schedule during the Election season, we were able to go to Negros Occidental to take a few days rest and go sightseeing, and to attend a family reunion. 160-strong, everyone gathered on a patch of land everyone calls Hacienda Sta. Julia, in Suay, Himamaylan in Negros Occidental, to renew ties and celebrate what it is to be members of the Maravilla family. It was RD’s first time to meet family members from the Maravilla side, and he was quick to make friends with his cousins, as well as nephews and nieces who where about the same age as he was!
This clan are all the descendants of Teodoro and Leoncia (Alipoon) Maravilla. They had 8 children; 6 of which were boys and 2 were girls. Of the 8, RD’s grandfather was the youngest. Today, only 1 is living (at 96 years old), the older sibling having died the other year (at 100 years old.) RD’s grandfather was young when he died of cancer in 1972 at the age of 43, so RD was never able to meet him.
It was a fun time for everyone to see each other again, and to know those we hadn’t met yet. We had a short praise and worship service, we heard a message from God’s Word, had a sumptuous lunch. Then all the families were asked to write their family tree on a piece of Manila paper and introduce themselves to everyone. Ours was the smallest in number since RD’s grandfather had died early and his mom was the only child.
After the family introductions, we had parlor games, where everyone enjoyed the laughter, the teasing and winning, of course. We all had a fun day, so much so, that another reunion has been scheduled for next year!