My Top Ten Coolest Parables, Da Conclusion!

Welcome back to our Top Ten Coolest Parables!  I’ve been on a blogging hiatus for more than a week.  I’m too busy beadling around.  It’s difficult to be creative, much more to write, when there’s alot of things to manage around the seminary and to coordinate with my superiors.  Today nga pala, I renewed for the third time my vows of chastity, poverty and obedience.  Any congratulations for me out there?  Anyhow, enough of the alibis.  Here, as promised, is the conclusion of our Top Ten Coolest Parables…

We begin our countdown with the Parable of the Wedding Feast at the number five slot.  It’s about a king who chose congressmen and mayors and wives of generals to be ninongs and ninangs for his son’s wedding.  He sent out invitations printed on scented linen paper and has prepared a powerpoint presentation of embarassing childhood photos of the bride and groom and their “pre-wedding honeymoon” in Puerto Galera.  But really, do you expect mayors and congressmen to attend a wedding reception on a casino night?   Afraid that 200pesos per plate dinner  for 500 pax (consisting of a few strands of carbonara, a slice of morcon, a sliver of fish fillet, a small heap of buttered vegetables and a cup of fruit salad) would go to waste, the King rounded up just about anyone in the streets (reminsicent of EDSA Tres) to grace the occasion.   The story doesn’t end there.  After all the “new guests” have arrived, he refused a person solely because his outfit failed to follow the wedding motif of fuschia and chartreuse (nagspell check pa ako sa word na ito, pink and green lang naman ang ibig sabihin).  What I couldn’t believe is that a King made all this fuss of inviting and preparing (except of course, the killing of the ninongs for their non-appearance).  Today, that would be the role of the Mother of the Bride, or, more appropriately, the role of a wedding coordinator.

At our number four slot is the Parable of the Lost Sheep!  In the pre-GPS days, what is lost has to be searched manually.  Now, why sheep?  The habit of counting sheep jumping over the fence in order to fall asleep already alludes to this creature’s propensity to get escape and get lost.  There are many livestocks in the bible but none has heard of the parable of the lost cattle, goat or chicken.  Only sheep.  Now, what’s cool with this parable is that it is the most gender-sensitive parable.  The shepherd, presumably male, is juxtaposed to another parable, that of a woman who lost one of her ten silver coins.  She swept the house, as every woman of her time is wont to do in absence of a vacuum cleaner, to look the coin, then, upon finding it, threw a party  (nagpa-cheeseburger siguro sya).  Scholars believed that the coin was part of her precious dowry.  In layman’s term, that’s her ticket to getting married.  I knew of many women who will also turn the house upside down if the end of her spinsterhood depends on a silver coin.  I’ve got a feeling this woman and that shepherd would make a good couple.

Bagging the third place is the Parable of the Good Samaritan!  This parable carries the classic bar joke formula,  “The third guy always has the punchline.”   If the Filipino joke involves an Amerikano, a Hapon and a Pinoy while the British joke characters are English, Irish and Welsh, this parable has a priest, a Levite and a Samaritan.  As it turn out, being helped by a stranger (wasn’t that the last line from Street Car Named Desire?) made the day.  The Good Samaritan became a by-word for any stranger who lent a hand for someone in urgent need.  Truth to tell, the biblical Good Samaritan points to someone whom we see as our mortal enemy but saves our sorry butts in the end.   To the Good Samaritans of our lives, they surely have the last laugh.   

The second place goes to The Parable of the Beggar and the Rich Man!  This parable has the honor of having characters with an actual names.  The beggar is named Lazarus, while tradition has it that the rich man is called Dives (Latin word for Filthy Rich).   This is a parable of two acts.  The first act is at the comedor of the Dives residence, probably furnished with a Cobonpue dining set and faux Thai wall panellings by Willy Layug.    Dives turned out to be a messy eater because his table habits has provided enough sustenance for quite a number of dogs and has inspired the beggar Lazarus to literally go under the table in hope of a better lunch.   Then death came to the two.  In my mind, Medical City coronary declared Dives dead due to acute pancreatitis (bangungot) while the Bible subtly implied that the galising Lazarus is nadale ng rabies.   Dives then suffered in hell while Lazarus rests at the bosom of Abraham (I’ve never known Abe to be… bosomy).  It should be noted that Dives here didn’t do anything mean to Lazarus.  He went to hell mainly because he failed to recognize a human being under his nose and invite him to share in his dinner.   Hmmm… I’m becoming preachy here. Better give you the winning parable.

Now, the number one coolest Parable is… The Prodigal Son!  This “Primetime Bida”-worthy parable is actually a continuation of the “Lost Sheep and Coin” narrative, made more mushy maudlin and melodramatic.  Any Catholic decent enough to be called one knows this story by heart.  But not everyone really knows what “prodigal” means.  To the most of us, I myself included, “prodigal” means someone disrespectful, disobedient and even ungrateful to his parents.  It’s a touch baffling to know that it actualy means someone who doesn’t know how to handle his money, a spendthrift, a compulsive buyer, or more appropriately in tagalog, alibugha.  But even alibugha is often associated to being a family’s black sheep and not from being magastos.   On our parable, the magastos trait seems genetic:  the son is prodigal precisely because the father is prodigal himself.  When his son returned, he went overload in spending by throwing rave parties for the son, no questions asked.  Now, why is this the coolest for me?  Simply because this is true: It’s the story of our life just waiting to happen.  Any moment now, we’ll wake up one morning and decide to return to Him.  Just imagine what great gifts await us.  This is because we, people, have a God who truly knows how to party.

Teka, naiiyak na ako…


16 Responses

  1. You never seem to stop to amaze me… even back then you were always gifted in writing… be it a poetic theme or an intelectual note, you always make ppl stop and read your writings…

    back when, kapatid?

  2. Hmmm? A Filipino version of the Manga Bible creator Siku in the making! More power to your creative prowess and religious presence on the web! I like the pancreatitis and rabies diagnoses…

    as always, thanks for the kudos. i don’t really deserve that much praise. God bless!

  3. prodigal son ang pinakacool rin sa akin.
    Ekshelli, iyan ang isa sa pinakamemorize ko na ang story.

    Ang ganda kasi ng message na ipinapahiwatig.

    Cute din kasi yaong story.

  4. How cool it is to actually read a blog of a Seminarian. And for that, congratulations on renewing your vows. Methinks, ilang beses ba yan?

    @K, it usually takes around six to nine annual renewals. I’ve got at least three more to go!

  5. “Now, why is this the coolest for me? Simply because “this is true: It’s the story of our life just waiting to happen. Any moment now, we’ll wake up one morning and decide to return to Him. Just imagine what great gifts await us. This is because we, people, have a God who truly knows how to party.”

    Such wisdom in these words – AH-LAB-IT!!! 😀

    Hmmm… at nag-match-make ka pa ha: Good Shepherd and Silver Coin Woman… Pwede kayang pantapat kay Richard at KC? Hehehe! 😆

    Congrats on your third profession! A blessed weekend to you!

    pinky, next time siguro, I’ll try to write about couples in the bible.

  6. itaguyod mo ang magandang balita kapatid na utoy!

    Iwaksi si satanas sa ating pang araw araw na buhay, at magmahal ng tapat at walang pag aalinlangan.


    Seryoso, that note, gave me an A+ on my theo class.

    Dati I’m ON YOUR SIDE, but things changed. I’m lost and floating.

    Pero Im beginning to get back on track because of your entries. more power.

    @it’s good to get lost and float once in a while. when you look back on your faith journey, you can say it was never a boring ride. hehe…

  7. Bro Utoy, you know I used to get confused with the story of the prodigal son. I always felt sorry for the other brother who, despite his loyalty to his father, did not enjoy all the things they owned. It was his prodigal brother who benefited from everything.

    I guess in the end God is really happy for any soul who repents. He is willing to give everything as long as you are truly sorry for all your wrong doings. Buti na lang, at least may chance pa ako… hehehe!

    By the way, congrats nga pala for making your third vow of chastity. Salute ako sa iyo at sa iyong mga kasama!

    @me too, leap. I felt the same way for the older brother. sabi naman ng mga theologians, the older brother represents all the people within the Church who are faithful but has never took advantage of living in the Christian joy. They felt bitter kasi they’re too blinded by jealousy to notice that they’re up to their neck in the richness of our Faith!
    God is always offering a lot of freebies. Make sure to grab some and be happy. God bless!

  8. wow!

    galing talaga. wala na akong masabi sa sobrang galing… diba may mga contemporary bible, eto ang contemporary-manga combo, galing galing talaga!!!

    ganoonpaman, maligayang bati sa ‘yo bro for that renewing of vows thingy…

    God bless you!

    @mang yan, thanks sa greetings!

  9. Nice blog bro. Add kita sa blogroll ko. Salamat sa pag drop by 🙂 God bless!

    @libay, thanks! nasa blogroll na rin kita. God bless!

  10. may i comment sa sinabi ni leap of faith? sasabihin ko naman anyway. LOL! thought ko lang naman to pero once i had that question also. the son who didn’t go astray consistently enjoyed the everyday comfort and blessing he gets just being with the father. di ba blest sila as compared to the other people during that time? he failed to recognize that by being jealous sa iisang sitwasyon at yun ay nung binigyan ng party ni papa si prodigal anak. and i believe it is the father’s right how he would react or deal with his son/people in certain situation. kumbaga, privilege niya yun at medyo dapat di na natin pinapakialaman.kung nanay ko yan, sasagutin ka lang nun ng EH GUSTO KO EH.

    hehehhe! 🙂

    @naku, Ifoundme, pwede ka na ring magmadre! pero hwag. maraming lalakeng ang mabo-brokenhearted at magpapakamatay.

  11. Bro Utoy, I just read your article in Bluep’s site and I just wanted to thank you for sharing it with all of us.

    Nakaka-touch how you gave up everything in order to serve your mother. I’m sure all the sacrifices you made did not go unnotice to your mom and to our God. Kita mo, pinabalik ka pa rin sa seminaryo at ngayon ay natutulungan mo pa kaming lahat na malugid mong mambabasa.

    Question lang… so paaano ka naging Bro Utoy kung ang tunay mong panagalan ay Vergel? At saka pala, yung apelyido mo ay pang future pari talaga… naks!

    Sige, yun lang.

    Leap, Utoy is a Batangueño term of endearment. It literally means “Little Boy” but as you can see in the pictures, there’s nothing little about me now! Salamat ulit!

  12. minsan ko na rin naisip magmadre pero nung sinabi ko sa mga prens ko yun di na sila makapagsalita sa kakatawa. hmmmmmmmmmm…. bakit kaya? hehehe! wala! di ako tatanggapin. yun lang yun.

  13. Today nga pala, I renewed for the third time my vows of chastity, poverty and obedience. Any congratulations for me out there?

    pwede pa bang humabol ng pag pagbati?..congrats bro.utoy!! ( pa cheese burger ka naman!) lols

    and2 ako nung isang araw kaso dahil sa aking katangahan hindi ko alam kung bakit hindi ko makita kung san ako dapat magkomento.. nyways, salamat at hindi mo ako binigo na isali ang Parable of The LOst Sheep..salamat brother..

    anytime, doc! dalaw-dalaw ulit!

  14. Hello my friends 🙂

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