Holy Trinity Academy: The Letter or the Spirit?


The cover of the 10th anniversary souvenir program of the Most Holy Trinity Academy of Balic-Balic, Sampaloc, Manila shows the tenth year as starting from 1946 and ending in 1956. In celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Holy Trinity Academy, the present administration made the decision to start counting the 60 years from 1947 to 2007. What accounts for the difference between the 10th anniversary (1946-1956) and the 60th anniversary (1947-2007)?

For the 10th anniversary, Fr. Bernardo Torres, the administrators and faculty celebrated the birth of Trinitarian education in the parish as the summer of 1946 when two women parishioners asked permission from Fr. Torres to start kindergarten classes under the convento of the parish. In the 10th anniversary souvenir program, Fr. Torres stated “on this our tenth anniversary, we offer our grateful prayers to our Lord”…who gave “His spiritual and material blessings”…for a school which “started in the midst of material poverty.” Clearly, among the early pioneers of the Holy Trinity Academy, 1946 re-echoed in their memories the humble and simple beginnings of the school: classrooms walls made of sawali, children bringing their own chairs to school, and studying in the unused space under the convento. Indeed, such a beginning needs to be celebrated and not forgotten.


For the 60th anniversary, Fr. Enrico Martin Adoviso and the school administration chose to celebrate the “legal” foundation of the school. The year 1947 was the time the government first recognized the education being offered by the fledgling school. An important milestone indeed for the government recognition must have provided the impetus for further growth. However, the fact that the pioneers of the school did not choose the year 1947 as the starting year provides the present community of the school with a lesson on remembrance and celebration. What really lies at the heart and soul of a school…not the fine legal document, but the untold story of how a community worked together to bring Trinitarian joy and hope to a parish still recovering from the destruction of World War II.

The 1946 story and spirit behind the 1947 letter is more important to remember and celebrate. Let’s us not forget.

~ by Martin Gaerlan on August 1, 2006.

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