Ghia in the Philippines
Full name: Kristine Ghia Malicay
State-in-life and Occupation: Freelancer/Member, House of Love Servant Community
Location: Butuan City, Philippines
Educational background: I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Accountancy from the Fr. Saturnino Urios University in Butuan City.
How does your Catholic faith affect the way you live your day-to-day life?
I live a life full of inspiration. I’m inspired everyday to:
Love just as God loves us;
Forgive just as He has shown me mercy;
Be obedient just as the Blessed Mother was in the Annunciation;
Do little things out of love just as St. Therese the little flower did;
and so much more!
I choose to be the better person every day. It’s not easy but it’s not impossible either.
Tell us about a moment in your life when your Catholic faith transformed your understanding of yourself, your purpose and others.
My relationship with God is both spiritual and personal. My faith in Him grew deeper as I came to know the lives of the Blessed Mother and the Saints. But back then, I acted like a spoiled daughter of a King who in-spite of how many times she had done wrong, would always feel entitled to His Merciful Love. When I was a teenager, I had so many insecurities that it eclipsed my appreciation of myself. I was constantly trying to please people just so that I would feel that I belong. I thought that by participating in idle chatter, I’m part of something cool. God has repeatedly called for my conversion but instead, I allowed gossiping to take root in me until I became it. He purged me from this bad habit that was hurting others and straining my relationship with Him. When God allowed for it to come to light in the worst possible way, I was devastated and I felt abandoned. Yet despite the hurt, I never felt empty. My heart took a beating, but it was still beating and in the quiet moments of that night, I realized that God was my heart, and my everything.
What lesson did you learn from that moment?
I’ve always been fiercely independent and wanted to fight my way out of the mess in the way I knew how. But for the first time, I let His love be. In complete surrender, I was cradled very close to God’s heart. I learned to love with abandon and to just be me. I wasn’t always an insecure person. I grew up loved by my family and relatives. It was when I began to socialize when I began comparing myself with others and there was always something lacking that I saw in myself… or I didn’t see in myself. But after that ordeal, it revealed the strength of God’s might in times when weakness casted a shadow of darkness in my life. I felt the surge of the fire of His love burning in my heart, and every beat was a praise of His love. I didn’t really understand why things happened as they did. I just trusted that God has the best perspective. He sees all things and wants me to follow Him. I’ve immersed myself in His love and have learned to share it with others. So that others may grow in His love, too. I became a better version of myself - secured, stronger, more patient, and more forgiving. I discovered my full potential. I became the person God created me to be. And the best thing about it was just I was just being me. No effort required. No comparison. If only we can see ourselves through the eyes of those who love us! I wish I didn’t have to lose what I lost. But I realized that for everything and every person that I lost, I found myself each time.
How do you grow in your Catholic faith?
I actively participate in the formation program of my community, the House of Love Servant Community (HoLSC). It’s a covenanted community and a member of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services. In the program, we are encouraged to pray the rosary daily, to go to mass daily, to read devotional books, watch videos about the Catholic faith, to attend regular prayer meetings and cell meetings, visit the Blessed Sacrament at least once a week, receive the sacrament of penance, participate in community outreach programs and to help each other grow in our spiritual journey and personal relationship with God through a system we call The Shepherding.
What do you do for fun?
Three words that describe you — go!
Devoted, sensitive, brave
Fill in the blank:
My morning routine consists of: Praying; reading; editing mobile photos (really!)
I’m currently obsessed with: Serving my community
I feel most inspired when: I’m helping people
My favorite part about my life right now is: Being single
The advice I would give to the millennial Catholic woman is: Stop comparing yourself with others. You are wonderful just the way you are. If you live for the very purpose that you were made for, how can you disappoint? How can you fall short? You don't. If life's a bit blurry now, just shift your focus back to God. Open your heart to His love. Let your soul praise and glorify His name. And when your cup runs over, let if overflow so that others cups may be filled with it, too. Share the love! Share Jesus!