Friday, April 2, 2004

Centering a business around Christ

Business Times p.B8
Friday, April 2, 2004

By Moje Ramos-Aquino
Centering a business around Christ

The movie The Passion of the Christ is already showing. The scenes are so vivid, the whole movie makes me abhor sins and sinning like nature abhors vacuum. It makes me realize how much JC suffered because of my transgressions. It makes me ashamed that I have betrayed His unconditional love by committing sins knowingly and wantonly. It reminds me that every time I sin, I shout “Crucify!”

We are close to the last days of the Lenten season. You don’t have to go far to absorb the significance of Holy Week. In my youth, Holy Week was spent with Jesus in mind, heart and spirit. We normally spend it with the least movement and faintest of sound lest we add to His sorrows.

I leave you to spend your Holy Week the best way you know. We have two business days left next week plus the nonworking days. Here are some suggestions to make them Christ-centered.

•View business as a spiritual endeavor and part of your religious life. Work as if JC’s life depended on it.

•Review and make right your ethical policies and practices. Remember the Four-Way Test of Rotary? Are you telling the truth about your products? Are your products and services ethical? Are your processes ethical? A friend gave this example: “Patis to be called Special must have at least 12-percent Kjeldahl Protein. Below 10 percent it must be labeled Patis Flavor. Between that, you may or may not call it Regular but never Special. Will the 15-year-old brandy and the 5- and 12-year- old whiskey stand this kind of scrutiny?”

“Is your ad telling the truth and creating awareness for your product or is it an obnoxious double entendre’ ad?” Are you providing your employees at least the minimum pay, benefits and humane working environment required by our Labor Code and other applicable laws?

Have you priced your products and services enough to allow you modest profit and return on your investment but not very high that you are depriving your customers the opportunity to satisfy their basic needs? Are you operating in a cartel? Are you paying the proper taxes regardless of graft and corruption in our government?

• Reflect and decide on who you will vote for this May elections. Not just those who are good for our business but those who could be good for our country. Pakisingit na po si Jun Yasay para senador.

•Reflect on your company values and how you are living them.

•Start a recycling project.

•Get to know your employees at a level deep enough to understand and accept their uniqueness.

•Adopt a tree.

•Watch The Passion of the Christ together and talk about it.

•Starting Holy Wednesday, forget about your business.

•For the whole week, list down what you do, what you think and wonder about and how you feel. On the eve of Easter Sunday, review your list and make action plans for your spiritual growth.

•Pretend you’re spending the week with JC.

•Give your maid a five-day off.

•Spend an entire day in church.

•Notice daily miracles.

•Listen and observe.

•Keep still and be quite for periods of time.

• Learn new religious songs.

•Plan and use your no-meat menu for the week. Fast if you are fit.

• Serve as an altar person.

•Invite some church volunteers to lunch or dinner or bring them snacks.

•Feed the prisoners.

•Hear mass.

•Read the Bible.

•Turn off your cellphone.

•Learn a appropriate words and phrases in Latin, Aramaic and Hebrew languages.

•Wear no footwear all day and feel the earth.

•Watch The Passion of the Christ with your family and talk about it.

•Apologize for a wrong you might have done.

•Set aside your newspapers and business or fiction books

•Read a book on spirituality or personal growth. I suggest Repacking Your Bags by Richard Leider and David Shapiro available at Fully Booked, Rockwell.

•Turn off your TV and radio.

•If there are enough of you, stage the passion story con todo action, emotion y vestuario (costume).

•Turn off your Internet connection.

•Call or do something for someone who is sick.

•Listen to the CD First Prayers by Arnel dC. Aquino, SJ., Gregorian Chant and other religious music.

•Do something for an elderly person.

•Turn off your lights and feel the darkness.

•Compose a piece of music for God.

•Sing in a Pabasa.

•Do a Visita Iglesia on Holy Thursday.

•Commemorate the Last Supper.

•Reflect on the Seven Last Words on Good Friday.

•Join the vigil on Black Saturday in your parish church.

•Observe Palm Sunday.

•Attend the Salubong and midnight or dawn Easter Mass.

•Greet every one you meet an enthusiastic “Happy Easter!”

•On Easter Sunday, revisit your personal vision, mission and values.

•Explain to your kids the significance of the Easter Egg and Easter Bunny to Easter Sunday as they relate to Lent. That it is not just a commercial activity as it is celebrated today.

•Visit your mom, dad and your significant adult if you are living away from them.

•Do a good deed to somebody who least expect it.

•And for you with kids, the book 5001 Things for Kids to Do is on sale at National Bookstore. Get your copy for your peaceful and your kids’ creative summer vacation.

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