RAFFY: Michelle and I had already gone through the prerequisite 2-day live-out Pre Cana Seminar at Mary the Queen Parish, when we pushed through with the experience of Discovery Weekend. We did not have to…but we wanted to. I guess we were swayed by the good feedback we heard from a lot of our married friends.
MICHELLE: To our delight, after going through the weekend in December 2001, Raffy and I confirmed what we already knew about one another. We confirmed our feelings for one another. Perfect timing, I suppose, since we were getting married less than two months thereafter on January 27, 2002.
RAFFY: This was how DW first helped us. It helped us discover that we were really meant for each other. The wonderful experience of DW made us sign up for volunteer work. Sometime before November 2002, after months of anxious anticipation, we finally got a call to volunteer…and we more than willingly accepted the call and volunteered as auxis. Thus began our work for our chosen apostolate.
MICHELLE: We were so happy with our DW experience that we wanted to give back to the community that gave us so much. Soon, we were volunteering as auxis on a regular basis. Before we knew it, we were acting as administrative couple in several weekends.
RAFFY: What was great about serving the community was that we got something in return as well. With the help of our young at heart mentors, first and foremost Allan and Maribel, and later on, Dondi and Cherry as well, we were able to work on our marriage through the marriage follow-up sessions.
MICHELLE: In the process, we met couples, who, like us, wanted to volunteer and to continually work on their marriages. Knowing that there are others like us who are as dedicated as we are is heartwarming and only makes us want to work on our marriage all the more.
RAFFY: There are many of us who share this commitment of helping other couples realize what is meant for them. As a consequence of helping others, we in turn are strengthening our marriages. With God as our center, we have grown together stronger and more resilient. We have auxi’d, admin’d, given talks and served as Board members.
MICHELLE: This is why we serve. This is why we come back, maybe not as often as we want to, but at least as much as we can. By helping others, we help ourselves. We thank God for all of this. Were it not for His grace, we would not have found our calling as a couple.