May 14, 2011

DUMAGUETE CITY, PHILIPPINES - Members of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Kapatirang Watchdog Lodge no.1, went to Wuthering Heights Beach Resort in San Jose, Negros Oriental, for a beach outing, team-building activity, conferral of the initiatory degree and awarding ceremony.

Nearly 40 brothers and sisters attended and the day was started with fun activities and challenges that aim to teach new members initiative, trust and teamwork. When asked what they have learned from the activities, Sister Ivana Mae Canlas said, "No guts, no glory. Work as a team, not individually. Take time to listen. Trust one another. Do things at your best". After the games, pork, chicken and fish barbecue was served for lunch along with 'pancit palabok' and a cake. Then, members played Frisbee, went swimming and diving while some just sat along the shores to relax.

By 3:00 PM, about 30 brothers, sisters and candidates proceeded to the function hall for the conferral of the Initiatory degree. Brother Rex Olpoc, the incoming Noble Grand, presided the ceremony while sister Karmen Arenas served as Vice Grand. In lieu of the lodge's aim to set a good standard, Brother Louie Sarmiento, who was acting Conductor during the ceremony, delivered the charges through memory. New brothers and sisters accepted were Justin Alexis Flores, Hener John Limbaga, Mark Abelito Elnar, Fionna May Chuang, Sheema Bajana, Jan Rey Ramirez, Ivana Mae Canlas and Abigail Mendoza.

A 'sing-and-dance' presentation by the new brothers and sisters came next and the awarding ceremony followed. Brothers Rex Olpoc, Kahlil Reu Reyes, Cyril Jaymes Plantilla, Armel Cabale and Sisters Karmen Arenas and Maria Katrina Mercado received the 'Medallion of Honor Award' as recognition and grateful acknowledgement of their Distinguished Loyalty, Commitment and Service to the Brotherhood and Sisterhood. On the other hand, Brother Kahlil Reu Reyes, who was Noble Grand of the 2010-2011 term, and Sister Karmen Arenas, who was Vice Grand of the 2010-2011 term, were awarded the ‘Most Outstanding member Award’ for their outstanding effort and contributions to the Lodge and its activities. Brothers Ivan delos Santos, Joseph Ian Parreño, Cyril Jaymes Plantilla and Armel Cabale also received the 'Pioneer Award' as recognition for their invaluable efforts and contributions during the early re-formation of the Fraternity. Lastly, Sister Frencille Tabaloc and Brother Jerzon Cañolas received an ‘Award of Recognition’ for their commendable time and support for the activities of the lodge during the the 2011-2011 term. “I had so much fun with brothers and sisters...” said Brother Joseph Ian Parreño. Sister Ivana Canlas, on the other hand, ended the day saying “Thanks! You made our day”.