An interview with Bro. Edgar Nicolas, Chapter Head, BCBP Mandaue Chapter
In your three years of service as Chapter Head of Mandaue Chapter, what experiences stand out for you?
BRO. EDGAR: There were so many experiences that really stand out and its quite difficult to specify which is weightier than the others. In general terms, I believe that the most significant are the harassments experienced by the governance team members. We had a very very good start and so many of our activities have been exceptionally successful. The governance team as a group hurdled many challenges and came up with very good results until the evil one harassed the team. Despite the difficulties, with a lot of prayers, decisions were made, actions taken and eventually the Lord allowed us to learn and see the positive side of things. The learnings I got from our elders in the many years I was with them confirmed that in service, there is no place for complacency, something will always come out and it will not always be good. Many are challenges in disguise. We were tested in fire. We matured from those hard experiences. We turned up stronger than ever.
What do you consider to be the most important accomplishments of your service as Chapter Head?
BRO. EDGAR: The main responsibility of the Chapter head, I believe, is to be the “good shepherd” so I should consider that as my basis of accomplishment, or a greater part of it. What keeps me awake at night is thinking how to keep the flock engaged, well-led, and united. The latter is difficult. The community is made up of people with different upbringing, culture, level of spirituality, education and spirituality. It is a big challenge to unify all and at all times.
To measure the accomplishment, we go back to some numbers because “you cannot argue with numbers”. Shepherding can be demonstrated by the attendance of members in our activities specially in breakfasts where we see many first timers, graduates and eventually BCLP participants until their elevation to members in formation. We are successful there.
The chapter head alone cannot manage the whole group, so the need for many and qualified leaders. We’ve proven that we have a robust pool of current leaders and leaders in the future long after I’m done as chapter head and the next. As the leader, I made it a point that the chapter will have more than enough leaders that will be ready to take the helm in the next several years.
As a group, I believe the important measure of accomplishment is that everything we envision will happen in the three years. I think we even exceeded ourselves.
What have been the most challenging aspects of leading BCBP Mandaue?
BRO. EDGAR: As I mentioned earlier, unity is most challenging, I can say that in all organizations and in all locations I’ve been in the past, and present this is something we cannot not see. At times I have to just remind myself that we cannot please everybody. There’s this saying I feel is very true – I do not know the key to success but the key to failure is to try to please everybody. Maybe I am too naïve to think that it will be different in a charismatic community like the BCBP.
If it is any consolation, majority of our members work as a team even with their differences. Many can set aside personal differences and work for the success of tasks assigned.
As you pass the leadership to a new set of servants, what are your hopes and prayers for the Chapter and its members?
BRO. EDGAR: Being with the community for 25 years, I saw for myself the growth of BCBP and how the community changed, reformed and at times saved the lives of others. It is my prayer that the community will continue to do so with the same if not more vigor and passion. I hope to see more young people having that zeal to serve with humility ever present in their hearts and minds.