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Casa News & Events

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  •  Story of the Week from the Philippines

    Monday, Feb. 4, 2013

    Meet Sister Mariek

    By Sullivan Oakley, Comunity Coordinator at Casa Bayanihan             

    She is a woman religious from Belgium who came to the Philippines at the age of 29 to work at Tahanang Walang Hagdanan (House Without Stairs), an NGO that provides just and meaningful employment, housing, and education for the differently abled. Sister Marieke is an astonishing woman who has made a life of giving attention and love to the marginalized, to those who have been forgotten. She is a collective memory of the stories and lives of the people whom she has encountered, and her example reminds us of the importance of each person we meet and each moment we share. “They might seem small to you,” she says, “but they aren’t. These small moments mean everything.”

    Casa Bayanihan has the privilege of knowing Sister Marieke through Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, which serves as one of our praxis communities that Casa students visit twice a week during their time here (read more about TWH & Casa Bayanihan’s other praxis sites here—> 

    You can find Sister tending to the gardens on the grounds of Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, biking around the property donning her famous tie-dyed jumpsuit and greeting everyone she meets, or sharing the unbelievable stories she has collected from working with the differently abled for more than 40 years. 

    “I have so many stories,” she repeats, “so many stories…and they are unbelievable.”

    We invite you to come to the Philippines. Meet Sister Marieke, and hear some of her stories.


  •  Ready to Start!

    Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2012

    Casa programs are ready to start both in the Philippines and El Salvador. We are glad to introduce our new Community Coordinators!

    El Salvador: Michelle Lally, Diane Fitts, and Chris Campbell.

    Philippines: Sarah Young and Sullivan Oakley.

  •  Here from SLU Alum

    Thursday, Sep. 13, 2012
    Dear SLU students,
    Hello and greetings from the Philippines! As a SLU graduate and a current Community Coordinator with Casa Bayanihan, I'm extending a warm invitation to consider studying with us in the Philippines! Living and working in the Philippines has already been a rich experience of cultural surprises, hospitable welcomes into the Filipino communities, and continued questions of how to respond to the realities we see around us. If you too have felt a similar tug to further immerse yourself in the diversities of a new culture as I did, then I encourage you to simply pay attention to it. As you consider what a semester in the Philippines may mean for you, please know that the Casa Bayanihan staff and praxis communities are all ready to welcome you warmly into our community here. Together we share a lot of energy around creating an experience that challenges students in the right ways and always supports them individually and communally. During my short amount of time here in the Philippines, I'm already discovering a culture that celebrates life deeply, even in the midst of harsh realities. It's the kind of daily life that's hard not to want to share with others. So, please know that we'd love to share life with you here in the Philippines! Feel free to contact me with any follow up questions, as I'm happy to accompany you through your discernment of studying with the Casa. 
    Sarah Young