TWENTY-YEAR-OLD Cebu Pacific flight attendant Aragen Rojero recounted one verse from the Bible, from Matthew 5:16, that illuminated her purpose in life: “Make your light shine so that others will see the good things in you and praise your father in heaven.”
“It reminds me every day that my purpose is to spread the word of the Lord. He uses me as an instrument and inspiration to others,” she said.
Rojero, throughout her adolescent years, accomplished numerous feats in the beauty and tourism world; she won a silver medal at the Tagisan ng Talino Tourguiding “National Level” Competition, was a national finalist in Miss Silka Philippines, crowned “Queen” at Miss Silka Bacolod 2018, and Pasalamat Festival Queen in La Carlota City.
However, her path to success was preceded by a mountain of struggles. She started participating in large beauty competitions in 2013, with the Miss Silka Bacolod competition; she recounted that this first competition was “the first prestigious pageant [she] joined” and therefore was a huge learning curve for her: “I gained new friends as well as experience, improving my abilities,” she said.
Consequently, Rojero returned for the next annual Miss Silka Baclod competition in 2014 but was disheartened because “a lot of people criticized [her].” This led to her taking a year-long break from beauty competitions. However, when she returned for Miss Silka Bacolod 2016, she brought with her the veteran experience of numerous competitions, winning third runner up.
“I thought that was the last time that I will join Miss Silka Bacolod, until I met Mr. Jett Desucatan, who is now my make-up artist and handler,” she said.
According to Rojero, Desucatan pushed her to join Miss Silka Bacolod 2018 after winning Pasalamt Festival (La Carlota) Queen. Rojero was in a state of perpetual anxiety on whether to heed his advice, but after almost two months, she decided she “wanted to challenge [herself] one last time.”
She would end up dominating the competition, winning the highest award, “Queen.”
“There is no thing as ‘luck.’ I believed in God’s time and the fact that if you are determined, you can make the impossible, possible,” she said.
Aside from beauty tourism, Rojero is also deeply passionate to explore the globe: “Ever since I was a kid, my dream was to travel the world,” she said. Thus, she embarked on the arduous path to become a flight attendant.
She remembered the days of pressure from the requirements of the profession, worrying that she would fail the exams, drills, and was generally unfit for the job. To counter this anxiety, she resolved to one method that she has coined “PPS,” Pray, Pray, and Study.
“I asked God to give me strength and wisdom, day by day. I studied most of the time, sacrificing my social life by limiting my conversations with friends and even family. But when I passed all the exams and drills and graduated, all my hard work paid off,” she said.
“I am very thankful to those who motivated me and believed in me, especially my family particularly my mother, and my friends.”
Rojero is also a “proud member” of the Bacolod City Sugarlandia Leo Club and the New Life Family Church. She continues to humbly serve God, who she contributed her success to.
Asked about her reflections in life, she said, “The road to success is a journey filled with happiness, tears, challenge, and growth. There are times that you will fall. But what matters most is that a dreamer should stand up and fight again.”
Furthermore, she also reflected on her religious piety. “Learn to value the words of the Lord and use prayer as an armor against all challenges in life. If you have these things, no matter how big your struggles are, you will still fight,” she said.
“You will believe you can do it because your God is bigger than your fear,” she added.