FOR devotees of Sto. Niño, the connection they have established and developed with the Holy Child Jesus has made a significant impact on their lives.
For Michelle Teves-Calog, who recently got married, Sto. Niño was integral to her relationship with her husband.
Michelle Teves and Jeff Calog met around 2017 when Teves was a guest speaker at Negros Oriental State University while Calog worked as a member of the Presidential Security Personnel.
Their extended families were close as they lived in the same area in Tanjay, Negros Oriental, but the couple initially did not know this. They also both graduated from Negros Oriental State University.
They started their conversation through social media.
“His name appeared on my suggested friends, and right then and there, he sent a wave. I replied with “Pit Senyor, Sir!” said Teves. “Since that time, we celebrated the annual Sinulog.”
Afterwards, the couple dated in January 2023, got engaged in February, and married in September of that year.
Teves said they wanted to have their wedding in January 2024, as part of their thanksgiving to Señor Sto. Niño, but decided to have it at an earlier date, Sept. 8, 2023 (Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary), due to the plans the couple had set.
The couple and Sto. Niño
Teves said she has always been a devotee of Sto. Niño and that Sto. Niño played a role in the couple’s individual lives and their relationship.
Teves added that every day is an opportunity for learning, forgiving and loving, and with the grace of Sto. Niño, the couple is able to navigate and learn.
“I have always anchored my hopes and dreams to His grace,” said Teves.
Sto. Niño’s innocence has touched the lives of the couple to have faith like a child, and when the couple encounters marital issues or differences, they depend on Sto. Niño. “I would say Señor Sto. Niño is our sure help, especially when needs and problems arise,” said Teves.
For the couple, it is Sto. Niño’s invitation to pour their love to God as the center of their marriage and to embrace each other’s imperfections, problems and differences, to befriend them and accept them by praising God together.
“When I met Jeff, I knew he was heaven-sent. We both prayed for each other, and we both trusted God’s timing,” said Teves.
Teves added that during the process of adjusting as a married couple, she and her husband got to know each other better and embrace their differences as they continue to carry their faith and love for God.
Sto. Niño’s miracle
Teves said months before her wedding, she got into a car accident. As she was driving home, her car tires screeched and exploded.
While waiting for rescue, Teves was inside her car when a child approached her, gave her water, and told her, “Ma-okay ra ka, te” and
“You’ll be fine.”
The child’s presence made Teves calm. Afterwards, she was rescued and arrived at the hospital for a medical checkup and CT (computerized tomography) scan.
“I asked the rescuers who that child was who gave me hope. They said there was only a woman carrying a month-old baby,” said Teves.
Teves thought of the moment as Sto. Niño’s saving grace and manifestation.
“I knew He was with me and with us because my only prayer while I was on the incident was to marry Jeff. He knew my sincere intentions,” said Teves.
Faith and relationship
Teves said the best weapon in a relationship is prayer. Despite a person’s best intentions, there will be times a couple will experience problems and issues.
“Praying together reminds you that God is the sole source of life, truth and love,” said Teves.
Teves said she and her husband pray every night and attend Sunday masses, which give them a new chance to act upon their faith.