We Asked Young Professionals: What Keeps You Going?

“According to Christian tradition, (work) is more than a mere doing; it is, above all, a mission.” These were the words of Pope Francis in his letter for the conclusion of a conference on labor in Rome last year. According to him, work is about more than just doing something for money, but about cooperating with Christ’s work of redemption in how we care for others and the earth.

As such, we at My Pope went around and asked two young professionals, a lawyer and a doctor, about what made them choose their career and what keeps them fulfilled in doing it. These are what they had to say:


Denise Pauline Purugganan, 25, Lawyer


Why did you choose your career?

It was a gut feeling. I had to be a lawyer. I was determined to be one simply because it’s what I wanted to be, and it’s how I envisioned myself back then. One of my passions has always been applying rational thinking. And in the legal profession, there is a constant need to update yourself with issues and legal developments. Thus, engaging in the practice of law is not routinary. There are no stagnant moments. I thrive in learning. It is important to choose your career based on your strengths, personality, and even the causes you want to advocate. Apart from being a noble profession, I think what also appealed to me in this career was that there is a whole lot of opportunities to refine yourself and your skills and to uphold the causes or rights you want to be acknowledged. You get to speak for those who cannot speak or defend themselves. I believe in that commitment.


How do you find fulfilment in what you do?

I feel fulfilled in the mere fact that I’m here, doing the things I could only imagine back then, after going through a long way of effort and bittersweet experiences. There is a certain joy in knowing that you earned where you are right now.  There is affirmation in the saying, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” But most of all, I find fulfilment and peace in knowing that I am contributing or giving back to the world, in my own way.


Mary Anne Mundin, 31, Medical Doctor


Why did you choose your career?

I wanted to become a doctor because it is a stable career. I can be a doctor wherever or whenever the duty calls.


How do you find fulfilment in what you do?

There’s always something unique in every case that we doctors handle. There is always something that you need to figure out, like a code that needs to be cracked. What fulfils me is that moment when I get to find the answer to the case.


What keeps you going when things get tough at work?

Whenever I’m feeling tired, I just think of what my daughter will tell me if i’m exhausted: “Mama, okay ka lang? Hindi ka kasi nagpapahinga.” (Mom, are you okay? You’re tired because you don’t take breaks). What I do is I just imagine her face, rest, then take a break. Afterwards, I’m ready to work again.


Text by Yen Cantiga and Aizel Dolom.
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