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Amazing Dr. Thelma Clemente


By Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD


Dr. Thelma Clemente, erudite and highly gifted foundress and president of the Capitol Medical, passed away at age 95.

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There’s a joke that when St. Peter was making the roll call in heaven, Dr. Clemente was always absent and per record she was very much overdue. When she passed away last Nov. 11, she was finally present.

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Someone bantered that her long delay was because she was busy modernizing the facilities and equipments of Capitol Medical Center to become up-to-date and competitive in the Philippines.

Her last legacy to CMC was installation of the new and complete facilities for heart bypass.

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What was extraordinary about the energetic doctora was her lucid mind and photographic memory; no trace whatsoever of creeping Alzhiemer’s disease common to elderly people.

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After celebrating her birthday Mass at the CMC chapel last Oct. 11, she called guests and myself to her private room and forthwith showed her books, paintings, then amused us when she started reciting Pres. Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, Rizal’s Mi Ultimo Adios, and lengthy speeches with amazing ease!

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Once in a seminar of physicians which she attended, the guest speaker for one reason or another did not show up. The organizer approached Dr. Clemente and requested her to save the day by substituting. She accepted it and spoke extemporaneously based on her practical experience. Some remarked that her talk was even better than the guest speaker’s who had failed to come.

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The most distinctive trait of Dr. Clemente was, no doubt, charity. A very generous person, she regularly donated to charitable institutions and causes. To mention some: our Adopt-A-Seminarian scholarship program, the Sisters of Mary School in Silang, Cavite, an institution for orphaned children, the CMC foundation for indigent patients.

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Inspired by the doctora’s heart of gold for the poor, I can’t help quoting the author Alfred Delp’s words, thus: “When through one man (or woman) a little more love and goodness, a little more light and truth comes into the world, then that man’s life has had meaning.”

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Psalm 90 says: “Life is over like a sigh. Our span is 70 years or 80 for those who are strong.” But Dr. Clemente was given super bonus years at 95.

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EUCHARISTIC CONGRESS AT PINK SISTERS. The public is invited to the 29th Eucharistic Congress on Nov. 26 (Sat.), 8 a.m.-5p.m. Registration starts at 6:30 a.m. For the first 2,000 registrants, registration, snacks, and lunch are free.

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The Congress with its theme “The Holy Eucharist: God’s Greatest Grace” will culminate with a procession and benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament followed by a Solemn Holy Mass to be presided by the Most Rev. Honesto Ongtioco, DD, bishop of Cubao.

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Venue: St. Joseph’s Adoration Convent, 71 Hemady Avenue corner 11th St. New Manila, Quezon City. For inquiries, call Pink Sisters Convent at 722-8828.

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  1. JUDE. Today join us in our novena to St. Jude Thaddeus at the Divine Word Shrine, Christ the King Seminary on E. Rodriguez Boulevard, Quezon City after the 6 p.m. Mass.

A healing pray-over and anointing of holy oil will follow.

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