That Rotary Centennial Journalism Award and the Four-Way Test
WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus Jimenez (The Freeman) - June 17, 2019 - 12:00am

Perhaps the greatest honor that one can ever receive is that which has not been aspired for at all. This columnist writes only for three simple purposes; to inform, to enlighten, and to inspire. Receiving recognition has never been one of our objectives, for indeed, there are far so many others who are more senior, more well-known, and perhaps more deserving. But when it rains, it really pours. Unexpected rains poured into my life this year indeed.

2019 has been a very auspicious one in my personal and family life as well as my career. The Lord has blessed me a lot more than I deserve. My son passed one of the most difficult Bar examinations in the past ten years, with only a 22% passing rate. My late father was awarded a US medal as a veteran of World War II. I was elected president of the UV Alumni Association and heading the alumni participation in our university's 100th-year anniversary.

Most of my candidates won in the last polls. I gained the trust of big multinationals that got me as their legal and HR consultant. Four of my children were promoted in their jobs. My youngest is defending her masteral thesis in UP. My youngest son is marrying a stunning international flight stewardess from Qatar. My fourth grandchild was born. I was asked to teach in San Beda School of Law. We are flying to Europe for a family tour. And then, the Rotary Club of Manila award.

Ten days ago, this provinciano columnist was conferred by the Rotary Club of Manila its Centennial Journalism Award as Regional Opinion Writer of the Year. It was doubly significant because I also received on behalf of The FREEMAN its own recognition as The Regional Newspaper of the Year. The Rotary Club of Manila is the first and the biggest Rotary Club in Asia. It is celebrating this year its 100th anniversary. The same is true with The FREEMAN, as well as my beloved alma mater, the University of Visayas.

I did not expect that the Rotarians would notice that in my writing I silently followed the Rotary's Four-Way Test. First, the test of truth; second, the test of fairness; third, the test of beneficiality; and fourth, the test of goodwill and good friendship. The test of truth requires that a journalist and an opinion-writer should base his news reports and columns on confirmed facts and verified news. The test of fairness demands that both sides to any issue or controversy should be given an opportunity to submit its input before making a conclusion.

The test of beneficiality calls upon each writer to reflect each day whether the things he or she writes on can bring about some benefits to the community, the nation, and the people in general. And the test of goodwill and good friendship expects that our articles should promote unity and coming together, rather than the fragmentation of people in society.

That award was a great challenge to me and to all of us, in the print media to follow the Rotarians' standards of truth, fairness, usefulness, and friendships among people and among communities. I do accept the challenge and I thank the Lord for his love and generosity.

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