Brothers Bonifacio

Brothers Bonifacio: Moments With My Hero

My father, Joey Bonifacio, is my hero. I can’t say I’ve always obeyed, I think I’ve disobeyed more. I can’t say I was always honoring, though I’ve tried my best. I can’t say I have always been grateful, but every time I think about my dad, I pause and thank God. In some ways I know I have made him proud, and I’ve done the exact opposite in others, and I know there will be more ups and downs because that’s life. But on Father’s Day I want to share a few of the conversations, quotes, and moments with my Pop.

On Humility: 
“If I found a girl like mom, would you give your blessing?”
“Of course! Your mom is the greatest.”
“If you had a daughter, and she found a guy like you, would you give your blessing?”
“Umm… maybe not. I was really nuts.”

On Faith:
From my dad’s text to me at 4:30am! “…all that to say the unlimited greatness of His power is available today and everyday by faith. The most important muscle one can have. He is our Father and He alone is able to uphold us by His mighty power. This we do not by performing but simply by believing. Nothing pleases God more than faith.”

On Friendships: “I really don’t know where I would be now if your mom and I didn’t have Steve and Deborah Murrell.”

“It’s better that you get the short-end of a deal, than you take advantage of friends.”

“When you enter a room, a group, or anything, I want you to know that you’re the leader. So you lead those people well.”

On Girls:
When we were in high school, my dad would sit us brothers down and say, “See all the prettiest girls in school? You haven’t seen nothing yet. Wait until you get to college! There are more girls there.”

When we got to college, he said, “See all the prettiest girls on campus? You haven’t seen nothing yet. Wait until you start working, and really start meeting girls.”

When we graduated college, “You haven’t seen nothing yet. Wait until you start traveling and meeting different nationalities and personalities.”

– 28 years later, I haven’t seen nothing yet.

On Girlfriends:
While getting mad at us brothers for picking on the only girl in the family:”If any of you hurts your mom or makes her cry, you’re going to get it from me! Don’t mess with my girlfriend! I love you guys but I love her more”

On Love:
My dad: “Who loves David?”
Me: “God.”
My dad: “Who else?”
Me: “Mom.”
My dad: “Grabe ka naman. I was talking about me.”

On Marriage:
When we were kids he sat us down and said, “When you get married half of everything you own belongs to your wife. That means half your lego and half your GI Joes.”

On Having A Wife:
“Your mother can really drive me nuts! Get a wife like her.”

“I’m really blessed to have your mom. She’s the sweetest, kindest person I know, and she’s so beautiful too. Look at her.”

“One of the things I love most about your mom is that she stayed.”

“Marry a woman who can tell what’s ugly about you and make you love her more for it.”

“Marry a woman whose face you’d like to see every morning.”

“My prayer is that you will marry a woman like your mother.”

“A guy like you needs to marry a woman like your mother.”

“Marry a woman like your mother.”

Me, during one of these ‘marry someone like your mother’ moments: “I thought you said there’s no one in the world like mom?”
My dad: “Don’t be a smart ass.”

On Sex:
“Sex is so amazing!”

On Fighting:
After Joe and I had a bloody fist fight with each other that woke my dad up, he said, “I hope you two will fight for each other as ferociously as you did each other tonight.”

On Being A Father:
“Don’t be so arrogant. I made you!”

 After every spanking he ever gave me, “Do you know why I know you so well?” “Why?” “Because you’re exactly like me.”

“I hope that you’ll enjoy being a father as much as I have.”

On Beauty:
My younger brother asked my dad, “Who is more beautiful? Mom or Monica Bellucci?” My dad, without missing a beat, “Your mom.”My brothers and I started laughing at how biased he was, “100 points for Joey Bonifacio! Someone is going to have a great night!” Then he said, “There’s no use explaining this to you, because you won’t understand. But you will someday, and you’ll know why your mom’s the most beautiful girl in the world.”

On Hope:
“David, our only hope is really Jesus. There’s so many things we think we know but we don’t really. Put your hope in Jesus.”

On Forgiveness:
On our last trip to the US, while waiting for our connecting flight to Orlando, my dad told me,”When I think about my life’s mistakes. When I think about how many evil things I’ve done, how many people I’ve hurt, I can only really go back to God’s grace. And really, when you’ve been forgiven much, you love much.”

On Death:
“On your death bed, the only things you’ll have around you are the relationships you built.”

When I was leaving for Afghanistan (back in 2004), my dad had a conversation with me and said:”You do know that there’s a chance you’re never coming back? You can really die.”
Me: “Pop, you were the one who told me that I shouldn’t fear death.”
My Dad: “Ok. Just wanted to make sure you understood. You’re going to have an adventure!”
Me: “Besides, if I die, my blood will be like Abel’s, it will cry out to God from the ground…”
My Dad: “Ok, don’t tell your mother that.”

On Legacy:
“When I die I want this on my epitaph: God’s friend, Marie’s best friend, and father of Joseph, David, and Joshua. That’s all I want to be remembered for.”