BY JOJO VILLALVA
This is the fascinating and inspiring story of JOYCE ANN BURTON-TITULAR and RON TITULAR, and how at times their humorous love story led them to Jesus Christ.
THE BEAUTY – “A thing of beauty is a joy forever” – John Keats
Joyce Ann Burton Titular is a well-known Beauty titlist who was crowned Miss Young Philippines 1981 and Bb. Pilipinas Universe 1985. The statuesque Fil-Am mestiza was also very active in Broadcasting for 20 years, working as a TV News Anchor on RPN 9’s News Watch and ABS-CBN’s ANC Cable News Channel and as Radio announcer and newscaster on NU107. Joyce has also included Acting as part of her extensive resume having performed in several stage plays, teleseryes, movies and independently-produced films. Her being a beauty titlist has also given her the opportunity to be an accomplished host for a number of live events and beauty competitions. She also continues to be in demand doing Voice over for Commercials.
THE VOICE – “The Human Voice is the organ of the soul” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Ron Titular has been in the Media & Broadcast industry for over 30 years as a Radio Announcer, Production Manager, Program Director, Station Manager, and Network Director. He’s a professional voice talent who has voiced many commercials and was the official voice at one time for stations like NU107, Joey FM, RJTV, The Home Shopping Network, Solar Sports and Basketball TV. He has hosted on stage and on TV and has been involved in media start-ups for Radio, Television and Internet ventures such as Radio Republic, United Christian Broadcasters’ The Edge Radio and NOW XD under Far Eastern Broadcasting Corporation. Over the years he has trained numerous broadcasters, announcers, emcees, hosts and voice talents.
THE MEETING – WHEN JOYCE MET RON
The first time Joyce and Ron met was in 1990 at the Birthday Party of 90’s Pop Artist Victoria. Ron and Victoria were College friends in UP while Joyce and Victoria were recently acquainted at that time because of a work-related project. As fate would have it Ron and Joyce were seated bedside each other at the party with Ron totally clueless as to who Joyce was. They were formally introduced by their host and right away Joyce was struck by Ron’s speaking voice which prodded her to ask “Are you a DJ”? Unbeknownst to Ron, Joyce has a special fascination for people’s speaking voice and she admitted that there was some kind of attraction the moment Ron introduced himself. But the two instantly connected not only because of Ron’s attraction to Joyce’s striking beauty and Joyce’s silent admiration for Ron’s silky smooth voice but also because both of them shared common Fil-American backgrounds, Joyce having an American Father but growing up in the Philippines and Ron being Filipino but growing up in the US. These shared backgrounds established a common bond that would bring them closer to knowing more about each other later on.
HUMOR IS THE SPICE OF THEIR LIVES
Ron and Joyce both admit that their shared Sense of Humour was one of the strongest bond that helped them establish a happy easy-going relationship. Joyce laughingly admits that they have a thing for “Corny Jokes” and that it was these “Corny Jokes” that eventually broke the ice during the early days of their friendship. Their sense of humour also helped them get through many of life’s serious challenges. From the get go of their first meeting up to this day, Ron and Joyce has never forgotten to laugh or find humour in whatever situation or circumstance they may be in because they apparently subscribe to the old adage that Laughter is the best medicine.
THE SEARCH – “Casting all your anxieties on Him, because he cares for you” – 1 Peter 5:7
It was on the 4th year of their relationship as Boyfriend / Girlfriend when at Christmas time out of boredom Joyce had an itch to call her acting coach to ask if she could tell her more about “this Jesus Thing”.
When Ron and Joyce first got together Joyce was already married but separated from her husband (who has since separating from Joyce moved abroad and had a new family). She also had two kids from her previous marriage and it was a very difficult situation for both Ron and Joyce as they were not financially stable enough to get a marriage annulment for Joyce.
The phone call that Joyce made to her acting coach at Christmas time became the turning point in Ron and Joyce’s life. Her acting coach suggested that they meet after Christmas to get to talk more about Jesus. But Joyce was not comfortable going alone for the meeting with her acting coach so she asked Ron to accompany her. For Ron, the subject of Jesus Christ and being “Born Again” was nothing new to him as some of his close College buddies were also Christians who also shared their faith. Eventually Joyce and Ron met up with her acting coach accompanied by her husband. They shared their personal testimony and the whole meeting became a spiritual eye opener for Ron and Joyce. Joyce’s friend suggested they attend a Midweek service where they could receive proper instruction and introduction about Jesus Christ and what it means to follow Him.
For Joyce and Ron however the road to salvation was not without its struggles and stumbling blocks. The matter of Joyce’s being separated from her husband and her relationship with Ron became a stumbling block in their being members of the Church they were attending. They revealed to the Pastors their situation expecting the worst possible consequences. Instead of threatening them with expulsion from the Church however, all the Pastors rallied around them and surrounded them with prayers and supplication for God’s timely intervention.
AN ANSWERED PRAYER – God is never early and never too late. He is always on time.
After the revelation of Ron and Joyce’s situation to the Pastors of the Midweek service they were attending, Ron and Joyce decided to move to Davao in hopes of starting afresh. With their move to Davao however they had to put on hold whatever strides they had made in their growing relationship with Christ. But after 2 years Ron and Joyce were back to Manila for Ron’s job reassignment. It was after coming back to Manila that Ron met with a close College friend who by that time was already a Lawyer specialising in Family Law. Ron told his friend about Joyce’s situation and his friend agreed to handle the case Pro-Bono. And after 2 years of tedious legal procedures Joyce was granted an annulment and was finally free to marry Ron.
PARTNERS FOR LIFE
“What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate” – Matthew 19:6
Life was not a bed of roses for Ron and Joyce as they did face a variety of challenges as Husband and Wife. But for all the difficulties that the couple has faced it was their genuine liking for one another that has helped them navigate through the many challenges as a young couple and as partners in business. Dealing with challenges and difficulties as Joyce would put it “were challenges upon us (as a couple) rather than between us (separate individuals)” and they always make it a point to go through the challenges together as a couple and not as individuals trying to solve problems separately. Through the many lessons that they have learned from years of applying of Biblical principles, Ron and Joyce has together been able to achieve a certain level of maturity in their life as a Christian couple.
BIBLE VERSES TO LIVE BY
“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be equipped for every good work” – 2 Timothy 3:16-17
At the beginning of their relationship as a Christian couple Joyce, being an independent woman and single mother, found it difficult to accept the verse “Wives, submit to your husbands, as to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22). Being in the same in the same line of work as Ron, Joyce had no problem submitting to Ron as her Boss. She respects Ron as the leader of their team because Ron is an excellent motivator to the people he works with and he is a leader who welcomes all ideas from everyone in his team. Joyce swears that some of the best ideas they’ve come up with came out of some of the toughest creative arguments they’ve had. With Ron’s help, Joyce was able to understand that submitting to her husband’s God given authority as the head of the family is to submit to the authority of Christ as the head of the church. In the same manner that:
“Husbands love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up (gave His life) for it” (Ephesians 5:25).
Throughout their relationship, through all its ups and downs, Ron has always given the love, care and concern that Joyce and her 2 children deserved, even looking after Joyce’s strict dietary requirements.
Another Bible verse that is important to the couple is from Jeremiah 1:5-9:
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations”. Then I said “Ah, Lord LORD! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.” But the Lord said to me “Do not say I am only a youth; for to all to whom I send you, you shall go, and whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, declares the Lord.” Then the LORD put out his hand and touched my mouth. And the LORD said to me “Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.”
Very few people know that Ron was born half deaf. But this has never been a handicap for Ron as he bravely worked to become a successful Broadcaster and Voice Talent for so many years. If anything his being half deaf has given him the courage to overcome adversities in his life. It has taught him to become a keen observer and a sensitive listener. Joyce on the other hand has bad eyesight and has to wear glasses in order to see more clearly.
Joyce recalls a funny incident that happened when they were in a mall. Someone said “Hi” to Joyce and Joyce without her glasses on replied without actually seeing who the person was. She then turned to Ron and asked “Who said that”? And Ron answered “Who said what”?
But Ron and Joyce’s handicap was never a hindrance to achieving their goals in life because they’ve always believed in God’s sufficient grace.
LEAP OF FAITH
Once Ron and Joyce found a church that they could call their home church, Ron and Joyce faced the difficult decision of resigning from their steady jobs at NU 107. It was a leap of faith for them but they were trusting God to open doors of opportunities for them. But the opportunities never came, not from where they were expecting it to come from anyway. And during the bleakest of times Jeremiah 1:5-9 resonated within Ron and Joyce’s heart which eventually led them to the work that they now do today.
THE MINISTRY OF VOICE
“His voice leads us not into timid discipleship but into bold witness” – Dr. Charles Stanley
These days, Ron and Joyce conceptualize, produce and manage in store radio platforms for major brands like Yamaha Motorcycles. They are still highly in demand for Voice Overs for Commercials. But their biggest passion in life is to help people realize just how amazing, powerful and beautiful their voice is. They do that professionally through their workshop, “YOUR BEST VOICE EVER” which they have been teaching and developing over the past 12 years. The courses they teach help people discover and develop their “Best Voice Ever”. Ron even regales their students with this encouraging lines: “Your voice can help you accomplish a lot of things, for me it help me get my wife.” They also teach Online Courses through the Theatre group TRUMPETS. And with the pandemic ravaging the country, their Online Voice Courses have become very much in demand. Through their Online Courses Ron and Joyce get to teach both International and Local students. Once a year Ron and Joyce would also travel to Thailand and hold a One-week seminar on Voice Courses to students in that country.
As part of their Ministry, Ron and Joyce would regularly visit Churches to help Pastors and Youth Leaders develop their confidence in Public Speaking and help optimize the Full Capacity of their voices through proper vocal techniques, vocal hygiene and other proven scientific methods of developing their Best Voice Ever.
Ron’s testimony is anchored on the message of Jeremiah 1 verses 5 to 9 wherein he believes that even though he was born half deaf, God’s destiny for his life would not be hindered and that he will be put in a place where he would be most useful to God. At the same time, Joyce who was born with bad eye sight never would’ve known that her destiny as a beauty queen would lead her to a life of glamour to Broadcasting and to a life of ministry for God’s service. Ron would sometimes quip that despite their handicaps and their diverse backgrounds, they together form a great partnership – Joyce is The Beauty and he’s The Voice.