50-year-old pastor passes Bar exam after five tries

MANILA, Philippines – As they always say, reaching your dreams shouldn’t have an age limit. A 50-year-old pastor was emotional when he finally passed the Bar exam. His success was even made sweeter because it was his fifth try.

The Tiktok video made by Jersome Arellano became viral with close to 1 million views since posting. Jerome shared his father’s reaction upon knowing that he had passed the 2020-2021 bar exam. He wrote in the caption, “Thank you Lord! Sa naipasa po ni Papa ang Bar exam.”

Pastor Cresencio Arellano Jr. passed the Bar exam after his fifth try
Pastor Cresencio Arellano Jr. passed the Bar exam after his fifth try | Screengrab: TikTok/Jersome Arellano

Jersome’s father Cresencio Arellano Jr. is a pastor from Llanera, Nueva Ecija. Atty. Crescencio is the first United Methodist Church clergy to become a lawyer, according to Jerome.


Despite setbacks and challenges, Atty. Cresencio didn’t give up on his dream of becoming a lawyer. He didn’t even enroll in a review center and studied independently. He took his fifth try last February 2022 at Saint Louis University in Baguio. Finally, he passed and his family’s reaction was captured on the viral video.

“He’s a refresher, and it’s his fifth take po. He couldn’t afford to enroll on a review center on his first two takes. My father’s actually a pastor of United Methodist Church (UMC), and we can proudly say that he’s the first UMC Clergy to become a lawyer!” Jersome shared.

On Monday, Associate Justice Marvic Leonen announced that a total of 8,241 out of 11,402 passed the 2020/21 Bar examination, or a record high passing rate of 72.28 percent.

Dubbed the “Best Bar Ever,” it had the biggest batch of examinees. Due to the pandemic, the Bar skipped two years for the first time in history, and two batches of law graduates had to take the exam at the same time. The 2020/21 Bar last February was considered the first digitized and decentralized Bar Exam in the country.

You can watch the video here:

@jrsmarellano Thank you Lord! Sa naipasa po ni Papa ang Bar Exam 😭❤️ #BestBarEver #fyp ♬ MAPA - SB19

— Sally, The Summit Express

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