Youth for peace

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The recent canonization of Cebuano San Pedro Calungsod and the elevation of Filipino Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, both youthful representatives of our hopes for our future, blessed us with faith and strength that upheld us through the devastating trials of Storm Pablo this week.

We here in central Cebu have been thankfully spared through these, thanks to Señor Sto. Niño whose feast day we shall celebrate next month, to Our Lady of Guadalupe in Cebu, and San Pedro Calungsod, whom most of us have prayed to for safety. And because of this, it is now our responsibility to help our brethren who have suffered loss of life, limb and property that they may not lose hope, but rise to yet live on in faith.

And all of these, even as we continue with our own personal concerns and responsibilities.

In this Year of Faith, we are reminded that the new liturgical year started with the First Sunday (of four) of Advent, as we count “the number of days” before Christmas.

Thursday last week, Nov. 29th, I attended the traditional Aboitiz Christmas party for Cebu media at the Marriot Hotel. This was thoughtfully scheduled early this year so that it would not coincide with other parties for media held by Cebu’s business companies, unlike an earlier year when media parties were held for media on the same day by both Aboitiz and San Miguel, which split up media guests.

The Aboitiz party, “Rockeokee” Night (Let’s Party Like a Rock Star), was officially opened by president Erramon Aboitiz of Aboitiz Equity Ventures. It was quite a party for all the youthful guests, whom this bystander admired for their dancing along to all the catchy rhythms.

The following day, Friday, Nov. 30th. I attended educator and fellow Zontian and former president of Zonta I, Fe Necessario’s birthday party at her residence at Sabellano Street in Tisa. Her guests included fellow members in the various educational, civic and religious organizations she actively belongs to. Among them were a few former students of mine and listeners to my early radio programs, who remembered and greeted me, after all these years. God bless them!

Most of her guests included priests and seminarians, led by Msgr. Fred Krekienbeek, who celebrated birthday Mass for Fe. Msgr. Fred, a well known religious authority and consulted Church-recognized exorcist, has founded a religious order for priests as well as for nuns, many of whom were present, some assisting in the Mass.

Then last Sunday, I attended our monthly meeting of Cebu United for Radio and Television Artists, Inc. (Curta) at the Rizada residence in Tisa. After tending to administrative concerns, including membership, led by president Edgar Gutierrez, honorary chairperson Rose Rizada took up with the group plans and details of our Curta Corp. Christmas Party on Dec. 16. After Mass celebrated by Msgr. Jose Tajanlangit, special awards will be given out, followed by the Christmas program and party, all to be held at the Rizada residence in Tisa. A detailed report on this will come out in my column the day after the celebration.

Tomorrow will be the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. It will be a very full day for me. The “Women’s Kapihan” which I host tomorrow at 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. over dyLA, will immediately be followed by our fellowship, and Christmas party. Then at 6 p.m., I shall proceed to the Cebu Country Club for Mass with our Zonta Club of Cebu I, to be followed by our Zonta Christmas party. Meantime, I am afraid I shall not be able to attend the opening of “Homage”, an exhibit of prints by Manuel Rodriguez, Sr. at the same 6 p.m. tomorrow at the SM City Cebu Art Center, on the invitation of Cebu Artists, Inc. But I hope to see that exhibit on any of the days after.

The topic for discussion on tomorrow’s “Women’s Kapihan” is Violence Against Women and Children, and the 18-Day Campaign to End VAW (Violence Against Women). The monthly program is organized by Legal Alternatives for Women’s Center, Inc. (Law Center, Inc.) and Cebu Women’s Network. Our panelists are CWN officers, board members and regular members.

Up for discussion are various forms of violence against women and children, how they are committed, Philippine laws against this violence, and the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign which will continue with the global theme: “From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World: Let’s Change Militarism and End Violence Against Women.” Do listen in.

And now for special movers and significant dates. Congratulations to Dr. Marcelo Lopez on his appointment as president of the Cebu Normal University (my alma mater) for 2012 to 2016, in which congratulations I join with the Federation of CNU Alumni Association, Inc. Last Tuesday, Dec. 4, Cebu remembered the late and beloved Serging Osmena’s 96th birth anniversary. And from Dec. 16 to 19 next week, we look forward to a successful National Youth Development Summit at Silliman University in Dumaguete City. It is the most holistic and progressive youth conference yet in the Philippines. Theme of the summit is, “Reclaiming the Past, Imagineering the Future.”

This Year of Faith has been truly presaged for our country’s youth by the young Filipino martyr, San Pedro Calungsod, and the second to the youngest cardinal in the world, Philippines’ Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle!

Until next week, then, as always, may God continue to bless us, one and all!

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