RSS Feed

Category Archives: Heroism

Tulfo: I saw people walking aimlessly like zombies

Posted on

Veteran journalist Ramón Tulfo’s account of his visit to Yolanda-ravaged Tacloban city has just been published a few hours ago and is worth reblogging. Manong Mon formed a medical and mercy mission to help out in the relief efforts. As a result of his stay there, he gives us a very clear description of the horrors of the aftermath of arguably the strongest typhoon in world history, as well as emotional insights from himself and his team. What he and his staff witnessed traumatized them.

Reading his account traumatized me too. Especially this scene:

I saw two children, aged between 5 and 9, separated from their parents as they were taken away to ride on a PAF C-130 plane. The parents had been barred from boarding by soldiers, as the plane was already full.

Poor little ones. My heart bleeds, especially since I couldn’t be there to personally extend my help. I just had to hug my kids after reading this. :-(

In the light of the misery and hunger going on in many parts of Visayas, I guess it’s OK if all of us seated in our comfy chairs get “traumatized” a little bit…

Photo by Danny Pata.

Tulfo: I saw people walking aimlessly like zombies.

By 

I was not prepared for the scenes of suffering that would haunt me for the rest of my life as we landed at the Tacloban City airport.

I had formed a medical and mercy mission of 12 doctors from St. Luke’s Hospital and six nonmedical people, including myself, that landed in the city three days after Supertyphoon “Yolanda” struck. One doctor had backed out so we became a 17-member mission.

From the air, the once-bustling city of more than 200,000 people looked desolate. Everything was a total mess. It was as if an atomic bomb had been dropped.

As the Philippine Airlines (PAL) plane prepared to land, I saw people walking aimlessly like zombies.

Navy Capt. Roy Vincent Trinidad, officer in charge of the airport, asked our group—the first nongovernment medical mission to set foot in Eastern Visayas after Yolanda struck—if we wanted to go to Guiuan in Eastern Sámar. The place was supposedly more devastated than Tacloban.

He offered to take us to Guiuan—three hours by car on a normal day from Tacloban—on a helicopter.

Dr. Sammy Tanzo, head of the medical side of the mission, said our group should just stay in the premises of the airport—then crawling with soldiers and police—for security reasons.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/527527/tulfo-i-saw-people-walking-aimlessly-like-zombies#ixzz2keJCQFT0
Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook

November 8, 2013 will forever be etched in the annals of Philippine History, a tragic date that will never be forgotten.

Congratulations, Senator Angara!

Posted on

A hearty congratulations to Hispanista/Filipinista Senator Edgardo Angara for being inducted to the Hispano-American Royal Academy of Science, Arts and Letters! He is the only Asian and non-Spanish speaker in the ranks of the exclusive academy.

Senator Angara is the only lawmaker today who is carrying on the fight to preserve the Filipino Identity through the promotion of our Hispanic ties. And right now, he is clamoring for the return of the Spanish language into K+12 program. He is reminiscent of past great senators such as Claro M. Recto, Enrique Magalona, Cipriano Primicias, and Vicente Sotto, among many others. The truth is that Senator Angara is struggling for an unpopular cause, especially since history has bedeviled our Spanish past. But he does not care about this. He is after nothing but the historical truth.

¡Viva Señor Angara, el héroe moderno del cosmos filipino!

It started in Baler: Angara’s ‘highest honor’ as 1st Asian, non-Spanish speaker royal academy member

The century-old Real Academia Hispano Americana de Ciencias, Artes Y Letras in Cádiz, one of Europe’s oldest cities and the Iberian Peninsula’s center of culture and the arts, last month inducted Sen. Edgardo Angara into its elite roster of intellectuals, recognizing the lawmaker for furthering Philippine-Spanish relations within and outside the government.

Click here for more!

Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day 2012

Posted on

The Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day is a national holiday that commemorates and preserves centuries-old friendship, and strong historical and cultural links between our countries.

—Senator Edgardo Angara

Click here for more info.

2011 Filipino Of The Year — The Filipino People!

Posted on

For the second time, FILIPINO eSCRIBBLES and ALAS FILIPINAS have unanimously chosen the Filipino People to win the 2011 FILIPINO OF THE YEAR! The decision is very simple: because once again, the Filipino people has joined hands in helping out their fellow Filipinos in Northern Mindanáo (Cagayán de Oro and nearby towns such as Iligan) who were victimized by the flash floods caused by Typhoon Sendong (and deforestation) last December 16. Thousands of people lost their lives. Countless more lost their homes and properties. Northern Mindanáo was almost an apocalyptic scene right after the typhoon left. Hopelessness seemed to reign supreme.

But like what happened two years ago, almost the whole country immediately came to rescue their southern brothers through various donations online as well as online petitions and campaigns seeking for more assistance. This is a proud moment for the Filipino, known for its bayanihan spirit.

Nevertheless, more help is still needed. Northern Mindanáo is still reeling from the devastation of the flash floods. More help should pour in. Can we revive the region? Yes we can! And we are already working on it!

Please click here on how to help the typhoon/flash floods victims.

Congratulations to the Filipino people! May we all have a happy and prosperous new year!

*******

2010 FILIPINO OF THE YEAR
2009 FILIPINO OF THE YEAR

Help Cagayán de Oro (YouTube)

Posted on

More help is needed. Please.

*******

RELATED ARTICLES
Fifteen ways to help the victims of Typhoon Sendong.
More ways to help the victims of Typhoon Sendong.

Fifteen ways to help the victims of Typhoon Sendong

Posted on

Once more, it is time for Filipino netizens to unite in this time of crisis.

A few nights ago, Typhoon Sendong wreaked havoc in Northern Mindanáo. It brought so much destruction particularly in Cagayán de Oro and Iligan. Aside from the typhoon, a deadly mix of gigantic timbers/driftwood (swept by the rainwater from the nearby mountains due to illegal logging), high tide, and darkness (the tempest occurred during the night) contributed to the catastrophe that destroyed so many lives around the Río de Cagayán and elsewhere. As of this writing, the death toll has risen above 1,000. And it is feared to rise even more. :-( The chaos caused by Typhoon Sendong proved to be more terrifying than Typhoon Ondoy.

Now it’s time to clean up. No political bickerings for now. This is the time that we all help our fellow Filipinos down south. We should not allow ourselves to be mere spectators of this tragedy, especially since Christmas is just around the corner. We are all part of this…

*******

Here are 15 Different ways you can help the Victims of Sendong:

HERE’S HOW YOU CAN HELP:

A. VOLUNTEER

1. DSWD

Volunteers are needed at DSWD Cagayán de Oro ( located at Masterson Road, Upper Carmen) to repack and deliver relief goods. Contact number: 09066150095.

B. DONATE (Old clothes, Blankets & Towels. Toiletries, Water, Canned Goods, Or Money)

2. Iligan City Government
Please address all monetary donations to:
Account Name: City Treasurer’s Office Iligan City
Trust Fund # 0820-016201-030
Bank Name: DBP (Development Bank of the Philippines), Iligan City

3. ROCK ED ILIGAN.
Running a soup kitchen in Iligan now. Donate any amount so they can continue to serve hot meals for homeless families in the neighborhood to BPI Loyola 3080.0073.44. Tweet @rockedradio for help

4. UA&P Student Executive Board-H.O.P.E.S. and Serve Life CDO, Inc.
Ready to accept donations for the flood victims of Cagayán de Oro / Misamis Oriental / Iligan. You may deposit thru Banco de Oro, CDO-Cogon Branch Acct#: 001918010567 (Acct Name: Serve Life CDO Inc). God bless you for your kindness! Please pass!

5. ABOITIZ/NEGROS NAVIGATION

Emergency/Relief goods and equipment bound for Cagayán de Oro/Iligan- we have ships ready to transport them asap. For bulk items, bring directly to Abotiz/Negros Navigation, Pier 2, Manila. Call +63 2 211 5484 for more information.

6. Xavier University, Cagayán de Oro
Needs donations in CASH, FOOD (noodles, canned goods, etc.), BOTTLED WATER, and CLEAN CLOTHES. Details here: http://www.xu.edu.ph/index.php/other-news/642-bagyong-sendong-relief-operations-in-xavier-university/

7. Iligan Bloggers Society
Cash donations, canned goods, noodles, bath and laundry soaps, toothpaste, rice, used clothings, slippers will be very much appreciated. Details here: http://iliganbloggers.com/food/one-for-iligan-help-the-typhoon-sendong-victims/

8. ABS-CBN SAGIP KAPAMILYA. Donations accepted in cash and in kind.

-> Peso Account

Account name: ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.-Sagip Kapamilya
Account Number: 39301-14199
Swift Code: BNORPHMM

-> BDO Dollar Account

Account name: ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.-Sagip Kapamilya
Account Number: 39300-81622
Swift Code: BNORPHMM

-> PNB Peso Account

Account name: ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.-Sagip Kapamilya
Account Number: 419-539-5000-13
Swift Code: PNBMPHMM

-> BPI Peso Account

Account name: ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.-Sagip Kapamilya
Account Number: 3051-1127-75
Branch: West Triangle, Quezon City
Swift Code: BOPIPHMM

->BPI Dollar Account

Account name: ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.-Sagip Kapamilya
Account Number: 3054-0270-35
Branch: West Triangle, Quezon City
Swift Code: BOPIPHMM

In Kind – SAGIP KAPAMILYA
ABS-CBN Foundation Inc.
Mother Ignacia cor. Eugenio Lopez St.
Diliman, Quezon City
*You may send rice, canned gods, noodles, biscuits, coffee, sugar, clothes, blankets, mats, medicines

9. GMA KAPUSO FOUNDATION

You may go to GMA Kapuso Foundation, 2nd floor, Kapuso Center, GMA 7, EDSA Diliman, Quezon City or call 9284299/9289351.

-> via METROBANK

Peso Savings

Account Name: GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number: 3-098-51034-7

Dollar Savings

Account Name:GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number:2-098-00244-2
Code: MBTC PH MM

-> via UNITED COCONUT PLANTERS BANK (UCPB)

Peso Savings

Account Name: GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number:115-184777-2 or 160-111277-7

Dollar Savings

Account Name: GMA Kapuso Foundation, Inc.
Account Number: 01-115-301177-9 or 01-160-300427-6

10. Cebuana Lhuillier Pawnshops Nationwide.

For your donations to be properly acknowledged, please fax the bank transaction slip at nos. +63.2.527.0575 or +63.2.404.0979 with your name, address and contact number.

11. Globe G-Cash.

Text DONATE(space)AMOUNT(space)MPIN(space)SLB and send to 2882

12. GAWAD KALINGA
Please address donations in kind to:

CAGAYÁN DE ORO :
Corpus Christi School, Tomasaco Street, Cagayán de Oro
Contact Harvey Maraguinot : 0917-8888427

ILIGAN :
GK Missionville, Purok 3, Canaway, Tibanga, Iligan City
Contact Judi Bentoy : 09178888745

DUMAGUETE/BACOLOD :
Contact Binsoi Rivera : 09175007092
Silliman University, Dumaguete City
St. Scholastica Academy Gym, La Salle Avenue, Bacolod

Donations Through Bank Deposit
Gawad Kalinga Philippine Peso Current Account
# 3101 0977 56 BPI EDSA Greenhills

Gawad Kalinga US$ Savings Account
# 3104 0162 34 BPI EDSA Greenhills

Swift code: BOPIPHMM

13. LBC Express

Now accepts donations for typhoon Sendong victims. You may drop off your donations in any LBC Express branch. To All Pinoys in Singapore you can drop your donations at LBC AirCargo #04-077 Lucky Plaza, Orchard Rd.

14. DSWD

Donations can be sent to: National Resource Operations Center (NROC) 852-8081(24 hours),Chapel Road, Pásay City (back of Air Transportation Office).

Donations can also be brought at all DSWD Field Offices. For DSWD NCR: San Rafael St., Legarda, Manila

Those living near the South: DSWD FO IV-A:Alabang-Zapote Road, Alabang, Muntinlupà City 1770 Tel. No: (02) 807-4140Fax No: (02) 807-1518.

15. PHILIPPINE RED CROSS
-> Through Mobile
-Globe. Text RED to 2899. You may transfer P5, 25, 50, 100, 300, 500
-Smart. Text RED to 4143. Valid donation amounts 10, 25, 50, 100

-> In-Kind Donation

Local

Please send in-kind local donations to Philippine Red Cross – National Headquarters in Manila. We could also arrange for donation pick-up

International

Step 1. Send a letter of intent to donate to the PRC.

Step 2. A letter of acceptance from PRC shall be sent back to the donor.

Step 3. Immediately after shipping the goods, please send the (a) original Deed of Donation, (b) copy of packing list and (c) original Airway Bill for air shipments or Bill of Lading for sea shipments to Philippine Red Cross – National Headquarters c/o Secretary General Gwendolyn Pang, Bonifacio Drive, Port Area, Manila 1018, Philippines.

The PRC does not accept rotten, damaged, expired or decayed goods. Though we appreciate your generosity, PRC also discourages donations of old clothes as we have more than enough to go around.

->Through Cebuana Lhuillier

We can now accept donations in any of the 1,500 Cebuana Lhuillier pawnshops nationwide.

For your donations to be properly acknowledged, please fax the bank transaction slip at nos. +63.2.527.0575 or +63.2.404.0979 with your name, address and contact number.

-> Bank accounts for Donations

Banco De Oro
Peso: 00-453-0018647
Dollar: 10-453-0039482

Bank of the Philippine Islands
Peso: 4991-0036-52
Dollar: 004994-0103-15

Metrobank
Peso: 151-3-041631228
Dollar: 151-2-15100218-2

Philippine National Bank
Peso: 3752 8350 0034
Dollar: 3752 8350 0042

Unionbank of the Philippines
Peso: 1015 4000 0201
Dollar: 1315 4000 0090

All Check/Cash for the account of Philippine Red Cross (Swift Codes):

Banco De Oro – BNORPHMM
Bank of the Philippine Islands – BOPIPHMM
Metrobank – MBTCPHMM
Philippine National Bank – PNBMPHMM
Unionbank of the Philippines – UNPHPHMM

-> For Online Donations:

Please fill up the form at http://www.redcross.org.ph/donate
Payment method: Credit Card, Online Banking, Megalink
Accepts: GreenPeso, PayPal, Bancnet, and GCash

*******

Special thanks to my cousin Jam Alas for the above info. I’m proud of you for doing this! :D

161st birthday anniversary of Plaridel

Posted on

prop·a·gan·da /ˌprɒpəˈgændə/ [prop-uh-gan-duh] (noun)
information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement, institution, nation, etc.

Finally, we have fulfilled a promise to Lola Bening by visiting her grandfather’s shrine in Bulacán. And we did so during a timely event.

Last month, August 30, the town of Bulacán commemorated the 161st natal day of its most celebrated son, Marcelo H. del Pilar, aka Plaridel. For his nationalistic writings mostly published in La Solidaridad and various pamphlets, del Pilar is widely regarded as the Father of Philippine Journalism. Many sectors also add another title to Plaridel’s hallowed name: the Father of Philippine Freemasonry.

For this year, the theme was “Talas ng Panulat at Talino, Inspiración ng mga Filipino” (Sharpness of Pen and Mind, Inspiration of all Filipinos). In a speech given by Bulacán Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado, the provincial leader made mention of the media killings and harassment during the past administration (Arroyo’s), noting that while it continues, the power of journalism then as now will always prevail against the forces of evil.

In such speeches celebrating historic milestones of our national heroes, understandably borne out of subtle “mind-conditioning” in schools, there is always an almost unconscious temptation of painting the past in a darker picture, as if the very air that our heroes’ breathed at that time were smothered in smoke deadlier than the smoke fumes we have today from factories and vehicles. That the sharpness of Plaridel’s pen cannot be denied. That his patriotism can even be at par with that of José Rizal’s, or even far greater, more sublime, deeper and more profound.

But it should be understood thoroughly: what did Plaridel really fight for? How did he put to good use the talas of his panulat?

To simply say that Plaridel “fought against Spanish abuses and tyranny” is mere elementary school talk, very shallow, a premise totally unacceptable in scholarly conversations. An unbiased reassessment of the past will clearly show that the Bulaqueño native belonged to the second wave of the “Propaganda Movement” (the first wave included creoles such as Padres Pedro Peláez and José Burgos, Miguel Rodríguez Varela, etc.), a movement strictly anti-clerical not so much that they were anti-Catholics but that the movement, inspired by a wave of revolutions in Europe, particularly France, saw in itself as carrying the cudgels of reform for a modernized/liberalized Filipinas. In the eyes of these intellectuals —”Europeanized” due to their language, Spanish—, the Philippines was very left behind in terms of economy and technology, arts and culture.

On a side note: if the propagandistas were alive today and then noticed at how that “backward culture” they loathed so much produced, ironically, renaissance men such as themselves —an endangered species in our supposedly modernized/liberalized milieu— I’m sure that they would have been laughing at their follies. Del Pilar would have been roaring the loudest out of sheer disappointment and despair: his nationalism cost him years of precious fatherhood.

Since the intellectuals of that time knew that the friars held prestige and influence on government affairs, these hapless men of the cloth became the main target of attack in the propagandistas‘ campaign for societal changes. Del Pilar was among the first to fire a salvo of anti-friar attacks, writing and distributing defamatory pamphlets and organizing rallies among students who have read liberal writings from Europe. On 1 March 1888, del Pilar helped organize the strongest anti-friar rally ever held during that time: the protesters marched to the office of José Centeno, the civil governor of Manila at that time. Their petition? To ask for the expulsion of Manila Archbishop Pedro Payo as well as all the friars in the Philippines. In the words of historian-priest Fr. Fidel Villaroel, “never before had Manila watched such a bold demonstration against the religious institutes and their Archbishop.” Steeped in knowledge of Church laws, the rallyists’ manifesto (strongly believed to be authored by del Pilar) quoted heavily from the Canon Law and the Leyes de Indias to support accusations against the friars: that they were hostile to authority, ambitious, despotic, etc.

This massive anti-friar protest —probably the first in Philippine History— was the main reason for del Pilar’s escape to Spain, for he was afterwards branded as a filibustero and even anti-Spanish. A legal action was subsequently filed against him, prompting the Commissioner Judge of the legal case to deport del Pilar (probably to faraway Marianas or elsewhere). To escape legal persecution, del Pilar opted to leave Manila for Spain on 28 October 1888, leaving his wife and two daughters behind.

He never saw them ever again.

But in Spain he still continued to fight for whatever reforms he had in mind. Still bitter on his apparent loss against the friars in the Philippines, del Pilar joined their ancient enemy, the Freemasons.

In an interview last year, Lola Bening told me that the main reason why her grandfather affiliated himself with Freemasonry was out of convenience. For a reformist during those days, joining Freemasonry was the most logical thing to do. Del Pilar joined Freemasonry not because he hated Christianity (although later on, estranged for too long from the faith of his forefathers and family, he did become a deist). Del Pilar did so because in Spain he saw an “atmosphere of freedom”, the very same atmosphere he had been yearning for for his beloved country.

During Spanish times, the friars were not just influential over the course of government affairs; the friars were also very much a part of every Filipino family. Unlike today, the cura párroco made it a point to literally look after the lives of his flock by visiting their homes every now and then and as much as possible. Strict Christian ideals and discipline were imposed in every home. Probably “choked” by all this for centuries, and seeing that it was no longer the norm in Spain (for the liberals were already winning during that time), del Pilar et al. called it quits and yearned for “more freedom” from a “stifling” religious life.

For the Freemasons, it was a win-win situation to have del Pilar, a very talented writer in both Tagalog and Spanish, join their ranks. For Freemasonry, nothing more can be sweet but to see the Church of Christ, i.e., the Catholic Church, to be laid to waste.

While in Spain, del Pilar rose through the ranks in Freemasonry quite fast (I do not doubt that he could have been a Freemason already while still in the Philippines). In La Solidaridad, a newspaper that is still very unfamiliar and misunderstood today because it is in Spanish, he wrote scathing essays and even more defamatory articles against the friars in the Philippines. He and his allies continued the “pamphleteering” (hence the name “propaganda”). But unprecedented events and in-fighting within the propagandistas, particularly between del Pilar and Rizal, proved to be fatal for the reform movement in Spain. In the end, an embattled and frustrated del Pilar wrote to his brother-in-law, Deodato Arellano, to organize a more radical group in the Philippines to finally overthrow the Spanish government and not just the friars anymore. Arellano took action and formed the underground movement known as the Katipunan, erroneously known to be a brainchild of Andrés Bonifacio. This fact, therefore, makes del Pilar the indirect founder of that group which directed the destiny of the nation. But that’s for another blogpost.

And since the Propaganda Movement was wasted in the end, the Freemasons saw no more use for del Pilar. In the end, they left him on his own to die on a lonely hospital in Barcelona. But the Freemasons abandoning him was fortuitous, for it allowed del Pilar to have silent moments with God. It is always said that only during the last hours of a man’s life does he take into account all the good and bad things that he has done throughout his existence, and to realize the “existential insignificance” of this ethereal life of ours.

He took the Holy Communion shortly before he died, thus reconverting to the faith of his fathers.

Taking note of all this, it is somehow disappointing to see Freemasons during special days held in honor of both del Pilar and Rizal and hear them lay claim to still having a brotherhood with both heroes in spirit. To a logical person, it should not be difficult to accept cold, hard facts: that both del Pilar and Rizal swallowed their pride and died as Christians. There lies their greatest heroism that should be emulated by all Christians and prodigal sons, an action that is sung not only on Earth but as it is in Heaven. If it is not ignorance from the the part of these Freemasons, then it is sheer desperation to continue acknowledging that Rizal and del Pilar are their brothers. To quote Fr. Villaroel, “what is important is to establish the historical facts and arrive at the truth, whether it pleases or not.

Familia del Pilar (left to right): Rev. P. Vicente Marasigan, Leticia Marasigan de Balagtás, Doña Marciana del Pilar (Plaridel's wife), Antonia Marasigan de Gadi, Sofía H. del Pilar (Plaridel's eldest daughter), Marcelo Marasigan (the baby), Anita H. del Pilar de Marasigan (Plaridel's youngest daughter and mother of Lola Bening), Josefina Marasigan (Madre Mª Aurora of the "Order of Pink Sisters"), Benita Marasigan de Santos (Lola Bening).

El Santuario de Marcelo Hilario del Pilar y Gatmaitán (Marcelo H. del Pilar Shrine). Lola Bening (del Pilar's granddaughter) told me that the original house was torn down. This house is just a replica of the original (much like the case of Calambá's Rizal Shrine). On this very site stood the original. This is where Plaridel was born and where he spent his youth. The whole property was reacquired later on by Lola Bening. It measures 4,027 square meters, but she had no qualms of donating it to the government for the sake of national patrimony. The shrine is now under the custody of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines.

Mrs. Sylvia Santos de Pineda, daughter of Lola Bening and great granddaughter of Marcelo Hilario del Pilar y Gatmaitán.

Bulacán Mayor Patrick Meneses, Bulacán Provincial Governor Wilhelmino M. Sy-Alvarado, Senator Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III, Plaridel's great granddaughter Sylvia Santos de Pineda and husband Patricio Pineda, and Bulacán Vice-Governor Daniel Fernández

Click here to view more photos and details of del Pilar’s 161st birthday!

The Filipino eScribbler, Patricio Pineda, Sylvia Santos de Pineda, and Vicente "Bong" Enríquez (manager of Bulacán-based VSE Productions, a private theater ensemble).

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 939 other followers

%d bloggers like this: