Monday, July 18, 2011

Cagayanos' Days of Faith

MANILA, Philippines — The image of Our Lady of Manaoag in a procession with the images of Our Lady of La Naval, and Our Lady of Piat? In June this year, Cagayanos and visitors to Tuguegarao City witnessed anew the parade of 12 famous Marian icons from the northern part of the country during the “3rd Marian Voyage of Peace and Love” from June 28-30.

The said voyage was the fitting centerpiece event of the 428th “Aggao nac Cagayan” (Araw ng Cagayan) or Cagayan foundation day whose over-all celebration was presided over by Governor Alvaro T. Antonio playing up the theme “Fiesta ta Bannag,” which means “feast at the river.”

The Voyage was organized by the Cagayan North Convention & Visitors Bureau (CNCVB), the Archdiocese of Tuguegarao, and the Department of Tourism (DoT), in cooperation with the provincial government, as a project to bolster Cagayan’s campaign as a pilgrimage center.

Department of Tourism, Region 2 Regional Director, Blessida Diwa said that the 12 Marian Images have been stationed at the following Tuguegarao schools and are open for public devotion: Our Lady of La Naval from Antipolo, Rizal at St. Paul University Philippines; Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage from Antipolo, Rizal at University of Cagayan Valley; Our Lady of Manaoag from Manaoag, Pangasinan at Cagayan State University;  Our Lady of Namacpacan from Luna, La Union at the University of St. Louis Tuguegarao;  Our Lady of Badoc from Badoc, Ilocos Norte at Linao National High School; Nuestra Senora del Mar de Cautiva from Sto. Tomas La Union at Tuguegarao Northeast Central School; Our Lady of Charity from Agoo at La Union- Tuguegarao East Central; Our Lady of Fatima from Valenzuela City, Metro Manila at Medical Colleges of Northern Philippines; Nuestra Senora de Caridad from Bantay, Ilocos Sur at Tuguegarao West Central School; Our Lady of Guibang from Gamu National Shrine- Isabela at Cagayan National High School;  and Our Lady of Immaculate Conception from Malolos, Bulacan at Tuguegarao North Central School.

At the helm of the Marian icons is the brown-skinned image of Our Lady of the Visitation from Piat, Cagayan, patroness of the Cagayan province (the only other popular brown Marian image in the group is Antipolo’s Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage).

Read more from Manila Bulletin where it was originally published.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Happy Feet Brothers Ramonito & Laudito Mata from Bukidnon

Theirs is a story worth hearing.

Two poor brothers from the faraway land of Bukidnon get to watch the "Happy Feet" film. They try imitating the tap dancing that they have seen, and eventually get enough courage to audition for "Pilipinas (and why does this not have an "'s" as it should have?) Got Talent." They perform without a formal knowledge of tap dancing, and worse, without the right shoes for it. One of the talent show's judges, the Comedy Queen, cries on learning the brothers' story, and promises on national TV that she will buy them their tap shoes if they get past the audition. The brothers get all three nods from the judges, and the Comedy Queen makes good her promise, flying over to Bukidnon to buy the tap shoes for the brothers herself. With the right shoes, the brothers display enough talent to proceed all the way to the grand finals. On finals night, they bag the second prize.

This is the story of Ramonito & Laudito Mata from Bukidnon. We await the next pages of their story. And, we pray, on happiest feet.

photo from