● Holy Week destinations for relaxation, reflection
● Don’t marry early, Sara Duterte tells UB graduates
Scene: Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach had a brief visit to Bohol last week to shoot an advertisement for a real estate property. Wurtzbach is a proud Century Properties homeowner after years of living in the good graces of friends and renting apartments while she worked hard to build a career in modeling and show business, and tried her luck in beauty pageants. “I'm still star-struck,” said actress-performer Scarlet Guelen-Boiser who was part of the commercial.
Scene: Senator JV Ejercito hit the graduation circuit this year, giving four commencement addresses in March in Bohol. He will be the commencement speaker for Bohol Island State University (BISU)’s communication school graduation ceremonies in four campuses. He will give an inspirational message to the graduates of Bohol Island State University (BISU)-Candijay Campus and BISU-Bilar Campus on March 26; and BISU- Balilihan and BISU-Tagbilaran on March 27. Ejercito will also inspect the additional building of the Gov. Celestino Gallares Memorial Hospital. He filed Senate Bill 1768 as senate counterpart of Rep . Rene Relampagos’ bill to increase the bed capacity from 225 to 525 and upgrading the medical facilities and equipment of the said hospital.
Scene: Karen Gallman was crowned as Miss Intercontinental Philippines 2018 in the 55th edition of Binibining Pilipinas. Gallman, who was croned Miss Ubay 2007, was asked if she agrees with the idea of having a third restroom built for transgenders. She responded, “I definitely agree that there should be a third restroom for transgenders because as women, we would also want our privacy, and also with men.”
Time has a way of changing things. Before, people could only go to church. Today, more and more people choose to spend it at the beach or the mall. For many Filipinos, the long weekend is a time to not only reflect on the sacrifices of Christ, but also a time to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Even though the folk beliefs and customs for the Holy Week are things in the past, we can still hear some of them:
-Evil spirits are believed to roam during the Holy Week.
-Travel on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday is taboo.
-Spending is taboo on Good Friday, as is sweeping the floor.
-Bathing, making noise, and laughing or smiling on Good Friday, especially at 3 p.m., are taboo.
-Roasting food during the Holy Week makes your face black.
- Using sharp objects is taboo during Lent.
In the past, the whole week was marked in red on the church calendars. The elders bought rice and viands good for one week since business establishments were closed for a week. The neighborhood was so quiet.
The Village of the Compassionate God the Father
in Inabanga town offers perpetual breeze to reflect
on the life, death and message of Jesus.
Photo by Leo Udtohan
It was also an ideal time to start a diet. Since meat is avoided during Lent, fish dishes were prepared in most households. Our favorite soul food binignit is still popular. Although a common merienda fare, binignit takes center stage during the Holy Week and especially on Good Friday.
As we journey through Holy Week, let us draw closer to Christ in many meaningful ways.
If you decide to look for destinations for the Holy Week, VRS has picked some places to allow this significant season to touch your life more deeply:
The Village of the Compassionate God the Father- Located in Barangay Fatima in Inabanga town, the place is peaceful, tranquil and something different. The place has a perpetual breeze that will remind you instantly about life and the Lord. There are life-size structures of the 14 Stations of the Cross with a big figure of the God the Father of All Mankind at the top of the hill.
Fatima Hill- The Fatima Rosary Hill in Barangay Buenavista in Carmen town will put you on a state of pure bliss with its scenic sights. It is the home of the Madonna of the Miraculous Blessed Virgin Mary. The shrine was built sometime in the early 1940s. There is a concrete chapel, a spring and a souvenir shop. Spiritual recollection becomes more enhancing on top of this hill where one can look at the wide plains of Carmen and Sierra-Bullones. Don’t forget that it is holy and quiet. Burn a candle and pray.
Virgen sa Kaluoy in Calape- The image of the Virgin is believed to be growing from an empty giant shell. From a mere obscure figure, the image now is very visible, showing the beautiful virgin with the giant shell in the background.
San Antonio de Padua Shrine- Located in Barangay Tinibgan in Calape town, it houses the miraculous image of St. Anthony of Padua, one of the Catholic Church’s most popular saints. Saint Anthony of Padua is the patron saint of lost and stolen articles.
Kruz Daku in Loboc – It is one of the favorite destinations of the pilgrims during the Holy Week. A huge white cross 80 feet in height is on top of the highest hill, where one can view the towns of Loay and Loboc. A few meters from the Krus Daku is the giant statue of the Our Lady of Guadalupe.
San Vincent Ferrer – It’s time to touch and kiss the 400-year-old image of Saint Vincent Ferrer at the Diocesan Shrine of Saint Vincent Ferrer in Maribojoc town. The place is a pilgrimage site, with many miracles reported. One can appreciate the wood and stone carvings of the Escuela Taller.
Lenten Procession in Baclayon- During Holy Wednesday and Good Friday, the streets of this town are filled with life-size religious statues depicting key events of the Passion and Death of Christ on decorated carrozas which are solemnly paraded along the streets followed either by devotees reciting the rosary.
Hugos in Loboc- The ritual that dramatizes the first meeting of Christ and Mary after His resurrection, and takes place at dawn on Easter Sunday. It begins with two processions, where statues of Christ and Mary are carried from opposite ends of the community. The statue of Mary is covered in a black veil of mourning. Eventually, they will meet at midpoint, during which an angel (typically played by a young girl from the community) will lift the veil, ending Mary’s mourning and Holy Week celebrations. Well, what makes it special is the world-famous Loboc Children’s Choir sings during the mass and the ritual.
There’s no place better than Bohol to make your Visita Iglesia pilgrimage, a good try for spiritual journey. There are many churches to attend services during the Holy Week.
With Holy Week destinations like these, there's enough time for both relaxation and reflection.
Sara Duterte tells graduates not to marry early
Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio advised University of Bohol (UB) graduates to be focused on living a fulfilling life, giving back through service and not marrying early during the school’s commencement.
Duterte-Carpio addressed 570 graduates at Friday’s ceremony in Tagbilaran City.
She said that when she saw the graduates she then realized how meaningful to attend one’s graduation. She failed to attend her own graduation ceremonies.
Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio
offered an impactful message to the
graduating students during the 154th
Commencement Exercises of the University
of Bohol on Friday afternoon.
Photo courtesy: Leah Tirol-Magno
“Nagtana-aw ko sa inyuha teary- eyed ko. You know wala ko muattend sa akong college graduation wala pud ko muattend sa akong law school graduation. Giingnan ra nako akong ginikana nga graduate nako, okay rana,” she said.
In her speech, she said that graduation was meant for the parents and loved ones.
“Today is the culmination of many years of hardwork and also the beginning of many adventures. This time, the tests will come first and the lessons afterwards. Some tests will be easy, while others might pull you down. But is in your determination to get back up that will reveal the strength of your character,” she said.
She encouraged graduating students to be honest with themselves.
“As much as possible stay true of who you are and never let a hardship will break your character. Do not be afraid to commit mistakes rather be fearful of learning from them,” she said.
She encouraged them to help their families, community and the nation. “I encourage for you to take some time to discern of what will be your contribution to your family, your community and your nation. Know your purpose, make some goals, no matter how small. Basin pa man inyong barangay inyong gitabangan that will contribute to nation building.”
Duterte-Carpio also advised the graduates not to marry early.
“And third personal note nga gusto nako i-impart this afternoon is ayaw mo pagminyo og sayu. Kay kung minyo namo karun okay lang na pero kadtong dili pa minyo ayaw samo pagminyo palihog og sayo. But you know, wala man ta kahibaw unsay mahitabo ogma ang importante lang you are happy with the decisions that you make,” she said while it elicited cheers, laughter and banter from the crowd.
Duterte-Carpio briefly stayed for an hour at the graduation ceremony.
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