Spanish flag flies again after 114 years-A A +A
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
THE Spanish flag known as “La Rojigualda” flew once again at the Pampanga Capitol Monday, marking the historic visit and friendship of Spanish Ambassador to the Philippines Jorge Manuel Domecq.
The “La Rojigualda” flew side by side with the Philippine flag as the national anthems of the two countries played one after the other for the first time marking a revitalization of friendship between the countries.
The event, which was in celebration of Bacolor's 250th founding anniversary, was a sight never before seen since the Kapampangans rose against their former colonial masters in 1898.
Ambassador Domecq is the first Spanish envoy to have visited Bacolor town upon the invitation of Governor Lilia Pineda.
The visit started with Domecq attending the morning ceremonies at the Pampanga Capitol before motoring to Bacolor town for the wreath laying ceremonies at the reconstructed monument dedicated to Governor General Simón de Anda y Salazar, who was then a Spanish Governor General of Bacolor, Pampanga from October 6, 1762 to May 30, 1764.
Domecq said both Spain and the Philippines share historic ties and the visit to Bacolor highlights this point.
Pineda, for her part, said the visit aims to remind Kapampangans of their heritage and identity in the context of global history.
The open-carriage tour made a stop at the “Escuala de Artes y Officios de Bacolor” (formerly named Pampanga School of Arts and Trade) now known as the Don Honorio Technological State University, the first state university in Pampanga and oldest trade school in Asia; the monuments of local heroes of the town; and at the San Guillermo Parish Church, which is half buried in lahar.
San Guillermo Parish priest Jess Manabat added the Spanish ambassador was also given a tour of the parish museum that houses much of the religious art that was saved from the lahar devastation that hit the town, adding that much of the Catholic heritage of the Filipinos was introduced from Spain through its missionaries.
Most of the town’s tangible history was destroyed by the 1991 eruption of Mt. Pinatubo and the subsequent lahar flows that buried the town proper and majority of the villages.
Domecq said he is happy to see Pampanga, particularly Bacolor, to have recovered from the Pinatubo eruption.
“The volcano that brought all those calamities to the people in Pampanga has also brought in livelihood and income for the people. Life always has its way of rewarding,” Domecq added.
Domecq said the Spanish government is happy with the development of the Philippines. Spain is currently greatly involved in development aids to the Philippines. (Ian Ocampo Flora)
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on October 30, 2012.