IT IS raining cats and dogs while I am pounding the keys of my beaten typewriter for my column this weekend. More often than not, this has been the daily weather situation for the last two months, caused by the series of typhoons with devastator “Luis” still battering many parts of Northern Luzon.
Yesterday, classes at all levels from pre-school to the college division were suspended. Unfortunately, the regular fourth Sunday Holy Mass at the Shrine of the Brown Madonna at Km. 7, Asin Road scheduled for tomorrow will not push through again, like the past two months, all because of the “habagat.”
For sure, my wife Consuelo Sol and I will visit and still offer prayers at the Shrine tomorrow. I hope that other Mama Mary devotees of the Shrine will be there too. Wally and Brenda Leyson, the very devoted patron of the Shrine visited the place of worship last Thursday morning. The couple offered lighted candles and flowers at the altar of Mama Mary. Maraming salamat po!
Like in the past, the lucky Charter day Babies, a baby boy and a baby girl will be known on September 1, starting midnight of August 31, at the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center.
The project committee led by Betty Fangasan, Department Head of the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO), Isaias Barongan of the Office for Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) and presidents of the BEA member associations namely, Edith Ibarra from the Federation of Baguio Senior Citizens Associations, Prof. Federico Balanag of BARP Foundation, former City Vice Mayor Betty Tabanda, of the Philippine Government Retirees Association, Baguio Chapter and representatives from the Veterans Federation of the Philippines, Baguio District, United States Armed Forces of the Philippines, Northern Luzon Association represented by the fighting 66th Infantry Battalion, AFP and yours truly as BEA President will visit the celebrity babies on September 2, at 9 0’clock in the morning to present the lucky babies welcome tokens.
The mabuhay gift package includes a cash gift from the 2018 Baguio Charter Day Committee; baby clothing, blankets, assorted fruits, canned goods and biscuits and a cavan of rice for each family. The humanitarian activity, honoring the city’s Charter Day babies started funding the observance of the Centennial Year Celebration of the Summer Capital of the Philippines way back in Year 2009. Thank you to Atty. Carlos Canilao, chairman of the city’s Special Events Committee and to the City Tourism Office for their continued support and cooperation. Mabuhay tayong lahat.
They citywide celebration of Octoberbest Festival in honor of the Filipino elderly sector will be on centerstage next month. The special event is in consonance with a Presidential Proclamation declaring the first week of every October every year as the “Lingo ng Matatandang Filipino”. The monthlong celebration in the city was approved by the City Mayor and the City council after considering with reason the Resolution of the BARP Foundation to extend the period of the honor rites to give more time and comfort for our city elderly to participate and give more meaning to the occasion. Hence, the birth of the Baguio Elderly Assembly (BEA) as the executive planning and program implementor of OCTOBERBEST Festival, since 15 years ago.
The highlight features of Octoberbest are the Senior Citizens Officials for a Day (Scofad) which takes place at the City Hall on the first Monday of October; a grand opening program and parade, a religious conclave, cleaning and beautification activities at the city’s parks, a palaro of Pilipino games, a leadership seminar on the on-going development programs of the city government, backyard planting of fruit-bearing trees, and a poster design contest.
Octoberbest will climax with the presentation of awards and recognition to the city’s 12 Most Outstanding Senior Citizens in the file of government service, education, medicine, military service, social-civic activities, tourism and special events, art and culture, journalism and sports. The “parangal” endeavor will highlight with a Pista sa Nayon where the elderly Lakambinis and their respective Lakans will be presented and crowned by the “potongan” entourage composed of leading city government officials and from civic organizations. A cultural presentation of folk dances and songs follow.
The CSWDO, OSCA and the BEA with its member organizations is set to meet shortly to finalize the OCTOBERBEST Festival program. We are with everyone hoping and praying for better weather conditions next month. Meanwhile, let us all enjoy the mystery, the wonder and grandeur of our natural environment as created by the Almighty God, rain or shine.