Sunday, November 17, 2019

Bohol designers unite for 'Exodus' in December; Fr. Parilla's 'Hashtags for Young Seekers' released

•Bohol designers unite for 'Exodus' in December
•Fr. Parilla's 'Hashtags for Young Seekers' released

Scene: The municipality of Sierra Bullones was the first in the province to put up their Christmas decor- the tallest Santa Claus. It was displayed last September. However,  the Santa Claus was dismantled last weekend.

Scene:  After K-Pop star Sandara Park who spent her pre-birthday celebration in the province, Boholano boxer Nonito "Junjun" Donaire Jr  went home. He posted photos of his Bohol vacation in Instagram and Facebook. Junjun posted a video of him with his son Logan dancing at the Loboc River.  He captioned the video, "Showing my son Logan a native dance from my home island where I was born in Bohol, Philippines."

Scene: The homecoming of Pinoy Big Brother(PBB) Otso Ultimate Winner William "YamYam" Guc-ong at Inabanga Cultural and Creative Park yesterday, Nov. 16. PBB Otso finalist Fumiya Sankai accompanied YamYaman. Saturday's event was also the  INB Christmas Tree Lights-on Ceremony.

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Boholano priest releases new book: Hashtags for Young Seekers

Fr. Harold Anthony Parilla is the author
 of "Hashtags for Young Seekers" that seeks
to answer the important questions that young people ask.
Contributed Photo
Fr. Harold Anthony Parilla, the rector of Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary in this city, launched his second book of homilies  "Hashtags for Young Seekers". 

The book is composed of 49 homilies organized into seven chapters.  All these homilies seek to answer the important questions that young people, its intended audience, fearlessly raise.

Pope Francis in Evangelii Gaudium,135 said that “The homily can actually be an intense and happy experience of the Spirit, a consoling encounter with God’s word, a constant source of renewal and growth.”

“We took the cue from the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) which declared 2019 as the “Year of the Youth”, a segment of the preparation for the fifth centenary celebration of the arrival of Christianity in the country," Fr. Parilla said.

He added, "This book is our modest contribution to the challenging and exciting ministry of accompanying young people in their own journey of faith.”

Movie actress and book author Dimples Romana wrote the foreword of the book.

In praise for Fr. Parilla’s work, she said, “I read the reflections and immediately felt the Holy Spirit come upon me. What a beautiful testimony of God’s love. These reflections will tug at your heartstrings and make you rethink just how deep you can go when it comes to nurturing your faith. These stories have left me with a heart yearning for more and a spirit ready to give.”

In this new volume, Fr. Parilla targets young seekers. 

In 2017, Fr. Parilla’s authored "Hashtags for Seekers" was published by Creannovate Publishing. It was praised by several leaders, no less than His Excellency Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle who wrote the foreword of the book.
Cardinal Tagle said, “Reading through Harold’s reflections, I felt assured that I do not need to be embarrassed or fearful of my faults, misconceptions, wounds, pains, and doubts for God remains faithful and near to us. God knows we are pilgrims, God’s work in progress. That is why God walks with us, for alone we perish.  God’s hope for us knows no bounds. These are some themes in Harold’s book that warmed my heart, as I wish they would yours.”

Fr. Parilla was ordained to the priesthood in 2003, after he finished his theological studies at the Loyola School of Theology in Quezon City.

After some years of work at the local seminary and in the chancery of the Diocese of Tagbilaran, he left for Rome to obtain a licentiate degree in canon law at the Pontifical Gregorian University.

He also finished masteral degrees in pastoral ministry and educational management from two Jesuit universities in the Philippines.

He also facilitates at spiritual retreats for various groups.

Currently, he is rector of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary in Tagbilaran City.

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Bohol designers unite for Exodus fashion show for a cause

Fashion has been used for a lot of worthy causes. 

In Bohol, 12 designers unite for Suppor+'s fund-raising show ‘Exodus-Bohol Fashion Forward' on December 21.

Exodus will be more than just about fashionable clothes and gorgeous men and women. It will showcase courage on the catwalk and stories of survival.

Exodus, a year-ender fashion show for a cause
will feature the creations of 12 Boholano designers
 for the benefit of HIV/AIDS Positive Organization,
iSuppor+. Contributed Photo 
The year-ender fashion show will feature the creations of Bebie Tagoctoc, Aileen Sendrijas Pasagad, La'doi Aquino, Kim Villamor, Nikki Simporios, Rose Paul Silhouette,  Christian Bustrillos, Tracy Remolador Torres,  Ryan Sadudaquil, Christian Relator, EJ Relampagos and Charlow Arbasto.

The clash of art, expression and glamour will be on December 21, 8 p.m. at the Bohol Cultural Center in Tagbilaran City.

For inquiries,  contact BDC Secretariat (Ryan Sadudaquil) at 09101244637.

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Sunday, November 10, 2019

Barajan proves that not all heroes wear capes

The costume and the superhero have become
 inseparable for Seaman First PO3 Ralph Barajan of the Philippine
 Coast Guard in this 2013 photo. Contributed Photo
Many of us are familiar with the often-caped superheroes that star in blockbuster movies. While these “heroes” save lives and overcome villains, their story ends when the movie ends.

But for the 59 people aboard the MV Siargao Princess that sank off Sibonga, Cebu after it was battered by strong waves on Thursday morning (November 7) , a different kind of superhero exists. One that doesn’t wear a cape, but saving lives — in a behind-the-scenes but in an awesome way.

The hero is Seaman First P03 Seaman Ralph Barajan, a native of Barangay La Paz in Cortes town. He played a key role in saving many passengers and crew.

The weather was fair but it became horrendous an hour after they left Loon Port. The vessel was battered  by strong waves and  the forward portion of the ship began to sink, throwing the passengers into panic.

It was fortunate that there was Barajan, a trained Coast Guardsman, who was among the passengers of the vessel who was on his way to the substation in Southern Cebu. 

He let the Coast Guard in him overcome fear and placed the safety of his fellow passengers above that of his own. He was able to direct the passengers and crew when the ship began to sink.

“Gusto ko lang ma save tanan mao tong naningkamot ko nga mag uban-uban mi tanan.

Ako lang naa sa mind kay way mamatay sa ako atubangan (I wanted everyone to be saved that’s why I tried to bring us all closer. That no one would die),” Barajan told VRS.

He took the initiative to ensure all passengers and crew wore life vests and that they stayed close together before the rescue. 

Architect Ernie Gelbolingo could testify to the bravery of Barajan.

"Kon di pa niya, di mi maluwas. Siya maoy nagpakalma sa mga pasahero, siya maoy nag-instruct ug nag-guide sa mga pasahero kanus-a mangambak, pag-abot sa dagat, siya maoy nagpahiluna sa mga bata ug tiguwang sa life raft,"  Gelbolingo told reporters.

Daphne Marielle Tudtud,15, also thanked Barajan's bravery.

"Magpasalamat gyud mi ni Kuya kay walay daotang nahitabo namo," said Marielle.

Maria Encarnacion Arellano, 65, who spent the two long hours with her sick husband Eduardo floating in the sea, said it was a miracle. She said Barajan calmed down the passengers.

Presence of mind, training and bravery helped
the Coast Guardsman Ralph Barajan to save passengers
 from the MV Siargao Princess that sank off the shore
 of Sibong town, Cebu on November 7, 2019.
Photo from Ralph Barajan FB 
Lieutenant Junior Grade Michael Encina, spokesperson of Philippine Coast Guard (PCG)-Central Visayas, praised Barajan as his leadership skills as a Coast Guard was essential to keep the passengers and crew alive during the maritime accident.

Everyone called him a hero.

However, Barajan shrugged off hero title for doing his duty.  He is just happy to be called dedicated and dependable.

Not all superheros wear capes. Ang uban taga La Paz, Cortes!

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Sunday, November 3, 2019

Memories are forever

My "visita cementerio" this year was limited to Tagbilaran cemeteries. I, sighed, failed to visit some great cemeteries in Guindulman, Calape, Loon and Anda.

I am not morbid but I always make it sure that every Kalag-Kalag I practice my "visita cementerio. " To this I have three reasons: (1) To give me spiritual theme that we have left to live a life united to G-d's merciful love, (2) to know more of our cemeteries, and (3) to know the people who passed away.

I just contented myself visiting first the Dampas Catholic Cemetery where it  houses the remains of the dean of Boholano journalists lawyer Zoilo Dejaresco and wife Rosario, Miguel Parras, Bernardino Inting, Asuncion Mira, Alberto Cainglet, Lucio Guy Lim,  Dr. Margarito Lim, Zenaida Darunday, Uly Dolojol, among other respected Boholanos who went ahead of us.

Victoria Memorial Park (ViMPark), laid out in 1975, houses notable people like Doña Basing, Obdulio and Juana Caturza Sr., Antonio Ong Guat, Carolina Alvarez, Erico Aumentado, Prisco and Socorro Tallo, Nelson Rio Sr., Will and Cristeta Tirol, and many others.

An interesting trivia about Victoria Memorial Park is via Aurelio "Ondoy Kalag" Gahit, whose name is synonymous to ViMPark.

He has spent most of his life at ViMPark that he, well, perfectly memorize all the names and locations of your loved ones.

He is also famous for his “graveside etiquette” to behave during a graveside service with the same attitude of respect and courtesy.

Ondoy said people might think a cemetery would make us feel sadder because it is a very stark reminder of the reality of our loss. But for him, although sadness is pronounced, a cemetery is a reminder for closure and healing.
There is no dull moment with Ondoy. He has lots of stories---love and ghostly stories.

He said he could not forget a man who spent over 10 years holding vigil at his wife’s grave every day, arriving when the cemetery opened and heading home when it closed.

He said he was touched of the man's loyalty and undying love.

Being more comfortable living with the dead, he recalled one horrific incident in 1993.

A mantiyanak (a woman who died in labor), who stirred the neighborhood appeared to him. Many people were said to have heard her singing lullabies to her baby, causing hair-raising chills and making them tremble in fear.

He saw the mantiyanak seemingly asking for help.

“She appeared to me,” he said.

He went to see a Catholic priest and he was told to pray at the grave of the person. After praying, the ghostly apparitions stopped.

Just this Friday, November 1, I spent the night at the Victoria Memorial Park to visit the graves of my sister, aunts, uncles and relatives.

As I watched each grave sites, I realized life has meaning and purpose. And some day it will end.

The cemetery will remind us of that. But it will also give us clarity and focus to use in charting the path ahead.

When I went home, I played (I never get tired playing and replaying) one of my favorite songs "Dust in the Wind," especially in this season when we are overwhelmed by intimations of mortality.

Listen closely and be humbled by the song’s message:

Dust in the Wind
by Kansas
I close my eyes, only for a moment
And the moment’s gone
All my dreams pass before my eyes, a curiosity
Dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind
Same old song, just a drop of water
In an endless sea
All we do crumbles to the ground
Though we refuse to see
Dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind
Now, don’t hang on, nothing lasts forever
But the earth and sky
It slips away, and all your money
Won’t another minute buy
Dust in the wind
All we are is dust in the wind
Dust in the wind
Everything is dust in the wind    

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Sunday, October 27, 2019

Sexy talk with Sean Tupaz

Sean Tupaz on being sexy: 'Sexy means
 being confident.' Photo by Marlon Boloron
If you're a student and in the 'de alta sociedad',  you should know who Sean Garsuta Tupaz is. He's Sandugo Festival King 2016 second runner-up,  Mr BQ Mall 2017 first runner-up and Mister UB Personality 2018.

Sean, 20,  is as funny and as witty and, well, as a sexy model. He's articulate and in very rare times when he can't say it, his body language does the trick.

What keeps him busy?
"Academics, household chore responsibilities, and my hobbies," he said.

Sean said he wants to become a licensed aircraft mechanic or a pilot.

"I want to make my mom proud of me," said Sean whose inspirations are his mother and girlfriend.

Here's Sean's "list of sexiest":

Define sexy:
"Sexy means being confident of what you have whole heartedly and handling yourself with poise."

What makes you feel sexy?
"By doing things that Im comfortable of, and by showing my unique styles."

What do you consider the sexiest part of your body?
"My abs."

What part of a woman's body that you find sexiest?
"The hips."

Singer with a sexiest voice?
" Zayn Malkk." (Former One Direction member)

Sexiest movie?

Sexiest clothes?
"Tank tops."

Sexiest perfume?

Sexiest book (s)?
"Me Before You (by Jojo Moyes) and Slave to Sensation (by Nalini Singh)."

Sexiest song (s)?
 "Versace on The Floor by Bruno Mars and Let Me by Zayn Malik."

Sexiest fantasy?

Sexiest time of the day?
"Every time!"

Sexiest thing you've ever done to yourself?
"Going out to the gym five times a week."

Sexiest thing he has ever done to a girl?
"Make her fall in love even more."
Sean Tupaz on the sexiest thing he has ever done
 to a girl: 'Make her fall in love even more.'
Foreverday Photography of Event Planner Philippines

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Sensible quotes

A friend shared this quote: "If you are ugly, you are ugly. Stop talking about inner beauty because people don’t walk around with X-ray machines to see inner beauty."

Well, the quote is from the late Zimbabwe ex-President Robert Mugabe who  will be remembered for his great wit.
Here are some of his (witty) quotes:

1) "When your clothes are made of cassava leaves, you don’t take a goat as a friend."
2) "If you are ugly, you are ugly. Stop talking about inner beauty because men don’t walk around with X-ray machines to see inner beauty."
3) "When one’s goat gets missing, the aroma of a neighbour’s soup gets suspicious."
4) "Treat every part of your towel nicely because the part that wipes your buttocks today will wipe your face tomorrow."
5) "Sometimes you look back at girls you spent money on, rather than send it to your mum, and you realise witchcraft is real."
6) "If President Barack Obama wants me to allow marriage for same-sex couples in my country (Zimbabwe), he must come here so that I marry him first."
7) "What is the problem with deporting white men from Africa? We now have aeroplanes which can take them back quicker than the ships used by their ancestors."
8) "Cigarette is a pinch of tobacco rolled in a piece of paper with fire on one end and a fool on the other end."
9) Interviewer: "Mr President, when are you bidding the people of Zimbabwe farewell?"
Robert Mugabe: "Where are they going?"

AND FINALLY the 'piece de resistance'
10) "If I am given a chance to travel through time, I will go back to 1946, find Donald Trump's father and give him a condom."

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Sunday, October 20, 2019

Milan and a few of her favorite things

Having seen her as a tot in the loving arms of her mom, Flor, I have to rub my eyes twice to make sure that the dainty young lady, still 15 years old, before me is, indeed, Milan Angelie Lawangon, who just recently joined the Runway search. How she has grown!

Budding model Milan Angelie Lawangon
on sunflowers: "Sunflowers really make me
 feel bright and cheerful.'  Photo Angel Baldapan 
Milan Angelie Lawangon, a Grade 10 student at Dr. Cecilio Putong National High School (DCPNHS), started her modeling and pageantry passion when she was chosen to represent their year level during the 2018 Miss English Personality. A newbie, she won two minor awards-Miss Photogenic and Best in Talent.

After the show, talent scout and trainer Khim of The Art Noveau convinced her to join her team. But like other students, she was so busy  that she was unable to continue the trainings and workshops.

Last summer 2019, she decided to enroll  at FILCAN's modeling workshop held at the Island City Mall (ICM) Activity Center that helped her confidence on stage.  Even now and then,  she joined auditions on modeling industry and  she was chosen as one of the The Philippine Runway (TPR) models – Bohol edition. 

Last September 29, TPR's Catwalk for Hope, under the umbrella of Humanista International Charities Inc. Project, held a charity fashion show at Metro Center Ballroom. Milan won the Best Female Runway Crystal Coctail Concept Award.

Before that event,  at school she also represented their year level during the Science Competition of Futuristic Concept design. She won the major award as Best in Futuristic Outfit and Trashion Model 2019.

Get to know a little more about Milan as she "plays favorites."

• ACTOR (local): Daniel Padilla. ("Overload with cuteness. I like their team-up with Kathryn because he is loyal.")
• ACTRESS (local): Kathryn Bernardo. ("She is simple but elegant.")
• MOVIE:  Cinderella.  ("It is not impossible to marry a prince.")
• TV SHOWS (foreign): ELLEN
• TV SHOW (local): GGV
• SONG: MEMORIES by Maroon 5
• SINGER (foreign):  Billie Eilish
• SINGER (local): December Avenue
• CRUSH: He's Cole Sprouse! ("I like his personality, his characteristics, the black hair for sure, and just him as a person overall lead to me thinking about how cute he is.")
• HIDEAWAY:  Friend’s cribs or houses.
• HOBBIES: Rampa rampa!
• TIME OF DAY:  6 in the morning! ("It means a new beginning and a new opportunity.")
• DAY OF THE WEEK: Sunday.("It's restday and family day.")
• FOOD (Filipino): Adobo
• DRINK(s): Milk Tea
• FRUIT: Mango
• FLOWER: Sunflower. ("Sunflowers really make me feel bright and cheerful.")
• COLOR: White
• SUBJECTS (in school):  English
The sea of yellow sunflowers aRJ's Javier Tropical Farm
Barangay Cagawasan in Pilar town.

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Boholanos remember 2013 quake with 6.3 tremor in Mindanao

Flashes of the 7.2 magnitude earthquake came into the mind of Boholanos when a tremor shook parts of Mindanao on Wednesday night, Oct. 16.

They were anxious when they learned

that a 6.3 magnitude shook a large swath of Mindanao since most of their families and relatives live or work in Mindanao. 

Jeycelle Espejo-Inting, a Grade 7 teacher at Dr. Cecilio Putong National High School in Tagbilaran City, was worried. Her uncle Capt. Abito Espejo and his family live in Bansalan town in Davao Del Sur, while her aunt Tita Baloco Suib in General Santos City.

She felt relief to find out nothing bad happened to them during the quake.

The tremor in Mindanao happened a day after Boholanos remembered the 6th anniversary of the powerful quake that hit the province in 2013.

Prince Salamat, 42, of Baclayon town, was at Carmen Public Market in Davao Del Norte  to buy durian after his whole day field work on Socksargen and Region XI.

He said it was raining with thunder and lightning at the time when the ground shook.

"I saw people coming out from the stores screaming and children were crying. I was frozen from where I stood. The Bachelor bus going to Tagum was moving to the left and right because of the strong earthquake. Motorcycles fell," narrated Salamat who works as a human resource officer in Mindanao.

Flashes of Bohol earthquake came into his mind.  He was in Bohol when the quake shook Bohol on October 15, 2013.

"I remembered the very strong earthquakes and aftershocks in Bohol. I was thinking of my family back home in Baclayon. These made broke more into tears,"  said Salamat.

At least five persons were reported to have died. 

It prompted several local authorities to suspend classes for Thursday.

As of posting, 246 aftershocks have been recorded in several parts of Mindanao, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.

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Sunday, October 13, 2019

Trishia Libres: 'Beauty is what we see, feel and believe.'

Trishia Marie Castulo Libres is on cloud nine. She has won the Miss Silka Bohol 2019.

She said joining pageants isn't an easy task.

"My preparation before the pageant is to come prepared," she said with a smile.

She said her victory is not just for herself but also for her hometown.

"I come by giving full efforts and pride in my hometown," she added.

She will compete in the Miss Silka Philippines 2019 on Nov. 29 in Manila.

Trishia, 19, who hails from Barangay Canhaway, Guindulman town, wants to become a flight attendant someday.

Here's my chat with Trishia:
Describe your self: I am a kind-hearted, family-oriented, and independent person. I am always ready to face any challenges and also to help others in need. I can be quiet at first, but I have unending stories to tell. One aspect that helped me grow is being a leader of the Youth for Christ organization which deepened my faith in God.

What are your preparations for the upcoming Miss Silka Philippines 2019?  To be one of the candidates of Miss Silka Philippines is such an honor.  This pageant may be different from my past experiences because this time, I am bringing the pride of my beloved province, Bohol. Just like any preparation, I will come prepared. I undergo trainings and identify room for improvements and sharpen things up. It will be hard because I am a student and balancing both of these things is essential. But I believe, through the help of G-d, family, and friends, I know I can.

Who are your inspirations? There's no other group of people that inspired me more than my Family, the Youth for Christ organization,  The Art Nouveau, and to everyone who's always been there since day one. I wouldn't be here without these people.

What dreams do you want to achieve? Science experts say that the brain is a goal-seeking organism. Whatever personal goals you give to the subconscious mind, it will work night and day to achieve them. Which is why my dream is to wake up. A dream remains a dream if we don't start working for it. Waking up is at the top of my priority. To face any challenges that come my way. And one day, when that dream becomes a reality, I will have the freedom that comes with intentions. To inspire the youth, and to act as what I say I will do.  Because a queen does not only wear the crown, she wears it with a purpose.

Likes? Hates?  I like being the person who has a privilege to be open-minded, to understand a soul behind any masks that people wear. And I hate people who are hypocrites and don't even make a single attempt on making this world a better place. 

Future Plans? I may have future plans but I believe that God's plan is way better than mine. His will be done.
How were you  discovered by Khim of The Art Nouveau? I was discovered by Ate Khim through my Facebook account way back year 2014. But I wasn't an active member of The Art Nouveau Models since my hometown Guindulman is far from Tagbilaran. Just this July 2019, Ate Khim and I crossed paths once again and that was the time my journey with her begun.

How do you define beauty? People often define beauty according to what a person looks like.
But I define beauty in a way that cannot be seen only by sight but with the heart and soul. Beauty is a combination of what we see, what we feel and what we believe.

How do you define a modern Boholana? I can say that a modern Boholana has found their voice, power, and purpose in life. Many times, we are neglected because we come from a province that is not very popular compared to the major cities in the Philippines. But today, I come as one of those modern Boholanas, and we came here to fight and show the world that we are more than just any probinsyana.

How Miss Silka Bohol 2019 experience is?It was a challenging but worthwhile experience. I situated myself in a place that I know that I can possibly receive both negative and positive comments. But receiving it was a gift, It inspired me to improve more and proving them that I am more than just what meets the eye. With all that being said, I did surpass it all with the guidance of everyone and I am very thankful than ever.

What is your message to those young girls who aspire  to become beauty queens? To the youth who always dreamt of being a beauty queen, don't give up.  Always live up to the dream you want to achieve but do it together with the people who were always there since you started. Be the role model that the future generations will look upon to. Be the positive change.

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