Touch me not: a resurrection of the Filipino spirit

Elias, Basilio and SisaIn the Latin Bible, Jesus Christ said to Mary after His resurrection, “Noli Me tangere…” (John 20:17). Inspired by these words, Dr. Jose Rizal penned a novel about the resurrection of the Filipino people, whose time had come to arise and forge a new destiny without the oppressive grip of Spain and her abusive padres.

This novel by our National Hero was crafted into a beautiful opera by National Artists Felipe P. De Leon and Guillermo Tolentino, circa 1957. A generation passed until this opera was staged in a foreign land, where philanthropists Loida Nicolas Lewis, Jerry Sibal and Edwin Josue heard the stirring music and lyrics in the mother tongue. The foreigners who listened to and watched the opera with them could not fully understand what the story meant—but for the Filipinos in the audience, the story was not lost, and the Motherland’s anguish was clear: Come to me, my sons, do not let me die.

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Batang Batis (Children of the Spring)

Let me just say, as an aspiring photo hobbyist, I am a fan of Humans of New York (HONY). I love the portraits and their stories, reminding us that we are more alike than we are different, no matter where we live. Inspired by this, I thought of taking portraits of the children who attend our church outreaches. I never knew how powerful a camera could be until today. During regular church events, these children are normally shy and reserved. But in this workshop, while I took their photos on their street, as I focused the lens on them, they were very open and willing to share with me their hopes and dreams, and even some of their struggles. Giving the right kind of attention really does make a difference to a child’s self-confidence.

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He’s finally here!

Look who’s so happy, she fought her naptime off so she could play with Rex. Thanks, dearest sister Lora (and to your Tita) for sending Rex to Manila!

Thank you, 777!

Honestly, I didn’t think it would even reach 100, but today I found out there are 777 beautiful people who follow my blog. I want to say THANK YOU to each one of you reading this!

As my way to say thanks to you for being awesome, I dedicate this humble photo and graphic I created (just now) to you, dear friend.

Never lose hope. Keep faith alive. Let love rule!


And since gratitude is a great attitude to dwell in, let’s get it rolling — feel free to share about things that make you say “thanks” in the comments portion. Have a blessed day!

Cebu: the Best Place for the Best Day of 2014

First StopFrom the printed and online invitations to the email reminders a month and a few weeks before 7-7-14, Carissa Villacorta and Ryan Songalia knew how to build up excitement and expectation for their “Best Day Ever.” And boy, did they deliver!

July 6: As soon as we arrived in Cebu, we were greeted by members of the bride’s family, who gave us awesome “welcome bags” (very thoughtful of them to include a few first-aid items for those “you-never-know” moments, along with the goodies). Then we were whisked off to our hotels in several white vans marked with the CVRS logo.

We were able to join Day 2 of the Wedding Weekend. Our first stop: The Chocolate Chamber by Ralfe Gourmet. On the way, we joined the tour bus and was treated to songs handpicked by the bride, for our listening pleasure. The ride allowed us to meet and bond with the couple’s family and other friends.

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So the senator thinks getting a mugshot is just like one of his photo-shoots. Stealing from the people he swore to serve, and still he smiles as if everything is okay. I am angered by the “special treatment” criminals with money get in jails that we pay for (thanks for the insightful post, Heckler). There should be a way for us, the People, to tell the government where we want our money to go: “Please do not use this tax that we paid, to feed criminals in jail for plunder and graft cases.” Napoles and her cohorts stole P10 Billion. That’s like P100 from every Filipino. There are many of us who earn only P100/day, and stealing that means these hardworking Filipinos and their families go hungry. Meantime, this Ramon (I cannot call him senator anymore, he has lost the title “Honorable Gentleman” already) and his cohorts enjoy three meals or more a day from the taxpayers’ pockets. How do they sleep at night?


Feeling nagfo-photoshoot pa ang lelong.