Rizal Day 2011 | We Remember

“I want to show to those who deprive people the right to love of country, that when we know how to sacrifice ourselves for our duties and convictions, death does not matter if one dies for those one loves – for his country and for others dear to him.”


2012: Year of the Water Dragon

5+ for Sendong Victims in CDO and Iligan

“There are 25 million Filipinos on Facebook. If each one donates 5 pesos to Red Cross we could raise 125 million pesos for Sendong victims.” ~Philippine Red Cross

Do charity this Christmas Season. Help the victims of Sendong in CDO and Iligan. Donate to Philippine Red Cross thru SMS:

Text RED AMOUNT to 2899 (Globe) or 4143 (Smart)


You can donate the following denominations:
Globe: 5, 25, 100, 300, 500 or 1000
Smart: 10, 25, 50, 100, 300, 500 or 1000.

Karangahan: Albay Green Christmas 2011

Albay stages its season-long Green Christmas advocacy project for the second year this year, with a new added element aimed at fortifying its terms of endearment with the local folks with special focus on ethnic culture, food and tastes.

Albay Gov. Joey Salceda has recently launched here ‘Karangahan sa Pasko: Albay Green Christmas 2011, an expanded version of its maiden edition last year. This year’s version admittedly “provokes a more celebratory attitude that builds on the spirit of the season”.

“In 2010, we launched Albay Green Christmas, essentially as an advocacy campaign for less pollution and reduced carbon emissions through ‘Iwas Paputok’; proper solid waste management through ‘No Plastics/Less Garbage celebration; and zero casualty, Salceda explained.

He said they added a new ingredient to this year’s ‘Karangahan sa Pasko,’ designed to bring out and fortify “the terms of endearment of Albayanos to their province” and enhance their pride and unique sense of ethnicity as Albayanos that is articulated by their culinary arts and other cultural forms.

Karangahan is a Bicol term derived from the root word ranga, which refers to a higher level of joy and contentment, and later was used to mean endearment.

President Benigno Simeon Aquino is set to switch on the lights of the giant Green Christmas tree at middle of Peñaranda Park in front of the Albay Provincial Capitol on Nov. 25, marking the start of the month-long festivity. The President will also formally inaugurate the Climate Change Academy at the Bicol University here.

The giant Green Christmas tree is about 58 feet tall, fashioned from recycled fuel drums painted green, with close to a thousand flickering solar powered led lights. It eloquently speaks for Albay’s advocacy and campaign for environment protection.

Salceda said Karangahan has some 40 to 50 activities lined up and has six pillars – Equalympics, a province-wide academic competition for High School, Elementary and Kindergarten/ Nursery levels students; Culinaria Albay – which seeks to promote Albay cuisine and its world-competitive restaurants; Green lantern and Christmas décor competition; Iwas Putok, a campaign for no-firecracker and safe celebration of the season; Wellness – interclub tennis tournament; and an indigenous art competition.

Of the many activities lined up, of special interest are “MusicHERO” or battle of the AFP bands featuring the bands of the Philippine Army, the Marines, the Navy and Air Force; and competitions for composers and signers from all over the country who will be asked to submit or perform their original Christmas jingles in English, Bikol or Tagalog. The entries must be themed Albay and must have a festive beat. (PNA)


Date Activities Venue
November 25 National Media Conference on Climate Change BU Amphitheater, Legazpi City
November 25 to December 25 Green Christmas Tree Lighting Peñaranda Park
Barangay On-Site Green Christmas Belen Competition
Fiesta Culinaria 2011 In front of Capitol
Paskuhan/Karangahan sa Albay Beer Plaza Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
Luntiang Pasko (Garden Show) Albay Astrodome
Art Decor Atrium
Pasko sa Kapitolyo, Agrikulturang Organiko Display of Organic Farm Products Albay Capitol Compound
Inter-Club Tennis Competition
Karangahan sa Pasko Trade Fair/Pyroclastic Display Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
November 25 to 26 2 Day Job Fair: Pamaskong Trabaho 3F Pacific Mall, Legazpi City
November 26 Chorale Festival Albay Astrodome
November 27 Rebuilding Lives, Rebuilding Community Dinner for a Cause Albay Astrodome
November 29 Regional Education Student Congress Albay Astrodome
November 30 Provincial Prayer Competition and Dedication of Albay “Albay is for Christ” Albay Astrodome
December 1 to 2 World AIDS Day Celebration Information Caravan
December 2 Iwas Paputok Launching Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
Tales from Mindanao “Dance Drama” Albay Astrodome
December 3 PUNK & SKAbadoo Night II The Wannabees featuring Punk and SKA Bands from Albay LKY Legazpi Terminal
Night Run in Albay Legazpi Boulevard, Puro, Legazpi City
“O Come Al Ye Faithful” Chorale Concert Albay Astrodome
December 4 Philippine Red Cross Fun Run Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
Albay Concert Crusade Albay Astrodome
December 5 1st Karangahan sa Albay Open Art Decor Competition Atrium
December 7 Bonggang Krismas ki Lo at La Year-End General Assembly Senior Citizen Albay Astrodome
December 8 Krismas para sa mga may K
Year-End Program and Evaluation of PWDS
Albay Astrodome
December 8 to 9 1st “Karangahan nin Dunong kan Albay (Academic Olympics) Albay Astrodome
December 9 Sounds and Movements “Cultural Presentation” Albay Astrodome
December 10 Christmas Rawit-Dawit Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
Vice Governor Imperial’s Cup (Shootfest) BGCI Firing Range, Padang, Legazpi City
December 12 Pastores Bikol Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City<
December 15 BUCAL Lantern Parade and Christmas Concert BU Grounds
Tabaco Viva Pastores Tabaco City Terrace
December 15 to 16 The First Bicol Social Media Workshop Ibalong Centrum for Recreation, Legazpi City
December 15 to 24 SANTA CLAUS is coming to Albay! Old Albay District, Legazpi Port and Polangui
December 16 Christmas Chorale Competition Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
MAGIC OF MAGIK (Magic Competition) Ibalong Centrum for Recreation, Legazpi City
December 17 Children’s Home, Orphans of PWD & Sagrada Familia Christmas Cheers in Costumes Astrodome/Peñaranda Park
Musical Sessions 5: Folk, Rock and Country Peñaranda Park
December 18 Search for Outstanding Gym and Fitness Center Peñaranda Park
December 20 Karangahan Green Christmas Photography Contest Peñaranda Park
December 21 Green Lantern Competition
Lantern Parade and Awarding
Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
December 22 to 23 MusicHERO: Battle of the Uniformed Bands Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City
December 23 Gabi ng Parangal/PDRRMC Night Albay Astrodome
Night Run Legazpi City
December 25 Handog Pamasko/Gift Giving to Orphans Peñaranda Park, Legazpi City


Off to Broadway Avenue: The Mr. and Ms. Bicol University 2011

Ms. College of Science Francia Layderos and Mr. College of Business Economics and Management Christian Dan Morada emerged as this year’s Mr. and Ms. Bicol University!

Dubbed as OFF TO BROADWAY AVENUE: A NIGHT OF GLITZ And GLAMOUR, Bicol University had its Broadway-themed 2011 Search for Mr. and Ms. Bicol University on September 21, 2011 at the Albay Astrodome. Bueños herded into the venue to witness the turning over of the titles from last year’s Ms. BU Iana France Villania and Mr. BU Casiano Bibon.

Fourteen BU colleges and campuses had their bets vie for this year’s Mr. and Ms. Bicol University title. Candidates took the stage and hit the catwalk with Broadway-like prods and attires.

Here are the results:

First Set of Minor Awards:

Mr. and Ms. Photogenic – Mr. CIT and Ms CENg
Mr. and Ms. Hotel Venezia – Mr. CBEM and Ms. CBEM
Man of the Press – Mr. TC
Darling of the Press – Ms. CN

Second Set of Minor Awards:

Mr. and Ms. Congeniality – Mr. CS and Ms. TC
Best in Swimwear – Mr. CIT and Ms. CS
Mr. and Ms. A. Bichara Silverscreens – Mr. CEng and Ms. CBEM
Mr. and Ms. Nelstar Fitness Gym – Mr. CIT and Ms. CN
Mr. and Ms. Facebook – Mr. CENg and Ms. CENg
Best in Broadway Attire – Mr. CBEM and Ms. CS
Best in Production Number – Mr. CIT and Ms. CS
Mr. and Ms. Misibis Bay – Mr. CIT and Ms. CS

Third Set of Minor Awards:

Best in Talent – Mr. TC and Ms. PC
People’s Choice – Mr. CSSP and Ms. CN
Mr. and Ms. Salon de Pacific – Mr. CEng and Ms. CEng
Mr. and Ms. 2GO – Mr. CE and Ms. CAL
Best in Ramp – Mr. CEng and Ms. CS
Best in Formal Attire – Mr. CEng and Ms. CBEM

Top 5 (Male Category)

Top 5 (Female Category)

Final Question:

In light of the University’s pursuit for globalization, what do you think is the most important contribution of a BUeño to the world?


(Male Category)
Mr. CEng: Pagkakaisa. “Ipakita sa mundo na tayo ay nagtapos sa BU at nagkakaisa-isa.”
Mr. CBEM: To be internationally competitive. “Someday, I can contribute to the world and to the Filipino people.”
Mr. GC: Quality Graduates. “Bicol University is pursuing the 4 pillars of education.”
Mr. CIT: Proper Education. “If every person in this world has proper education, there will be no discrimination in the world.”
Mr. TC: Quality of our Education. “What we need is education.”

(Female Category)
Ms. CEng: Start by being responsible individuals to being globally united with other ones.
Ms. CS: Intelligence and Excellence. “BUenos are always giving for excellence.”
Ms. TC: Utilize our manpower. “…to develop our skills and talents for us to be globally competent.”
Ms. CN: Personality. “BUenos are the most kind people compared to other colleges here…Character supersedes beauty.”
Ms. CBEM: The teaching itself.

The final results are as follows:

Ambassador and Ambassadress of Service: Mr. CEng and Ms. CN
Ambassador and Ambassadress of Leadership: Mr. GC and Ms. CEng
Ambassador and Ambassadress of Character and Scholarship: Mr. #12 TC and Ms. CBEM
Mr. and Ms. September Fest 2011: Mr. CIT and Ms. TC
Mr. and Ms. Bicol University 2011: Mr. CBEM and Ms. CS

Photo Credits: Gov. Joey Salceda, Mr. and Ms. Bicol University 2011 Facebook page

Peñafrancia Fiesta 2011

This year marks the closing of the Tercentenary (300th year) Celebration of the Devotion to Our Lady of Peñafrancia. Known as the biggest and grandest Marian festival in the Philippines, Peñafrancia Fiesta annually intensifies the faithful’s devotion to Mother Mary. Being celebrated every 3rd Sunday of September, Peñafrancia Fiesta is being attended by thousands of pilgrims, devotees and tourists to participate in the festivities in honor of the Our Lady of Peñafrancia, the patroness of Bicol, being addressed by the Bicolanos as Ina (mother).

See Schedule of Activities 2011.


The Image of Our Lady of Peñafrancia1

About thousands of devotees who come from different parts of the Bicol Region and the country to attend the annual pintakasi, the origin of the Holy Image not altogether known. It is a mystery to a great many especially the youth.

Many believe that the Holy Image its origin in a pineapple plant which since time immemorial grew abundantly in Francia, the place where the Sanctuary in her honor stands today. There is even a painting, purposely for commercial sale of the Holy Image, representing the Blessed Virgin as coming out of a pineapple fruit. The native word for pineapple is “pinya”. Pena de Francia sounds very much like Pina de Francia hence many believe that the Blessed Virgin must have really come from the pineapple fruit of France.

Pena de Francia, literally, is Rocky hill of France, where the Image of Our lady of Penafrancia is believed to have been discovered by a hermit named Simon Vela.

The discovery of the Holy Image is a wonderful story of providence whose retelling will never fail to evoke a sense of wonderment and mystery in the hearts and minds of believers and cynics alike.

On September 4, 1401, in the city of Paris, capital of France, a child was born to pious and religious parents, Rolan and Barbara. He was christened Simon.

They were quite well off; their property was more than sufficient to maintain a family of four. Early in youth, however, Simon despised wealth although his parents could well afford his wishes. He was rather of a religious turn of mind and was wont to kneel before the altar of the household shrine to pray. He was no ordinary boy who, instead of taking part in boyish games and pranks, found delight in things spiritual. Nothing the religious bent of their child, the parents sent him to school at age of ten to study grammar and, alter, philosophy to prepare him for the priesthood. Not being bright, however, he was not able to finish his studies and was not ordained therefore to the priesthood. When he was old enough, his parents advised him to marry, but marriage offered no allurement to him as he made a vow to the Holy Virgin to devote his life to works of piety.

When his parents and his only sister died, Simon inherited all their property. To avoid trouble which he thought might ensue from his possession of such wealth, he sold his patrimony and donated the proceeds to the church, the poor and the destitute, and to charitable institutions. He then applied for a position as chamber boy in a convent of Franciscan church in Paris.

See History.


Official Coronation as the Patroness of Bicolandia2

The official coronation of Our Lady of Peñafrancia as Patroness of Bicolandia took place on September 20, 1924, officiated by the Rt. Rev. Msgr. Guillermo Piani. The image of Our Lady of Peñafrancia enshrined in the sanctuary in Calle Balatas is about 300 years old.

On the morning of August 15, 1981, the image was stolen from the shrine at the Peñafrancia Church. In the course of following leads to the theft, a policeman was killed and a police lieutenant was wounded when the jeepney they were riding in were ambushed by heavily armed men somewhere in Bolo Sur, Sipocot, Camarines Sur.

Most of the leads proved to be hoaxes. The approaching feast of Our Lady of Peñafrancia necessitated an image to be borne during the “traslacion” or transfer of image and the colorful fluvial procession. One was commissioned by church authorities and another image was donated by the First Lady.

A little over a year later, the image was returned to Rt. Rev. Msgr. Florencio Yllana, P.A., Liaison Officer of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines and former Rector of the shrine of Our Lady of Peñafrancia in Naga City. On September 8, 1982, the Feast of the Nativity of Our Lady, the motorcade from Manila bearing the image arrived in Naga City at the height of Typhoon Mike. Thousands of devotees braved the raging winds and the devastating floods to welcome the image. At 10:00 in the evening of the same day, the image was safely enshrined at the Metropolitan Cathedral where a pontifical concelebrated mass offered in thanksgiving for the return and safe arrival of the image. The image is now enshrined at the Basilica Minore at Calle Balatas in the City of Naga.



Photo Credits:


Simeon Ola y Arboleda

September 2, 2011 marks the 146th birth anniversary of Gen. Simeon A. Ola, the last revolutionary general to surrender at the end of the Philippine-American War. By virtue of Proclamation No. 222 issued by the Malacañan Palace, special non-working holiday will be observed in the Province of Albay to give its people the opportunity to celebrate said occasion.

Simeon A. Ola (September 2, 1865 – February 14, 1952) was a hero of the Philippine Revolution and the last general to surrender to American forces during the Philippine-American War.

Simeon Ola was born on September 2, 1865 to Vicente Ola and Apolonia Arboleda, whom was ordinary citizens with few money. He was enrolled in Holy Rosary Minor Seminary and attended the Philosophy, but didn’t finish the course. He joined the the local branch of the Katipunan in his hometown province of Albay and later became the leader. With the help of a parish priest he was able to acquire arms to support his men. Promoted to the rank of captain after the battle of Camalig in Albay, 1898 and again promoted to the rank of major after a daring ambush mission that led to the capture of three Americans. He was also the leader of the subsequent valiant attacks on Albay towns namely, Oas, Ligao and Jovellar. He later surrendered in condition that his men would be granted amnesty, he was put on trial and was proven guilty of sedition and was sentenced to thirty years inprisonment. In 1904, he was given a pardon and returned to his place of birth and became the municipal president. The regional police command in Legazpi City (Camp General Simeon A. Ola) was named after him.

Simeon Ola died on February 14, 1952 and was interred at the Roman Catholic Cemetery of Guinobatan.