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Home Sections DrRizal.com Knights Look Out to Rizal’s Sesquicentennial
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Sections - DrRizal.com
Written by Joseph G. Lariosa   
Sunday, 03 January 2010 07:23

 

By JOSEPH G. LARIOSA

(© 2009 Journal Group Link International)

 

C HICAGO, Illinois (JGLi) – World War II is now a distant memory but the destruction it wrought havoc on Filipiniana records is still being felt very much to this day.

 

Overseas Filipinos, particularly in the United States, are mightily trying hard to get their children interested into things Filipinos but they have nothing to show except their oral history of their Philippine experience.

 

The closest things they could show are the Filipino American publications and a handful of television programs that mostly depend on Philippine newspapers that they access through the Internet.

 

Both public-and-private libraries in the U. S. have a handful of Filipino-authored books. But the young Filipino readers will only seek out these books as their resource if they are making a report as part of their school home works.

 

The Reyes Family and the Media Breakfast Club of Los Angeles donated Filipino books for a ‘Filipiniana Section’ (FS) at the West Covina County Library in 1994 and at the Azusa City Library in 2001 and plan to reactivate the FS project in other libraries in Southern California in 2010 – Editor

 

T he Knights of Rizal in Central USA based in Chicago, Illinois, is networking with Chicago-based Newberry Library to hold a Filipiniana exhibit that will take place in 2011, when they will celebrate the sesquicentennial (150th) anniversary of the birthday of Jose Rizal’s birthday on June 19, 2011.

 

Perhaps, only the Newberry collection can come close to the Filipiniana collection of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., which has 18,000 entries in the Oriental section.

 

Chicago area Pinoy Newsmagazine publisher-editor Mariano “Anong” Santos, commander of Malaya chapter of the KOR in Chicago, told his fellow knights assembled Wednesday (Dec. 30) at Little Quiapo at Chicago’s north side that the destruction of Manila as the second worst-devastated city to Warsaw, Poland, during World War II has also brought a collateral destruction of public records in the Philippine National Archives.

 

“Fortunately, some Americans, who left the Philippines before the outbreak of the war, were able to bring into the United States some important cultural artifacts, and some of them were donated to the Newberry Library.”

 

Mr. Santos said that if the KOR will be able to coordinate with the Newberry Library to hold a Filipiniana exhibit of its collection, it could be a big draw for Filipinos, Filipino Americans and their friends when the KOR’s celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Philippine national hero.

 

Some KOR members visited the Newberry Library a few months ago. They were convinced that the Filipiniana collection at Newberry should attract a lot of interest.

 

The KOR event last Wednesday saw the induction of the new set of officers of its Malaya chapter elected for 2010-2011 led by Sir Mariano Santos as Commander, Sir John Claridad, Deputy Commander;  Sir Nick Gilana, Chancellor; Sir Pedrito Mejorada, Exchequer, Sir Ely Barja, Archivist; Sirs Ely Labja, Ben Gallardo and Felix Gonzales, Trustees.

 

After the election of officers held last Dec. 12, 2009, Sirs Willie Buhay and Felix Gonzales conducted orientation of new officer candidate, Francisco Pizarro.

 

Sir Ely Barja also talked about his personal researches on Dr. Jose Rizal.

 

At the Wednesday event, Sir Raul Fermin of Chicago chapter summed up the message Rizal left behind when he scribbled the Spanish 14-stanza poem posthumously titled “Mi Ultimo Adios” (My Last Farewell) as having a life of “No reserves, No retreats, and No regrets.”

 

The summary was a take-off from the words young Chicago millionaire-turned Christian missionary in China William Borden scribbled in his Bible. He died ahead of his time at the tender age of 25 after promoting school prayer at Yale University.

 

Sir John Claridad also spoke of Rizal being buried "uncoffinated," or without coffin, after his public execution that endeared Rizal to the Filipinos. Rizal, a civilian, was tried by court martial for three days from Dec. 26-30, 1896, without a chance to appeal.

 

Philippine Consul Roberto Bernardo, who was accompanied by the consulate’s protocol officer, Sir Joe Mamalateo of the Tokyo, Japan, KOR, cited Rizal’s martyrdom by his refusal to escape from firing squad on two occasions – when Andres Bonifacio’s men told him to escape to Japan while he was in exile in Dapitan and while on board a vessel Castilian while he was unbound and unguarded.

 

In a message, Rey Banta, KOR Region (USA) Commander, reminded members of the next KOR regional assembly on the first weekend of September in 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada, that also welcomes Knights from Europe and Canada.

 

On the 113th death anniversary of Rizal’s death, Sir Banta urged his colleagues not to turn their back on corruptions plaguing their motherland that Dr. Rizal had exposed in his two novels – Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not/Social Cancer) and El Filibusterismo (The Reign of Greed or The Filibustering). # # #(lariosa_jos@sbcglobal.net)

 

© opyright 2009 The Journal Group Link International. The contents provided in the JGLi may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or otherwise distributed without the prior written authority of the Journal Group Link International.

 

(Editor’s Note: Watch out for the upcoming outlet-oriented, subscription-based website of Journal Group Link International that guarantees originally sourced stories, features, photos, audios and videos and multi-media contents.)

 

 


Last Updated on Sunday, 03 January 2010 07:26
 

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