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Singing priests (The Peter’s Chord) in Canada-US concert tour for a mission
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rey_andresAfter their concerts in Michigan, New York, California and Canada, the singing priests from the from the Archdiocese of Palo in the province of Leyte who call themselves The Peter’ Chord, would have covered more territories than the Biblical Apostle Paul of the New Testament who did at most, four missionary journeys in his life.

The Thanksgiving concert tour is wrapped in a presentation called “Moments of Grace” being undertaken for worthwhile reasons.

Through the gift of music, these men of clothes, consider their journey as “an expression of gratitude, humility, and understanding” as they put their hearts in the act of gratitude on behalf of the flock of the Archdiocese of Palo, whom many of us recall as the ones who bore the most  brunt of the Super Typhoon Yolanda which visited Philippines more than three years  and left in its wake billions of pesos in physical damages and unimaginable miseries for the families of the close to 10,000 who lost their lives.

ABAOC’s University: The Asian Business Association of Orange County has been known for the diversity of its member-entrepreneurs, a plus factor in its more than 25 years of existence. As one of the most respected nonprofits, it is also known for the many projects it undertakes for the community one of which is the university project it hosted at the Wynham Anaheim Garden Grove as a means of educating the business community on ways to be more effective and profitable. The ABAOC officers are shown (from L-R), Roger Cheng. Edith Andres, Gloria Rull (Directors) Sam Nguyen (President) with the speakers, Sarah Garrette and Gilbert Buchanan, at the conclusion of the event.

ABAOC’s University: The Asian Business Association of Orange County has been known for the diversity of its member-entrepreneurs, a plus factor in its more than 25 years of existence. As one of the most respected nonprofits, it is also known for the many projects it undertakes for the community one of which is the university project it hosted at the Wynham Anaheim Garden Grove as a means of educating the business community on ways to be more effective and profitable. The ABAOC officers are shown (from L-R), Roger Cheng. Edith Andres, Gloria Rull (Directors) Sam Nguyen (President) with the speakers, Sarah Garrette and Gilbert Buchanan, at the conclusion of the event.

The singing priests had found a new prayer to express their gratitude to thousands who stood by them in the hour of their flock’s unprecedented sufferings by extending material, moral, emotional and financial support to help the victims putting their lives back and infused in them a new sense of hope and faith in humanity.

The catastrophe failed to crush the spirits of strong-willed Leyteños even when all else seemed hopeless. Instead, they found out that collectively they managed and were able to slowly bring normalcy to their live.

These verses in the Bible, “And we know that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose” of Romans 8:28 remind of how adversities and trials could be turned later on into blessings with the right attitude of the heart.

Instead of breaking their spirits and resolve, the harrowing experience had made them more resilient and tenacious to rise from the harrowing episode.

In his letter introducing the group’s musical itinerary, Rev. John F. Du of the Archdiocese of Palo stated that “while Yolanda caused unimaginable damage to the lives and properties in the Island of Leyte, the victims were able to stand again with the help of many people around the globe by God’s mercy.”

While the Apostle Paul had a singular purpose for his missionary journey two thousand years ago, the modern version of the missionary as personified by Peter’s Chord have their presentations “anchored on two inspirational aspects – the elements of the Mass which is presented as something very close to human experience that shows the love of God at work in all human activities.

The repertoire has a familiarity with the Eucharistic celebration but with a “twist” as the known songs rendered in the regular Mass will be blended with Pop Music.

The other aspect of the concert is the presentation of the story of repentance of the Prodigal Son interpreted in a musical.

“Moments of Grace” is perceived to be more than a thanksgiving concert as it will also serve as an avenue “to spread the greatness of God’s unceasing love and compassion.”

The concert, according to the organizers “represents the warmth of gratitude to all men of every race who helped and still continues to do so in the rehabilitation efforts of the Archdiocese of Palo”.

Proceeds of the musicale has been earmarked for the College seminary, the Archdiocese Endowment Funds and for the reconstruction of other churches hit by Typhoon Yolanda.

Moments of Grace California Presentations:

On September 8 at the Immaculate Heart of Mary at 4954 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90029, Contact-Rowena Dizon-213-447-2009,  Mely Trillo-323-646-3673, Eric Cordeta-310-930-5443, Fr. Rey Matunog-323-540-1136,  Lidu S. Sano-714-747-6318, Jennie Urbina-Kriz-818-983-9529

On September 10 at St. Michael Parish,  2643 Homedale St., San Diego – Contact-Luz Montemayor-619-228-3338, Parish Office-619-470-1977

September 11, St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 426 E 7th St., National City,                      Contact-619-474-1501

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Duterte to CHR: Crime or human life?
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President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a speech during the oath-taking ceremony for newly-promoted generals and flag officers at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan on August 23. (MNS photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte delivers a speech during the oath-taking ceremony for newly-promoted generals and flag officers at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan on August 23. (MNS photo)

CAMP GENERAL MATEO CAPINPIN, Tanay, Rizal  (PNA) – President Rodrigo Duterte urged the Commission on Human Rights to consider the safety of the 104 million Filipinos before criticizing his intensified anti-illegal drugs campaign.

”Itong mga human rights, mamili kayo: Is it the comfort and safety of the population? Or the lives of criminals?” President said in his speech before the more than 300 soldiers belonging to 2nd Infantry Division of Philippine Army here.

President Duterte said illegal drug is destroying the country and “there’s always a price to pay.”

”Itong mga… those who are pag magkaharap itong mga ganito, lumalaki ‘yung bunganga pati ‘yung ulo eh and they talk nonsense,” the President said.

Police have reported that over 700 drug pushers and users have been killed already in legitimate police operations since aggressive war against drug started almost two months ago.

”We are supposed to protect the integrity of our Republic and the safety of the citizens there,” the President said.

Meanwhile, Department of Justice (DoJ) Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II on Wednesday said that the agency has witnesses to provide the evidence against Senator Leila De Lima and former DoJ Undersecretary Francisco Baraan link to the illegal drug trade in New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City.

However, Aguirre said the agency did not go into details on what evidence they have against de Lima and Baraan but they would present it when the House of Representatives started its inquiry on the issue.

“There are several witnesses who are already executing their sworn statements as of now. For the house investigation where we will present our witnesses, these will be the house investigation on the proliferation of prohibited drugs at NBP,” Aguirre told reporters after the culminating activity of the European Union-Philippines Justice Support Programme held in Pasig City.

President Rodrigo Duterte administers the oath of office of newly-promoted generals and flag officers at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan on August 23. (MNS photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte administers the oath of office of newly-promoted generals and flag officers at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan on August 23. (MNS photo)

He noted that the DoJ has five or six sworn statements against De Lima which all involves the cause of the proliferation and the neglect that they did why the drugs proliferated in the NBP.

“Well I’ve been saying we are not focusing our investigation to any particular individual but definitely when I say that we are investigating ex officials of DoJ that include the highest to the lowest as long as we could show that there is probable cause against them. We are going to file the necessary charges,” he added.

The DOJ chief said one of their witnesses also linked de Lima’s driver-bodyguard Ronnie Palisoc Dayan to the operation of the illegal drugs trade, adding that he collected drug money from high-profile drug lords currently detained at the national penitentiary.

President Rodrigo Duterte receives commemorative stamps featuring his presidential inauguration after the 5th Cabinet meeting in Malacañan’s State Dining Room on August 22. (MNS photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte receives commemorative stamps featuring his presidential inauguration after the 5th Cabinet meeting in Malacañan’s State Dining Room on August 22. (MNS photo)

“He collects drug money from high profile drug lords, even after the elections, the two were seen in Urbiztondo, Pangasinan, this was about June after the elections,” said Aguirre.

Aguirre also said he could not yet answer how much de Lima received from her driver.

“But perhaps when the investigation is already nearing its end, we will have some figures already,” he added.

Aguirre said so far the profilers who submitted their sworn statements were only the lieutenants of high-profile drug lords or the bagmen while some inmates and guards are linking de Lima to the illegal activity.

For Baraan issue, Aguirre said information provided by the witnesses said the former DoJ undersecretary was also receiving money but he cautioned that these individuals hadyet to execute affidavit against the former undersecretary.

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De Lima laughs off Duterte’s ‘drug matrix’
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“As I have often said, I will not dignify any further this so-called drug matrix which, any ordinary lawyer knows too well, properly belongs to the garbage can,” Sen. Leila De Lima, who is linked by President Rodrigo Duterte himself to illegal drugs trade, tells reporters.

“As I have often said, I will not dignify any further this so-called drug matrix which, any ordinary lawyer knows too well, properly belongs to the garbage can,” Sen. Leila De Lima, who is linked by President Rodrigo Duterte himself to illegal drugs trade, tells reporters.

MANILA (Mabuhay) — Saying she is 100 percent of her innocence, Sen. Leila de Lima on Thursday laughed off President Rodrigo Duterte’s matrix supposedly showing her role in the drug operations inside the New Bilibid Prison.

In a press conference, De Lima said the matrix—released by Duterte on the wee hours of Thursday—deserves to be put in the “garbage.”

The matrix also linked Pangasinan Rep. Amado Espino, Jr. to the illegal drug operations at the national penitentiary, describing him as “the richest politician in Northern Luzon” and one who “has amassed unexplained wealth.”

In her press conference, De Lima said she has filed a murder case against Espino when she was secretary of the Department of Justice and he governor of Pangasinan. The case, however, was dismissed.

Meanwhile, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez said Thursday that he intends to meet with Espino.

Speaking to reporters, Alvarez said the House of Representatives will not do anything “drastic” after Espino’s name appeared in the matrix of the “Muntinlupa Connection” presented by Duterte on the wee hours of Thursday.

“Of course, kailangan tingnan natin dahil hindi naman ibig sabihin na nandoon ‘yung pangalan mo ay kami dito sa Kongreso, meron kaagad gagawin na drastic,” Alvarez said.

“We have to look into that. Meron naman tayong proper committees para tingnan itong complaint na ito,” he added.

Alvarez, a close ally of President Duterte, said he will speak with Espino on Tuesday next week.

In Duterte’s matrix, Espino, former governor of Pangasinan, was tagged as “the richest politician in Northern Luzon” and one who “has amassed unexplained wealth.”

The matrix also links him to black sand mining, quarrying, and jueteng operations.(MNS)

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Military must have access to every inch of republic, Duterte says
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President Rodrigo Duterte, along with non-uniformed personnel of the 2nd Infantry Division, does the fist gesture at Camp Capinpin in Tanay, Rizal on August 24. (MNS photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte, along with non-uniformed personnel of the 2nd Infantry Division, does the fist gesture at Camp Capinpin in Tanay, Rizal on August 24. (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) — The military must have access to every inch of the country, including areas of indigenous peoples or lumad in Mindanao, President Rodrigo Duterte said at past midnight Thursday.

Asked about the issue of militarization of lumad communities that IP leaders believe should be eased with the advent of the ceasefire and peace talks with communist leaders, Duterte said, “There is no such thing as a militarization.”

“Every inch of this property of republic must be occupied by soldiers of the government,” Duterte said in a news conference in Davao City.

“There is no such thing as hindi kayo papasok diyan kasi no militarization there,” he added.

President Rodrigo Duterte, along with the 2nd Infantry Division army troopers, does the fist gesture at Camp Capinpin in Tanay, Rizal on August 24. (MNS photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte, along with the 2nd Infantry Division army troopers, does the fist gesture at Camp Capinpin in Tanay, Rizal on August 24. (MNS photo)

What may be prevented, Duterte said, are open conflicts between the military and the lumad, and the influences behind each.

“Siguro yung overt acts , yung makipagway, ‘yun ang iniiwasan,” Duterte said.

Duterte said conflict only developed because of the involvement of the Alamara paramilitary group and the Communist Party of the Philippines.

“Kanya-kanyang sphere of influence,” Duterte said.(MNS)

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Duterte’s ‘drugs matrix’ tags De Lima, others
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President Rodrigo Duterte vows to boost the country's military capabilities during his speech at the 2nd Infantry Division headquarters in Camp Capinpin, Tanay, Rizal on August 24.  (MNS photo)

President Rodrigo Duterte vows to boost the country’s military capabilities during his speech at the 2nd Infantry Division headquarters in Camp Capinpin, Tanay, Rizal on August 24. (MNS photo)

MANILA (Mabuhay) — President Rodrigo Duterte early Thursday morning released a “matrix” showing links between Senator Leila de Lima and several others allegedly involved in illegal drug activities at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) under the previous administration.

Duterte disclosed the document in the early hours of the morning in Davao City after a press conference and visit with journalists at a local park in the city.

The names listed in the matrix are:
– Senator Leila De Lima
– De Lima’s former driver Ronnie Palisoc Dayan
– former Justice Undersecretary Francis Baraan
– Urbiztondo, Pangasinan Mayor Raul Sison
– Pangasinan provincial administrator Rafael Baraan
– Pangasinan Rep. Amado Espino
– Former Bureau of Corrections chief Franklin Bucayo

Duterte did not say where the information in the matrix came from.

The matrix claims that Dayan had been a boyfriend of De Lima since her days in the Commission on Human Rights.

He allegedly received monthly payola (grease money) from Bucayo through a certain Senior Police Officer 1 Palisoc.

The document also claims that Dayan, “a known drug user in Urbiztondo”, got house and lot, money, and vehicles from De Lima.

According to the matrix, Bucayo is a go-between of De Lima and Espino, a former governor of Pangasinan.

Former Justice Undersecretary Francis Baraan’s brother Rafael, meanwhile, was allegedly used to cover for Espino’s illegal activities.

Duterte earlier said the matrix explains the dynamics of the illegal drug network in Bilibid.

He has accused De Lima’s former driver and bodyguard of being her link to convicted drug lords, who were supposedly allowed to run their illegal operations from detention when she was justice secretary.

De Lima has denied the allegation. She also belied existence of shabu laboratories inside the NBP when she was justice chief.

She also debunked allegations that she bought a house for her former driver in Pangasinan.

According to the Urbiztondo Municipal Assessor’s Office, the land where the Dayan family’s house was built is owned by the driver’s sister. “Si Kagawad Dureta po iyung nagmamay-ari po. Nakapangalan po sa kanya,” said municipal assessor Merle Moreno.

Dayan’s sibling said that the senator and her driver did not have any romantic relationship, contrary to Duterte’s allegations.

Baraan, meanwhile, has denied any involvement with the proliferation of illegal drugs inside Bilibid.

“All I can say now is that this is something I totally cannot imagine myself being involved in; it contradicts the deepest Christian values I hold dear,” Baraan said in a statement, released a day after President Rodrigo Duterte tagged him in the narcotics trade.

“I know myself, and in due time the truth will prevail,” Baraan added. (MNS)

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Campaign Promoting Benefits Of U.S. Citizenship Targets Asian Immigrants, Fastest Growing Immigrant Population
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Eligible immigrants strongly urged to take the first step now to have a chance of becoming a U.S. citizen before November election
 
Over 300,000 Asian immigrants in L.A. County currently eligible to naturalize and become a U.S. Citizen

Adavancing JusticeLOS ANGELES – Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles (Advancing Justice-LA), in close partnership with community-based organizations and local government, announced an unprecedented campaign to encourage and increase the number of Asian American immigrants applying for U.S. citizenship. Community based organizations serving the Asian American community will receive additional funding and support to process citizenship applications. In addition, Asian ethnic media will be invited to join the effort as official campaign partners, to promote the benefits of citizenship. In Los Angeles County, over 300,000 Asian American immigrants are currently legal permanent residents who are eligible to naturalize and become U.S. citizens.

“The United States was founded by immigrants and continues to thrive because of the contributions of immigrants,” said Stewart Kwoh, President and Executive Director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice – LA. “For many Asian Americans, the risk of leaving their native countries in pursuit of better opportunities outweighed all their fears of the unknown. Today, we are launching ‘Endless Possibilities. Citizenship Now!’ in seven Asian languages, drawing on an unprecedented partnership between nonprofits, government, and media, with the purpose of reminding immigrants that citizenship is a pathway to the many benefits and opportunities many hoped to achieve for themselves and their families by coming to America.”

“More than 1 million people in Los Angeles County speak an Asian language and their main source of information is ethnic and in-language media. We are asking that our Asian-language media step forward to be a part of this campaign, alongside our nonprofit partners, government agencies, and elected officials who are leveraging their collective voice to raise awareness about the opportunities and resources available to anyone who is eligible and interested in becoming a United States citizen,” said Nasim Khansari, Citizenship Project Director for Asian Americans Advancing Justice – LA. “Not only are media critical to informing our communities about what they need to know, but media can also empower our community to achieve what they may not know is possible.”“Endless Possibilities. Citizenship Now!” is a coordinated effort of more than 10 nonprofit organizations serving multi-ethnic communities as well as government agencies and the offices of elected officials. The first partnership event is a free citizenship workshop taking place on Sunday, April 10th at the Long Beach Convention Center. For an appointment, call the Advancing Justice-LA helpline:
  • English: 888-349-9695
  • Mandarin/Cantonese: 800-520-2356
  • Khmer: 800-867-3126
  • Korean: 800-867-3640
  • Tagalog: 855-300-2552
  • Thai: 800-914-9583
  • Vietnamese: 800-267-7395
All who are interested in citizenship assistance or legal services are encouraged to call the toll-free helpline service. Callers can reach helpline staff between 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. When unable to speak with a live helpline staff, callers are encouraged to leave a voicemail message including their name and contact information. Calls will be returned within one business day.The campaign is made possible through funding and support from the California Community Foundation in an effort to break down the myths and barriers preventing more L.A. County residents from applying. “Endless Possibilities. Citizenship Now!” is a coordinated campaign operating in conjunction with ¡Protégete!…¡Ciudadanía Ya!, a campaign taking place in Spanish-language media and is led by a strong coalition that includes Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis, Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Los Angeles and several other nonprofit organizations.
About Advancing Justice – LA:
Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Los Angeles (Advancing Justice – LA) is the nation’s largest legal and civil rights organization for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (NHPI). Through direct services, impact litigation, policy advocacy, leadership development, and capacity building, Advancing Justice – LA focuses on the most vulnerable members of Asian American and NHPI communities while also building a strong voice for civil rights and social justice.
Source: courtesy of http://advancingjustice-la.org/

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Lynda A. N. Reyes exhibits in two LA venues
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Lynda Reyes

Lynda Reyes

Fil-Am artist, Lynda A. N. Reyes is currently participating in two art exhibits in Los Angeles. Her oil painting “Blue vs. Pink” is currently on view at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery (LAMAG) in Barnsdall Park until September 18, 2016. The gallery is located at 4800 Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles, California 90027.

The Open Call exhibit is a thematic community-based biennial featuring artworks by 300 artists who were encouraged to freely interpret the notion of play in sculpture, painting, and photography.

 This year’s juror is Scott Canty, who recently retired after 30 years with DCA’s Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery.

Lynda AN Reyes_Blue vs. Pink Oil Painting

Lynda AN Reyes_Blue vs. Pink Oil Painting

Lynda wrote a short verse about the painting: “It was a day of fun. Who cares if the blue team or the pink team wins? The girls enjoyed playing, the families enjoyed watching. It was fun time for everyone. Hurray! Let’s play again and again.”

Two oil paintings of Lynda “Branching Out No. 1 and “Branching Out No 2” are on display at the San Fernando Valley Arts and Cultural Center (SFVACC) from August 23 – September 10, 2016. The gallery is located at 18312 Oxnard Street in Tarzana, CA 91356.

Juried by Margaret Danielak, the show features 65 local painters, sculptors and photographers in the age of 50 +. The exhibit titled “The Art of Creative Aging” celebrates the minds of artists who continue to explore their creative skills during the third phase of their lives.

The chance to meet and greet these creative “aged” artists is on Saturday, August 27, 2016 from 5-7 p.m.

Lynda has had four exhibits this year and she anticipates more before the year ends. In 2013, she has a record of seven exhibits, five of which are out of state (New York, Colorado, Wisconsin, Maryland and Kentucky), 1 in Canada and 1 in California. So far she has participated in 5 museum exhibits since 2012.

In April 2016, Lynda’s double portrait in oil “Amsan and Api” garnered 5th place in an international art competition themed “Cultural Diversity”. She is further known for her beautiful figurative watercolors.

Her painting “California Grandpa” was chosen for the Splash 14: Color and Line book on watercolor. It was edited by Rachel Rubin Wolf and published by North Light Books in Ohio in June 2013. For more information please visit http://www.lamag.org, http://www.sfvacc.org/center, http://lyndaanreyes.com and lynda@lyndaanreyes.com.

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