PHL EMBASSY IN BRUSSELS JOINS FILIPINO COMMUNITY IN COMMEMORATION OF 119TH DEATH ANNIVERSARY OF DR. JOSE RIZAL
08 January 2016 - The Philippine Embassy in Brussels joined the Filipino community in Belgium last December 30, 2015 in commemorating the 119th Anniversary of the death of Philippine national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal.
Philippine Ambassador to Belgium Victoria S. Bataclan and Sir Mario Fajardo, KGOR, Area Commander for Belgium led the Knights of Rizal (KOR) chapters of Aalst, Brussels, Charleroi, Diamond and El Filibusterismo Belgium as well as the Kababaihang Rizalista and Las Damas de Rizal in a simple but meaningful commemoration rites at the Philippine Embassy.
Mr. Fajardo, in his welcome remarks, rallied his Brother Knights to pay greater attention to and raise awareness on issues affecting the Philippines such as that of the West Philippine Sea. He invited everyone to pray that the Philippines' belief in the rule of law would prevail and that the matter be settled through peaceful means. He reminded everyone that Dr. Rizal was an advocate of the peaceful resolution of conflicts.
Ambassador Bataclan, the Guest of Honor of the occasion, expressed her appreciation for the KOR's continued partnership with the Philippine Embassy in its goal of propagating the ideals of the Philippine National hero including defense of the country's sovereignty and territorial integrity from foreign intervention such as in the West Philippine Sea through peaceful and legal means. She encouraged the KOR in Belgium to take an active role in celebrating this year the 70th anniversary of Philippine-Belgium diplomatic relations and the 115th anniversary of the publication of the Dr. Rizal's novel, "El Filibusterismo," in Ghent.
The commemorative event included the traditional floral offering and the recitation/renewal of the Rizalian Pledge. Also featured were the reading of the introduction of the "El Filibusterismo" by the Diamond Chapter, a presentation of a project in the Philippines by the Charleroi Chapter, and musical renditions from the Aalst, Brussels, El FilibusterismoBeligum, Kababaihang Rizalista and Las Damas de Rizal chapters.
The event was capped by a fraternal reception of the Brother Knights and their counterpart lady organizations.
Among those present during the commemoration were KOR Adviser Lino Paras, Regional Commander for Europe Cesar Alcoba, and the Commanders of the different Chapters (Aalst Jimboy Rebong, Brussels Felipe Yap, Charleroi Danny Vandenbogarde, Diamond Ronny Felix, El Fili Belgium Frank Velasquez, Celanie Francisco of Kababaihang Rizalista and Mary Anne Ballesteros of Las Damas de Rizal.
The KOR in Belgium also took the opportunity to welcome the new Filipino Chaplain in Brussels, Fr. Carmelo Horlador, MSP, in Belgium. Fr. Melo, as he is fondly called, delivered the Invocation during the event. END