This morning I gave a talk during the “Theological Hour” at the Loyola School of Theology in Quezon City. The title of my talk was “Trending: #TheWord” and it was about how to effectively utilize social media for evangelization. The main aim of my hour-long presentation was to broaden the participants’ understanding of social media as well as to show them how they can best use social networking, visual storytelling and digital gaming to proclaim the Gospel to everyone. The audience consisted of students and faculty of the premiere Jesuit theology school. Take a look at the pics below and you’ll notice that they come from various parts of the globe. All photos were taken by Anthony Coloma, SJ.
I was in Nueva Ecija two weeks ago to shoot a video documentary for the Diocese of San Jose. I was able to visit all the towns and parishes under the jurisdiction of the Diocese. I got to meet a lot of wonderful people and see equally wonderful sights.
Here are four of the more than four hundred photos I took while I was there.
Before kissing Fiyero, Elphaba hesitates for a moment and declares with a smile, “It’s just for the first time, I feel … wicked”. Although at first she appears to be a menacing witch (well, she is called the wicked witch of the west) in the stage musical “Wicked”, Elphaba is anything but wicked. On the other hand, the other characters who seem to be the personification of goodness and perfection are in fact proved to be the ones who are wicked down to their very core.
The musical is filled with such surprising twists and ironies. And that is the reason why I enjoyed the show so much. I watched “Wicked” last Friday night with two MSC confreres in the Oriental Theater (Ford Center for the Performing Arts) in Chicago. I looked around and I did not see any empty seat in the theater and as soon as the cast performed their first number I understood why.
This morning, Fr. Lucho, the formator of the MSC seminarians in Colombia, brought me to the Catedral de Sal de Zipaquirá (Salt Cathedral of Zipaquirá). Just the name itself already makes you think it’s a place like no other.
Zipaquirá is about 48 kilometers north of Bogotá. I was so excited to see the sanctuary that it actually felt like the fifty-minute drive took five hours. I chose not to research about it before traveling to Zipaquirá so that I would not have any preconceptions about the place. The entrance ticket to the cathedral costs 12,000 Colombian pesos (about five US dollars). The tour inside the cathedral could be taken in different languages. I chose an English-speaking guide. Continue reading
The flight from Manila to Bogotá via Los Angeles took 20 hours (13 hours from Manila to L.A., and 7 hours from L.A. to Bogotá). This is not just my first time to be in Colombia but also my very first to be in the South American continent. I am in Bogotá to facilitate a workshop on Web Design using free and open source software. The fifteen workshop participants are all Colombian MSC seminarians.
The Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC) have been in Colombia since the 1960′s and they have established themselves well in the capital city. The main focus of their ministry here is to administer parishes and to help the poor by initiating housing projects for squatters and giving scholarships to deserving students who cannot afford to send themselves to school. Continue reading
Four afternoons ago I went to the Vatican to take a picture of St. Peter´s Basilica with the setting sun in the background. It was windy and chilly – the temperature was between four and six degrees Celsius above zero. Some of my confreres thought it was crazy for me to stand for more than an hour in biting cold in St. Peter´s Square to wait for my sunset. And I told them that any picture worth taking is worth sacrificing for. Continue reading
I am now in Cebu to start a 19-day (11-29 Nov 2007) trip to the Visayas and Mindanao. My other stops are Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Marawi, and Cotabato.
I am traveling with a team from the Communication Foundation for Asia (CFA) and our job is to do a traveling exhibit called “Dear Peace”. The exhibit is the output of a peace camp entitled “Impressions of Conflict, Expressions of Peace” held early last year in Antipolo. The participants of the camp were Muslim and Christian high school students of Ramon Avanceña High School in Manila. During the five-day camp, the 29 participants were given crash courses on essay-writing, watercolor painting, ethnic music, photography, videography, and theater arts. The purpose of the camp was to empower and encourage the participants to become peacemakers through creative expression.
The mobile exhibit features the artistic works of the participants, i.e. videos, essays, paintings, and photographs. Another important part of the exhibit is the showing of a 30-minute video also titled “Dear Peace”, which documents what happened before, during and after the peace camp. I co-directed and co-edited the video docu with Sheila del Mundo. The script was written by the participants themselves.
We will set up our exhibits in malls, schools and religious institutions.
Three summers ago I went on a pilgrimage to Fatima in central Portugal. The city is famous for the Marian apparations that took place there in 1917. I celebrated masses in the Basilica and in the Sanctuary with a group of Dutch-Filipino pilgrims. Aside from checking out Fatima’s shrines, museums and bookstores, I also visited nearby towns and communities.
One place that is worth mentioning is Cova da Iria. For it was there where I met an old woman sitting at a well. She claimed to be a relative of Lucia, one of the three peasant children who witnessed the apparition of the Virgin Mary. The other two were Francisco and Jacinta. Continue reading
Finally I’m back in the Philippines.
I do not care about the trademark traffic in Manila nor about the humidity of this megapolis, it simply feels great to be back in my beloved country.
My flight from Rome to Manila took about 18 hours – 14 hours of flying time plus three hours of stopover in Dubai.
Four friends met me at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport and they all made me feel so special. On my way to my residence in New Manila, Quezon City I was so impressed at the cleanliness of the streets in Paranaque, Mandaluyong, Makati, and San Juan.
I will be having my vacation for about month in Cebu and in January 2006 I will formally begin my communications ministry at the Communication Foundation for Asia(CFA) in Sta. Mesa, Manila.
Yesterday a good friend of mine left Rome. He returned to Barcelona for good. We’ve been together for more than three years here in the MSC Generalate House. He was Catalan by birth and by choice. Aside from his native tongue, he could speak Spanish (of course) and French.
His name is Joaquin. Continue reading