Some of the mothers who attended the event pose for a souvenir picture.

EMOTIONS ran high when over 100 mothers dressed in their Filipiniana attire were honored to celebrate Mother’s Day in Historic Filipinotown last Friday, May 10, with guests led by Vice Consul Dyan Pastrana and GAD officer Aurea Bahjin of the Consulate General of the Philippines in Los Angeles. 

In her inspirational talk, Pastrana revealed she grew up without a mother, thus had to help take care of her siblings.  It was not until she became a mother herself that she realized the sacrifices of a mother especially when her own child got hospitalized in the ICU.  Witnessing several mothers like her being shattered to see their child seriously sick and suffering, gave her an added opportunity to appreciate motherhood. 

The Tribute to All Mothers started with an invocation by singing  Ama Namin led by spouses Cres Go who also was the emcee and Rosito (Loloy) Go, co-chair of the sounds & music committee;  rendition of national anthems by Tess Nones for Star Spangled Banner and Lupang Hinirang by Lily Tabafunda, respectively; followed by welcome remarks by Fidji Victoriano, Operations Director of SIPA, one of the collaborating organizations of the event.

Blessing of the mothers by Rev. Geo Sargent; pinning of corsage by children to their moms who were both present at the event;  and dedication of his poem, “Alay sa Ina,” composed by Eusebio “Bing” San Diego.

The Igorot dancers pose with Vice Consul Dyan Pastrana (standing center) and FASGI Exec. Director Yey Coronel (standing at right).

Depicting a Philippine courtship through the cultural presentation of Igorot Dance entertained the guests by dancers Juliet Arevalo, Luz Rondilla, Esther Bermudez, Fely Benitez and Elizabeth Magtoto, choreographer and activity director of Everlasting CBAS.

Bernadette Pasion and Alicia De Aragon of the TLC Family Caregiver Foundation, one of the collaborating organizations under the leadership of Dr. Veronico Agatep, led the closing song You Raised Me Up. 

Also present to support the occasion were Rosalie Caratao, Trini Foliente, Cora Aragon Soriano, incoming president and VP of LA Philippine Women’s Club, respectively, collaborators of the event.

Over-all coordinator Perla Santos asked the mothers if they would support MOTHER Movement’s endeavor to gather 1,000 signatures —  to which an approbation was received in unison — asking legislators to re-file the 20-year-old MOTHER Bill in the Philippines. The advocacy seeks to mandate that self-defense awareness be included as part of schools’ PE curriculum among others.  

Based on the principle that self-defense is an instinct that needs to be developed, the mission of the Movement is to teach everyone to be able to defend themselves in the event of imminent danger. Its vision:  intentionally inflicted crimes, including bullying, human trafficking, sexual harassment, and others will be a thing of the past. 

Vice Consul Dyan Pastrana delivers her inspirational message.

Santos, who is the Movement’s founder, requested the guidance of, and support from Vice Consul Pastrana to be the envoy to hand-carry the important documentation.

Santos thanked the guests including Malou Villacisneros of Pilipino Workers Center, Ludi Santos Martin and Dionesia Domingo of the Santa Ignacia So. CA Asso. (SISA); the LA Seniors Society led by Gloria Resurreccion; president Dr. Arturo Flores of Knights of Rizal; Lina Navarro; Gigi Valiente Romy Borje, mothers in the neighborhood including participants from various CBAS in the community. 

The organizers thank the committees and volunteers who made the event a huge success, including those who donated substantial prizes for the social bingo games, major raffles and giveaways; Registration: Prim Barlahan, Zeny Sta. Catalina and Lucy Ginete; Games  by Ely Cabungcal assisted by Yolly de la Rosa; Food by Benny Velasco, Lilia Fos, Marie Domingo, Irene Dungo, Leony Labang, Major door prizes comprised of electronics and various kitchen appliances were donated by Noli Reyes; Physical arrangements – Maria Valendez and John Swing; Decorations by Mercedes Kruze, Beth San Diego; sponsors:  2nd Century CBAS, the Filipino Family Caregiver Support Group,  Yey Coronel of FASGI;  Atomy;  Music by Buddy and Letty Reyes; and Asian Journal, the media sponsor. 

The fun-filled day also served as the venue for health education about breast cancer prevention from the Asian Pacific Health Care Venture. 

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