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As we rekindle the richness of our Catholic Faith when we celebrated our 500th Year of Christianity in the country; Radio Veritas, Radio Veritas Asia and the Tourism Promotions Board of the Philippines recently held the Special Cinematic Screening of a Historical Documentary Film dubbed as “THE PILGRIM: 500 Years of Catholic Faith in the Philippines”. This theatrical showing is now screening at the FISHER MALL BOX OFFICE located at Quezon Avenue corner Roosevelt Avenue, Quezon City; and will run till January 31, 2023.

 

Directed by Real S. Florido (Chief Creative Officer, Firestarters Productions) and Produced by Radio Veritas846 & Radio Veritas Asia; this docu-drama comes in five parts: (1) Colonization and Christianization; (2) Piety and Identity; (3) War and Sovereignty; (4) Democracy and Service; and (5) Faith and Modernization; all of which are visually presented to give each and every moviegoer a glimpse on how we have evolved as a Catholic Church in the Philippines. Though chronologically designed in form, each exposition of Philippine Church History was presented thematically for a more holistic viewing experience.

 

Do you have a wonderful yet impossible dream? Ferdinand Magellan once had a dream. He wanted to discover a new westward route to the Spice Islands — a feat never accomplished before. There was a problem though. He needed support and funds to make this dream a reality. Magellan approached the person he thought could help him — King Manuel of Portugal. Sadly, the Portuguese King rejected his proposal not just once, but multiple times!

 

If you know the pain of being rejected, then you probably felt what Magellan experienced. Instead of giving up, Magellan turned to another person — King Charles I of Spain. Believing in him, the Spanish King provided the funding and support Magellan needed. Thus on 1519, with 5 Spanish ships under his command, Magellan set sail for the Spice Islands westward.  Crossing the Strait of Magellan, the Pacific Ocean, managing his own fleet’s mutiny.

 

On March 1521, 3 out of the 5 ships he commanded arrived on the shores of the Philippine archipelago. During his brief stay, Magellan was able to convert the natives to Christianity and celebrate the first Holy Mass.  Everything went well, until one tribal chieftain stood up to Magellan…and the rest, we know, is history.

 

Ferdinand Magellan never lived to see Christianity’s influence in our country’s history and identity.  But you, can. Brothers and Sisters, we would like to invite you to take part in the historic unraveling of an epic journey. A journey Magellan never would have imagined in his lifetime — Come and Watch this once in a lifetime documentary film.

 

The ancient Greeks had two words for time: chronos and kairos. The former refers to chronological or sequential time, while the latter signifies a proper or opportune time for action. While “chronos” is quantitative, “kairos” is qualitative and permanent nature. Truly, this 500th Year in our history is a moment of chronos because though God’s grace we have come this far. It is the hope of this written work that it would take this historical moment to be a moment of kairos as well — a moment of inspiration to bring the Philippine Catholic towards another 500 Years in the “missionary spirit” we are “gifted to give.” As such, may this Historical Documentary Film bring such inspiration to its readers.

 

As we share images, words and insights in this motion picture we will likewise rediscover our sense of identity as a Church.  From each and every visually presented image we will be able to learn how our Catholic Faith was formed as a nation, and how it evolved and developed over time. Like when individuals take it upon themselves to dive deep into their own family’s history, they can understand how their family interacted with larger historical change; so, too can we appreciate the richness of our faith experience spanning 500 years of existence vis-à-vis the events that shaped who we are as a Church in the Philippines.

 

Hopefully through this film, the viewers will gain access to a laboratory of faith encounters. When we reflect judiciously well on its contents, and so acquire some usable insights, as well as some basic information about the influences that affect our own spiritual lives, we emerge with relevant knowledge and an enhanced capacity for informed awareness, critical thinking and simple mindfulness.

 

We are all pilgrims in this world, and we hope that this Docu-Drama will be our modest contribution to your faith journey. “For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4).

 

The Radio Veritas Production Team includes: Rev. Fr. Anton CT Pascual (Executive Producer); Bro. Clifford Sorita (Managing Producer); Prof. Ricardo Lazo (Head Writer); Prof. Ludmila Labagnoy (Associate Writer), Prof. Raymond Datuon (Associate Writer); Ryan Angeles (Design Consultant); Dene Mickel Mondoñedo (Executive Production Head); Aurelia Elarde; Audrey Elli, Liberty Pabillore and Trixie Olandria (Production Staff). Special Thanks too to Mr. Jacques Ruby (Production Consultant).

Veritas Editorial

Rev. Fr. Anton CT Pascual

Rev. Fr. Anton CT Pascual

President of Radio Veritas

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