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Fil-Oz celebrates its 21st Santacruzan with a difference


By Richard J Ford,
PRO and VP - Fil-Oz Liverpool and Districts Inc.
Liverpool-NSW-Australia
May 28, 2016

 
 


This year’s Santa Cruzan Flores de Mayo, its 21st, was held at All Saints Liverpool Catholic Church Hall on 21st May. This year the theme was “cultural diversity,” with the idea of moving forward but still looking back to learn from the past.

The new Board of Fil-Oz Liverpool with its President Cora Bojarski decided we needed to do something different in order to grow and mature; we all felt it was time to step out of our shell and embrace other cultures, as we are a truly multicultural society. As this is Fil-Oz’s first major function we received a very good response, in which we believe will be the start of more to come.

 “A Santacruzan is a religious-historical beauty pageant held in many cities, towns and even small villages throughout the Philippines during the month of May. One of the most colourful May-time festivals in the Philippines which depicts the finding of the Holy Cross by Queen Helena, mother of Constantine the Great. The Santacruzan is a symbol of the strong Catholic faith of the Filipino people. As a Flores de Mayo enthusiast I hope that in the future, the Filipinos in Australia will be able to bring back the sincerity, simplicity and solemnity of Flores de Mayo. It is about thanksgiving, remembering where we came from and giving honour, respect and importance to our culture and traditions.”

The little Angels, the Flower Girls, Queens and the Reyna Helena, who was Miss Rica Sey, the Miss Visayas 2015 and Miss Philippines Australia 2015, they all looked so beautiful in their white outfits, where the true Filipina beauty shone through. The procession through the church was solemn as the flower girls presented flowers to the Virgin Mary, with many gave thanks for her many blessings upon them.
The thanksgiving service was given by Father Nards Mercene, after which the procession proceeded to the Church Hall to partake of food, music and songs, to enjoy the pleasant day with family, friends and guests.

The VIP Guests were, the Mayor of Liverpool Ned Mannoun, Philippine Consul General Anne Jalando-on Louis, Liverpool Member of Parliament Paul Lynch, Liverpool Catholic Club Duty Manager Phil Clark, People of Australia Ambassador Dr Cen Amores, who also inducted the new Board of Officers for 2016-17,  Pet Storey APCO Inc. President, who enjoyed the food, music by the Commancheros and Danny Garcia, with singing from the talents of Stephanie Bernardo,  and  Sharlene Gamo, and Katherine Tiatco, with dancing from the Fil-Oz Children’s Dance Group, also a special performance by Georgia Fenton and Ellelouise Hipolito.   

What was the difference in the event than previous past events? The idea that we can invite other beauty queens from other countries to our event to join together as one, united by our respect and concern for one another, our special guests were Monique Navratil who is Miss Face of the Globe Finalist 2016 and Miss Hope Australia 2016, with Samantha Mullins who is Miss Tourism Australia International 2015, 3rd Runner-up in the Beauty Pageant held in China 2015, and Miss Australia Finalist 2016.

The emcees for the event were the indomitable duo Jun Tekiko and Past President of Fil-Oz Cora Paras.


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