Sunday, April 15, 2012

Canada's Titanic Stamps

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic which hit an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic that claimed 1,500 lives. The Titanic was almost 280 meters (883 feet) in length and was the largest passenger steamship in the world at that time. 
To commemorate this famous maritime disaster, Canada Post issued on April 5, 2012 stamps depicting various parts of the titanic created by designers Dennis Page and Oliver Hill of Halifax.

The RMS Titanic's enormous bow and two front anchors appear in the center of the first pair of the stamps. Southampton (England), the place were the Titanic's maiden voyage began is shown. On the left is Halifax (Nova Scotia, Canada) which became the center of recovery efforts after the ship sank.

The second stamp pair shows the 3 propellers that were located at the rear of the ship—2 larger outer propellers and a smaller center propeller. At the bottom of each stamp sits the House Flag of the White Star Line, the owner of the Titanic. This iconic red flag flew from the Titanic's main mast and was also displayed on her tickets, cutlery and furniture.
A fifth stamp shows the Titanic at sea between Southampton and Halifax. Cape Race, N.L., is highlighted because its radio station was the first land-based site to receive the ill-fated ship's distress signal. Halifax played a major role in the Titanic story when the city's cable ships were dispatched to pick up bodies from the Atlantic in the days after the accident. 150 people whose bodies were recovered were laid to rest in the city's three cemeteries.

A Souvenir Sheet features the international rate stamp, which depicts a full color side illustration of the Titanic.

Included in this year's centennial activities is the re-release of James Cameron's Titanic movie in 3D.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Eight Churches in a Day

Earlier today, me and my son Jerald Kervin decided to embark in our first ever visita iglesias that would involve eight churches in the cities of Cebu and Mandaue. Excited and determined to be able to fulfill our mission, we left at almost 11:00 in the morning bringing along some chocolate fudge bars and lots of water.

We both agreed to offer five Our Father, five Hail Mary, and five Glory Be along with
a thanksgiving prayer as well as intentions for our family and for the departed souls of our relatives and the poor souls in purgatory.

The churches we went were the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral, the Basilica Minore del Santo NiƱo, the Santo Rosario Parish and the Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. Feeling hungry at this time, we decided to have lunch at a Jollibee Restaurant where we ordered fried bangus (milk fish) with fresh tomatoes, rice, coke sodas and french fries. We stuck with Church tradition to refrain from eating beef, pork and chicken meat from Thursday till Saturday.

We then proceeded to Redemptorist Church while having some potato chips and chocolate drinks along the way. After our prayers at the said church and with the scorching heat of the sun, we decided to have some ice cream bars at a nearby Julie's outlet. Mine was Rocky Road while Kervin got his favorite Double Duch. Our next stop was the St. Joseph the Patriarch Parish, the last church in our list located in Cebu City.

The next itinerary were the two churches in Mandaue City. We arrived at the National Shrine of St. Joseph where we were just in time for the general absolution ceremony. The last church we went was the San Roque Parish. After our prayers were done and some souvenir poses, we both agreed to go home where we arrived at exactly 5 pm.

Both of us never thought this would be a great bonding and a fulfilling experience but it truly was! At this early, we have promised to make this a family tradition.         

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Time to Reflect on the Passion of Christ

It is the season of Lent once again. With 90% of Filipinos practicing the Roman Catholic faith, it is not surprising to see closed signs in most malls, business establishments and offices in the country as everyone take the time to observe the Holy Week.

Traditionally, Holy Thursday and Good Friday are always declared public holidays.On Holy Thursday, churches will be filled with people making confessions and doing the stations of the cross as well as the visita iglesias (visiting different churches).

As we reflect on the passion of Christ, i wish you all a blessed Holy Week!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

It's the Anniversary of The Battle of Tres de Abril

In May of 2007, I came out with an idea to come up with a stamp that will highlight the historic battle of Tres de Abril. Together with Patricia "Noeng" Perez, the Community Affairs Officer IV of the Cultural and Historical Affairs Commission (CHAC) of the City of Cebu, we started to make this concept into a reality. Noeng who is also a member of the Board of Trustees of Cebu Stamp Club, Incorporated gave her full support to the project.

Fabiolita Ferraris, another  member of Cebu Stamp Club happened to be the regional manager of the Philippine Postal Corporation Region 7. She was the link between CSCI with CHAC and the Philpost Stamp Advisory Committee. It was through her efforts that there was a smooth flow of communication between all parties involved. Later on, the Chairman of the Stamp Advisory Committee, Dr. Ngo Tiong Tak who is also a member of Cebu Stamp Club gave his full support too.

The Cebu City Council came out City Council Resolution 3258 during the regular session held at the Sangguniang Panglungsod on June 2, 1997. On June 13. 1997, the city mayor at that time, Hon. Alvin Garcia affixed his signature.

To complete everything, famous Cebuano artist Jose "Kimsoy" Yap was tasked to do the artwork of the famous battle scene. Kimsoy wasted no time in recreating the scene and donated the masterpiece.

On June 12, 1998, the Battle of Tres de Abril became an official stamp as part of the Centenary of Philippine Independence series 6 souvenir sheet.      

I have written the full history on how the stamp came to be, through my weekly column Stamplines in the Freeman newspaper in 1998. A reproduction of the said article is posted at Cebu Stamp Club's official website. You may read the whole story by clicking here


The top most photo features Jose "Kimsoy" Yap with his masterpiece. Seated beside him are Philpost Regional Director Fabiolita Ferraris and CSCI Founder and President, Richard Allan Uy. Standing from left are CSCI Executives Maria Luisa Potian, Rachel Betos, Teresita Caballero, Patricia Perez, Beeling Yap and Erwin Allan Orosco.

Also shown is the Battle of Tres de Abril painting done by Kimsoy Yap. The stamps included are that of the Tres de Abril battle and Pantaleon Villegas, the leader of the Cebuano Revolutionaries.

The Centenary of Philippine Independence Series 6 souvenir sheet that includes the stamps of the Tres de Abril Uprising, the Negros Uprising, the Iligan Uprising and the Philippine Centennial Kalayaan logo.