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Vol. XVII No. 1
June - September 2006


Mr. Arnold Clavio is Pista Guest

Engr. Pablito R. Freo, New DBI Prexy

Last DBI Scholar Graduates

Sponsors Awarded

DBI Gears for More Activities Ahead

Buhang National High School is Now Jaime G. Espeña High School

A PTCA to Emulate




Monthly Mass Now On Its 25th Year

How to Reach PLM Chapel

The Halums' Legacy

Thank you, Dr. Frando, other Buluseños

Filipino Section



President's Corner

Sa Ngaran San Damayan

Bato-Bato sa Hangin






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The Gazette

The Online Edition

Damayan-Buluseño, Inc.



The Official Homepage of the Municipal Government of Bulusan

Glimpses of Bulusan

Bulusan Genealogy Site

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  Page 2 of 3   


                You may not believe it but the monthlymass of Damayan-Buluseño, Inc. is now on its silver anniversary this month  of August 2006.  “Parang kahapon lamang,” said some of the elders in the organization when they realized they have been attending their monthly mass consistenly for the past 25 years.

                Many have been wondering how this small town organization could maitain such monthly activity which entails expenses for the use of church facilities, stipend for the officiating priests, and others – when the organization has only limited funds. In fact, it is the only town organization based in Metro-Manila that holds monthly spiritual gathering.  Some organizations of bigger towns had tried but failed to last long.

                But, what is more intriguing is the story that this organization and its monthly mass came into being in a very strange way. It started with a mass in the afternoon of August 5, 1981 at the Holy Trinity Church in Balic-Balic, Sampaloc, Manila sponsored by Mrs. Nena Gonzales-Fabic of Barangay Sabang, Bulusan.  Officiated by Rev. Fr. Antonio Pura, then the newly assigned parish priest in Bulusan, the mass was attended by a handful of Buluseños only. During the merienda y cena at Mrs. Fabic’s residence, Fr. Pura signified his plan of a monthly prayer meeting in residences of Buluseños in Metro-Manila. But, Mr. Rogelio Fuentes who was among those present, suggested that a mass be held instead in a church for a much bigger attendance.  He further suggested that before doing so, they should first visit a young Buluseña housewife then detained at the Manila City Jail for a parricide case for the death of her 72-year old husband.

                In their first visit, they promised the detainee that as their moral and spiritual support to her, they will arrange for a monthly mass at the jail’s chapel for the duration of her detention. On August 30 at 4:00 p.m., a mass was celebrated by Fr. Pura. It was followed in two Sundays of September and October after which they had to move out with the promulgation of her life-term sentence.

                They continued with their monthly mass at the Manila Cathedral the following month and stayed there until December 1996.  For reasons known only to then newly assigned rector of the Cathedral, the group was evicted and had to move to nearby Knights of Columbus Clubhouse in January 1997 and stayed there until October 2005. Due to financial constraint, they had to move from one venue to another where they can use the facilities with less expenses.  Until they finally settled in a chapel at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila in April this year where they were warmly welcomed by its administration. Thanks to Rev. Fr. Aris Bajao of the San Agustin Church who went out of his way to negotiate in behalf of DBI for the use of its facilities for the monthly mass. Fr. Bajao became close to the Buluseños having regularly officiated their monthly mass for more than a year now.

                The group hopes that this stay at PLM Chapel will last long – but as to how long this monthly mass will last, only Heaven knows.  Most of them though firmly believe that if it has existed for 25 years,  then there is no reason really as to why it should not go on until  the next generations.

                Now, you might be asking how such a tradition, or how this organization for that matter  - could stand firmly on its feet despite its limited resources; how such could still face various odds and ends in sustaining not only this monthly spiritual gathering but also its various project and activities.  Devoted members have this to say: “It’s perhaps with the intercession of the town’s patron saint, St. James the Greater  (whose  18-inch tall image is enthroned at the  altar every mass).  Most of all, God Himself -  who put us together, seeing our sincere devotion and dedication to serve our hometown and townmates in a manner that is totally unselfish.”

                When asked as to what his most  unforgettable moment is during all these long years serving as head of DBI, Mr. Fuentes first explained that he have had met many challenges since the early days of the association until his retirement in December 2004.  According to him though, what could be most unforgettable was when he first stepped into the office of the Manila Cathedral to reserve its facilities for the monthly mass of the Buluseños in November 1981. When told of his purpose, the clerk, who turned out to be quite an arrogant old lady, asked him: “Kaya bang punuin ng mga taga Bulusan ang Manila Cathedral ng alas dos ng hapon? Bakit, gaano ba kalaki ang Bulusan?”

                Although insulted by her sarcastic remarks, Mr. Fuentes kept his cool and politely replied: “Maliit lamang po ang aming bayan pero, pipilitin po naming punuin. Saka, kung hindi man po namin mapuno ay babayaran din naman po namin ang dapat naming bayaran.”

                While accepting the reservation as requested by Mr. Fuentes, still the clerk had these parting words to him: “Kayo ang bahala. Sayang lamang ang mahal na ibabayad ninyo. Kung ang malalaking bayan nga, hindi napuno ang maliliit na chapel sa tabi, kayo pa!”

                Mr. Fuentes took her words as a challenge to strive and encourage more Buluseños to attend the mass just to prove to the Cathedral clerk wrong.

                The following month, when he went back to have it reserved again, Mr. Fuentes was surprised to see her in an exceptionally good mood who even courteously asked him: “Totoo po ba ang balita na napuno daw ng mga kababayan ninyo ang simbahan noong nakaraang buwan? Hindi ako makapaniwala, titingnan ko nga sa Linggo para mapatunayan.”

                When Sunday came, she had no choice but to watch in astonishment as Buluseños started coming in in groups.  The pews were already filled up and the mass was yet to start.  Many were standing behind and more were coming in.

                Approaching Mr. Fuentes, she told him: “Ngayon, naniniwala na ako. Hindi ko akalaing ganito karami ang mga kababayan ninyo na dadagsa sa misa.  ‘Kapagtataka, marahil may Holy Spirit na gumagabay sa grupo ninyo.”

                Mr. Fuentes himself could hardly believe how the handful of Buluseños who attended their first mass at the Holy Trinity Church, have turned into a huge crowd that overflowed the Manila Cathedral. 


For Buluseños who wish to attend their monthly second Sunday mass at the Chapel of the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, you may follow these instructions on how to get there:

 1. If you are in Quiapo or Sta. Cruz, take a jeepney bound to Mabini-Harrison-Pasay.  Request driver to drop you off at the Round Table along Palacio Street. Walk towards Gen. Luna Street.  On reaching Muralla Street, turn left and walk until you reach Sta. Lucia Street.  Then turn right at the corner and you will see the gate leading to the chapel.

2. If you are coming from Pasay via Taft Avenue, drop at Lawton, then take a jeepney bound for Mabini-Harrison-Pasay.  Request to be dropped off at the Round Table, then follow the rest of instruction no. 1.

3. If you are from Pasay via Mabini-Harrison, drop at the corner of Ma. Orosa and P. Burgos Streets at Luneta.  Then cross P. Burgos Street towards Palacio Street, and follow the rest of instruction no. 1.

For a more detailed information, you may call on Engr. Pablito Freo, DBI President , at 912-9141; or the Secretary, Mr. Ulping Sorra at tel. no. 929-0848.


The new castillo or alleluyahan courtesy of the Halum Family           Just a few meters before the main gate leading to the Parish Church of St. James the Greater in Bulusan, there now stands an imposing structure called castillo or alleluyahan by local residents.  This tall and sturdy edifice was a dream-come-true to the late Rev. Fr. Domingo “Inggo” A. France and a lasting legacy of the Halum family – the children and grandchildren of the late couple Don Ramon Halum, Sr. and Doña Salvacion Gaylon.

                When Fr. France assumed his assignment as his hometown’s parish priest in July 2004, his cherished wish was to put up a permanent castillo.  According to him, of all the sixteen towns in the province, only Sorsogon and Bulusan had no castillo then.

                By the grace of God, his prayers were answered when members of the family came home from the US with the remains of the late Martin G. Halum.  With them came members from Metro-Manila who were there also for their kin’s interment at the family mausoleum.  In them, Fr. France saw the fulfillment of his wish.

                In their courtesy call to the priest at the convent, Fr. France hinted to them his plans for the parish foremost of which being that of the castillo. The group was composed of Dr. Rogado G. Halum and his spouse; Atty. Alden & Alice Gajo; Dr. Ramon, Jr.; Engr.Trason and wife Tagay; Ellen, now Mrs. Cuevas; and other members of the family.

                Realizing the need for such a structure for religious purposes, they readily pledged to finance its construction.  In January 2005, the work was started and was ready for the Easter Sunday rites that year.

                Aside from being an additional landmark in town, it is a great relief to the parishioners especially to the Hermanos who had to put up a temporary castillo of light materials every year in the past.

                Five years before passing away, the late Martin sponsored the scholarship of Salvacion Gardon through Damayan-Buluseño, Inc. Fortunately, before his illness turned serious, Salvacion had already graduated with a degree in education. When he was finally laid to rest, his scholar was already employed as teacher at the town’s Immaculate Heart of Mary School.  Now, Salvacion is with the Makati City High School.

                Earlier, nobody knew that he was Salvacion’s benefactor except Mr. Rogelio F. Fuentes, then  the president of the association, and Martin’s igsoon whom he asked not to reveal his identity.  It was only when he was too ill that he consented to be identified.  If he had lived long, he could have sponsored more scholars in college as he wanted so much to see more professionals from the less-privileged sector.  That was what he confided to Mr. Fuentes.

                Unknown to many, other members of the family have also their way of sharing their blessings with others especially to the needy but they would rather keep the matter to themselves than flaunt about it, a source close to the family said.

                Some Buluseños are of the opinion that if only well-to do Buluseño families would have such benevolence in their hearts, instead of squandering their wealth in dirty politics and worthless vices - Bulusan could have greatly improved by now, and could have truly been an example of a community of caring people.


Dr. & Mrs. Virgil G. Frando and family                In behalf of Damayan-Buluseño Foundation, Inc., Mr. Rogelio F. Fuentes, chairman, wishes to extend his grateful appreciation to Dr. Virgil G. Frando and his wife, Angie; and other generous Buluseños for their donations to the foundation.

                Dr. and Mrs. Frando who are now based in Texas, USA – handed a check of US$500.00 to Mr. Fuentes when they came home for a vacation.  It was in that meeting that the couple informed Mr. Fuentes that they will donate five sets of computers to the Bulusan High School, which at time of writing, are already in the said school.

                According to Mr. Fuentes who regularly receives from them a Christmas greeting card each year – Dr. Frando has, since his bachelor days, been very supportive of the activities of Damayan-Buluseño, Inc.  He even extended assistance to townmates in need of his services particularly when he was still with the Philippine General Hospital in Manila.  This is not the first that the couple sent donations to DBI and other entities in Bulusan, a thing that they would rather not elaborate on.

                Mr. Fuentes added, Dr. Frando has many bright ideas and plans for the progress of Bulusan especially on the aspect of education that if realized would greatly benefit the community.

                In the same light, Mr. Fuentes also appreciates very much the concern of some Buluseños to the cause of the foundation by sending in pledges/donations through e-mails although  two of whom preferred to hide their true identities.  They are: Binlopeep – P2,000.00 + P3,000.00, Lantoag – P2,000.00, and Felicia Fortes – P1,200.00.

                He is very grateful to all these fellow Buluseños for their kind response to the needs of the foundation.  He hopes other townmates would be inspired also to support its objective of uplifting the lives of poor Buluseño families through the scholarship of their talented children.

                Mr. Fuentes said that those who wish to share may remit their donations through the peso and dollar accounts of the foundation.  Account numbers may be obtained from Mr. Fuentes through his e-mail address or at tel. no. 929-5277; or from the treasurer, Engr. Pablito R. Freo at tel. no. 912-9141.

FILIPINO SECTION:mga mag-aaral gamit ang mga kompyuter na ipinagkaloob nina Dr. at Gng. Virgil G. Frando

Mga Buluseño, Nagkaroon ng Bagong Liwanag

ni: Marissa F. Fortes (III-A)

Hindi naman po bago sa ating pandinig ang Mataas na Paaralan ng Bulusan.  Isang hamak na paaralan na minsa’y may pagkukulang din sa mga estudyante sa iba’t ibang aspeto.  Subalit hindi ito naging pader upang bitawan na ng mga bata ang pangarap nilang umangat – ang hangaring kahit sandali ay malasap ang bunga ng pagbabago.

Naging madilim ang kahapong nagdaan para sa mga estudyanteng ito umulan man o umaraw.  Walang patid pa rin silang tumutuklas ng karunungan sa simpleng pamamaraan.  Hindi man nga maibigay ng paaralan ang kanilang mga pangangailangan ngunit patuloy pa rin silang nangarap na balang-araw magkakaroon na rin ng tugon ang kanilang mga minimithi.  Nalagas na ang mga dahon pero wala pa ring nagbago sa teknolohiya ng institusyong ito.  Hanggang isang araw ay tuluyan nang nalunasan ang kanilang pagdaramdam.  Isang may busilak na puso ang nagmagandang-loob na tulungan ang paaralan ng mga Buluseño.  At iyon ay walang iba kundi sina Dr. at Gng. Virgil Frando.  Dahil sa kanila, higit na tumibay ang hangarin ng mga estudyante na magpursige sa buhay.  Napuno ng galak ang kanilang mga puso’t isipan nang biyayaan sila ng ganito kalaking sorpresa.  Ito ay ang limang (5) set ng kompyuter.  Sa katunayan, hindi nila maubos-maisip na sa tagal ng panahon, sa wakas ay nailalapat na rin nila ang kanilang mga kamay sa kompyuter, mga kamay na matagal din naging uhaw sa bagay na ito.  Kasalukuyan na itong nagagamit at napakikinabangan ng mga mag-aaral.  Labis ang tuwa ng mga guro lalong-lalo na ang punong-guro na si Bb. Ave E. Mendizabal.  Ayon sa kanya, magiging tanglaw ito upang akayin ang mga estudyante sa landas na tatahakin sa hinaharap.  Ito ang papawi sa hirap ng mga pasanin ng guro at mga kabataan na kanilang nararanasan ngayon.

                Tunay  ngang sa bawat katanungan ay may kasagutan.  Kailangan lang nating maging matatag upang matagpuan natin ito.  Ang magsisilbing susi ng ating bukas ay mismong kaugnay din ng ating dugo.  Kung kaya’t sa ngalan ng Mataas na Paaralan ng Bulusan, malugod naming inihahandog ang abot-langit na pasasalamat sa inyo Dr. at Gng. Virgil Frando at sa inyong pamilya.  Asahan po ninyong ang mga ito’y iingatan namin tulad din ng pag-iingat namin sa aming paaralan.

                Nawa’y marami pang mga Buluseño ang katulad ninyong may ginintuang puso.



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