12 June 2022
Melbourne PCG Conducts Flag Honoring Ceremony for the 124th Anniversary of Philippine Independence
The Philippine Consulate General in Melbourne led the Commemoration of the 124th Anniversary
of the Declaration of Philippine Independence at Federation Square
together with members of the Filipino Community
The Philippine Consulate General in Melbourne held its first face-to-face Independence Day Flag Honoring Ceremony on 12 June 2022 at the Federation Square and the Consulate General premises to commemorate the 124th Anniversary of Philippine Independence. Around 170 guests, including Filipino community leaders, media, students, retired military personnel and incumbent Armed Forces of the Philippines personnel attended the program with the theme Kalayaan 2022: Pagsulong sa Hamon ng Panibagong Bukas.
The event commenced with an Acknowledgement of Country and People by Ms. Fides Santos-Arguelles of EntrePinays, followed by interfaith prayers by Monsignor Joselito Asis, Catholic Chaplain to Filipinos in Victoria, Rev. Berlin Guerrero of the Dandenong Regional Uniting Church, and a Muslim Prayer. The Entry of Colors by members of Katipunan Australia, Inc., an organization composed of war veterans and former personnel of Police, Fire, Corrective and Investigative agencies of the Philippines, and former regular and reserve members of the AFP preceded the singing of the Philippine National Anthem by the 20-member Filipino Choir of St Francis Church or Kiko Choir.
Melbourne PCG’s officers read the Philippine Independence Day messages to the Filipino Community who braved the cold winter morning to attend during the 124th Anniversary of Philippine Independence
Consul General Maria Lourdes M. Salcedo gave a Welcome Address and read the Independence Day Message of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte; Deputy Consul General Anthony Achilles L. Mandap read the Independence Day Message of Foreign Secretary Teodoro L. Locsin, Jr.; and Consul Jan Sherwin P. Wenceslao read the Independence Day Message of Ambassador Maria Hellen B. De La Vega, who lauded the “historic and dynamic partnership of the Philippines and Australia and expressed hope for a “broader people-to-people connections in education, science, technology and innovation and promotion of our shared maritime heritage”
The event moved to the Consulate General premises, with the recognition and speech of Mr. Walter Villagonzalo, 2021 Presidential Awardee for Filipino Individuals and Organizations Overseas (PAFIOO), under the Pamana ng Pilipino Category on Commission on Filipinos Overseas, Office of the President. In his short remarks, he encouraged Filipinos to continue nominating fellow Filipinos for their stellar accomplishments, including in the prestigious Australian Honors System.
The Kiko Choir performed patriotic songs, including Isang Dugo, Isang Lahi, Isang Musika and Ako ay Pilipino during the event, which was followed by a simple breakfast by Basement Café, a Filipino-owned restaurant in Melbourne. END
Entry of Colors and Flag Raising by members of Katipunan-Australia
The Filipino Choir of St Francis Church (Kiko Choir) sings the National Anthem
Consul General Maria Lourdes M. Salcedo (middle), Deputy Consul General Anthony Achilles Mandap (to her right) and Consul Jan Sherwin Wenceslao (to her left) with the Kiko Choir at Federation Square, a hub of multicultural communities in Melbourne
Consul General Maria Lourdes Salcedo and Deputy Consul General Anthony Achilles Mandap present a certificate honoring Mr. Walter Villagonzalo, 2021 Presidential Awardee for Filipino Individuals and Organizations under the Pamana ng Pilipino Category of the CFO, at the Philippine Consulate General