God’s love for children is encapsulated in His verse, “Let the little children come to Me…for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.”
This is why I found it very admirable for Manila Hotel to have initiated support for “our little ones” through the charity dinner concert it recently hosted, entitled, Yes, I Believe. The well-attended event also served as the official launch of the National Nutrition Program of the Alliance for Healthy Filipino Children (AHFC).
The AHFC aims to increase awareness of the serious malnutrition problem of the children in our country and it plans to implement barangay-based nutrition intervention programs, especially during the child’s first 1000 days. AHFC will work with the government, particularly with the National Nutrition Council.
The musical performances were rendered by a trio of former government officials: former Presidential Executive Secretary, Atty. Salvador Medialdea; former Press Secretary, Atty. Mike Toledo; and former Senator and former DILG Secretary Atty. Joey Lina. They were joined by three of the country’s top songbirds Lara Maigue, Isay Alavarez, and Rachelle Gerodias. Each of their musical renditions became even more grand with the accompaniment of the Manila Philharmonic Orchestra.
I couldn’t help but sing along when the concert started with the very inspiring Filipino ditty, and one of my favorites, “Umagang Kay Ganda,” dished out beautifully by all six performers. There were many other songs that were all familiar to the audience, for us to sing along with, especially those rendered by Atty. Mike Toledo because they were the Frank Sinatra and Michael Buble classics, songs of my generation.
The audience was tickled pink when the trio asked for volunteers who were brave enough to join them on stage for another song. After going around the hall, Atty. Lina hooked somebody who did show his mettle. It was former National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, Jr. He sang a love song dedicated to his wife who was also in the audience, kilig to the bones, I was sure. What I found adorable was when Atty. Lina asked his three-year-old grandson, Evan Lina Mandap, to sing with them, and the cute little lad was game enough to follow what his grandpa asked for.
In between their songs, Atty. Lina shared with the audience more information on the activities he has planned to help support this enviable advocacy for children. He said that this concert was just the first step of many in the pipeline, to help overcome the malnutrition problem in our country.
With everybody’s beautiful performance throughout the evening, I was looking forward to the concert’s grand finale and I was not disappointed. They chose another favorite of mine, “I Believe”, originally sung by Andrea Bocelli and Katherine Jenkins. This song was the inspiration for the concert’s title. I treasure this song because it has such a majestic and heavenly tone. While you’re singing it, you get this feeling that God is in front of you, smiling, as he hears your every word and musical note. I know because I, too, have sung this song in many private gatherings in the past.
As for the concert’s finale number, it was an awe-inspiring ending to a beautiful evening. And, YES, I BELIEVE that we have to take good care of future…our children!
YOUR MONDAY CHUCKLE
An Amish family went to a mall in the city. While the mother was shopping, father and son stood in awe in front of an elevator, with no idea what it was. As they watched, an old lady walked into the “strange” silver doors which, later, closed. Father and son saw the lit numbers above it go up, and back down. When the doors opened, a beautiful young lady walked out. The father leaned over and whispered to his son, “Son, go get your mother!”
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