Silsilah Message of Ramadhan 2018

This post comes from the “Oasis News” of Silsilah Dialogue Movement for our friends and linkages around the world, printed also to a local newspaper of Zamboanga City (Mindanao, Philippines).


This message comes from Mindanao, Philippines and it is the voice of a Movement that in 1984 started to invite, especially Muslims and Christians, but also people of other living faiths, to build together a “chain”/”link” (Silsilah) of love convinced that all of us are part of the same human family, created by the same God.

This basic concept has been always supported by the spirituality of life-in-dialogue with God, with the Self, with Others and with Creation to promote a sustainable Culture of Dialogue, Path to Peace in our society.

This year 2018, we have reflected on our mission in the midst of an increasing violence and conflict in Mindanao, as well in other parts of the world. We are alarmed of many signs of violence, especially among Muslims groups fighting in the name of Islam. This is now an international reality visible also in Mindanao among groups that are fighting guided by their understanding of the “true Islam”.

What appears clear to us is that the victims are the Christians and also Muslims who do not have the same “ideological” understanding of Islam. It was a time when the relation among Christians and Muslims in Mindanao was better even in majority populated Muslim areas like Jolo, in the Southern part of the Philippines. Before the Christians there were free to go to the church and practice their regular Christian life. Now the church in the city of Jolo has to be protected by the military to protect the Christians who are in danger.  This and many other alarming stories are the causes of sadness also among good Muslims, commonly called “Moderate Muslims”. They too live in fear because they are not “good Muslims” in the eyes of those who are practicing a more radical understanding of Islam that justifies violence.

In this situation, Silsilah this year in preparation for the 35h Anniversary of the Movement that will be on May 9, 2019, decided to move with more determination guided by the theme: “Silsilah, a sign of hope in the midst of divisions and conflicts”.

In this Holy Month of Ramadhan for the Muslim world, Silsilah wishes to share solidarity with the Muslims and reaffirm the belief that Islam can still contribute in the world today for a better future for all because Islam reminds us, among the many things, the value of prayer, fasting and attention to the needy, especially during the Holy month of Ramadhan.

In this context, we recall what the Catholic-Muslims Forum in Rome of 2008 affirmed after the open letter of 138 Muslim Religious leaders of the world of 2007 which emphasizes the Love of God and the Love of Neighbors in Islam and Christianity. In that document we also read:



For Muslims, as set out in ‘A Common Word’, love is a timeless transcendent power which guides and transforms human mutual regard. This love, as indicated by the Holy and Beloved Prophet Muhammad, is prior to the human love for the One True God. A Hadith indicates that God’s loving compassion for humanity is even greater than that of a mother for her child (Muslim, Bal al-Tawba: 21); it therefore exists before and independently of the human response to the One who is ‘The Loving’. So immense is this love and compassion that God has intervened to guide and save humanity in a perfect way many times and in many places, by sending prophets and scriptures. The last of these books, the Qur’an, portrays a world of signs, a marvelous cosmos of Divine artistry, which calls forth utter love and devotion, so that ‘those who have faith, have most love of God’ (2:165), and that ‘those that believe, and do good works, the Merciful shall engender love among them.’ (19:96) in a Hadith, we read that ‘Not one of you has faith until he loves for his neighbor what he loves for himself’ (Bukhari, Bab al-Iman: 13).

In that document, the Christians too, reaffirm the identity of Christianity and the importance of love and in the same document presents fifteen points: the importance of human life, the human dignity, the respect of the Creation of God, the genuine love of neighbors, the respect of religious minorities, the importance of education in human, civic, religions and moral values, the importance of love and harmony among believers, the ethical financial system, the attention for the youth.

These and other relevant points presented in the document tell us that there is the desire among Muslims and Christians to move together inspired by the Love of God, the love of neighbor and the love for the common good. This is the wish of Silsilah in this holy month of Ramadhan.

We invite Muslims to reflect in prayer the many points of their faith that help to build Peace in society and also invite the Christians and people of other faiths to be in “solidarity” with Muslims in this special time.


Silsilah Dialogue Movement
137 Gov.Alvarez Avenue(Buenavista),
Zamboanga City, Philippines,7000,
 Tele-Fax: (062) 983-0014 / 983-0155
From Monday to Saturday 9:00am-5:00pm


Trolls Versus the Press

Dr. Crispin Maslog


Asian Media Information and Communication Center Board Chairman CRISPIN MASLOG, Ph.D will talk on May 18 about TROLLS VERSUS THE PRESS at the Gansewinkle Hall of the University of San Carlos Downtown Campus.

This forum is focused on the role of online trolls and disinformation in forming political discourse and public opinion. This event is under the partnership of the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP)-Cebu Chapter and the Department of Communications, Linguistics and Literature of the University of San Carlos.

Reactors will be Leo Lastimosa (DYAB), Charity Turano (USC) and Atty. Eddie Barrita (Sunstar). Open to the media.

USC Made it to the #BarExams Top 10 Again!

Christianne Mae, Ivanne D’Laureil and Rheland (Photo Credits from their FB Page)


Congratulations! Three of our students from the University of San Carlos made it to the Top 10 of the#BarExams!
2nd – Christianne Mae Balili (USC) – 90.80%
4th – Ivanne D’Laureil Hisoler (USC) – 89.55%
7th – Rheland Servacio (USC) – 89%

Congratulations sa tanan nga nipasar! #Labanlang sa mga wala gipalad. 


The Tomb of Fr. Raimundo Argarate, SJ

The tomb of Fr. Raimundo Argarate, SJ

When half of Zamboanga del Sur was still under the Zamboanga Mission District of the Society of Jesus, a Basque Jesuit named Fr. Raimundo Argarate, SJ arrived in Olutanga island on the last week of December 1951 to begin his evangelization in the island after being expelled from the communist China.

During this time, logging was a lucrative business. Ships were a common sight docking at the island’s port to bring logs to as far as Japan. The prominent Miranda family generously supplied lumber for the building of the Church and the convent.
Missionary life in the island was not a bed of roses for this saintly Jesuit. The second elected mayor decided to get a portion of the the Church property for the road construction, which Fr. Argarate strongly opposed.
On the day that the bulldozer had to divide the land, the heavy equipment miraculously fell into the sea until it became totally out of sight.

Roses at the side of Fr. Argarate’s tomb

From Subanipa, Fr. Argarate widened his apostolic endeavors to what is now the parish of Parokya San Miguel-Mabuhay and town of Talusan. More Jesuits also came to join him. Filled with zeal for souls, Fr. Argarate labored unceasingly for 50 years until his death in 2001.
It was his ardent wish to be buried at the side of the statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Nuestra Señora de los Remedios Parish in Subanipa, the parish which he himself started and shepherded as their first parish priest in 1953. Many parishioners until this day still visit his tomb to offer their prayers.

The stairs of the original parish convent during Fr. Argarate’s time.

Celina Tan Fiel a.k.a Sister Teresita, RGS

Sr. Teresita

I just received the news today from a friend that our dear Sister TERESITA (Real name: Celina) TAN FIEL of the Religous of the Good Shepherd (RGS) congregation passed away this morning. Her body lies in state at the St. Bridget’s chapel in Batangas until Wednesday morning. She will then be brought to the Good Shepherd Convent in Quezon City for her burial.


Sr. Teresita was the daughter of Emiliana Tan (b. October 11, 1888) and Agaton Fiel of Ormoc City, Leyte.


She had two other sisters who became nuns. On May 13, 1946, Josefina Tan Fiel sailed for the Good Shepherd Novitiate in Los Angeles. She was later known as Sr. Anne, RGS. Seven days later, Milagros “Guitos” Tan Fiel joined the Holy Spirit Sisters in Mendiola. She was later known as Sr. Milagros of the Blue Sisters.


Lastly, in 1954, Celina Tan Fiel also joined the Good Shepherd Sisters. She used the religious name Teresita

453rd Anniversary of the Finding of the Child Jesus

Photo Credit: Basilica Minore del Santo Niño de Cebu FB Page


On April 28, 2018, the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño de Cebu will commemorate the 453rd Kaplag or the Finding of the Image of the Holy Child by one of Miguel Lopez de Legazpi’s soldier by the name of Juan Camus. The Basilica Community would like to invite you for the various activities of the Kaplag, especially the novena masses. Included here is the schedule of the activities.

First Tech4ED Center in the Sacred Heart Parish Shrine, Kamuning

Photo Credit: Tech4ED Centers FB Page

The first Tech4ED center in the Sacred Heart Parish of Kamuning is launched today, April 12. This initiative aims to bring the benefits of ICT and introduce the Department of Information and Communications Technology – DICT Tech4ED Project in the religious sectors.

Photo Credit: Tech4ED Centers FB Page


The Technology for Education, Employment, Entrepreneurs, and Economic Development (Tech4ED) Project evolved  from the Philippine Community eCenter Program,  a national digital inclusion initiative establishing eCenters that provide critical e-government and  ICT-enabled services in  communities with minimal or no access to information and government services.


This initiative was the government’s  response to the World Summit on Information Society Plan of Action of which the Philippines  was a signatory which states that “ Governments and other stakeholders should establish multi-purpose community public access points, providing affordable or free-of-charge access for their citizens to the various communication resources, notably the internet.”

Photo Credit: Tech4ED Centers FB Page


Arnold Janssen Catholic Mission Foundation, Inc. (AJCMFI) is a non-profit organization which aims to promote the ideals and goals of the Department of Education’s Alternative Learning System (ALS) initiatives in the ALS centers in the country.


Photo Credit: Tech4ED Centers FB Page


The Ceremonial Memorandum of Agreement Signing and Center launching was led by Tech4ED Project Manager Maria Teresa Magadia Camba, Asst. project Manager Amelia Dean and Rev. Father Jerome Marquez, the parish priest of the Sacred Heart Parish of Kamuning.

Photo Credit: Tech4ED Centers FB Page

The parish was erected on October 1, 1941 and Fr. Theodore Buttenbruch, SVD was installed the first parish priest.