Assumption Velada 2019:  Love unites!
Silver jubilarians dancing to Miss You Much by Janet Jackson. Carrie Arnaiz Alejandrino, Jo Dy Maranan, Jo Pineda Tengco, Malen Gomez Garcia, Anna Cruz Tayag, Carla de Ocampo Fragante, Marga Cunanan Kwok, Gia Bernardo So, Carol Santiago Yenko, Tan Pellicer Atendido, Anna Abad Lim, Diane dela Cruz Vivar, Anna Cajipe Escaro, Jack Cabales de Jesus and Kitten Goco Pabalan.
Assumption Velada 2019: Love unites!
FAMILY JEWELS - Michelle Dayrit-Soliven (The Philippine Star) - November 10, 2019 - 12:00am

Coming home to Assumption just gets better each year for us “Old Girls.” The highlight of our three-day Velada celebration was the thanksgiving Mass where Assumptionistas gathered to hold hands in loving prayer in our pretty plaid uniforms.

A hilarious scene forever etched in my memory took place in the Assumption San Lorenzo chapel that Sunday morning of Oct. 20. We stood excitedly listening to Bishop Raul Martirez as he greeted us all with a charming sense of grace and humor. “Today is Old Girls’ Day and you are very beautiful!” After the girls’ giggling, he prayed, “Dear Lord, we thank You for these beautiful girls.”

He continued, “Now, I would like to talk about the three precious Rs. Recall. Rejoice. Renew. Recall the days that you spent in Assumption, the months, the years. Recall all the good things including the mothers, yes those lovable purple creatures.”

Raucous laughter erupted and he had to pause. “Recalling all of that brings you rejoicing with much gratitude for your beautiful education. And looking back at what you are now, all of that has been the grace of God, the grace of Assumption. Because of recalling, because of rejoicing, you start to renew your faith and renew your love for one another. Let us give thanks to our Lord and let us give Assumption a big round of applause,” he said.

The applause resounded in our hearts of plaid because each of us knew that this was the true meaning of the Assumption Velada tradition. Beyond the grueling dancing and singing, there was much to celebrate the joys of deep friendship through the years. From different parts of the world, many Old Girls came home to reconnect, to embrace each other, to tell stories of long ago, for prayer and recollection, and to pay homage to our alma mater that brought us all together and continues to bind us together in love as one Assumption family. 

This year’s generous hosts were our Silver sisters of Batch 1994 who livened up the Velada with vibrant energy making all their jubilarian guest performers feel so welcome with their enthusiasm and hospitality. Truly, their hearts of plaid beat with compassion and kindness. Our endless gratitude goes out to them for making this joyful reunion happen.

The delightfully engaging and highly organized three-day Velada went so smoothly and we all thank our director-choreographer, the talented Maribeth Bichara, and her team Marsha Mallari, Theody Delmoro and her sister Maritess Bichara del Rosario, who indefatigably helped us polish our dance steps. Maribeth was like a mother, who relentlessly disciplined and taught us valuable lessons on and off the dance floor.

“Whenever you dance,” she said, “you must not just pay attention to yourself  alone but look around you at what and how the others are doing. Be sensitive to each other. ‘Wag kanya-kanya. Stop being self-centered.” This was magical advice! The moment we began to watch out for each other, the magic of the Velada came through. Our movements became so beautifully synchronized and Maribeth was in tears as she applauded us for finally coming together as one. United in love, we began to really shine.

What a wonderful journey it has been! This year was extraordinarily special for my Batch ‘79, the Ruby jubilarians. Now, we all miss each other at those grueling rehearsals where the loving kindness, the sharing of talents, resources and caring overflowed. Where each one felt loved and supported, we had the chance to reach out to one another in countless ways. It was a Velada to remember! Truly, our love unites!

Congratulations to all the jubilarians! All hail to our beloved Assumption.

Photos by Bert Gutierrez of Ting’s Video and Photography

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