FVR Sermons Launch
Press Release (Book Launch)
MANILA, 16 JANUARY 2009
AUTHENTICATION: ATTY. FRUMENCIO A. LAGUSTAN
By: Former Congressman Ranjit Ramos Shahani
FVR Sermons Volume 3: "UNITY, SOLIDARITY, TEAMWORK"
to be launched
The Ramos Peace and Development Foundation (RPDEV) and the Manila Bulletin will launch Volume 3 of The Bulletin of Sermons, on 10 February 2009 (Thursday) at 3:00 p.m. at the Roma Ristorante Italiano at the Manila Hotel. Concerned citizens, journalists, civil society leaders, and other advocates of good governance and national unity are cordially invited.
Almost four years since FVR started writing a column for the Sunday issue of Manila Bulletin (beginning 08 May 2005), with 172 Sunday columns written and published, volume 3 makes its debut. Titled "Unity Solidarity and Teamwork," this compilation follows in the footsteps of its predecessors, Volume 1, "Raising the National Spirit" and Volume 2, "Empowering the People." This third volume is the logical sequel to the previous two volumes in terms of our nation's progression to a modernizing society.
FVR's Sunday column gives him a unique opportunity to convey to our people and to the international community his views on democratic governance, sustainable development, socio-economic progress and the great issues of peace, security and stability in the Philippines and the larger Asia-Pacific region.
Last February 2008, the Manila Bulletin headed by its Chairman Dr. Emilio Yap and RPDEV launched the second volume of FVR's Sunday "Sermons." This third volume, again co-published by the two partners, features FVR's selected writings (2007-2008) that focus on five highly significant and inter-related subject areas: Revisiting the Past For Our Better Future; Reflecting on Filipino Values; Nation-Building: Forward and Upward; Reaching Out To Our Neighbors; and Reforms and Opportunities.
In the third volume, FVR presents his far-sighted perspectives thus: "The step-by-step mobilization, consolidation and application of Filipino virtues and talents is a generational process to institutionalize a culture of excellence among our people and facilitate our attainment of global competitiveness. The desired outcome of a better Philippine future is aptly represented by the Olympic motto: "Citius, Altius, Fortius," meaning "Swifter, Higher, Stronger". What is depictive of the modern-day Olympiad is equally resonant with our common vision of building a modern 21st century nation and more equitable national community that is swifter, faster-growing, with stronger, more durable structures of democratic governance.
"These goals are aimed at empowering the Filipino people to pole-vault over the highest of all bars, thus winning the gold medal among the numerous developing nations in attaining first world status. This is a vision not only of FVR's original "Philippines 2000" but beyond --- verily, it is the aspiration of a brighter future held by each and everyone of 90 million Filipinos here at home and abroad. This is our country's permanent national interest, likewise that of every other nation, regardless of political ideology, cultural background, colonial history, ethnic origin and socio-economic condition.
"Thus in our swifter, stronger and higher ascent to modernization, present-day Filipinos should learn and benefit from the sacrifices, reforms and achievements of past generations. Our patriotic and pro-people values as a nation should enable us to seize the opportunities and overcome the challenges that lie along the way."
To be launched in connection with the 23rd Anniversary celebration of our 1st EDSA People Power Revolution, this third volume of "Sermons" is an exhortation by the former Philippine President and Chief Executive for all Filipinos from every walk of life to internalize the essential virtues of Unity of Purpose, Solidarity in Values, and Teamwork in Nation-building (U-S-T). If firmly believed in and actualized by each and every Filipino, unity, solidarity `and teamwork shall, for all time, bind our Republic as a sovereign whole, from Luzon to Visayas to Mindanao.
Surely, one of the best examples of U-S-T was the conquest of Mt. Everest by three youthful Pinoys and three Pinays who reached Everest's Summit in May 2006 and May 2007, respectively. The First Philippine Mt. Everest Expedition (FPMEE)'s achievement has shown that Filipinos can prevail and succeed - no matter how high the objective - if we put our acts together. Today, the top goal to be ascended is to attain a higher quality of life for Filipinos.
Complementing and reinforcing this audacious hope, FVR reiterates that: "In this crucial year of 2009, our caring, sharing and daring for one another and the nation must go on unabated, to become an irresistible force that will one day truly unite the diverse components of our nation as we rendezvous with destiny for a better, modern, and more bountiful future."
Turning 80 years young last 18 March, FVR is thankful to the Good Lord for allowing him to reach this milestone, still sound of body, mind and spirit, thus enabling him to pursue his lifelong advocacies for people empowerment, poverty alleviation and good government.