June 4, 2023

“There are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; there are different forms of service but the same Lord. There are different workings but the same God who produces all of them in everyone. To each individual, the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit.”
We need the Holy Spirit to direct our lives. We need the Holy Spirit to sanctify our lives. We need the Holy Spirit for harmony and positivity.
How can we feel the presence of the Holy Spirit in our communities? When there is unity amidst diversity, there is the Holy Spirit.
During the enhanced and general community quarantines, the Mountain Province Police Office Mobile Force Company under Lt/Col. Jomerick Felina and the Armed Forces of the Philippines under Lt/ Col. Josef Diamante, and the priest of Kilong Catholic Mission joined forces to bring forth positivity amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. We worked on an online song contest dubbed the PAPSongFest. It was born from creativity and the need to bring forth positivity. PAP stands for PNP, AFP, and Padi.
The PAPSongFest aims to continue the information, education, and communication on quarantine protocols to help sustain a Covid-19-free Mountain Province.
It aimed to acknowledge and thank the frontliners, to seek God’s mercy for healing through music, to enliven families during the quarantine, and to creatively make use of our time and improve our musical talent at home while on quarantine.
It also aimed to maintain a good working relationship between the church and the uniformed men and women in advancing peace in the communities and to uphold mental health by overcoming anxiety and depression during quarantine days.
The participants were asked to choose one of the Covid-19 Marcsongs original compositions and master the chosen piece with their family members and friends. The song can be performed in solo, duet, or choir to be accompanied by an instrumental or by actual instruments.
The music videos of the participants were judged based on interpretation and mastery of the song, quality of voice, creativity of the music video, and audience impact on social media through the number of FB likes and shares.
Winners received cash prizes with certificates. The first place winners received P10,000; second place, P7,000; third place, P5,000; fourth place, P2,500; and fifth place, P2,000.
I have seen the musical talents of MPPMFC personnel which we can share. The same interest in music and our advocacy to uphold and advance peace led us to a creative approach, the online singing contest. We saw the need for positivity during the quarantine days to cheer up the families especially the youth. We trusted that the musical activities can incite interest and creativity eventually preventing anxiety and depression, vices, and other risky behaviors and illegal activities.
In so doing, we saw that music is one simple way to acknowledge the services and sacrifices of the frontliners.
I had been working for years with the PNP and the AFP especially on morality, faith, and peace.
We acknowledge the generous people who provided for the prizes of the PAPSongFest: Col. Allen and Maria Ocden – P10,000; Merriam Joy Amok-awichen Wap – P3,000; Genevieve Tudlong – P2,000; Christine Macli-ing Oliquiano – P2,000; Carrie Aluyen Iguban – P2,500; Caroline Castañeda – P2,500; Engr. Alexander Castañeda – P2,500; Jess Castañeda – P2,000; Julita Bangloy – P2,000; Virginia Sally – P2,000; anonymous donor – P1,000; and Vincent Castañeda – P1,000.
We also thank the following who served as judges namely Fr. Michael Tokoyen, Ingrid Payaket, Dax Afidchao, and Copeza Lao-ed. Our gratitude to Frank and Flor Armas for providing the venue for the PAPSongFest awarding, facilities, and waiving the fee for electricity costs.
Winners were awarded on June 4 at the Flormas Restaurant, Samoki, Bontoc. It was attended by the AFP, PNP, representatives from the provincial government, and religious group with Gov. Bonifacio Lacwasan as the guest of honor and speaker.
The governor has promised financial assistance to the incoming PAPSongFest. Reach me at [email protected] or at 0905-165-3669.