On Wednesday 18 September, at 11.40 pm, Fr. Giulio Mariani died at the Manzoni’s Hospital in Lecco, Italy.
He was born in Vedano al Lambro (MB), Italy, on 30 January 1933. After taking the temporary oath at PIME in 1954, he completed his theological studies in the USA at the Pontifical College Josephinum, Ohio. He became a perpetual member of the PIME on 3 May 1957 and was ordained priest on 26 April 1958 in Newark, Ohio. He carries out various services in the USA (vice-rector and teacher in Newark and in Oakland, N.J., rector of the Newark seminar, head of the Foster Parents) and attends various courses in American universities. In 1974 he began licensing courses in spiritual theology at the Gregorian Pontifical University (1974-76). After completing the courses, he became rector of the PIME major seminar in Monza (1976-84).
In 1985 he left for the Philippines. On the journey he visits almost all the PIME missions in Asia. He founds, among them many difficulties. He arrived in the Philippines few months before the killing of Fr. Tullio Favali, Tulunan, Mindanao. In those days he stayed in Manila to keep in touch with the media. Hard task, in fact, newspapers, TV news and radio, especially those controlled by the government, were publishing false information on the causes of the killing. He then was assigned to the parish of Mary Queen of the Apostles in Parañaque City, a populous district of Manila. Elected regional superior in 1991 and subsequently deputy director of the Euntes Asian Center (E.A.C.) in Zamboanga City. On May 20 1992Fr. Salvatore Carzedda was killed and has regional superior found himself, again, face to face with the experience of martyrdom. In 2001 he was called to Rome to cover the position of PIME General Secretary (2001-2007). Eager to return to the mission, he returned to the Philippines and reopened the “new” E.A.C. (the first EAC, founded by P. Enzo Corba PIME was closed in 1999 due to the constant threats of kidnapping), definitively closed for security reasons in 2011. Invited to return to Italy, for health reasons, he lends his service at PIME Sotto il Monte, Bergamo, birthplace of Pope John XXIII, and then two years ago moved to the Home of the Elderly in Rancio, Lecco, Italy
The funeral will take place today 20 September 2:30 local time, the suffrage Mass in Vedano al Lambro (MB). Burial will be held at the Vedano cemetery.
“I adore you, my God, and I love you with all my heart. I thank you for having created me, made a Christian and preserved until this day ” (from Mariani’s testament).
A Filipino nun, who happened to be the great, great grandaunt of former first gentleman Mike Arroyo, is now a step closer to sainthood. This after Pope Francis has recognized the “heroic virtues” of Maria Beatrice Rosario Arroyo, declaring her as “Servant of God.”
The Vatican’s Congregation for the Causes of Saints promulgated the declaration on Wednesday. Arroyo was the founder of the Congregation of Dominican Sisters of the Holy Rosary in the Philippines. According to the Dominican Sisters, Mother Arroyo was born on February 17, 1884 to a wealthy couple, Don Ignacio Arroyo and Doña Maria Pidal in Molo, Iloilo City. But despite her wealthy upbringing, the nun chose a life of poverty and devoted her life to the service of the poor.
At the age of 27, she entered the convent and donated her inheritance to the congregation. She was described to have “virtues of purity and innocence, deep simplicity and profound humility, and ardent love for the poor and needy.” With the help of two other Dominican nuns, Mother Arroyo created the Dominican Sisters of the Most Holy Rosary. She died on June 14, 1957.
After being recognised as Servant of God, Arroyo now earns the title “venerable.”A person’s declaration as Servant of God signals the beginning of the long and meticulous process of his/her possible canonisation. Canonisation is the official act of the Catholic Church declaring that the person who has died was indeed a saint.
After the declaration of being a Servant of God, a miracle approved by the pope is required to pave the way for beatification. After the beatification rite, a person is now declared “Blessed.” But in case of martyrdom, meaning that the person died defending the faith, the miracle required for beatification can be waived.
A second miracle is required for eventual canonisation. Once the pope declared that the person was indeed a saint, he/she is included in the “canon” or list of saints recognised by the Church. So far, the Philippines have two recognised saints: Lorenzo Ruiz of Manila and Pedro Calungsod of Cebu.
Aside Maria Beatrice Arroyo other three new blessed and five newly venerable are among the decrees authorised by Pope Francis after the audience with Cardinal Angelo Becciu, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints.
Among them Felice Tantardini(Introbio, Como, Italy, June 28 1898 – Taunggyi, (Burma) Myanmar, March 23 1991). He entered PIME at the age of 23 and was assigned to Burma, Myanmar, as a lay brother. He remained there for 69 years finding his death on 1991. Initially sent to Toungoo, he moved from mission to mission, wherever his skill as a blacksmith and his ability to withstand fatigue was needed. In this way he builded churches, schools, parishes, hospitals, orphanages, always with a smile on his lips, always with a boundless love for Jesus and Mary.
The recognition of the erotic virtues of Brother Tantardini is a very significant fact for PIME: for the first time this act refers to the life of a lay missionary in PIME. And it comes the day after a special year that the institute wanted to dedicate to the figure of the lay missionaries “ad vitam”, who still today choose to adhere to the missionary charism of PIME.
“We have chosen Brother Felice as a reference figure, who has been in Myanmar from 1922 to his death in 1991, because he is a model of holiness and radical dedication to the cause of the Gospel,” said Father Ferruccio Brambillasca, Superior General of the PIME. The beatification process is also supported by the Burmese Christians who are still remembering him very well.
With the decree on the heroic virtues of Brother Felice Tantardini, a new page is added to the history of friendship that unites PIME with the Church of Myanmar. In the former Burma, where PIME arrived in 1868, the blessed Paolo Manna, Clemente Vismara and Mario Vergara, lived their ministry. And in this same country also Father Alfredo Cremonesi, who will be beatified next 19th of October in the diocese of Crema (Italy), lived his martyrdom.
The XV General Assembly of the PIME in Rome, continues. The reports of the 19 circumscriptions, the General Delegation, the Economy, the initial and ongoing formation and the report of the Superior General have all been presented on last Tuesday. In addition to these there were also the presentation of ALP (or Pime Lay Association), New Humanity and three new projects or proposals: China in what will be the strategy to present the Gospel into this vast continent, India, in order to welcome new missionaries for a more international community, and the Maghreb (North Africa), with the request of the bishop of Tunisia to open a mission that, eventually, can cooperate with the other Pimes now present in Algeria.
From the presentations there appeared a PIME engaged in the mission ad gentes with a wide range of initiatives. From evangelization and pastoral care to catechumenate paths, inter-religious dialogue, attention to indigenous peoples, working for human promotion, peace and justice, attention to the poor and disabled, and finally vocational work and propaganda in order to train young people for the various missionary realities in which they will find themselves.
The report of the general treasurer reaffirmed how we should be all co-responsible for the assets of the Institute, for a more sober lifestyle. The report of the Superior General, welcomed by a long applause, highlighted two key words: true discernment and change things that must lead us to be involved in a personal and communal missionary growth. He reiterated that the mission must be at the centre of our work and the theme of the General Assembly “Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel” speaks about a missionary urgency that, once, gave life to the Institute. The model to imitate is once again the figure of Abraham: just like him, have faith in the Lord, leaving everything and going where the Spirit guides us to be.
“Lying on a picturesque volcanic lake, Lakewood seems like a place of enchantment, a kind of earthly paradise in which man and nature live in spontaneous harmony. In reality, few places in the world are more torn than these hills of Mindanao, in the South of the Philippines, the scene of clashes, looting and abuses for at least 30-40 years.” Thus begins a report on the area written by Fr. Giorgio Licini in 1993. Once, this was really a corner of Eden: the tropical forest around the lake was lush; the inhabitants were few and all were tribal Suban (a term that means “inhabitant of the rivers”, but they prefer to call themselves Lumad). “But then the arrival of immigrants from the North and Central Philippines was worse than a devastating cyclone,” continued Fr. Giorgio. Having visited it 25 years later, I can only confirm: Lakewood is a beautiful place, so much so that a tourist-entrepreneur opened a four-star resort here. We are, however, in a very isolated strip of the province of Zamboanga del Sur. The nearest town, Pagadian, is 31 miles away. As for the problems of the tribal population, despite some significant improvements over many years, they cannot be said to be totally resolved.
PIME arrived here in 1985, at the surprise request of Bishop Federico Escaler. The area remains very remote despite the improvement of communications. Fr. Angelo Biancat, who died in 2005 at the age of 68 (32 of which he spent in the Philippines), conquered the hearts of people with his simplicity during the years he spent in Lakewood. They called him “Fr. Lumad” or “Fr. Native”, because he immediately had done his utmost to care for the Suban, learning their dialects and welcoming their culture as well as their strong religious beliefs. He had become one of them, to the point of defending their human rights before Philippine Government authorities. After repeated efforts, he succeeded in declaring the land where the Suban people lived “ancestral domain”.
Fr. Stefano Mosca, from the Brianza region of Italy, has been working in Lakewood for 12 years. Fr. Ilario Trobbiani, a veteran of the Philippines, has been lending him a helping hand since 2015. In all that time, Fr. Mosca did not forget how the Regional Superior of the Philippines welcomed him when he arrived: “The Superior, Fr. Gianni Sandalo welcomed me at the airport like this, ‘Have you come here ready to die? If the answer is no, take your suitcase and go back to where you came from.’ It was a welcome with a profound sense that I soon understood.” After a period of language study in Davao, Fr. Stefano was sent to Sampoli with Fr. Ilario, after only three years, he was called to replace Fr. Carrara in Lakewood. The ministry of preparing people for Christian initiation, catechises, and the celebration of the Sacraments would be a great undertaking. However, he quickly realised the urgency of three social priorities that were more pressing: the Suban people, education, and medical aid for the sick.
The tribal situation at the beginning of the 2000s was complex; they had formed a legal association to prove to the government that they were the first inhabitants of the area. A legitimate claim soon clashed with the greed of powerful local people. “They placed hurdles of all kinds in my path,” Fr. Stefano laments. “The situation turned very ugly, they started threatening me with death, trying to tarnish my name and sending letters to the local Bishop. It was a hard time, I was scared. When they killed Fr. Fausto Tentorio, in the fall of 2011, they told me, ‘You will be next.’ Fortunately, I’m still here.”
In 2013, the Filipino government issued a law that offers these tribal people the opportunity to apply for a mine-operating permit as they “arrived first”to the territory. “My people sensed the importance of this opportunity and understood that, if they turned down the government’s offer, they would have opened the door to the arrival of foreign multinationals.” Thus, the Lumad Mining Corporation was established, with the financial support of a friendly politician. Thanks to the intervention of a pro-Lumad Filipino and all required legal documents in hand, we are now studying how to carry out the project.
PIME runs a very important educational service through the Lakewood mission. It makes sense, since the number of children and young people that hang around the parish is so high. “Through the PIME Foundation,” Fr. Mosca explains, “there are 186 students who will take advantage of this opportunity this year: 36 in college, and 150 in high school. They are mostly tribal, because they face more learning difficulties.” In addition to this school, there is also the diocesan vocational school recognized by TESDA (Technical Education and Skills Development Authority). An important vocational school promoted by the State that offers a diploma recognized throughout Asia. The children and their families are asked to pay a small, accessible fee, about a third of the cost of similar schools in nearby Pagadian City. “Formally owned by the diocese, every year this vocational school educates more than 300 students through various training courses for manual work.” Fr. Stefano took advantage of the previous experience of Fr. Ilario, who had already opened a Tesda school in Sampoli. “Today we have 12 recognized courses,” Fr. Stefano explains. “In our school we train welders, electricians, mechanics of motorcycles and cars, but also computer technicians, tailors, masseurs, physiotherapists, taxi drivers and bus drivers. We have recently started a course to teach how to preserve food: make jams or can sardines in oil, etc. These are all courses we have studied for the Lumad because, in the absence of some work skills, they would continue to be socially marginalized.” The result? “The vast majority of the students who have graduated have already found work: one has become the chauffeur of the mayor of his town; another is in Manila working as welder in skyscrapers under construction. Being able to work allows them to have an income and send money home, it gives them a strong sense of self-esteem.”
The third front on which the parish works is medical care for the sick. “The nearest hospital is the Pagadian Medical Center, 37 miles from here. We had a public hospital in the village, but the authorities closed it. Pagadian is semi-private and my people cannot afford it,” says Fr. Stefano. “The nearest state clinic is in Margosatubig, but there, too, care is not free. Consequently, they put off a visit to the doctor or hospitalization until it might be too late. Hence, why so many recoverable sick people end up dying.” It is for this reason that the parish of Lakewood is setting up a Caritas fund for the sick.
Among the many young people who have passed from his parish, Fr. Stefano has not forgotten Cristy Capua. “She was finishing middle school and, as she was good at school, I promised to help her get into college.” On the first Sunday of June 2017, Cristy received her Confirmation. A few days earlier, participating in a work camp organized for the students, a stray dog bit her. Frightened by the possible costs of treatment, she said nothing but simply rubbed some alcohol on the wound.”
Fr. Stefano fights for equal opportunities for the Suban people; more often than not, their own government forgets them. “When I went to bring her the certificate of Confirmation,” Fr. Stefano remembers. “I saw that she was pale, but she explained that she was just tired.” In short, Cristy got worse. Fr. Stefano was going to suggest that Cristy use the Caritas fund to pay for the costs of her treatment. By the time he made it to the hospital, it was too late: rabies had already taken her life. “The nun at the hospital told me that right before dying, Cristy comforted her family members: ‘Why are you crying? Jesus is coming to take me and I go with him, I’m happy. Why are you crying?’” They buried her near the parish church. Fr. Stefano concludes: “From time to time I stop at her grave, and I ask her to intercede for our young people.”
Grande entusiasmo e partecipazione alla prima festa patronale della nuova parrocchia di Pangi-Ipil. La novena ha invitato tutte le comunità di base e cappelle alla preparazione spirituale dell’evento. La sera della vigilia, come tradizione nelle Filippine, c’è stato un programma e spettacolo nel cortile della parrocchia. Il giorno dopo, domenica 21 ottobre, grande Barrio Fiesta preceduta dalla celebrazione eucaristica presieduta dal vescovo di Ipil, Mons. Julius Tonel. La data è stata scelta perché il patrono della nuova comunità parrocchiale è san Giovanni Paolo II di cui si può vedere la bella statua all’interno della chiesa.
Dopo la Messa, processione parata con tutti i leaders e le organizzazioni della parrocchia per le vie della zona. Infine il pranzo comunitario preceduto dalla scelta del lechon più gustoso, cioè del maiale allo spiedo che ogni cappella ha portato nel suo stand per la gioia dei partecipanti. In poche parole, tutti sono stati vincitori, eccetto ovviamente i maiali che in queste celebrazioni festive ci lasciano sempre letteralmente la pelle.
Alla regia di tutto naturalmente il nuovo parroco brasiliano del PIME, P. Paulo Dos Santos, installato ufficialmente lo scorso giugno, che dice di essere più che felice in questa nuova destinazione, anche se le attività da iniziare e poi portare avanti sono tante. Durante la parata dopo la messa P. Paulo ha cavalcato un cavallo del posto, come segno di voler servire come Gesù. Dopo un’ora e più di camminata il povero cavallo non ha fatto commenti.
Mabuhay si san Juan Pablo II, mabuhay ang bag-ong parokya sa Pangi, Ipil.
Dako kaayo ang kadasig ug partisipasyon sa unang patronal nga kapistahan sa bag-ong parokya sa Pangi-Ipil. Atol sa novena, ang tanan nga GKK ug mga kapilya gidapit sa pag-pangandam sa ilang mga kaugalingon alang niining mahinungdangong nga okasyon pinaagi sa usa nga espirituhanong pagpamalandong. Sa gabii sa bisperas, isip usa ka tradisyon sa Pilipinas, adunay usa ka programa ug cultural show sa nataran sa parokya .
Pagkasunod nga adlaw, Domingo, Oktubre 21, didto gud ang dakung Barangay Fiesta nga gisundan sa Eucharistic nga pagsaulog nga gidumala sa Obispo sa Ipil, Mgr. Julius Tonel. Ang petsa gipili tungod kay ang patron sa bag-ong komunidad sa parokya mao si St. John Paul II diin atong makita ang usa nga matahum nga estatuwa sulod sa simbahan.
Human sa Misa, adunay usa ka prosesyon ug usa ka parada sa mga kadalanan sa lugar sa Pagni, nga gitambongan sa tanang mga lider ug sa nagkalain-laing organisasyon sa parokya.
Sa katapusan, ang katingbanong paniudto nga gisundan sa pagpili sa pinakalami sa tanan mga letchon nga gidala sa mga kapilya ngadto sa ilang mga stands alang sa kalipay sa mga partisipante. Sa laktud, ang tanan nahimong mga mananaog, gawas lagi sa giasal nga mga baboy nga kanunay mao ang bugtong mga biktima niini mga matang nga kasaulogan. Tinuod gayud nga sila gani ang una nga nawad-an sa ilang ‘mga panit’
Dayon, sa katapusan gud, dapat naton hinumdoman ang direktor sa tanang kalihokan nga mao ang ating Brasilian nga pari nga si Paulo Dos Santos, PIME, kinsa nahimong kura paroko sa milabay nga Hunyo. Siya miingon nga labaw pa siya nga malipayon tungod niining bag-ong misyon ug buhat pasalig. Atol sa parada, si father Paulo nagsakay sa usa ka lumad nga kabayo, isip timaan sa pag-alagad sama sa gibuhat ni Jesus. Hinuon, human sa usa ka oras, ug labaw pa sa paglakaw, ang ‘intawon’ nga kabayo wa gani mokomento.
Mabuhay si san Juan Pablo II, mabuhay ang bag-ong parokya !
Great enthusiasm and participation in the first patronal feast of the new parish of Pangi-Ipil. During the novena all the basic communities and chapels were invited for a spiritual preparation for the event. On the evening of the eve (bisperas), as a tradition in the Philippines, there was a program and show in the courtyard of the parish. The following day, Sunday, October 21st, the great Barrio Fiesta was preceded by the Eucharistic celebration presided by the Bishop of Ipil, Mgr. Julius Tonel. The date (the day of his santification in Rome) was chosen because the patron of the new parish community is St. John Paul II of whom we can see a beautiful statue inside the church.
After Mass there was a procession parade, through the streets of the area of Pangi, joined by all the leaders and organizations of the parish. Finally, the community lunch was preceded by voting for the tastiest lechon, that is the rosted pork, among those that each chapel had already brought to their stands for the joy of the participants. In short, everyone has been a winner, except of course the pigs that literally lost their skins in these festive celebration.
The new Brazilian PIME parish priest, Fr. Paulo Dos Santos, officially installed last June, says that he is more than happy for this new mission, even if the activities to start the parish and to carry on are many. During the parade, after the Mass, Father Paulo rode a local horse as a sign of wanting to serve as Jesus did. After an hour or more of toddling the poor horse made no comment.
Mabuhay San Juan Pablo II, mabuhay ang bag-ong parokya sa Pangi, Ipil.
I was twelve when I saw the macabre urban legend walking before my eyes.
I was grade six in Kidapawan, and my section in Notre Dame was having its retreat in Guadalupe Formation Center shortly after Joseph Estrada pardoned Norberto Manero Jr.
I could see him from the screened windows of the large pavilion in which retreat sessions were held, overlooking the road from the gates of Guadalupe to the Bishop’s Palace further inside the compound: the man they called ‘Kumander Bukay,’ ‘The Priest-killer,’ ‘The Cannibal,’ or more sinisterly ‘The Brain-eater,’ walking solemnly from the gates towards the grave of Fr. Tullio Favali.
In the urban imagination of Kidapawan, the story of Manero has passed into the realm of legend and folklore, becoming archetypal of what I call Cotabato Gothic.
‘The man named Manero killed an Italian priest and burned his motorcycle before he ate the priest’s brains.’ That was the story I heard as a child growing up in Kidapawan. I must have heard it before I was eight, because when I was old enough to go to Guadalupe on recollections and our teacher brought the class to the grave of Fr Favali, I knew more about the story than what she told my classmates (I recall trying to look for bits of brain matter on the charred motorcycle when I first saw it).
North Cotabato is mythic like this. The distance or the danger of travel between towns, or perhaps the inherent tendency of Mindanao Settlers to invent reality to make something more dramatic, meant that news and history when told are often stripped of facts and condensed into pure impression, often embellished to capture the horror or wonder, until only that fabulous version is remembered. This was how violence and insanity became normal in the world I grew up in.
And yet behind the macabre and the fantastic there is almost always a grain of truth.
Fr Tullio Favali was murdered by the Manero Brothers on the 11th of April, 1985 in Tulunan. The Manero Brothers, Norberto, Edilberto, and Elpidio, were members of the armed group Ilaga, which ravaged our side of Mindanao from the 60s to the 80s.
By most accounts, the Ilaga started out as a militia in the settlements of what was once the Empire Province of Cotabato, organized by Ilonggo settlers who were tired of having the land they tilled pillaged by neighbouring Moros. From there the group became a paramilitary unit which helped the military in its fight against Muslim and Communist insurgents.
In the troubles of the late 60s, Ilaga was consumed by its narrative of hate and evolved into a cult-like group, with its members being reported wearing strings of human ears (cut from their victims) as talismans. Magical powers were routinely attributed to its leader, Commander Toothpick, and to its other commanders. The group went about earning a notoriety unseen in Mindanao perhaps since the days of J.W. Duncan. On June 1971 they massacred nearly a hundred civilian Muslims, including children and the elderly, in the mosque of Manili in Carmen (read Rogelio Braga’s vivid account of the massacre). When the writ of habeas corpus was suspended on September of that year, the Muslim community in Kidapawan’s Poblacion went on exodus en masse overnight as the Ilaga came in and looted their homes.
The court decision that found the Manero Brothers and their cohorts guilty of the murder of Favali is a sobering read, in both senses of the word. It demystifies the legend that even then had already enshrouded the case (the court decision acknowledges this at some points), but it is still an account of a cold blooded murder done very publicly and in broad daylight.
The Manero brothers and their friends who were in Tulunan on 11 April were high ranking members of the group operating in North Cotabato. They were there to go on a killing spree of pre-identified targets, among whom was another foreign priest, Fr Peter Geremia, whom the group suspected of having links to the NPA (the Catholic church of Kidapawan and of the province, as I’ve written here last time, has a history of actively fighting for social justice). After shooting several people, the group came across Favali, who arrived in the house of Domingo Gomez. They burned the priest’s motorcycle, and when Favali came to react over the burning, he was shot in the head.
While Norberto was the one often called ‘The Priest Killer,’ Favali was actually shot by another Manero, Norberto’s brother Edilberto. It is what Kumander Bukay did after the priest died that lent him the notoriety. ‘Edilberto,’ I quote from the court decision, ‘jumped over the prostrate body three times, kicked it twice, and fired anew. The burst of gunfire virtually shattered the head of Fr. Favali, causing his brain to scatter on the road. As Norberto, Jr., flaunted the brain to the terrified onlookers, his brothers danced and sang “Mutya Ka Baleleng” to the delight of their comrades-in-arms.’
This danse macabre is all that stuck to the province’s imagination, and from there the horror of it grew as it was embellished. The Manero Brothers were essentially reduced to just one person, ‘Manero’ (a name which I observe had since eclipsed ‘Kumander Bukay’ in notoriety), and stories of how this Manero ‘ate the priest’s brains’ or ‘had the priest’s brains as pulutan with Tanduay’ became more widely known than the actual details of the murder.
This is how legends are born in North Cotabato.
By the time I was growing up, the incident had been all but forgotten, but the horror of it lingered, as parents in Kidapawan in the 90s told their children of the story barely remembered of the man who ate a priest’s brains.
On the day I saw Norberto Manero he was walking towards the grave of the man whose murder he was party to. He was visiting the grave for the first time, as an act of reconciliation.
But I did not see it that way, and so do many, still. Reconciliation is far too subtle to be understood in Mindanao, it has always been easier to see demons in people, to be blind to the struggles of others in light of the atrocities they commit. Just as Manero and his fellow Ilaga lost sight of Favali’s humanity in their score-long hatred of Moros and insurgents, so too did the province lose sight in Manero of what might once have been a poor farmer’s son dragged into counter-insurgency by the violent circumstances of his island.
Today even the memory of that horror is slowly fading away. In Kidapawan at least, where Fr. Favali is buried, I get the sense that part of the drive to progress is to discard the sordid memories of a painful past, that for us to be a happy town we must somehow forget that we once saw suffering and misery. We dance the Samba and the Cha Cha, but we forget even the melody of ‘Mutya ka Baleleng.’
Favali, who gave his life to his mission here in Mindanao, deserves better, just as the Maneros, who in the madness of their hatred ended up killing many innocent people, deserve better. The lessons of the past, of the lethal power of blind resentment, of the ease with which truth is distorted, and of the many murders that still remain without justice, they deserve better than just being dismissed as the obscure interests of morbid historians. They can be re-contextualized, perhaps even reevaluated, but they deserve better than to be forgotten.
But then again, that is also how legends die in North Cotabato.
Molte volte guardo alla nostra storia come se fossi uno spettatore che osserva una mostra fotografica: volti e luoghi lasciati andare nel tempo. Che senso dare a questi 50 anni di storia, ma anche al nostro agire? Perché abbiamo difeso certi valori anziché altri? Naturalmente queste domande possono avere molteplici responsi, tanti quanti sono coloro che l’hanno vissuta. Ma quale che sia la risposta, il problema rimane: come recuperare il senso di queste domande. Il senso? Se cioè questa storia abbia avuto una logica o tutto è accaduto a caso.