Republic of the Philippines

50 Hobson Street, Thorndon, Wellington, New Zealand 6011

The Philippine Embassy joins the 2014 Barangay Sta Teresa Fiesta celebrations in Karori, Wellington, New Zealand

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As the Philippine Embassy continues to reach out to Filipinos in New Zealand, foster greater friendship and fellowship between the Filipino community and the Embassy team, and in grateful recognition of the Filipino community’s continued support and cooperation, Ambassador Virginia H. Benavidez and the Philippine Embassy in Wellington together with their families and private staff attended the Barangay Sta. Teresa Fiesta at the St. Teresa Church Hall in Karori, Wellington on 11 October 2014.

The Barangay Sta. Teresa servant team, led by Mr. Jovic Villareal, organized the fun-filled event for Filipino families living in Karori, Kelburn, Makara, Wilton and Northland. The spirit of camaraderie and community fellowship pervaded the air at the annual fiesta which began with the traditional community procession around the perimeter of St. Teresa’s Church while the community sang the St. Teresa’s Hymn and paraded the image of St. Therese of the Child Jesus.

Fr. Marlon Maylon, SVD, Parish Priest of St. Patrick’s Parish in Wainuiomata officiated the fiesta mass immediately after the procession. The altar servers, readers, offerers, collectors and Eucharistic ministers were all members of Barangay Sta. Teresa. The Barangay Sta. Teresa’s own music ministry, the Barangay Sta. Teresa Choir, sang during the mass.

The well-attended event provided a delicious array of traditional Filipino food served for the shared lunch. A special program was also arranged which included raffle prizes donated by various sponsors, such as Sugar Box, Filipino Mart, Orbit Remit, DMC Box Limited, and FSB. The children enjoyed traditional Filipino games including the pabitin and pukpok palayok. Games of Bingo were also played for the enjoyment of the community.

Ambassador Virginia H. Benavidez delivered remarks during the occasion and commended the Barangay Sta. Teresa organizing committees, the community members and all those who worked tirelessly to highlight the importance of the Christian faith and the roles of the churches and observance of religious festivities in the spiritual lives of Filipinos wherever they may be, the demonstration of the Filipino culture and the manifestation of the Filipino’s compassion, care and concern. She expressed appreciation to Mr. Jovic Villareal, Ms. Baby Villareal, Mr. Fred Aron, Ms. Belle Aron, Mr. Roel Dadulo, Ms. Roselle Dadulo, Ms. Rita De Mesa, Ms. Reine De Mesa, Mr. Mike Encarnado, Ms. Lei Encarnado, Mr. Ludger Zabala, Ms. Felibel Zabala, Mr. Agot Umali, Ms. Myrna Umali, Mr. Glen Torres, and Ms. Cristina Torres for their continued commitment, dedication and contributions. Their united community effort makes the annual Barangay Sta. Teresa fiesta celebrations shine in New Zealand.

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