Visitors at ADD Apalit
Famous celebrities, together with representatives of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), graced the regular Thanksgiving Celebration of the Members of the Church of God International (MCGI) yesterday, June, 27, 2015. This is part of their efforts to give tribute to the brave men and women of the AFP and the PNP and raise funds for the armed officers of the land.
The visitors showed their support for the Songs for Heroes 2 concert to be held on Tuesday, June 30, 2015 at the MOA Arena. During a short intermission during the MCGI Thanksgiving, PO2 Melliza Vitangcol, P02 Marvin Salvatierra, Lt. Lady Chaterly Alvaro Sumbeling, PFC Efraim Rivera, Asia Got Talent’s Gwyneth Dorado, The Voice Kids’ Sam Shoaf and famous singer Jeffrey Hidalgo performed onstage to promote the second leg of the advocacy that was borne out of the bravery and sacrifice of the protectors of peace.
The live performances of the afternoon showcased not only the great talents of Filipinos but also sincere concern for the welfare of others. The crowd gave warm applause to the invitations to support the fundraising event. A gesture that shows belief in the advocacy being promoted.
The performers willingly sat down for a short interview, expressing their thankfulness to God and to the organizers for having given a chance to help others.
“Of course, the feeling is very overwhelming because this is a very big event. This is not just some event, to belong to the line up of singers is a blessing. So happy and excited to be part of this event,” PO2 Vitangcol said.
Lt. Sumbeling affirmed this by saying, “When I learned that we will be part of the Songs for Heroes 2, we didn’t just feel happy, we were so excited.” True enough, the excitement dawned from the lady officer’s eyes as she took pride in her profession and talent. She declared, “we are not just meant for war or for the mountains. We are here not just to raise arms, but we also have other talents to show the whole world.”
PFC Rivera exclaimed his gratitude to God for having given the talent to perform in this huge event. His counterpart PO2 Salvatierra agreed. The smart, young charmer, Sam said,” Yeah, I’m very excited and blessed.”
Gwyneth smiled her cute little smile and thanked the organizers of the event early on and said, “It’s an honor that I am included in the Songs for Heroes 2 Concert.”
With as much excitement, Jeffrey Hidalgo expressed his feelings of priviledge for being a part of a great advocacy. He gave the interviewers a sneak peak of the kind of songs that the concert goers will be hearing on the concert evening.
Advocates of Real Public Service
The amount of support that the advocacy has been receiving tells the story why the advocacy has risen to its current state. It was not too long ago when UNTV CEO Daniel Razon and MCGI’s Presiding Minister, Bro. Eli Soriano, started their own brand of public service.
During their early of public service, they were able to put up edifices for social welfare, vehicles that can bring free medical services, ambulances, and other projects to help Filipino families without much assistance from other agencies or branches of the government. Both pushed the standards for public service to a higher degree each time so that time came when the government and other significant parts of the society can no longer ignore the huge projects that these men have started.
More and more public servants, entertainers, public personalities and companies have begun taking interest in the projects that these two are promoting. Then came the idea of putting up a concert meant to raise financial support for the bereaved of the Mamasapano Fallen 44. Dubbed as Songs for Heroes, the concert filled the MOA Arena to the brim so that at the end of the concert, Bro. Eli (as he is endearingly referred to by many) declared that there will be another concert to honor the men and women in uniform and to raise funds for the ranks.
Razon and Soriano shared the vision of protecting the lives of the protectors of the land because they recognize the sacrifice and great love that the soldiers and police officers put into their work. The PNP and the AFP responded by providing some of their best entertainers in the ranks, as their support for the initiative.
Heroes honoring heroes with songs
Meanwhile, back at the MCGI’s thanksgiving celebration, popular songs were alternately performed by the guests after the usual singing of praise songs by the choir to give the members a sampler of the kind of performance to be expected during the concert.
The quartet from the PNP gave a hair-raising rendition of “The Prayer” to suit the religious celebration. Gwyneth did her own amazing singing against her own acoustic guitar performance. Sam supplied the cuteness for the whole intermission with his fast beat song while Jeffrey Hidalgo awed the audience again with a very emotional rendition of an original tagalog song. In their own small ways, the supporters of the advocacy are heroes for giving of themselves for and in behalf of the heroes in uniform.
When asked why they joined the concert, Lt. Sumbeling answered, “Maybe because it’s our passion. Aside from the fact that we want to serve our country, we have this passion to entertain other people too.”
Jeffrey Hidalgo injected emotion in the midst of laughter when he said, “it is a different variety show, there is a story, of course, there is the whole thought of honoring our heroes in mind, which is like a core of the whole show.”
Songs to inspire, concerns from a stranger
In the midst of all the inspirations gathered to come up with such a well founded project, one person continually inspires people to give of their own self. The call to care for her kind came as a surprise to Lt. Sumbeling who said, “For me, I dedicate my performance to everyone. PNP is very thankful that someone has come up with this. We did not initiate it, not the soldiers, not the police. The one who initiated the concert was somebody who is not even a solder or a police. The concern came from the heart of Bro. Eli Soriano. We are so much thankful that someone has taught of this for us. So that alone is so much help. Thank you God.”
PO2 Vitangcol agreed by saying, “Some of the people do not understand what we do for the country. So the mere fact that this is a concert for all of us, everybody, ’cause we are all heroes so, the fact that we are recognizing them, … I think, a simple gesture of appreciation, and thankfulness is more than what money can do for them definitely.”
Finally, each of the guest singers gave their short message to Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel.
“To Bro. Eli, thank you very much for giving us the opportunity to showcase talents among our uniformed officers,” said PO2 Vitangcol.
“From the AFP, thank you so much to Bro. Eli and Bro Daniel for coming up with a concert for us. Well, I can just say to the supporters of your Armed Forces of the Philippines and PNP, please continue to support us, love our soldiers and police officers. Don’t be afraid of us, because we are here to serve you and offer our lives for you. That’s all and thank you for supporting the Songs for Heroes concert.”
PFC Rivera expressed a heartfelt message saying, “Thank you Bro. Eli, Kuya Daniel, UNTV for including us in the concert I’m grateful that I was the one sent by our commander to join this event. Thank you so very much.”
Sam came next with a very fine message, saying, “Thank you Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel for making this Songs for Heroes 2 possible and for making it possible and for inviting us. It is a pleasure for me to sing. And also, my message to the police officers and soldiers, always be strong, always pray to God, always risk you lives for us Filipinos and for saving us and yeah, thank you for being a soldier and for being brave.”
With a very shy voice, Gwyneth started his final message saying, “I would like to thank Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel for inviting me here to sing for Songs for Heroes. My message to the soldiers is be brave, be strong and always pray to God that He will be at your side. And also, thank you for saving and protecting our country.”
Finally, Jeffrey Hidalgo made a strong finish by saying, “Thank you. First of all, for the families of the fallen 44, thank you so much for the sacrifices that they have given us. There are no word really to express my gratitude because of what they have given up. And of course, to our police and army men and women, we can never thank you enough, we, the civil citizens enjoy freedom because of you. And of course, Many thanks to Bro. Eli and Bro. Daniel for Songs for Heroes part 2, for once again giving tribute to our fallen heroes and once again reminding us of their sacrifice. We hope that this indeed becomes a very fruitful project for the beneficiaries.”
The concert is a serenade for the valiant men and women of AFP and the PNP. The music came from the hearts of people who recognize valor, honor, bravery and love amongst the two government agencies. The instruments are the voices of the men, women and children who will fill the Arena with their melodies. This is hoped to resound an echoing reminder of our accountability to each other, a lesson learned from the hearts of Bro. Eli Soriano and Bro. Daniel Razon.