Daily Archives: April 1, 2015


March 31, 2015


Los Angeles- The Filipino American Community of Los Angeles (FACLA) and the Pilipino American Kultural Society in Action (PAKSA) will hold a two-day PABASA or choral reading by singing of the PASYONG MAHAL NG PANGINOON HESUKRISTO, a tradition during the Holy Week in the Philippines

The PABASA will be held on Holy Thursday, April 2 and Holy Friday, April 3, 2015 in the Filipino American Community of Los Angeles (FACLA) Social Hall.

The PABASA will begin on Maudy Thursday, April 2, 2015 at 12:00 Noon and ends at 12:00 noon on Holy Friday, April 3, 2015.

Marathon Reading by singing the Holy Book in Tagalog

It will be a marathon 36 hours of singing the PASYON in the tradition of the PABASA or Holy reading singing in Tagalog.

The PASYON was introduced in the Philippines during the Spanish times in a way to introduce Catholicism to Filipinos by the Catholic Church.

Since then it has been a tradition during the celebrations of the Holy Week in the Philippines until today. FACLA started the event last year with the PABASA during the Holy Week of 2014. More than 40 people joined the PABASA for the two days.

We call on everybody to join the event, bring food and drinks especially the Filipino_American youth to join and try this Filipino tradition by joining the Holy Week PABASA in FACLA.

Those who are interested to join the PABASA can come during the two days of the PABASA and enlist by calling Clarita or Cording at the FACLA office (213)484-1527 or Al of PCORE at (213)241-0995 or Sid of PAKSA at (213)399-5042.

You can also visit our website at newfacla.org or by email at [email protected]/[email protected]



April 01, 2015.


By the end of March, the 90,000 Filipino and American troops of the besieged USAFFE forces in Bataan was at the end of their tether.

Food was low, thousands were sick with malaria, dysentery and all kinds of sickness. The continued artillery barrage and air raids by the Japanese has taken its toll to the defenders.

The promised mile-long armada was not coming. Despair started to sink in.

The troops knew that their commanding General Douglas MacArthur has just left the Philippines on March 22 and now in Australia.

They called themselves as ; ” The battling bastards of Bataan, No Papa, no mama, No Uncle Sam” to the tune of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,”


Pabasa combines Filipinos’ musicality, religiosity, patriotism

April 01, 2015

Pabasa combines Filipinos’ musicality, religiosity, patriotism

04-Apr-12, 3:16 PM | Lira Dalangin-Fernandez, InterAksyon.com

MANILA, Philippines — The Pabasa is the chanting of the Pasyon, the text on the passion, death, and resurrection of Christ, said Jesuit priest Rene Javellana in his book, Casaysayan Nang Pasiong Mahal Ni Jesucristong Panginoon Natin: Na Sucat Ipag-Alab Nang Puso Nang Sinomang Babasa.

Retired Archbishop Oscar Cruz said the Pabasa is a tradition that may be unique to Filipinos. He said he has visited many countries, and has yet to hear of the same Lenten tradition. The Pabasa seems to spring from Filipinos’ musical nature. “Back then we have the harana, the kundiman. We really love music, and probably he used this cultural trait to spread theÂ

Pasyon,” retired Archbishop Oscar Cruz said.

The chanting is meant to highlight the “epic dimension” of the readings, he added.

Historically, the first published text of Pasyon came out in 1703 written by Gaspar Aquino de Belen entitled Ang Mahal na Passion ni Jesu Christong P. Natin na Tola (The Sacred PassionÂ
of Jesus Christ Our Lord in Verse).

“He (de Belen) saw to it that it would be sung,” Cruz said. “It could only be crafted by somebody who has poetic inclination because at that time there were just few bibles around.”Â

De Belen wrote the text of Pasyon, which has five lines with eight syllables per line, in Tagalog and crafted the verses for chanting to suit the Filipinos’ penchant for music.  In theÂ
following years, the text would be translated to Kapampangan and Ilokano.Â

Rocked and rappedÂ

The evolution of the chants from the original harmony into the modern rock or rap version is something that the Catholic church welcomes. But Cruz said that people should not tamperÂ
with the words in the Pasyon.Â

“Ang simbahan umaayon din naman sa panahon, basta irerespeto lang ang tunay na kahalagahan ng mga salita ng Pasyon (The church also adapts to the times, as long as the true meaning of the words of the Pasyon are respected),” he said.Â

The prelate said he was even impressed with how young people who chant the Pasyon are very attentive. “They really know what they are singing, probably because they do it in the tune they are familiar with,” he added.

Cruz, who now heads the National Appellate Matrimonial Tribunal of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), acknowledged that fewer Filipinos are doing the Pabasa during the Holy Week because some opt to do other activities like going to the beach or taking trips abroad.Â

That is why, he said, the CBCP launched the Pasyon Online together with the Station of the Cross Online to allow the people access to the Catholic practices through the Internet. The site also has homilies delivered by priests from various Eucharistic celebration. (See www.visitaiglesia.net).Â

Expression of patriotism, revolutionary hopes

Taking another dimension, historian Reynaldo Ileto wrote in his book, Pasyon and Rebolusyon, that Pasyon played a strong role in Filipino anti-colonial struggles. Columnist and anthropologist Mike Tan wrote that Ileto “proposed that the Pabasa took on the functions of pre-colonialÂ
epic poems that were chanted out by village elders. These older epic poems were passed on orally, and took days to complete. The poems were usually stories about a community’s origins, their heroes and heroines as well as villains.”

“The Pasyon, Ileto proposed, allowed Filipinos a language to express their oppression and suffering, as well as a vision of liberation,” Tan said.

Marcelo H. Del Pilar also wrote Pasiong Dapat Ipag-Alab nang Puso Puso nang Taung Babasa sa Kalupitan nang Fraile (Passion That Should Inflame the Heart of the Reader) to narrate theabuses by the friars in the country.