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FilAm Vera is new OFC heavyweight champion

Published in Sports

(Photo from Philippine Star)


PASAY CITY — Filipino-American mixed martial arts star Brandon Vera made quick work of Taiwanese contender Paul Cheng to capture the inaugural ONE Championship heavyweight title last week at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.

Vera's fellow FilAm and former world boxing champion Ana Julaton, however, lost to her Russian opponent on points in the same canvas.

It was the second time Vera and Julaton fought for OFC before the big Filipino crowd at SM Mall of Asia arena, the first being last year where both were winners.


After feeling each other out for a few seconds, Vera and Cheng immediately went at it, proving to the thousands in attendance they both want the strap for themselves.


About 20 seconds into the fight, a left straight counter from Vera dropped Cheng to the canvass. The latter stood up only to get kicked in the chest and get floored again.


Vera then followed up with multiple hammer fists which forced referee Yuji Shimada to halt the contest at the 0:26 mark of round one. 


Before the Vera bout, Filipino mixed martial arts fighter Eugene Toquero gave the Philippines its first win of the night in the ONE Championship: Spirit of Champions.

Toquero, 34, was up against Chinese striker Li Wei Bin.


Toquero immediately went to work upon hearing the opening bell, throwing punches and kicks at Bin (4-2) with bad intentions. Bin managed to take Toquero down twice in the round but wasn't able to do much from that position.


Toquero outlanded Bin in strikes in round two. Be it standing up or on the ground, Toquero did a number on the visiting Chinese, dishing out vicious knees and executing with some ground and pound.


Bin waived the white flag from his stool before the start of round three, earning Toquero a second round technical knockout victory as he improved his record to 8-2.


Sotto tops senatoriables survey, Pacquiao in

Published in Latest News

(Photo from Philippine Daily Inquirer)


MANILA — Congressman Manny Pacquiao is among the top picks in the latest Pulse Asia nationwide survey on senatorial candidates in the 2016 elections commissioned by ABS-CBN.

Pacquiao, who is currently serving as Sarangani congressman, placed 7-10 in the November 8-15, 2015 Pulse Asia survey for ABS-CBN.

The poll said 96% of survey respondents were aware of Pacquiao and 50.2% said they would vote for him if the elections were held during the survey period.

(Photo from Rappler)


Senator Vicente Sotto topped the survey, with 72.6% of respondents saying they will vote for him.

Philippine Red Cross chairman Richard Gordon (49.7%, 7th-10th places), former Justice Secretary Leila de Lima (37.9%, 11th-12th places), and former Akbayan party-list Rep. Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel (11th-12th places) were also in the winning circle.

Others in the winning list are Panfilo Lacson (65.3%) 2nd-3rd places, Ralph Recto (62.9%) 2nd-6th), Francis Pangilinan (58%) 3rd-6th, Franklin Drilon (57.5%) 3rd-7th, Juan Miguel Zubiri (57.5%) 3rd-7th, Sergio Osmeña III (52.1%) 5th-9th, and Teofisto Guingona III (44.8%) 8th-10th.


Editorial cartoon

Published in Editorial & Other Articles

The Pinoys' Simbang Gabi

Published in Editorial & Other Articles

 There’s no other church proof that Christmas is around the corner than the traditional “Simbang Gabi” (Midnight Mass) in Philippine churches. It is actually a nine-day novena of Masses which starts on December 16 and ends on Christmas Day, December 25. It is actually also a concrete way of preparing for the Messiah’s Nativity.


According to Fr. Bel San Luis, a colleague of Philippines Today's editor in chief in the Manila Bulletin before, the Masses which also honor Mother Mary is part of the Filipino religious culture influenced by the Advent customs which originated in Mexico in 1587. An account states that Fray Diego de Soria asked permission from the Holy Father to hold the dawn Masses for the farmers who woke up very early to work. Hence, the Spanish name Misa de Gallo celebrated at dawn when cocks (gallo) crow.


This centuries-old tradition is surely a sacrifice of love because it is not easy to rise so early in the morning to attend Mass, and then drag oneself to work later. The sacrifice is more felt for countrymen and expatriates living in cold countries like the United States where the Misa de Gallo novena is tenaciously observed. In the Philippines, the observance of this custom has been adjusted to accommodate the needs of the faithful in their work schedules. Hence, according to Fr. San Luis, we now have Simbang Gabi at night, Simbang Umaga in the morning, and at noon Simbang Tanghali.   Regretfully, some people go to the Simbang Gabi after a night out intoxicated, ending up in church snoring in the pews; in which case, Father San Luis jokes it’s Simbang Tulog.


Filipinos also do the Simbang Gabi as thanksgiving for special graces received,  as a panata (personal vow) to complete the whole nine days to pray for a special intention, like passing the board exam, securing a visa for work abroad, or obtaining cure from a serious sickness. Whatever the personal intentions may be, it’s certainly a meaningful opportunity to pray and thank the Lord Jesus who came into our world in order to save us from sin. We certainly agree Farther Bel.


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