despidida party: FORTY members of Chicago FilAm community led by PACF Ruben Salazar at the Kusina de Manila Restaurant in Des Plaines with Alpha Nicolasin and Anong Santos who led testimonials in honor of the PH Cultural Attache Liezel Alcantar (seated, 5th from left) a for her six years of selfless service at the Philippine Chicago Consulate. (Photo by Winston Sevillas)

Rappler CEO Maria Ressa arrested; no bail recommended

By Aie Balagtas See, Matthew Reysio-Cruz

inquirer News Service

Maria Ressa, the CEO of online news site Rappler critical of the Duterte administration, was arrested after office hours on Feb. 13 in connection with a cyberlibel complaint filed against her by a businessman.

Rights advocates called her arrest an act of “persecution.”

Right pic: Rappler CEO Maria Resssa. (PDI Picture)

The arrest warrant did not state recommended bail, according to Ressa’s lawyer, JJ Disini.

“People should know that a line was crossed,” Ressa said, after she arrived at the National Bureau of Investigation headquarters on Taft Avenue in Manila on Feb. 13.

“We are going to new lows … We should be worried,” added the Rappler CEO, who was one of those named Time magazine’s “Person of the Year” in 2018 for journalistic work.

Malacañang advised Ressa to concentrate on her defense.

“The case against Maria Ressa is not based on any violation of press freedom. Simply, she committed a crime and the court finds probable cause,” presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo said.

Disini said Ressa may have to stay overnight at the NBI.

(Read more "Rappler CEO Maria Ressa arrested; no bail recommended")


Fil-Canadian needs stem cell donor to beat cancer

inquirer.net us bureau

RICHMOND, British Columbia — Members of the Filipino community are trying to help Martin Lintag of Richmond, B.C., who needs a stem cell donation to fight cancer.

Lintag was diagnosed with two forms of leukemia last fall just after his 30th birthday.

He has had chemotherapy and other forms of treatment, which have been hard on his body. Doctors have given him three months to a year to live.

Cancer patient Martin Lintag needs a stem cell match. FACEBOOK

Lintag needs a stem cell donation to survive. But Sarah Jasmines with Canadian Blood Services says there are no matching donors on the registry. Matches can only be found in one’s ethnic group, in Lintag’s case, Filipino.

Volunteers recently organized a stem cell swab at Vancouver’s Croatian Cultural Centre in the hopes of finding a match.

Blood Services says finding a match is like winning the lottery, but some donor drives have been successful in the past.

For more information, visit https://swabtheworld.com/patients-and-survivors/lintag/.

Fil-Am actor Marc dela Cruz plays lead role in ‘Hamilton’ musical


A Filipino-American theater actor just made history once more, bagging the lead role of the Tony Award-winning “Hamilton” musical.

Marc dela Cruz played the titular character of the Broadway musical, Alexander Hamilton, on Saturday, Jan. 19. Dela Cruz, who is of Filipino-Japanese descent and born in Hawaii, was also the first Asian-American actor to play the lead role.
Actress Olivia Oguma expressed her pride about dela Cruz’s achievement and cheered for the “Japanese-Filipino Hamilton.”

In dela Cruz’s Instagram post, he thanked the “Hamilton” cast, who he calls the “Ham fam.” He also thanked everyone who supported him in his first outings in the lead role.

Dela Cruz joined the cast in November 2018, playing various roles in the musical such as Hamilton’s father-in-law Philip Schuyler, Hamilton’s eldest son, and even as his doctor, online magazine The FilAm reported.

“I am over the moon to be a part of Hamilton,” dela Cruz told the magazine. “I’ve been a fan of Lin-Manuel Miranda since I saw ‘In the Heights’ and I always wondered at the possibility of being in something he created.”

The actor is the third Filipino-American to take part in the highly-popular musical in Broadway, joining other actors such as Karla Puno Garcia and Christina Glur.
Meanwhile, another acclaimed Filipina singer-actress, Rachelle Ann Go, currently plays Hamilton’s wife, Eliza Schuyler, in the West End show in London. Katrina Hallare/JB

Shooting of a 30-year-old Chicago Fil-Am ruled a homicide

PINOY Newsmagazine Special

CHICAGO—The frozen body of a man found early Sunday morning of January 20 between two houses in the Village of Morton Grove, a near north suburb of this city, was that of a 30-year-old Filipino American identified as Anthony del Barrio. Village police commander Paul Yaras said that del Barrio sustained a single shot wound and his death is being investigated as a homicide.

left pic is the late Anthony del Barrio (courtesy of Marilyn Vargas).

Police also said the victim’s pick-up was found parked a few blocks from where his body was found and based on their initial investigation, the police believed that del Barrio was not shot on the spot where he was found by a resident who was out to shovel snow. No police record was found associated with the victim.

In an interview with the Pioneer Press, del Barrio’s sister, Marilyn Vargas described him as a “very very hard worker and very caring man.” She said that her brother who grew up on the north side of Chicago, spent most of his time with his parents especially with his mother, who he brought along with him to try different cuisines in various ethnic restaurants. “He was a passionate foodie,” Vargas added.

It was further learned that del Barrio started TKO Junk Removal a year ago and an online search showed his company being given high ratings for performance, promptness and professionalism by people who used his 24-hour, six-day a week service company.

Morton Grove police along with del Barrio’s siblings are appealing to report any information regarding the homicide by calling the village police department, (847) 470-5200. (MAS/Pinoy)

Pappas: 1,000 senior citizen homes being offered at Tax Sale

CHICAGO--About 1,000 homeowners in Cook County who have not paid last year’s taxes could avoid the Annual Tax Sale by rxeapplying for senior citizen property tax exemptions they did not receive last year, Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas said today.

Lists of all properties with delinquent taxes, broken down by Chicago ward and suburb, are posted daily tocookcountytreasurer.com. The Treasurer’s Office also is sending lists of these senior citizens to elected officials countywide, asking the officials to encourage their constituents to apply for the missing exemptions to avoid the Tax Sale.

To see if your taxes are delinquent—and to make a payment—go to cookcountytreasurer.com and follow these steps:

    1. Select “Avoid the Tax Sale”
    2. Search by address or by Property Index Number (PIN)

Delinquent taxes for Tax Year 2017 (which were due in 2018) will be offered for sale to investors at the Annual Tax Sale that starts May 3, 2019.


Joint “GOMBURZA”commemoration &“Paskuhan”Appreciation, Feb. 15

THE 122nd YEAR of Jose Rizal’s Martyrdom was marked Dec. 30 at the hero’s monument at Margate Margate Park, 4700 N. Marine Drive in Chicago led by PH Cultural Attache Anna Liza Alcantara, Consular officer and Knights of Rizal Maynilad Chapter deputy commander Al Rosales and Central USA Commander Mariano A. Santos bottom photo shows some of the attendees at the screening of the award-winning film, “Jose Rizal” at the Morton Grove Library Dec. 29 hosted by the Malaya Chapter headed by Sirs Ed Ramos and Erich Monson (Standing R). (Photo by Manny Zambrano & Lynn Santos)

THE 147th YEAR anniversary of the martyrdom of Frs. Mariano Gomez, Jose Burgos and Jacinto Zamora (GOMBURZA) will be commemorated on Friday, Feb. 15, at 5 pm at the Philippine Consulate, 16th Floor at 222 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago hosted by the Maynilad Chapter of the Knights of Rizal and co-sponsored by the Malaya, Chicago Chapters of the Central USA Area and the Ladies for Rizal.

On the same event, the appreciation day for the organizations and sponsors who made the first “Paskuhan sa Chicago” possible last Dec. 15 will take place. The honoring will be led by Consul General Gina Jamoralin and Sir Everett Francis Icao, KOR, co-chairs of the Paskuhan.

The GOMBURZA execution on Feb. 16, 1872 at the Bagumbayan is considered by historians as one of the two main reasons to the radicalization of Philippine National Hero, Jose Rizal, who was only 11 years old when the three priests were falsely implicated in the Cavite Mutiny weeks before they were summarily put to death at the instigation of corrupt clerical hierarchy in Manila.

(Read more “Joint “GOMBURZA” commemoration and “Paskuhan” Appreciation, Feb. 15'"...)


The Filipino connection in the 2019 Chicago's mayoral elections

By Mariano "Anong" Santos

PINOY Publisher/Editor

FOURTEEN candidates are vying to be the next mayor of the City of Chicago. There are 21 who submitted their petitions to be on the ballots but six were eliminated after the board of election determined they did not meet the minimum 12,500 needed to qualify.

Six other hopefuls wanted to run but also eventually withdrew even before petitions were filed. Incumbent Mayor Rahm Emanuel led this batch and the moment he announced he was not running for a third term the list just shot up.

right pic: Jerry and Jannine Joyce (middle) in front of Seafood City in Chicago.

Even at 14, it is still the largest number of wannabes in the history of Chicago local elections. In case you are wondering, here are the names listed in the polling places on Tuesday, Feb. 24:

Gery Chico, Former Chicago Public Schools Board President, Bill Daley-Former White House Chief of Staff, Amara Enyia-Activist, Bob Fioretti-Former Chicago Alderman, Jerry Joyce-Attorney, LaShawn Ford-Democratic State Representative, John Kozlar-Attorney, Lori Lightfoot-Former Chicago Police Board President, Garry McCarthy- Former Chicago Police Superintendent,Susana Mendoza-State comptroller, Toni Preckwinkle-Democratic Cook County Board President, Neal Sales-Griffin-Tech entrepreneur, Paul Vallas-Former Chicago Public Schools CEO, and Willie Wilson-Businessman.

FIRST NAME you will see on the ballot list will be that of Jerry Joyce who won the lottery to be on that coveted spot which some observers say could mean additional two to three per cent after the votes are all in.

Joyce, who is an attorney, hasn’t run for an elective public office. But his father, Jeremiah, Sr. used to be an alderman and a state legislator and was a close Daley ally. He was also a major player at O’Hare Airport’s concession stores until Rahm Emanuel stopped it.

Pundits point that out to young Joyce-- if that was one of his main motives in throwing his hat in the mayoral derby—one of the few who did it before Mayor Emanuel withdrew. Joyce debunked such talk saying that he plans to improve the public education and crime situation.

(Read more “The Filipino connection in the 2019 Chicago's mayoral elections'"...)


Trump-A president like no other

By Mariano "Anong" Santos

PRESIDENTS’ DAY is on Feb. 18. Our first president, George Washington, was born on Feb. 22. The 9th president, William H. Harrison, on Feb. 9, is known for his shortest term of office—31 days—who delivered the longest inauguration speech—60 minutes—in an open and cold area that might have contributed to his dying of pneumonia with complication of typhoid fever.

Our 16th president, Abraham Lincoln, considered the greatest among his peers, was born on Feb. 12. Another Illinois native, Ronald Reagan, our 40th president was born on Feb. 6. So there are only four of them but February is when we mark Presidents’ Day.

Young George was the one, according to legend, who told his father, “I can’t lie, I was the one who cut the cherry tree.” So by that we know Washington and our present president, Donald Trump, is NO Washington.

THE FACT CHECKER started monitoring Trumps’ misstatements since his inauguration and as of Jan. 20, 2019, and its data base shows Trump made 8,158 false and misleading statements—6,000 of those were made in his second year in office.

The president averaged 5.9 false claims in his first year but alarmingly, during his second year, the average shot up to 16.5 a day—almost three times that of his first.

In the first 21 days of 2019, Trump has already topped the 492 unsupported claims during his first 100 days in 2017. The biggest source of misleading claims is immigration. There were only 11 days in his presidency when no recorded misstatements—and those were days when he was playing golf.

(Read more "Trump--A president like no other")


Editorial Cartoon by Jym Andalis

A New Year’s (our 19th year anniversary) wish list

Guest Editorial
Inquirer News Service

With each year being a mixed bag of blessings and blight, the year’s end brings with it the compulsion to take stock, to look back at opportunities missed, missteps made, and dreams given up for lack of will or resources.

Fortunately, there’s always the New Year, a blank slate on which second chances are writ large, and possibilities resurrected. Despite the limited shelf life of resolutions, we harbor relentless hope that the next 365 days will bring meaningful change, a better political climate, less excesses, and a proof of a shared humanity. If we can ring in better times and excise the ills from the year just past, what would be in our wish list? Here are a few:

A bullish economy balanced with respect for workers’ rights. While global financial institutions like the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank see a strong growth rate of 6.6-6.7 percent in 2019 for the Philippines because of robust public investments, the country also made it to the list of worst countries to work in, according to the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) Global Rights Index. The Philippines got the lowest rating of 5, as there is “no guarantee of rights” for workers despite labor laws meant to protect them, and due to “intimidation and dismissals, violence, [and] repressive laws.”

Stronger children’s rights. The Ateneo bullying incident illustrates how far the country still has to go when it comes to children’s rights. This is reflected in the Philippines’ drop to 104th spot from 96th in the latest report of international advocacy group Save the Children, which ranked 175 countries where childhood is most and least threatened as a result of poor health, malnutrition, exclusion from education, child labor, child marriage, early pregnancy, and extreme violence. The Philippines performed poorly on three different indicators: teenage childbearing, severe malnutrition and under-five mortality.

(Read more "‘A New Year’s (our 19th year anniversary) wish list"...)


Letter from Washington

By Jon Melegrito


“Immigrants, we get the job done!”

Tthe U.S. government shutdown – which affected 800,000 federal workers – has ended, but it is the longest in history.

Trump’s insistence on a $5.7 billion wall has made compromise difficult.

Democrats also want a path to citizenship for “Dreamers” - children of undocumented immigrants who are working, in countless ways, to make the United States stronger. If given opportunities to realize their potential, they will no doubt make substantial contributions to this country.

America has achieved greatness by welcoming people from around the world who seek to make a better life for themselves and their families. In turn, they give back.

Like Alexander Hamilton, one of nation’s founding fathers. Born in the Caribbean, he was an orphan when he came to America. In Lin Manuel Miranda’s musical, Hamilton declares: “Immigrants, we get the job done!” This phrase evoked thunderous applause because it resonated deeply with Americans who are alarmed by

Trump’s immigrant bashing

Hamilton reminds us of the positive impact immigrants have made. With the opportunities afforded to him, he made significant contributions serving as the first treasury secretary. And he got the job done.

One can’t watch Hamilton without realizing it’s not just the story of a Founding Father. It’s also our nation’s story.

(Read more "'Immigrants, we get the job done!'”...)




By Fr. Tirso Villaverde

Presentation of the Lord a.k.a. Candelaria

February 2nd on the Church’s liturgical calendar is always the feast of the Presentation of the Lord. It celebrates the 40th day after Jesus’ birth. In the Jewish tradition, the 40th day after birth was usually when a woman was to be “purified.” Such things were always necessary whenever someone had come into contact with a mystery of life—that is, a birth or a death. Forty days after the birth of her son, Mary would have gone to the Temple to have offered the customary sacrifices.

Mary presenting baby Jesus at the Temple. (Photo from lds.com)

In the fourth century, a woman named Etheria (Egeria in some places), made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. She kept an extensive journal of the liturgical life in Jerusalem and its surrounding area. This journal, incidentally, has been one of the major resources that has provided much detail about the worship life and ritual of the earliest Christians.

In one of her entries, Etheria describes a grand procession that took place on the fortieth day after the celebration of the birth of Jesus. Originally, the date of this celebration was February 14th since the early Christians commemorated the birth of Jesus on January 6th—the feast of the Epiphany.

But, when the Church began to give more emphasis on the date of December 25th as the birth of Jesus, the feast of the Presentation was transferred to February 2nd which, again, is forty days after. The first Christians celebrated this feast forty days after the birth as a way not only to proclaim their faith in Jesus but also to serve as a reminder of the connection to the Jewish roots of Jesus’ life.

(Read more "Presentation of the Lord a.k.a. Candelaria"...)



By Alberto Gonzales

Immigration Attorney

(708) 916-3077


The long arduous journey to womewhere Part III-C: Adjustment to status

Note: This article is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship or to constitute legal advice. This article provides a general overview only and should not be relied upon in lieu of consultation with an immigration attorney.

We are following the journey of Jose (a fictitious character), who is in the process of immigrating to the U.S. via sponsorship of a U.S. employer. Jose has an undergraduate degree in accounting and was working as a senior accountant in Manila for years. Three years ago, he found an employer in Chicago who began to sponsor him for permanent residence (green card) in the United States. While waiting for his permanent residence petition priority date to become current, Jose’s employer petitioned Jose for an H-1B temporary working visa. Jose then entered the U.S. with his H-1B Visa. As his priority date has now become current, what are his next steps?

This article series continues our discussion on employment-based immigration. In contrast with some family-based immigration where the wait for eligibility to immigrate could last several years and even decades, employment based immigration may allow a foreign worker to immigrate to the U.S. more expeditiously. In the employment-based immigration sponsorship, the prospective U.S. employer is known as the “petitioner”, and the foreign worker being sponsored is the “beneficiary/applicant”.

The immigration process for foreign workers, like Jose, involves a number of stages, namely: (1) the Labor Certification (LC) stage; (2) the I-140 Immigrant Visa Petition stage; and (3) the Visa Consular Processing (VCP) stage OR Adjustment of Status stage. As our previous articles discussed the LC, I-140 Petition, and VCP stages, this article will focus on the Adjustment of Status (AOS) stage. Generally, VCP is applicable when the beneficiary is outside the U.S. Alternatively, a beneficiary who is physically present in the U.S. may be able to apply for permanent residence via AOS, provided he/she meets the AOS requirements.

(Read more "The long arduous journey to womewhere Part III-C: Adjustment to status...")




Featured Sponsors






Pianist Ester Hana performs in Chicago: March 13 &17

Wed. & Friday at Gaslight Club, Chicago Hilton, O'Hare, starting March 13

Skokie Theatre:"In LOVE with Nat 'King' Cole"

a Daryl Nitz production

Sunday, March 17, 7:30 pm

Call 847-677-7761


FASAC Valentine's Day Party, Feb. 16

The Filipino American Seniors Association of Chicago (FASAC) will hold their Valentine's Day Party on Saturday, Feb. 16 at the Levy Senior Center , 2019 W. Lawrence Avenue in Chicago from 12 pm-4 pm. The event includes the crowning of their queen for Mr. & Mrs. Valentine's 2019. For particulars, call Frank Alvarez at 847-651-3713.


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