Philippine Independence Day Celebrations in New Zealand start with the prayer for the Nation
To commence the series of celebrations for the 117th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence, Ambassador Virginia H. Benavidez and the officers and staff of the Philippine Embassy in Wellington, New Zealand organized an inter-faith Prayer for the Nation at the “Ang Bahay” (Residence of the Philippine Ambassador) on 2 June 2015. Religious leaders and representatives from Filipino organizations attended the Day of Prayer to pray for the Philippines and the Filipino people.
Ms. Melody Pagalilawan and Ms. Dinna O’ Meara led the singing of the Philippine national anthems and rendered the Opening Song, “How Great is Our God”. Ambassador Virginia H. Benavidez offered the opening prayer and Mr. Hugh O’ Connell of Life Church, Palmerston North, delivered an inspirational message.
Starting with the Prayer of the Youth, the Filipino community members, religious leaders from New Zealand and friends led prayers for the 117th Anniversary of the Proclamation of Philippine Independence and the activities lined up for the celebration; Instilling Greater Sense of Nationalism and Love of Country and for the Services and Contributions of the Filipino Community, Migrants, and Migrant Workers to National Development and Progress in New Zealand and the Philippines; Blessings upon the President, Leaders and Officials of the Philippines and Thanksgiving for the Positive Developments and Economic Gains of the Philippines; the 49th Anniversary of the Philippine– NZ Diplomatic Relations; Philippine Embassy Personnel in New Zealand, the Filipino Community Centre, Projects and Filipino Community Activities; Protection of our Beloved Country Philippines Against Terrorism, Maritime Disputes, Epidemics and Other Diseases, Financial Crisis and Natural Disasters and Calamities; Unity of Muslims and Christians in the Philippines and all over the world; World Peace and Unity of all religious sectors and congregations around the world; Strengthening of Filipino Family / Social Cohesion; Enhancement of Moral Recovery and Integrity; Promoting Peace and Unity in the Philippines and Promotion of Interests and Welfare of Overseas Filipino Migrant Workers and the Filipino Community in New Zealand; Peace, Progress and Prosperity of New Zealand, the Governor General, Prime Minister and Government Officials; Spread of the Gospel / Word of God; and the Philippines in Ascendancy.
The attendees sang the thanksgiving song “10,000 Reasons” which was led by Ms. Pagalilawan and Ms. O’ Meara. Ms. Fe Muriel led the closing prayer for the 2015 Prayer for the Nation. A delectable dinner followed and capped a blessed and meaningful evening of inter-faith prayers and music to usher in the month long celebration of the Philippines’ national day for 2015.