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A Heritage We Can Be Proud Of

I watched the movie GOMBURZA with my wife and daughter a week ago. The era of the great Filipino filmmaker Lino Brocka is long gone, but every once in a while, we get to see a film like this that leaves us with a quietly powerful message. This movie, produced by the Jesuits, no doubt ignites a flame in the hearts of Filipino moviegoers, and reminds us that as Filipinos. we are all part of a legacy of heroism and courage. It adds a rich contribution to history as told in the so-called “pop culture” (popular culture), and there is no apprehension about its fidelity to historical facts, having been based on the writings of Filipino Jesuit historian John N. Schumacker, SJ.- known for his work in exploring the Catholic clergy’s role in the 1896 Philippine Revolution.

GOMBURZA is a name that stands for martyred secular priests Fr. Mariano Gomez of Bacoor, Cavite; Fr. Jose Burgos of Vigan, Ilocos Sur; and Fr. Jacinto Zamora of Marikina, all executed by garrotte at Bagumbayan on February 17, 1872, unjustly accused and found guilty of treason by a Spanish military tribunal. Of the three, Fr. Burgos was the most famous, who is said to have written nationalistic views and empowered native clergymen and whose name caught the attention of Spanish civilian authorities.

It is said that Jose Rizal dedicated his writing of the novel El Filibusterismo to GOMBURZA. In the movie, Rizal is seen as a young boy who witnessed the martyrdom of the three priests. The transition unfolds from the young Pepe to the nationalist and hero writing the novel, then from his very own martyrdom on December 30 that sparked the Filipinos into action in the 1896 revolution- and as this was all being shown on screen, there is a beautiful line that strikes every Filipino heart to the core: “Enlightenment is never killed; it stays as embers in people’s hearts.”

GOMBURZA is a source of great hope and inspiration whose richness should not go to waste. It is my hope that copies of the movie can be made available as a classroom resource for young learners of history. It is a gift to young people of the heritage they can be proud of.


Belated and warm birthday greetings to Manager Marlo Barrameda, and Mary Jane Ante, bot of the RCBC Bank Naga branch.


“Nationality is the creative power of human culture, culture is the creative power of nationality.” ~ A. C. Cuza


“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.



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