Thursday, June 09, 2005

Farewell Dad Part 3: Necrological Services

procession2 Posted by Hello

Most of the Necrological photos were taken by the traditional point and shoot cameras thats why I still needed to have it scanned. Both my past posts reflected photos from my digital camera which were faster to upload.

As mentioned in my past post, some people from the Knights of Columbus gave me a call and asked if they could hold a Necrological service for my father. At the onset, I could recall my dad saying not to allow any such service to be held during his wake. On the other hand, besides having so much info on my mind that time and knowing I never informed or called them up, I said to myself, why not? I guess I was not mistaken for it was a fitting tribute to a man who served the organization the longest time as of this period.

Below was the Necrological Ceremony program:

Knights of Columbus
Manila Council 1000

Necrological Ceremony for the Late
Sir Knight Hilarion C. Tolentino
(Oct 21, 1923-May 23, 2005)

Part I

A. Opening Hymn
B. Our Order and Its Dead
C. Eulogy
D. Presentations of - Resolution of Condolence, Mortuary Benefit, Perpetual Mass Certificate

Part II

E. 4th Degree Perpetual Mass Certificate
F. Presentation of the Golden Chalice
G. Presentation of the Golden Chalice Certificate
H. Presentation of the Sword
I. Response from a member of the Bereaved Family
J. Concluding Prayer
K. Farewell Salute by the Honor Guards and Brother Knights

Photos below were the various presentations given by KC:

presentation1 Posted by Hello

presentation3 Posted by Hello

presentation4 Posted by Hello

The presentation of the Chalice and Sword were both interesting. The Chalice they mentioned is usually given to the wife but since my mother has also passed away they were giving it to me instead.

It was also mentioned that this chalice must not be kept but given to a new or missionary priest who will need it badly. Dad's name was engraved on it so the priest who will be receiving this will remember to pray for his soul during mass.

SK Torrente the master of ceremonies related that a similar chalice was also given to Jacqui Kennedy for the late John F Kennedy but she kept the chalice with her for long.

Below is a photo of the chalice presentation:

presentation5 Posted by Hello

chalice Posted by Hello

The Presentation of the Sword is usually handed over to the son of the deceased. Since I was the only child, they were looking for the nearest male relative. The closest to dad that I could think of was my tito paquito but he was in chicago. The next one, my cousin Piling was still on the way from Bulacan. They didnt inform me earlier of such reqts ergo they had no choice but to hand the sword to me :)

On hindsight, I feel thats what my dad wanted.

sword2 Posted by Hello

I was asked to give a response while they were explaining the program earlier. I declined cause I didnt want to prepare anything and cry. Nevertheless they still called on me so I had no choice but give one. Well I was able to hold up without much tears perhap just misty eyed and at times a cracked voice while I reminisce the times ages past when I spent much of my childhood in the KC mother council at Intramuros, learning how to bowl, watching the billiards (which I never liked till now), learning the food biz in mom's canteen, acting as muse in their basketball team and most of all, the annual three kings celebration. There were two years that I was really sick come the Three Kings celebration. Dad to keep up the tradition, brought the Three Kings celebration in our home at Philamlife!

concludprayer Posted by Hello

Farewell Salute by the Honor Guards:

honorguard Posted by Hello

necroprocession Posted by Hello

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Farewell Dad Part 2

pugadcollage Posted by Hello

Somehow it was difficult to add more photos in my blog posting below so doing a part 2 here. Above photo is a noon time mass last wed (dad passed away Monday and brought to the church chapel around midnight) where his street children wards all attended as well as relatives from mom's side who all trooped from Tayabas, Quezon.

heritageinter Posted by Hello

The photo collage above shows the interment at Heritage Park last thursday May 26, which is dramatically a day before my birthday (a truly memorable one indeed).

Monday, June 06, 2005

Farewell Dad

dadmaan Posted by Hello

Since mom left us almost four years ago, dad started to deteriorate. She was his world but of course he realized that I am still here so he had to be here for me.

He hated going to doctors but instead prefers to self-medicate. The only reason I was able to rush him to the hospital in the past were due to emergency situations such as he could hardly move.

The past weeks and months I noticed he couldnt sleep or if ever talks loudly in his sleep. Thats usually an indication that there is something wrong with him. Unfortunately though each time I graciously suggest that I have him checked, he gets so angry almost spewing lava.

I guess everything happens in God's time. Lina, the one always accompanying dad, was recently discovered to have cancer and perhaps due to her chemo treatments, weakened and ultimately passed away early May. I had to retire from the bank that month so I could have more flexible time to look after my dad and set up the various businesses that came my way.

I wanted to take a short break before I plunge into my new life and since Dad had been wanting tons of the Fitne tea from bangkok I decided to just fly there myself and purchase them. He asked a couple of friends who visited thailand in the past to buy him specifically the brown variety for its the only one which relieves him and fr. faroni. Unfortunately, some of them were only able to buy the chrysanthemum type which he found too mild.

So off I went one sunday, arriving bangkok with Tess late afternoon. After checking in we went straight to the various markets to buy dad's bilin first. He kept calling my mobile every half hour to buy some goodies for some church workers and priests. I went to each pharmacy and tried buying all their stock of that brown tea.

I was able to buy only all that he asked me to that evening. I was going to buy for myself the succeeding days after our tour. The following morning, while starting to take breakfast, I received an sms from myrna, a good friend who I requested to regularly check on dad, that he was rushed to the hospital.

What follows was a mad rush to check out, cancel the tour, calls to Arnel (husband of tess) to rush by dad's side since I cant reach my cousins, Uncle Jun, dad's best friend and Fr. Pablo. PAL's flight that 1pm is overbooked so we had to call our bank president to intercede, as well as Uncle Jun and my aunt who was formerly from PAL.

The PAL office I guess got all sorts of orders from above that they had to really try and help but since I cannot get any hundred percent assurance that we can be seated, I had to take the next best alternative, purchase a ticket from Kuwait airways which was leaving 12 noon. The plane had to wait for us while we checked in.

I asked uncle Jun to have someone meet us at the airport so I can immediately rush to the hospital. Unfortunately as Arnel, Uncle Jun and Fr. Pablo told me on the phone while on the way to them, his heart could no longer handle the blood transfusion which had to be given.

He was warm when I got there still with the respirator as I frantically ordered the doc not to unplug while I was still on the way. I firmly believe that this suburban hospital where both my parents passed away had some negligence. Will be too long to expound here but one day perhaps I will expose it. As I rummaged through the papers of my dad, I saw his letters and the two doctors (surgeon and anaesthesiologist) who heartlessly operated on mom which may have caused her demise.

My cousin in law Lulu assisted me at the hospital in paying, getting all the necessary papers etc. He didnt have a memorial plan for he had the one mom and I were paying for expire. Had to scrounge for one. I also demanded that the doctor explain to me his cause of death. Good Lord, even their lab couldnt comprehend what was written by the doctor. I was exasperated and told them if they will not be able to explain this to me, I will sue them. That I guess was the magic word for they searched the city for the doctor who ran back to the hospital and talked to me.

I went home to get the St. Gregory uniform dad was going to wear. Eddie told me dad has been looking for that a long time. I told him that mom told me where she kept it. I rode with the ambulance to the parlor and waited till he was embalmed for I dressed him up myself. I knew that was what he wanted. He ordered me to go with mom's body when she passed away and wait till she was ready to be dressed which I also did myself.

The photo below shows his peaceful face. Took it from my mobile phone right after I dressed him up at Funeraria Paz, Sucat. We brought him to St. John Bosco chapels after.

dad Posted by Hello

I never had any premonition that he would go. Although for quite some time the past years and more so recently, I always get scared when I leave him. Everything that transpired was typical of dad. He never wanted me or mom to witness someone dying. When he felt my grandparents were son to go he asks me and mom to go home. I guess somehow he knew so he let me leave for just a few hours. I didnt even stay 24 hours in bangkok.

Dad had so many 'bilins' through the years. In gist, he wanted a pauper's burial, not to inform anyone, and no necrological services.

dadkc Posted by Hello

Unfortunately for practical reasons I couldnt acceed to those. First, the papers related to interment were only done last wed so the funeral was held the ff day ( a day before my birthday). I didnt inform everyone just a couple but the word spread and finally I didnt call KC but they learned and they asked permission for a necrological service. Wont hurt I guess so I said ok. I didnt know what would take place for I never witnessed one but I think I made the right decision for it was something he deserved. Photo above was the start of the Knights of Columbus Necrogological rites.

Photo below is during the interment at Heritage Park. Fr. Bernie, St. John Bosco Parish Priest, a good friend of dad, and Fr. Faroni, dad's confessor both went with us to give their final blessing.

heritageblessing Posted by Hello

Since I was alone and had to do most of the work (some good friends of course helped a lot), I was able to order and pay for dad's grave marker after the burial. I had to design it myself as I did mom's. Since an image of Our Lady was carved in mom's marker, I chose St. Joseph for dad and this is what will be written:

Truly a great man. He lived his life to serve others.

Papal Knight Commander of the noble knighthood of the pontifical equestrian Order of St. Gregory the Great

October 21, 1923 – May 23, 2005

Beloved husband and father, guardian and protector, our source of strength and joy.

grave Posted by Hello

Hope to see the marker done this week. Photo shows mom's grave and the one beside is dad's. Now they are together once again and this time forever.