Now on its 6th edition, the recently concluded 2019 Philippine Conference on New Evangelization (PCNE) gathered over 5,000 Catholics at the University of Santo Tomas, with the spiritual life of young Filipinos taking center stage.
Following the theme “Filipino Youth Walking with Jesus,” the Jesuit Music Ministry (JMM) of the Jesuit Communications Foundation (JesCom) helped deliver yet another sensational musical experience to a vibrant youthful crowd seeking to enrich their faith.
“Jesuit Music Ministry has been partnering with the organizers of PCNE to produce the highlight of the event: the concerts. The PCNE concerts are in connection with the theme of PCNE,” says JMM Director Lester Mendiola of their all-around contribution.
“Since this year focuses on the youth, we tapped youth celebrities to perform. Also, it isn’t just JMM that’s involved in PCNE. Our production team headed by Ernestine Tamana and our other units in JesCom are also involved in working for the PCNE events,” he continues of JesCom’s integral role in planning the whole program as part of the PCNE executive committee. Straight from the successful hosting of their landmark concert “Ginintuan: Celebrating 50 Years of Jesuit Music”, the JMM and JesCom team quickly buckled down to work once more, while keeping their strong focus on the greater purpose of their admirable efforts.
“It is an honor to be tapped to work on the Day 4 of PCNE. Ginintuan and PCNE are just a week away from each other, so we had to juggle from one event to another,” recalls Mendiola.
“Both events were demanding in terms of detail, artist management and coordination, concept, etc. however both were fulfilling because we were able to inspire many individuals for both of the events.”
With notable youth role models such as lay preacher Bo Sanchez and UAAP Volleyball MVP Sisi Rondina, present to share their wisdom and messages of guidance, JMM brought together a sterling cast of rising talents that included soprano Lara Maigue, ‘The Voice’ contestants Poppert Bernadas and Miss Ramonne, as well as ‘Idol Philippines’ alumna Vanya Castor.
“We are surprised by the generosity of our artists; their willingness to be a part of the event stands out. We were happy to hear the young people singing along with the songs, which means we made the right choices in terms of the songs. We also made it a point to insert a few generic numbers where both the young and not so young audiences could relate to,” recounts Mendiola.
Yet perhaps the concert’s featured star was no other than the Archbishop of Manila himself, who began the PCNE six years ago in response to then, Pope Benedict, the XVI’s call for “new evangelization.”
“There are many standout moments but perhaps Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle singing ‘Maging Sino Ka Man’ is the most memorable one. It’s an assurance to the youth that the Lord says, ‘mamahalin kita, maging sino ka man’,” highlights Mendiola.
In yet another collaborative success for JMM and JesCom, Mendiola expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to share their time and talents to the 2019 PCNE’s mission of leading the youth towards the truth.“Maraming Salamat po sa naging bahagi ng PCNE Day 4 this year. We are grateful for the trust given by the organizers as well as the staff and crew who worked tirelessly to put the events for Day 4 together. Marami pong salamat! May the Lord bless you for your untiring service to his Church.”
Photos by Roma Escaner (Jesuit Communications)