The Archdiocese of Cebu, PLDT and Smart have formalized their partnership to celebrate the 500 Years of Christianity in the Philippines. The celebration, spanning a period of two years, will feature a series of online and on-ground activities, mostly in Cebu—recognized as the cradle of Christianity in the Philippines. Also unveiled during the partnership launch were the Panaw sa Pagtuo (Journey of Faith) Mobile Exhibit App and Gasa: 21 Historical Snippets to 2021 video series.

In a video message during the ceremony, Alfredo Panlilio, PLDT Chief Revenue Officer and Smart President and Chief Executive Officer expressed his appreciation for being part of this important milestone that will enable the Church and tourism stakeholders with digital technologies. “I am happy to see how our partners are able to pivot and integrate digital technologies into their current mode of operations with the help of innovation. These initiatives underscore PLDT-Smart’s commitment to rebuild our nation. We are always ready to be of service to the country and the Church—whether it is to deliver innovative solutions that drive economic growth and development, or social services that enable people and communities to live better,” he said.

Archbishop Palma expressed his heartfelt gratitude for PLDT-Smart for its support to the Archdiocese for the 500 Years of Christianity Celebration. “I’d like to sincerely thank PLDT-Smart. In this age of connectivity, virtual spaces and social media enabled us to continue being in solidarity, being connected, with the desire to offer something that can lift up the spirit, that can give hope, that can tell people despite COVID-19, we have reasons to believe. I am excited. I may not be a digital native, but I am learning. In Cebu. it is our joy, our privilege, and our responsibility to show that God has blessed us, as I said, we have a thousand reasons to thank the Lord, that God loves us through all these beautiful things. From the archdiocese, daghan kaayong salamat (thank you so much). Let the world know that we are grateful to be Christians, we are thankful for the gift and we are willing to share our giftedness,” Archbishop Palma added.

“I am most pleased to know PLDT-Smart is a big part of enabling tourism in the new normal. What better way to help reinvent tourism in one of the most beautiful archipelagic countries in the world- the only predominantly Roman Catholic country in Asia—than through the digital platform. We at PLDT-Smart feel blessed to have been selected to be the official partners of the Archdiocese of Cebu in mounting the celebrations of the 500 Years of Christianity in the Philippines,” says Cathy Yap-Yang, First Vice President and PLDT-Smart Corporate Communications Group Head.

Present during the ceremony held at the Archdiocesan Museum of Cebu were Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma, Assistant Vice President/Center Head for PLDT-Smart Corporate Communications Atty. Maria Jane Paredes, 500 Years of Christianity Celebration Chairman Fr. Mhar Balili, and Cebu Archdiocesan Commission for the Cultural Heritage of the Church Chairman Fr. Brian Brigoli. (PR)

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