The Tomasinong Isabelino was conceived on June 26, 2015, during the Holy Spirit Mass of the Lyceum of Aparri, Cagayan, upon the invitation of Fr. Joel Reyes, the executive vice president of the school.
Fr. Ric-Zeus E. Angobung, the then Parish Priest of St. Joseph Parish in Delfin Albano, Isabela, and the current president of the Tomasinong Isabelino, was inspired by the homily of Fr. Reyes who urged the Thomasian priests from Isabela & Nueva Vizcaya to create a chapter as he called out the first-ever Tomasino Cagayan Valley Alumni meeting. It was the event that encouraged Fr. Angobung to research, plan and finally decide to organize the Tomasinong Isabelino Chapter. Also attending the said mass were Asst. Prof. Fides Maria Carlos, the then director of the Office of Alumni Relations (OAR), the OAR staff and a group of UST alumni from Cagayan—both clerics and the laity.
THE CHAPTER’S TIMELINE
On Jul 9, 2015, Fr. Angobung created the chapter’s Facebook Page: Tomasinong Isabelino. Initially, the page was visited by a total of 171 alumni. The initial meeting was conducted on Aug 26, 2015 at the Bishop’s Residence in Gamu, Isabela. There were only three participants: Mrs. Luzvimin Bautista Vizcarra, an elderly friend and Fr. Kelly Lora. There was another attempt at an initial meeting at the Bishop’s Residence last Nov 27, 2015. Asst. Prof. Carlos was due to fly in but, unfortunately, due to the inclement weather, the meeting was canceled.
On Jan. 8, 2016, during the UST Alumni Priests Association Reunion, Fr. Angobung personally visited Asst. Prof. Carlos to inquire about the details of the alumni office. He was also introduced to Ms. Cherry Gatchalian-Tanodra, the then assistant director who gladly toured him around the new facilities of the Thomasian Alumni Center (TAC).
Fr. Angobung also attended the first meet-and-greet organizational meeting on Feb 22, 2016, at the TAC. His sole companion was Ms. Tanya Cayetano from Santiago City, Cagayan Valley. The OAR Office also helped them come up with their customized logo design. The first general assembly of all Thomasian Alumni chapters happened on May 4, 2016. Those who joined were: Fr. Angobung, Jayvee Diaz, and Mrs. Viscarra. They were also given an official certificate of attendance as a chapter.
On Aug 12 last year, the General Assembly of Thomasian Associations was conducted. It was graced by the presence of Fr. Angobung and Prof. Bong Baybado of the Institute of Religion.
The National Alumni Chapter Convenors Association happened on Oct 21 of last year. Among those who attended were Mr. Paul Aldrich Pimentel, Ms. Vanessa Lachica, Prof. Baybado, Mrs. Viscarra and Dean Aleth Lora-Dacanay of the Faculty of Pharmacy.
Last Aug 22, the first organizational meeting of the Tomasinong Isabelino-San Mateo “Balatung” Unit was conducted. Fr. Angobung decided to subdivide the meetings and groupings per town, per parish first before calling for a province-wide general assembly later this year.
The initial meeting of the San Mateo Unit was well attended. The interim officers are as follows:
Interim Officers/Secretariat: Atty. Ernesto Piedad Jr., Dr. Glen Fabros, Atty. Loella Agcaoili, Paul Aldrich Pimentel and Vanessa Lachica.
Consultors: Priscilla Piedad, Leny Petines, Aurora Visitacion, Rosalinda Dumayas, Emerita Simeon, Marileo Pascua and Purabel Francisco
The group also decided that they would officially launch the Tomasino Isabelino-San Mateo “Balatung” unit on Sept 8 as this will also signal the opening of the Holy Rosary Festival 2018 in the St. Matthew parish, on the occasion of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary.