Three Priors meet Senator Villar

Towards the end of February Prior General Fray Miguel Miró, Prior Provincial Fray Dionisio Selma and outgoing San Sebastian Convent Prior Fray René Paglinawan paid a visit to Senator Cynthia A. Villar in the historic city of Las Piñas in Metro Manila. Today Las Piñas is synonymous with its world-famous Bamboo Organ inside its parish church.

The historic visit was planned at the provincial curia in Quezon City a couple of days before the three Capitular Fathers took the plane for the Visayas. They were to join the 24 religious in the two-week 7th Provincial Chapter of the Province of Saint Ezekiel Moreno at the Talavera House of Prayer in Barangay Quiot, Cebu City.

Despite the traffic mess apparently common in Manila, they reached Las Piñas in less than an hour, thanks to the expert driver Monching. At the church patio of Saint Joseph parish church, the concrete statue of the iconic friar Padre Diego Cera de la Virgen del Carmen silently greeted them.

At once the newly re-elected prior provincial noticed and lamented the absence at the metal marker of the statue’s foot of anything that identified the confrere Fray Diego as Augustinian Recollect. Even the metal historical landmark at the façade of the Temple of God, now 243 years old, dedicated to the foster father of Jesus, was likewise bereft of the acronyms OAR, ORSA nor of Agustino Recoleto, Augustinian Recollect.

Father Selma asked aloud: “Why is there nothing indicative of the ecclesiastical affiliation, religious provenance of the church and organ builder and nor of the 200-year presence of the religious order that administered Saint Joseph Parish?”

There is nary a hint of grateful mention of the Spanish friar’s religious order. Its illustrious member Padre Diego Cera of Aragon, Spain, and his handcrafted Bamboo Organ had placed Las Piñas in the cultural map of the world. Bereft further of religious affiliation too is the Diego Cera Avenue that separates the Church of the Bamboo Organ from Saint Ezekiel Moreno Hall. But then, this is pursuant to provisions of a Philippine law prohibiting any professional title or religious affiliation in street names.

The three priors knelt down and prayed before the Blessed Sacrament inside the stone house of God where the hardworking Padre Diego and the exemplary Padre Ezekiel Moreno, parish priest in 1876-1879, prayed as well decades before. They all looked up at the choirloft and marveled at the iconic Bamboo Organ, hand-crafted in 1819-1825.

The parish museum beside the divine temple was filled with noisy high school students from nearby Saint Joseph’s Academy. The museum has a large framed photo of Padre Diego, a metal bust of bearded Saint Ezekiel, paintings and pictures of old Las Piñas town and church, and a small pipe organ. Near the exit were a showcase of souvenir items, religious articles and copies of Helen Samson-Lauterwald’s Bamboo Organ book. Fr. Selma carefully sat on a sturdy antique chair. The curator’s assistant was informed that the visiting priests were senior citizens and confreres of Saint Ezekiel and Padre Diego and no museum entrance fee was charged.

The San Sebastian van proceeded to Santuario de San Ezekiel Moreno, ten minutes away. Architect Claude Edwin Andrews had designed it. The church is the biggest ever constructed by Vista Land, a corporation owned by the Villar family. For four decades, the family is known to be builder of residences and memorial homes and developer of subdivisions. At present, they have constructed houses of God in Iloilo, Cagayan de Oro, Alabang, Tagaytay, etc.

The construction of Santuario de San Ezekiel Moreno commenced in May 2011. It is located in the compound of the headquarters of Villar SIPAG (Social Institute for Poverty Alleviation and Governance) Center, Barangay Pulanglupa Uno, C5 Extension Road in Las Piñas City. The bright interior of the Santuario without columns was the work of Architect Joey Amistoso. The gilt retablo was a fine sight to behold with the sacred images and that of Lady of Buen Suceso, patroness of the Diocese of Parañaque-Las Piñas, at the apex. At the lateral wings, the stained glass rosettes depict the Saint on one side and on the other the episcopal coat-of-arms of Saint Ezekiel in Pasto, Colombia, depicting the pierced heart on a book with the text Fortitudo mea et refugium meum es tu (You are my strength and my refuge). The rosette of the coat-of-arms of Saint Ezekiel Moreno Province is prominent at the church façade.

The Santuario was inaugurated by the local Ordinary Jesse Mercado on 19 August 2014. The diocesan rector, Recollect priests from Manila and Cavite and ex-provincial Father Regino Bangcaya concelebrated the holy Mass with the bishop. Las Piñas residents, Secular Augustinian Recollects from Cavite City and devotees of Saint Ezekiel occupied the 700-seater temple with countless parishioners standing at the aisles, huge frontal and lateral doors. Bishop Mercado blest the Museo de San Ezekiel after the Mass.

At her speech during the lunch tendered for the guests at the nearby Villar SIPAG Center, Senator Cynthia A. Villar could never forget how in 2011 her family was given a special guided tour by no less than the former prior general Father Javier Pipaón at Monteagudo, Navarra, Spain. It was a guided tour of the Recollect convent where Bishop Ezekiel spent his last days on earth and passed away on !9 August 1906 in the odor of sanctity.

Senator Villar met with the three priors who had earlier viewed and admired the interior of the 200-million-peso Santuario. They did not visit the Museo de San Ezekiel which was closed for renovation. The lady senator had rushed from the Senate in Manila where her Agriculture Committee had conducted in the morning a hearing on the National Food Administration (NFA) rice shortage. Days later the hardworking senator flew to Boracay for an ocular inspection of the world-renowned beach resort and her Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources conducted a hearing on the ecological woes of the primary tourist destination.

The senator conversed with the prior general from Tarragona in Catalonia, Spain, through Fr. Rene Paglinawan’s help as interpreter. Fr. Miró then gave various medals with relics of Saint Ezekiel to the senator who said she would share them with her husband ex-Senator Manny Villar and children. After the native snacks, they all proceeded to view handcrafted artifacts made from water lilies and labelled photos at the Villar Legacy Museum inside the Center. She gave the visiting priests a bag each of native products and publications on her cherished advocacies, poverty-reduction programs, farm schools and other pro-poor projects in Las Piñas, Manila, and other parts of the Philippines.

On the way to the shop where strips of plastic waste were transformed into 20-kg. school armchairs, the visiting priests observed the incredibly clean water of Las Piñas River, another favorite eco waste-management project of Villar SIPAG Center. Their last stop was spent at the coffee shop inside the family-owned commercial center where over cups of cappuccino and brewed black coffee. Senator Villar got to know the Augustinian Recollects better. She rued that the Santuario de San Ezekiel could not be handed over to the Recollects. Father Miró then invited her to visit the general curia in a future visit to Rome.

It was past 7:00 PM when the prior general checked in at Terminal One of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport after a twenty-minute drive. The Qatar Airlines flight was scheduled at 12:01 AM.

It was a historic visit of sorts and the good senator got to know and appreciate the charism and mission of the Augustinian Recollects whose sons Padre Diego Cera and Saint Ezekiel had bequeathed the intangible heritage of faith and spread the Good News of Jesus to her forbears. Furthermore, the iconic Recollect friar brought worldwide fame and tangible cultural legacy to the Filipino people and to Senator Cynthia A. Villar’s native Las Piñas as the City of the Bamboo Organ.

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Prof. Emmanuel Luis Romanillos

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< 2019 >
April
SMTuWThFS
 1
  • All day
    April 1, 2019

    MEETING OF THE PRIOR GENERAL WITH THE PRIORS PROVINCIAL
    April 1-5, 2019 / Rome

    RECOGNITION DAY (GRADE SCHOOL) – USJ-R, CEBU
    08:00 AM

2
  • All day
    April 2, 2019

    ORDINATION OF BISHOP-ELECT MARVYN MACEDA
    (Diocese of San Jose, Antique)

    BACCALAUREATE MASS (GRADE SCHOOL) – USJ-R, CEBU
    08:00 AM

    GRADUATION RITES (GRADE SCHOOL) – USJ-R, CEBU
    10:00 AM

3
  • All day
    April 3, 2019

    RECOGNITION DAY (COLLEGE) – SSC-R CAVITE
    9:00 AM

    THANKSGIVING MASS – CSNT-R, TALISAY

    SILVER ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1994-2019)
    Fray Cirilo Andan
    Thanksgiving Mass
    10:00AM / Our Lady of Lourdes Quasi Parish, Tambo,
    Ayungon, Negros Oriental

    INSTALLATION OF BP. OSCAR JAIME FLORENCIO, D.D.
    (Military Ordinariate of the Philippines)

    ANNIVERSARY OF EPISCOPAL ORDINATION (1981-2019)
    Most Rev. Gabriel Reyes, D.D. (Diocese of Antipolo)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Fray Melquiades Modequillo
    Sr. Ma. Mercedes de los Sgdos Corazones
    Sr. Aurelia Cagang, AR

4
  • All day
    April 4, 2019

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR VOCATIONS (cf. LAMP 5c)

    RECOGNITION RITES (GRADE SCHOOL AND HS) – CSNT-R, TALISAY

    KINDER MOVING-UP CEREMONY – SSC-R CAÑACAO CAMPUS
    9:00 AM / Auditorium

    GRADE 6 GRADUATION RITES – SSC-R CAÑACAO CAMPUS
    4:00 PM / Auditorium

    BACCALAUREATE MASS (GRADE SCHOOL) – SSC-R, MANILA
    9:00 AM / San Sebastian Basilica

    RECOGNITION DAY – USJ-R, CEBU
    Grade 11 – 08:00 AM
    Grade 12 – 01:00 PM

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Maria del Sgdo. Corazon de Jesus

5
  • All day
    April 5, 2019

    PATRONAL FIESTA of the Diocesan Shrine of San Vicente Ferrer
    Talisay City, Negros Occidental

    CLOSING OF THE 6TH CENTENARY (1419-2019) OF THE DEATH OF SAN VICENTE FERRER
    10:00AM –Fiesta Mass Presider & Homilist: Most Rev. Vicente Navarra, D.D. (Bishop Emeritus)
    3:00PM – Palapak Festival at the SNTP Grounds

    PATRONAL FIESTA of the San Vicente Ferrer Chaplaincy in Apo Island, Dauin, Negros Oriental
    9:30AM –Mass Presider & Homilist:Rev. Fr. Carmelito Limbaga, Jr. (Chancellor, Diocese of Dumaguete)

    GRADE 10 MOVING-UP CEREMONY – SSC-R CAÑACAO CAMPUS
    10:00AM/ Auditorium

    THANKSGIVING MASS – USJ-R, CEBU
    8:00 AM

    GRADUATION RITES (GRADE SCHOOL) – SSC-R, MANILA
    2:00 PM

    MOVING-UP CEREMONY – SSC-R, MANILA 8:00AM/ Auditorium

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Vincent Cadeliña

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1997-2019)
    Fray Ferdinand Fornilos
    Fray Julius Marcos
    Fray Cristopher Maspara
    Fray Corvin Maturan
    Fray Vicente Ramon, Jr.
    Fray Anthony Morillo

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Toribia de la Virgen de la Paz
    Sr. Ma. Cristina Verzosa, AR
    Sr. Ma. Resurreccion Jayme, AR

6
  • All day
    April 6, 2019

    GRADUATION RITES (COLLEGE, GRADUATE SCHOOL, COLLEGE OF LAW) – UNO-R, BACOLOD

    MOVING UP CEREMONY AND GRADUATION RITES (GRADE SCHOOL AND SHS) – CSNT-R, TALISAY

    COMMENCEMENT EXERCISES – USJ-R, CEBU
    ABM, HUMSS, TVL – 08:00 AM / STEM – 01:00 PM

7
  • All day
    April 7, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Jonathan Jamero

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1996-2019)
    Fray Sixto Bitangjol

8
  • All day
    April 8, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Leo Alaras

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Maria de Santa Rita
    Sr. Candida Umali, AR

9
  • All day
    April 9, 2019

    DAY OF VALOR/ARAW NG KAGITINGAN

    INSTALLATION OF BISHOP MARVYN MACEDA, D.D.
    (Diocese of San Jose, Antique)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Walthrode Conde
    Sr. Ma. Dolores Daquilanea, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2006-2019)
    Fray Radni Caparas
    Fray Dexter Palagtiosa

10
  • All day
    April 10, 2019

    GRADUATION RITES (SHS) – SSC-R CAVITE
    8:30AM / Recoletos 4th Centennial Gymnasium

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Lounal Jarumay
    Sr. Querubina Cabillon, AR
    Sr. Ingrid Gueriña, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Brigida Jamisola, AR

11
  • All day
    April 11, 2019

    BACCALAUREATE MASS (SHS) – SSC-R, MANILA
    9:00 AM / San Sebastian Basilica

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1993-2019)
    Fray Ronel Gealon

12
  • All day
    April 12, 2019

    BACCALAUREATE MASS (COLLEGE) – SSC-R, CAVITE
    3:00 PM / Recoletos 4th Centennial Gymnasium

    GRADUATION RITES (COLLEGE) – SSC-R CAVITE
    4:00PM / Recoletos 4th Centennial Gymnasium

    GRADUATION RITES (SHS) – SSC-R, MANILA
    8:00 AM / Auditorium

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Joel Dequilla

13
  • All day
    April 13, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Fidela Advincula, AR
    Sr. Herminilda Ceniza, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION (1980-2019)
    Archbp. Peter Liu Cheng-chung, D.D. (Archdiocese of Kaohsiung)

14
  • All day
    April 14, 2019

    PALM SUNDAY

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1966-2019)
    Fray Joaquin Jamelo

    ANNIVERSARY OF SOLEMN PROFESSION
    (1969-2019)
    Fray Joaquin Jamelo

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    Most Rev. Victor Bendico, D.D. (Bishop of Baguio)
    Most Rev. Socrates Mesiona, MSP, D.D. (Apostolic Vicar of Puerto Princesa)
    (2012-2019)
    Fray Philip Rollon
    Fray Nestor Raras
    Fray James Castelo
    Fray Rellyric Delos Santos
    Fray Ralph Laureen Ciceron

15
  • All day
    April 15, 2019

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Bp. Gregorio Espiga, OAR, D.D.

16
  • All day
    April 16, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI
    Sr. Marissa Tepora, AR
    Sr. Maria Veronica Mendez, AR

1718
  • All day
    April 18, 2019

    HOLY THURSDAY

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Amado Lucero
    Sr. Ma. Esperanza Escaño, AR

19
  • All day
    April 19, 2019

    GOOD FRIDAY

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE SICK (cf. LAMP 5c)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1992-2019)
    Fray Joel Naranja
    Fray Emilio Edgardo Quilatan
    Fray Antonio Limchaypo
    (2009-2019)
    Fray Arian Josef Ocheda
    Fray Samuel Eyas

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Gregoria Ibarra, AR

20
  • All day
    April 20, 2019

    BLACK SATURDAY

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2003-2019)
    Fray Glynn Ortega
    Fray Albert Pellazar

21
  • All day
    April 21, 2019

    EASTER SUNDAY

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1990-2019)
    Fray Rouel Sia
    Fray Joel Villaruel

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Fray Cirilo Durana

22
  • All day
    April 22, 2019

    EARTH DAY (cf. LAMP 52)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Persiuz Joseph Decena
    Fray Helfrid Palmis (simple prof)

23
  • All day
    April 23, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Marilou Delmoro, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2000-2019)
    Fray Urbano Galanido
    Fray Mark Rochele Renacia
    Fray Renie Villalino

24
  • All day
    April 24, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Bob Cabanag
    Fray Rafael Pecson

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1994-2019: SILVER JUBILARIANS)
    Fray Amado Emmanuel Bolilia
    Fray Jonathan Caballero
    Thanksgiving Mass at SEMONORE (Other details to be finalized later.)
    (1999-2019)
    Fray Romeo Ben Potencio
    (2004-2019)
    Fray Renier Alviola
    Fray Bob Cabanag
    Fray Arian Josef Ocheda
    Fray Christopher Gaspar

    AR SISTERS – JUBILARIANS OF RELIGIOUS PROFESSION
    Officiating Minister: Most Rev. Alberto Uy, D.D, Bishop of Tagbilaran
    Venue: San Sebastian Basilica, Manila
    *Diamond (60 Years)
    – Sr. Teresita Aurigue, AR
    – Sr. Angelica Fuentes, AR
    – Sr. Marcelina Diaz, AR
    – Sr. Gerarda de la Riarte, AR
    – Sr. Anastacia Fangon, AR
    *Silver (25 Years)
    – Sr. Naria Flor Mejarito, AR
    – Sr. Marietta Angelica Gunayan, AR
    – Sr. Herminilda Ceniza, AR
    – Sr. Rona Alaza, AR

25
  • All day
    April 25, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Hermina Billate, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1987-2019)
    Fray Cirilo Andan
    Fray Leander Barrot
    Fray Carmelo Borces
    Fray Leopoldo Estioko
    Fray Jose Fortunato Garces
    Fray Antonio Limchaypo
    Fray Gaudencio Geronimo de Mesa, Jr.
    Fray Nemesio Tolentin
    (1992-2019)
    Fray Ferdinand Fornilos
    Fray Edwin Macmac
    Fray Julius Marcos
    Fray Cristopher Maspara
    Fray Corvin Maturan
    Fray Anthony Morillo
    Fray Vicente Ramon, Jr.

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2014-2019)
    Fray Jose Teodulfo Jadulco
    Fray Hector Gonzales
    Fray Jess Marco Sanchez

26
  • All day
    April 26, 2019

    GRADUATION RITES (COLLEGE OF LAW) – SSC-R, SURIGAO CITY

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Sotero Macabudbud
    Fray Raymund Rueann Alcedo
    Sr. Constancia Reyes, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1997-2019)
    Fray Raymund Rueann Alcedo
    Fray Louie Gabinete
    Fray Jay Parilla
    Fray Albert Pellazar
    Fray Niño Cesar Ruiz
    Fray Jerome Virtudazo
    (2003-2019)
    Fray Roy Baluarte
    Fray Allan Rubett Cabatian
    Fray Samuel Eyas
    Fray Dominador Mercado, Jr.
    Fray Allan Jacinto
    (2014-2019)
    Fray Benjamine Monday Edobor
    Fray Andrie Pugate
    Fray Jovy Gallego
    Fray Jessriel Marcha
    Fray Yamaguchi Tomakatsu
    Fray Maximillian Ifeanyichukwu Omem

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ma. Natividad de San Jose

27
  • All day
    April 27, 2019

    BACCALAUREATE MASS, HOODING & GRADUATION RITES (GRADUATE SCHOOL) – USJ-R, CEBU
    01:00 PM

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Lucille Encabo, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1996-2019)
    Fray Jose Alden Alipin
    Fray Don Besana
    Fray James Bumangabang
    Fray Arnel Diaz
    Fray Rommel Rubia
    Fray Edgar Tubio
    (2002-2019)
    Fray Roderick Deguit
    Fray Ian Anthony Espartero
    Fray Teodulo Hayahay
    Fray Excel Saycon
    (2013-2019)
    Fray Kenneth Caligdong
    Fray Kenneth Pahamutang
    Fray Paul Demillones
    Fray Robin Ross Plata
    Fray Neil Ryan Jarumay
    Fray Jorr Rabacal
    Fray Elpedio Sarita, Jr.

28
  • All day
    April 28, 2019

    DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE MISSIONS (cf. LAMP 5c)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Maria Lirio Guillermo, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (2001-2019)
    Fray Rey Tripulca
    Fray Feliciano Campomanes
    Fray Roland Cepe
    Fray Henry Santiago
    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Fray Jonathan Jamero
    Fray Russell Lapidez
    Fray Abraham Latoza
    Fray Virgilio Paredes
    Fray Gideon Antolin Lagrimas
    (2012-2018)
    Fray Mark Saludes
    Fray Roweno Eugenio Hamo

29
  • All day
    April 29, 2019

    ARSE – BATCH 1
    Inclusive Dates: April 29 – May 3, 2019
    Venue: Talavera House of Prayer, Cebu City

    24th RECOLLECT CAMPUS MINISTRY SUMMER INSTITUTE
    Inclusive dates: April 29- May 3, 2019 / SSC-R Cavite

    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Edgardo Juanich, D.D. (Apostolic Vicariate of Taytay, Palawan)
    Fray Hector Gonzales
    Sr. Rebecca Adarayan, AR
    Sr. Zosima Tambanillo, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1989-2019)
    Fray Emilio Jaruda, Jr.
    (1995-2019)
    Fray Urbano Galanido
    Fray Jose Jaazeal Jakosalem
    Fray Mark Rochelle Renacia
    Fray Renie Villalino
    (2006-2019)
    Fray Persiuz Joseph Decena

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION (1986-2019)
    Most Rev. Gerardo Alminaza, D.D. (Diocese of San Carlos, Negros Occ.)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Pilar de San Jose

30
  • All day
    April 30, 2019

    MEETING OF THE REVITALIZATION TEAM (ERO) IN ROME
    Inclusive dates: April 30-May 4, 2019

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Mavieve Joy Bernaldez, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1988-2019)
    Fray Paulino Romel Dacanay
    Fray Ronel Gealon
    (1993-2019)
    Fray Jose Ernil Almayo
    Fray Joel Alve
    Fray Randolph Castulo Castillo, Jr.
    Fray Charlito Orobia
    (2000-2019)
    Fray Vincent Cadeliña
    Fray Radni Caparas
    Fray Joseph Dexter Palagtiosa
    (2005-2019)
    Fray Michael Catama
    Fray William Cordero
    Fray Kenneth Joseph Onda
    Fray James Dexter Tanquis
    (2011-2019)
    Fray Nimrod Launio
    Fray Rafael Pecson
    Fray Jerik Troy Siozon
    Fray John Paul Tanquis
    Fray Jayferson Baldelovar
    Fray Leo Neil Bullos
    Fray Sir Michael Dineros
    Fray John Zachary Haguisan
    Fray Lounal Jarumay
    Fray Enrico Nacorda
    Fray Nelson Plohimon

    

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