SHARING the same values and Spanish legacy, the University and the Chilean Embassy celebrated Chile’s bicentenary in UST last September 19.

“We (Chile) share the same values [with UST] like the concept of family, nation, and the Church,” Roberto Mayorga, ambassador of the Republic of Chile to the Philippines, earlier said in an interview with the Varsitarian after the Rector’s report last September 8.

Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Esteban Cornejos, who also attended the event, likewise said UST and Chile share a “Hispanic past and common vision of peace and development.”

Rector Fr. Rolando de la Rosa, O.P. said the University and Chile have forged strong ties through the International Council of Universities of Saint Thomas Aquinas (Icusta), where UST and La Universidad Santo Tomas (Chile) are both members.

Icusta is an international association of Catholic schools patterned after the ideals and teachings of the St. Thomas Aquinas.

Mayorga also said “UST-Chile” will join the University on its quadricentennial celebration.

A commemorative plate at the garden in front of the Santisimo Rosario Parish was unveiled after the mass officiated by Father De la Rosa.

A commitment to environmental preservation was signed by De la Rosa, Mayorga, and Richard Tantoco, president of the Energy Development Corp., following a ceremonial tree planting participated by De la Rosa, Mayorga, Tantoco, and two other representatives from other religions.

“We hope that as the tree grows, the economic development [of Philippines and Chile] will also grow, and ties between [the two countries] will be stronger,” said Aleem Said Basheer, chairman of the Imam Council of the Philippines, after the tree planting ceremony.

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Rabbi Eliahu Azaria recited a Mishaberah, a Hebrew prayer for the sick, which he offered to miners trapped since August 5 at the San Jose mine in Chile.

“Since this is an international gathering, Ambassador [Mayorga] decided to celebrate their bicentenary with representatives from some of the other major religions,” De la Rosa said.

The Republic of Chile is located in the South American continent, near the countries Peru, Argentina, and Bolivia. The country gained independence from Spain in 1818.

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