3rd European Assembly Report by USA Regional Commander

Recently, Lady Ching and I returned from Europe after attending the successful 3rd European Assembly held on July 27-29, 2007 in Paris, France, hosted by Paris Chapter under the leadership of Chapter Commander Sir Carlos Arnaldo KCR, Sir Rey Pablo KCR, Area Commander for France and over all chair of the event and Sir Lino Paras KGOR -Regional Commander for Europe. The theme of the assembly- Dr.Jose Rizal Heritage Trails in Europe- which brings about the importance of travel in Rizal’s life which “ greatly contributed to the development of his intellectual horizon and instilled in him the value of equality, liberty and justice, through his keen observation of different races, places and events.”

The Assembly was well attended by knights all over Europe including, Austria, Belgium, England, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and France. Delegation from the Philippines included the Acting Supreme Commander Sir Ver Esguerra KGCR, Sir Roger Quaimbao KGCR, Past Supreme Commander and Chairman of International Affairs, Sir Rey Mateo, KGOR former member of the Supreme Council and Area Commander for Rizal, Sir Esmeraldo Plastina, KGOR former member of the Supreme Council and Area Commander for Southern Luzon, Sir Jose Gardoce KGOR Commander Laong Laan Chapter of Quezon City, Sir Luis Villafuerte, KGOR and Lady Dra.of Davao City Chapter. Other International delegation were Sir Chito Collantes, KGOR Consultant to the Supreme Commander for Canada, Sir Felix Gonzales, KGOR Deputy Area Commander for Central USA and Adviser to Malaya Chapter Chicago Illinois, Sir Lito Gajilan KGOR, Commander- New Jersey Chapter

The Assembly were highlighted with the presence of dignitaries such as Sir Ambassador Jaroslav Ludva, KCR, Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the Philippines, Sir Ambassador Jose Abeto Zaide, KGOR Ambassador of the Philippines to France and Portugal, Sir Consul Jesus S. Domingo, KGOR and Sir Consul Miguel R. Bautista, KGOR of Switzerland, Sir Honorary Consul Tony Guansing KGOR of Antwerp, Belgium.

Other Affiliated and Allied Organization from the Philippines present were Justice Ruben Dela Cruz- Supreme Court, Deputy Court Administrator, President- Ombudsman Anti Corruption Council of the Philippines, Dr. Consolation Alaras of the University of the Philippines, Professor, President Moral Recovery Foundation Officers, Inc. of the Philippines and Ms Irene Isles- Securities and Exchange Commission Philippines.

The assembly started with a welcome address from the Regional Commander of Europe Sir Lino Paras KGOR, followed by inspirational message from Philippine Ambassador to France and Portugal Sir Jose Zaide, Jr. KGOR. Sir Ambassador Jaroslav Ludva- Czeck Republic Ambassador to the Philippines stated that he will ensure to establish KOR Chapters in Litomerice and Prague and mentioned the sisterhood agreement between Calamba, Dapitan and City of Litomerice the city of Ferdinand Blumentritt, where the memory of Dr. Jose Rizal is very much known. Acting Supreme Commander Sir Ver delivered the keynote address on behalf of Sir Hilario Davide,Jr. Supreme Commander and Philippine Ambassador to the United Nations. Sir Roger Quiambao, KGCR delivered his stirring message to the knights and ladies who are members of Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW). The assembly also included the knighting of new members, elevation to KOR, exaltation to KCR and conferment to KGOR from different areas of Europe. I extend my congratulations to Sir Lito Gajilan Chapter Commander of New Jersey and host of the 15th International Assembly for his conferment to KGOR.

After the Paris Assembly a side trip to Brussels was included. With the generosity of
Regional Commander of Europe, knights and ladies of Brussels Chapter we were able to visit many sites of this wonderful city, including the famous Atonium, Waterloo, Rotterdam, Amsterdam and City of Ghent. This trip was highlighted also with the reception and audience with the charming Philippine Ambassador to Brussels- Her Excellency Christina Ortega of Ilocos Norte. A special ceremony was held at the garden of the Philippine Embassy, the conferment of Sir Cesar Alcoba to KGOR presided by Sir Ver Esguerra KGCR, at the presence Sir Roger Quiambao KGCR and delegation from the Philippines

After staying in Brussels for five days, it was time to say goodbye to members of the Supreme Council and knights of Brussels and so we headed back to Paris via the famous train ride to Central station where we were met by Sir Rey Pablo KCR and Lady Flor. That evening we joined the bus tour to Lourdes along with some knights and ladies of Paris with a side trip to Irun and Biarritz the southern coast of France. We spent the last four days in Paris with the knights and ladies of Paris Chapter and took the time to see all the wonderful sites such as the Eiffel tower, the Louvre Museum, Notre Dame Cathedral, Palace of Versailles, River Seine boat ride and many more.
As I have said repeatedly, attending the Knights of Rizal Assembly both International or Regional is a venue for learning more about Rizal, meeting old friends, making new ones and experience the memory of a lifetime, I have not attended any assembly anywhere in the world that I did not like. Everyone of these assemblies gave the best of themselves in camaraderie and fraternity.

As a neutral observer on this 3rd European Assembly in Paris, I found this to be excellent. and successful. The preparations and cooperation among their Area, Chapter and individual knights and ladies is commendable. Of course with a venue like Paris … walang kaparis how can anything go wrong. I am more elated to find that the new Regional Commander of Europe, Sir Lino Paras KGOR is well respected and liked by the European Region. To Area Commander for France and overall chair of the assembly Sir Rey Pablo and Lady Flor, all knights and Damas for Rizal of Paris Chapter, I tip my hat to them for job well done and their genuine hospitality. MERCI BEAU COUP!
Sir Emmanuel ‘Noli‘ Vianzon, KGOR






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