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Various Filipino-American Community associations from the Bicol Region, Bicol clergy, spearheaded by Fr. Roy Rogaspi, classmates and friends of the late Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse M. Robredo held a memorial mass on August 25 at the Our Lady of Victories Church in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Deputy Permanent Representative of the Philippine Mission to the United Nations in New York Eduardo de Vega, Deputy Consul General Theresa Dizon-de Vega, other Filipino-American Community members, and several classmates of Secretary Robredo from Bicol were present at the mass, the Department of Foreign Affairs said in a news release.
In his homily, Fr. Rogaspi, a friend of Secretary Robredo and fellow devotee of Our Lady of Peñafrancia, recalled his previous conversations with the late secretary which centered mostly on his dedication to public service and his family. He noted how the secretary remained humble and simple in his ways despite his growing national prominence. He cited the deep spiritual life of Secretary Robredo as the foundation for how he conducted himself in public and in private.
Another friend of Secretary Robredo, Mr. Fiorello Salvo, recounted how helpful Secretary Robredo was to friends who had migrated to different countries and needed assistance in reconnecting to the Philippines.
Deputy Consul General Dizon-de Vega, speaking on behalf of the Consulate, noted that Secretary Robredo would remain an inspiration to all those in government to conduct themselves in a manner befitting their office and to always strive to deliver efficient, honest, and responsive public service.
At the end of the mass, the Book of Condolence from the Philippine Consulate General in New York was opened for signing to members of the community present at the service.