Happy Reading & Eating to All

From the Positively Filipino staff -- Mona Lisa Yuchengco, Rene Ciria Cruz, Raymond Virata and myself -- we'd like to wish all our readers a joyous holiday season. Another year is almost over and, already, this is our second to the last issue for 2015. How quickly time flies, really. We hope that in some small way, we have enhanced your lives with our carefully curated stories.

Did you know that Pope Francis so loved the Pope Mobile that he rode in during this Manila visit in January that he actually ordered another one for Rome? Nitz Almazora, whose family built that particular custom-made vehicle, tells us about how her family of seven flew to Rome for an audience with the beloved head of the Catholic Church and to deliver the ordered Pope Mobile. Surely an experience to be told to every generation of the Almazora clan.

From London, meanwhile, Sarri Tapales writes about her transformative experience "Dancing with Ligaya." That's Ligaya Amilbangsa, a recent recipient of the much-coveted Ramon Magsaysay Award for culture and dance, who teaches Pangalay, the traditional dance of our ethnic brothers and sisters in Mindanao. Sarri is a ballet dancer herself and she knows whereof she speaks when she describes how learning the Pangalay brought her home to her Asian roots.

A Christmas issue isn't complete without a Christmas story so we have a poignant one, "They're All We Shall Ever Want for Christmas" by esteemed Filipino writer Ed Maranan.

And we're not ignoring the Miss Universe brouhaha: our Art Director Raymond Virata has compiled some of the funniest tweets and reaction videos on that tragicomedy.

Our Happy Home Cook feature: Churros with Tsokolate from our resident foodie Elizabeth Ann Quirino. Perfect as a post-Noche Buena treat.

Gemma Nemenzo

Editor, Positively Filipino