Every year, the Philippines never fail to give importance to the commemoration of our Filipino National Heroes. This was evidenced by the many public holidays that the country held annually. Now, as we enter the last month of the year, another holiday will be held in commemoration of Andres Bonifacio, the founder of the Katipunan and the Father of the Philippine Revolution. He played a crucial role in the 1896 Philippine Revolution that paved the way for the end of 333 years of Spanish colonization in the Philippines. For this reason, he has firmly cemented himself and his legacy to the pages of history books. However, although widely known, many Filipinos are still clueless about why do we celebrate Bonifacio day. Meanwhile, others who wanted to get the most out of the holiday did not know what to do on Bonifacio day. These queries have led us to provide you with an insight into the essence of the holiday. We hope to provide you with an answer to why do we celebrate Bonifacio day. Simultaneously, we also wanted to give you suggestions on what to do on Bonifacio day to be able to get into the spirit of the holiday.
For starters, you may read the article below, which talks about National Heroes Day and how we can honor the past and present heroes of the Philippines.
Read the article: Honoring Past and Present Hereos on National Heroes Day
A Short Overview of Andres Bonifacio’s Life
Andres Bonifacio was born on November 30, 1863, on present-day Claro M. Recto Avenue in Tondo, Manila. He was the first-born of the five siblings of Santiago Bonifacio and Catalina de Castro. At the tender age of 14, they were orphaned, and he was forced to abandon formal schooling to be able to provide for their family. Thus, he worked in different blue-collar jobs while growing up. As such, there is an existing misconception that Bonifacio was an uneducated individual. However, this was not the case since although Bonifacio did not receive any formal schooling, he dedicated time to studying both Spanish and Tagalog languages.
It was perhaps Andres Bonifacio’s view on education that sparked his nationalistic fervor and love towards the country. Upon the deportation of Dr. Jose Rizal to Dapitan, Bonifacio, together with five other compatriots, formed a secret society known as the Kataastaasan, Kagalang-galang na Katipunan ng mga Anak ng Bayan (KKK) or Katipunan for short. He became the President of the organization or the Supremo in 1895, which saw a great rise in their ranks. In August 1896, he declared an armed revolution against Spain, which became known as the Cry of Pugad Lawin.
He was instrumental in the eventual dissolution of Spain’s control in the country. However, his life would be cut short due to internal conflicts and the politics of the organization. He would eventually be sentenced to death by a military court of the new Philippine Republic led by Emilio Aguinaldo. He died on May 10, 1897, at Mt. Nagpatong, near Mt. Buntis in Maragondon, Cavite.
Read the article: Get to Know Andres Bonifacio on Bonifacio Day 2021
Why do we celebrate Bonifacio Day?
Having an overview of his life, we can now understand that Bonifacio’s contribution to the Philippines was deemed too great not to be commemorated. The celebration serves as a way to give respect for the legacy of Bonifacio to our country. Around the country, several celebrations are held to show this gesture. At the same time, the non-working holiday nature of Bonifacio’s day is a way for the government to invite us to remember his memory.
There is also an interesting fact surrounding the day of his celebration. As you may notice, the day of the commemoration of Bonifacio was around the date of his birth. This is in contrast to his contemporary, the national hero Jose Rizal, whose commemoration is on December 30, which was the date of his death. Such was the case because, unlike Rizal, Bonifacio’s nature of death was in the hands of his fellow countrymen and not with foreign colonizers.
Going back to Bonifacio’s life, it is undoubtedly clear that his instrumental role in founding Katipunan and organizing an armed revolution makes him worthy of the title “Father of the Philippine Revolution.” Up until now, he still serves as a role model for a lot of Filipinos who want to evoke change in the current sociopolitical landscape of the country. His love for the country serves as a beacon for many Filipinos, which we ought to follow for many years to come.
What to do for Bonifacio Day?
This 2022 celebration will serve as the 159th Birth Anniversary of the Supremo. At the same time, the National Historical Commission of the Philippines’s theme for the celebration is “Bonifacio 2022: Kabayanihan at Pagtindig sa Makabagong Panahon.
With that said, we like to give you suggestions on what to do to celebrate this public holiday. Take note that most of our suggestions hope to improve your learning and appreciation of our history.
Attend the Official Celebrations of Bonifacio Day
The official celebration of Bonifacio’s day is annually held at Bonifacio’s Monument in Balintawak, Caloocan. The celebration is always presided over by the President of the Philippines, which is now Pres. Ferdinand ‘Bongbong’ Marcos Jr. It will be a great time to visit the monument since it is always in its full splendor during the occasion. The monument was designed by National Artist Guillermo Tolentino and is even considered more symbolic and grander than Rizal’s Monument in Luneta.
There will also be a celebration besides the one in Caloocan. Each of the venues will feature simultaneous flag-raising and wreath-laying ceremonies. Perhaps after the celebrations, you may also visit BRIA properties in Montalban and in the soon-to-rise Deparo, Caloocan.
Other celebrations besides in Caloocan will be held at Andres Bonifacio Monument, Tutuban, Manila, Pinaglabanan Memorial Shrine, San Juan City, Andres Bonifacio Monument, Balintawak Cloverleaf, Quezon City, Andres Bonifacio Monument, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, and at NHCP Museo ng Paglilitis ni Andres Bonifacio, Maragondon, Cavite.
There would be no greater celebration that you can offer to our National Heroes than giving time for yourself to learn and appreciate history. And no, we are not asking you to sit down and watch Tiktok history videos. Instead, we invite you to visit museums which should be open on public holidays, such as Bonifacio’s. This will be a perfect opportunity to visit since you will be free from your preoccupations such as work.
You can visit the National Museum of Fine Arts, which houses the work of the National Artist for Painting, Carlos ‘Botong’ Francisco, entitled “Filipino Struggles Through History.” This painting has the iconic image of Bonifacio holding a bolo and leading the charge of the Katipunan. Another museum that you can visit is the Museo ng Katipunan in Pinaglabanan, San Juan, which houses all of the Katipunan documents and memorabilia. The museum also has an exhibit that has extensive details regarding the life of Andres Bonifacio.
Enrich your Historical Knowledge
It will also be a good time to spend the free day reading some historical books, watching some well-researched historical videos, and attending free historical webinars. There are tons of great works that studied the intricacies of the Philippine Revolution. A good start would be the works of the Filipino historian Teodoro A. Agoncillo. His works, such as The Revolt of the Masses (1956), History of the Filipino People (1960), and Malolos: Crisis of the Republic (1960), are some of the well-acclaimed books about the revolution.
You can also watch some historical videos on Youtube from acclaimed historian Xiao Chua. There are also archived documentaries available from local TV Networks, such as iJuander and Lourd de Veryra’s History with Lourd. If you want a deeper discussion, you might also look up upcoming webinars from the social media pages of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP). You may also search for free webinars organized by certain universities like the University of the Philippines.
Indeed, there is no better way to celebrate Bonifacio day than taking the time to understand our history and the role that our National Heroes played in achieving independence. We also hope that learning history will give you a deeper reason why to commemorate Rizal for his upcoming death anniversary next month. Read the article below to learn more.
Read the article: Commemorating Rizal for Rizal Day 2021
As such, BRIA Homes not only primes itself on offering affordable homes for our Filipinos but also recognizes Andres Bonifacio’s insurmountable efforts this Bonifacio day. The same sentiment also goes for every National Heroes of the country who willingly offered and laid their life on the line to ensure our future. Thus, we highly encourage you to take a well-deserved break and revisit the past this coming Bonifacio day.