LONDON – The Order of the Knights of Rizal honored their youngest member, a leadership and management student, with knighthood in an investiture ceremony that coincided with the 151st birthday of Philippine national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal.
Elija Paul Villanueva, a disc jockey, is also a photography enthusiast who looks up to Rizal as his inspiration and model.
The national hero’s contribution to the society was the driving force that made Villanueva joined the Order of the Knights of Rizal.
“I joined the Knights of Rizal because I believe in his works and teachings. I was also inspired by him,” he said.
Villanueva encouraged Filipinos to emulate and spread the teachings and legacy of Rizal.
“We need to propagate Rizal’s teachings and legacies. He contributed a lot to our society and also to other countries,” he said.
“We will learn so many lessons from his teachings. What he wrote in the past are still applicable to what’s happening in the present,” he added.
Advocating the teachings of Jose Rizal was also the vision asserted by Lady Aurea Taguiang, the President of the Ladies of Rizal here in the UK.
“We, the Order of Knights of Rizal and the Ladies of Rizal, are promulgating the ideals of Rizal and his teachings,” she said.
“That is why it is so important to celebrate the birthday of Rizal to commemorate all his teachings and ideals,” she added.
The Order of the Knights of Rizal has 25 members in the United Kingdom. It was founded in 1990 here in London.
London is very significant in the life and works of Rizal. He came to London in 1888 and did some research work at British museum. It was also here in this city that he accomplished one of his known works, the annotation of Morga’s book, ‘Sucesos de Las Isla Filipinas’.
Until today the house in 37 Chalcott Crescent, Primrose Hill, Camden where Rizal once stayed still exists with a commemorative mark to remember his life in London.