As the Balangigaons celebrated the Feast Day of San Lorenzo de Martir — the town’s patron saint — on 10 August 2018, United States (U.S.) Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis signed the papers favoring the return of the Balangiga Bells to the Philippines.
This comes following the signing of the U.S. National Defense Authorization Act of 2018 by U.S. President Donald Trump on December 12, 2017 which gives the U.S. Defense Secretary the chief authority to decide on the return of th…e Balangiga Bells.
As of posting, Deputy Press Attache Trude Raizen of the U.S. Embassy in Manila released a statement regarding the matter: “Secretary of Defense Mattis has notified Congress that the Department intends to return the Bells of Balangiga to the Philippines. No specific date has been identified for the return of the Bells. We’ve received assurances that the Bells will be returned to the Catholic Church and treated with the respect and honor they deserve.”
“We are aware that the Bells of Balangiga have deep significance for a number of people, both in the United States and in the Philippines.”
While the country awaits the bells’ return, RTVM once again brings you the first installment of its documentary film entitled, “Kampana ng Balangiga”, directed by Amable ‘Tikoy’ Aguiluz.