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The Hopevale Martyrs were Christian martyrs who died during the World War II in the present day Hopevale, Aglinab, Tapaz, Capiz, Philippines. The martyrs were Jeanie Clare Adams, Prof. James Howard Clovell and his wife Charma Moore Clovell, Dorothy Antoinette Dowell, Signe Amelia Erikson, Dr. Frederick Willer-Meyer and wife Ruth Schatch Meyer, Dr. Francis Howard Rose and wife Gertrude Coombs Rose, Rev. Erle Frederich Rounds and wife Louise Cummings Rounds and their son Erle Douglas. Despite of the order that these Americans should go home because of the war, they refused to leave their mission and eventually offered their lives when they were caught by the enemies.

During the Japanese invasion of the Philippines, 11 American Baptist Missionaries refused to surrender to Japanese troops. The martyrs took refuge in the mountains of Barrio Katipunan, Tapaz, Capiz. With the help of their Filipino friends, they hid in the forest they call Hopevale. On December 19, 1943, Hopevale fell into the Japanese hands. The martyrs begged to free the Filipino captives and instead offered themselves as ransom. At the dawn of December 20, 1943, the missionaries asked to be allowed to pray, and an hour later, they told their Japanese captors they were ready to die. The adults were beheaded and the children were bayonetted [1].

Memorial

To this day, there is a cross marker on top of the common grave of these martyrs in Hopevale near the place where they were bayoneted to death. A replica of this marker also stands at Central Philippine University.

Legacy

A 2-Act musical drama entitled "HOPEVALE: Memories of Missions and Martyrs" was staged in honor of the martyrs during the centennial celebrations of the founding of Central Philippine University last 2005. The musical was written by Rodolfo Cabado, an alumnus of the university.

References

  1. ^ Labiste, Ma. Louisa (2005). One Hundred Years of Lighting up the City and the World. Philippine Daily Inquirer
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