We've bid 2015 goodbye, but we can still remember the news and newsmakers which not only made it to our news feeds but also made the headlines as well.
Here’s a look back at some of them, from a charismatic papal visit to a phenomenal love team to newly coined words to add to our growing vocabulary.
1. Pope Francis visits the Philippines
Filipinos got a taste of Pope Francis’ charismatic charm when he came to the Philippines for a four-day visit. People either lined up on the streets to catch a glimpse of him, or stayed glued to their TV sets to hear him speak. There were just good vibes all around that time as everyone felt blessed by the Pope – a great way to start the year. Moreover, he left us with these 11 inspiring messages for families.
2. Annulment procedure for Catholic marriages simplified What used to be a long, tedious, and expensive process has been simplified by the Vatican. The streamlined procedure comes as good news to Catholics seeking annulment, including those who have legitimate grounds for doing so, but are prevented from re-marrying within the Catholic church.
3. AlDub phenomenon sweeps the nation
Even the producers couldn’t explain it, but AlDub is an accidental hit more than anything. It’s as if life stopped for about an hour every afternoon so TV audiences could watch the love story of Yaya Dub (Maine Mendoza) and Alden Richards unfold before their eyes. It has broken records, generating as many as 41 million tweets within a 24-hour period. Their story continues to this day, and we are still glued to our TV sets, very likely because it is refreshing to re-learn these 8 family values from a humble kalyeserye.
4. Metro Manila prepares for the “Big One” PHIVOLCS has given us the worst possible scenario: it may be time for another major movement in the West Valley Fault. Although they still haven’t found a way to predict earthquakes, the “Big One” may be due to happen anytime. This has sent public and private offices as well as schools to update their disaster preparedness programs and conduct regular earthquake drills. Some schools have gone as far as having emergency bags and helmets for their students! We all hope it never happens, but being prepared certainly doesn’t hurt. Get more tips on how to prepare your little one for the "Big One".
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5. DOLE mandates lactation stations in workplaces
No more hiding in cubicles, conference rooms, or worse, bathroom stalls. The Department of Labor and Employment released its guidelines on the establishment of lactation stations in private workplaces to allow mothers to continue breastfeeding even after they return to work by expressing their milk and storing it properly until they return home.
6. Uber, GrabTaxi: Finally, an alternative to riding taxi cabs Just when we had gotten tired of taxi drivers who would refuse to give you a ride, or demand an additional amount on top of the metered fare, ride-sharing apps like Uber and Grab came into our lives. The convenience of being able to book a ride when you need it (with the added bonus of not having to pay in cash, in Uber’s case) was something we definitely needed. Commuters can now get from point A to point B with ease, and private car owners have the option to leave their vehicles at home if they don’t want the hassle of finding parking and weaving through traffic.
7. Yaya’s meal in exclusive resort condemned Netizens were up in arms about Balesin Island Club’s “yaya meal,” after a beauty queen revealed that the restaurant refused to serve her mother the same meal as her yaya’s. This got us talking about how we treat our yayas, and whether we are discriminating against them when their meals are different from ours and when we require them to wear a uniform. It was actually a good wake-up call.
8. Teenage suicides on the rise
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Earlier in the year, it was a teenage student at an international school who reportedly jumped to his death after being reprimanded by his teacher. Show business was also rocked by the suicide of a young teenage actress, who was the daughter of renowned stage actors. These incidents made us pay a little more attention to our older children who are possibly going through a confusing adolescent phase. Maybe it also prompted some of us to hug our children a little tighter and just a bit longer. It was a reminder to parents like to listen more and talk less.
9. Dadbod, mombod and other coined terms now widely used If the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year for 2015 is an emoji (insert “Face with Tears of Joy” emoji here), then anything is possible. Emojis have become a shortcut to expressing our emotions and thoughts, and yes, even our responses! Other words that have been recently coined are “dadbod” (a male body that is untoned but still attractive), “mombod” (female version of dadbod), “manspreading” (hogging space on public transportation), and Collins 2015 Word of the Year “binge-watch” (what we do when we watch an entire season of Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead in one go).
10. "Confidently beautiful, with a heart" wins Miss Universe crown for the Philippines Rounding up this year's biggest newsmakers is the Philippines winning the Miss Universe Crown. Although surrounded by controversies, Miss Philippines Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach bested 79 other contestants from around the world with her beauty, poise, and brains. When asked why she should be the next Miss Universe in the final round, she replied with her now famous line: "I want to show the world -- the universe, rather -- that I am confidently beautiful with a heart." Now that's what being a Filipina is all about! This year's pageant also gave us an opportunity to teach our kids these 6 lessons.