By Jay Luna
M Lhuillier together with the Cebu City government officially launched the “Pasko sa Sugbo 2019” by gifting the Cebuanos with a giant Christmas tree which was was lighted on the first day of December at the Fuente Osmeña Circle last December 1.
To herald the yuletide season, Michel Lhuillier and Amparito Lhuillier, together with Vice-Mayor Michael Rama and Cebu City Councillors were at the forefront of the ceremonial Christmas tree lighting.
Called the “ML Tree of Hope,” the annual tradition is now on its 19th year where it continues to remind the Cebuanos’ resilience amidst the calamities and difficulties they are facing.
M Lhuillier proprietor Michel Lhuillier expressed his gratitude and wisdom during his Christmas message. He shared how hardwork, perseverance, and prayers reached his dreams.
“Don’t give up. Life has plenty of opportunities. I would like to share also my happiness with other people. That’s why every year we put this tree in order that we can share with other people,” Michel Lhuillier said in an interview.
M Lhuillier continues to stand with its tagline “Tulay ng PaMLyang Pilipino” as they give life and hope for all families this Christmas season.
Standing 125 feet tall, this year’s ML ‘Tree of Hope’ embraced the theme “Guiding Star, Peace To All” which symbolized the coming of Jesus Christ. Seventy one year-old Bernardino Adiong, who has been designing the tree since the Lhuilliers hosted the annual event, said that this year’s tree highlighted the comets that represent Jesus’ coming.
“Kini akong gipili nga tema kay tungod sa atong karong kahimtang sa kalibutan, nga karon murag we need prayers gyud. Prayer na gyud atong gikinahanglan (This is the theme I chose because of the circumstances we are experiencing now. We need prayers), Adiong said.
To secure the structure from bad weather conditions, steel was used as the main structure. The design of this year’s tree was adorned with 72 giant comets and 200 colorful Christmas balls made of steel and charol plastic. On top of the tree is a 36-inch tall image of Senor Santo Nino. 1000 flickering light bulbs, pilot bulbs, ball lights, rope lights, series lights, and fluorescents were added. Traditional Christmas colors, red and green, were applied. The base of the tree was composed of a human-sized Señor Santo Niño image and crown, angels, and diamonds. The materials fitted for the decorations were metallic foil, charol plastic, and colored cloth. Bible verses like ‘Peace on Earth’, ‘Good Will To Men’, ‘Joy To The World’, and ‘The Lord Has Come’ were placed on the wall.
It took three months with more than 600 hours of labor and 20 skilled workers to build the tree and apply all important elements to achieve a beautiful masterpiece.
The excitement continued with M Lhuillier’s series of enjoyments like meet-and-greet Santa, photo booth, games, promos, and giveaways.
Lucky winners of the “Super Cash Pa-Premyo sa ML” were awarded 50,000 pesos each. Giveaways like towels, tote bags, and pens were given to the people who joined the games. The ML photo booth is available every Fridays and Saturdays from 6pm to 9pm until January 17, 2020.
M Lhuillier is the country’s largest and most respected non-bank financial institution that has almost 2,000 branches nationwide.