In the Philippines, labor migration has become a common phenomenon. Asian surveys reveal that the country has become one of the biggest migrant exporters in the region.
Migration has its human and social costs. By and large, it has become not only an economic issue but a moral one as well. It is in this perspective that the Filipino Service of Radio Veritas Asia was conceived. In the milieu of a migrant life, programs broadcast to overseas Filipino workers seek to respond meaningfully to the unique needs of the listeners.
The Kuwait invasion in August 1990 gave impetus to the creation of a broadcast service that has long been in the planning board of some media specialists in the Church hierarchy. Concerned about the situation and well-being of thousands of Filipinos stranded in that war-torn part of the Middle East, the Archdiocese of Manila took the initiative of adding one more service to Radio Veritas Asia, the shortwave counterpart of the Domestic Service.
Test broadcasts commenced on December 16, 1990, with a nine-day Novena Masses for Christmas. The initial trickle of feedback from listeners expressed gratitude from the listeners who, right from the start of the broadcast, have stated the felt need for a Holy Mass on the air. Furthermore, the daily news segment of the broadcast was predictably the service’s “come-on”. Filipinos overseas were just too hungry for news from their homeland, and to get it on a daily basis was really something else.