Familia Gonzalez de Sulipan, Apalit, Pampanga

I have put off writing about my father’s distinguished Gonzalez antecedents for the longest time.  I have to admit that I take it for granted and I have taken it for granted, very undeservedly, all these 39 years of my life.  I guess I did not know how to deal with it, for while my father’s senior, more academically distinguished cousins trumpeted their intellectual and professional Gonzalez heritage to no end, my father and his siblings dealt with it very casually, often humorously, as they recalled the happy, fun, and sometimes comical episodes of the family from their youth in the prewar to their adulthood in the postwar.  My uncle Brother Andrew Benjamin Gonzalez, F.S.C. of the De La Salle University Christian Brothers [ the youngest brother of my father ], in particular liked to reminisce the bawdy and even scandalous incidents with memorably hearty laughs.  But despite that, he, probably more than any member of the family, carried the greatest pride in that heritage and the resolve to live up to it, and excel beyond all expectations, with every fiber of his being…


One Sunday evening after dinner, in the car, on the way to the De La Salle University on Taft avenue, Manila [ probably in the late 1990s ]…  Brother Andrew and I were talking as usual, about matters both august and mundane, serious and comic…  when, somehow, he reflected on his very successful professional life as an educator…

“I have that drive…  that passion to excel… There’s just no other way to do things…”  Brother Andrew reflected.

“My model for achievement was Papa [ Augusto Diosdado Gonzalez y Sioco, 1887 – 1939 ] …  With a father like that, how could I do less?”  he continued.

I thought of my own dear late Daddy [ Augusto Beda Arnedo Gonzalez, 1932 – 1990, Brother Andrew’s eldest brother ] — laidback and content, all ambitions forgotten in the wake of life’s vicissitudes — and thought that I had to do more, much more…

“Ah, but you had everything it took, and everything it takes, to achieve all of that…  all the resources, all the back-ups at your disposal.  I can’t say the same thing for us…  the situation is very different for us now… I don’t know how it will all turn out…”  I countered.

“You will have your own time, you’ll see, I hope I’ll still be around to see it…”  He turned to me and smiled widely, then turned his gaze back to the horizon and looked straight to the future, as he always did.

He was truly the educator that way:  He led the way by example, advised you on your direction, but the game plan and the execution were entirely up to you, and only you…


How could he not achieve, and achieve spectacularly, given his antecedents???  [ His paternal great grandmother was the firebrand Matea Rodriguez y Tuason { viuda de Sioco, viuda de Arnedo Cruz } of Bacolor and Sulipan, Apalit;  according to Tiburcio Hilario, secretary of the revolutionary Katipunan, she was the biggest financier of the Katipunan movement in Pampanga, secretly contributing thousands of pesos in gold coins to the cause. ]  His paternal grandfather was one of the first Europe-educated “ilustrados” in the 1870s, Dr. Joaquin Gonzalez y Lopez [ 1856-1900 ]:  the first Filipino ophthalmologist, philanthropist doctor, “revolucionario” [ cooperated with the Katipunan despite his being half-Spaniard ], the discoverer of “beri-beri” as a disease in the Philippines, one of only two representatives of Pampanga to the 1898 Malolos Congress, and appointed by President Emilio Aguinaldo to be the first rector of the first state university, Universidad Cientifico-Literaria de Filipinas [ the forerunner of the UP University of the Philippines ]  [ by the way, Brother Andrew’s maternal grandfather was the first elected Governor of Pampanga during the American regime, Macario Arnedo y Sioco [ 1868-1941 ], son of the legendary “El Anfitrion” Capitan Joaquin Arnedo Cruz of Sulipan, Apalit ] .  His father was Atty. Augusto Diosdado Gonzalez y Sioco [ 1887-1939 ]:  “hacendero” landowner, technocrat par excellence, corporate secretary of the PASUDECO, industrialist, and one of Pampanga’s two richest multimillionaires in his lifetime.  His paternal uncle was Dr. Bienvenido Maria Gonzalez y Sioco, sixth President of the UP University of the Philippines and the visionary who transferred it postwar from Manila to its vast Diliman, Quezon city campus [ by the way, Brother Andrew’s paternal second degree uncle was Atty. Jose Escaler y Sioco, “hacendero” landowner, technocrat, and multimillionaire industrialist;  his paternal second degree cousins were multimillionaire industrialist Ernesto Ocampo Escaler and his youngest brother, the respected Bishop Federico Ocampo Escaler, S.J..  His paternal first cousins and mentors [ because he was born posthumously ] were the distinguished legal luminaries Atty. Joaquin Tomas de Aquino “Jake” Valdes Gonzalez and Atty. Gonzalo Walfrido Rafols Gonzalez.


Through the quiet example of his distinguished academic career and patrician way of life, Brother Andrew showed his generation and ours exactly what a “Gonzalez de Sulipan” should and must be:  an individual of exceptional intelligence, possessed of unquestionable integrity, high professional achievement, resulting in considerable financial productivity not really used for personal gain, but for the greater good of the community.  It is an altruism that defies the world.  Admittedly, it is a noble and difficult path which our generation nor the succeeding one is not eager to tread…


We shouldn’t even be carrying Gonzalez as our surname because our patronymic is really Lopez… Lopez de Valladolid, Espana.  True, our ancestress was the beautiful and spirited Maria Amparo “Mariquita” Gonzalez y de los Angeles of Baliuag, Bulacan, daughter of the rich hacendero Vicente Gonzalez and Venancia de los Angeles.  She became the de facto wife of Fray Fausto Lopez, O.S.A., who was the “cura parroco” parish priest of Baliuag in the 1850s.  He was from Valladolid, Spain and he came from an aristocratic family in court circles, most probably with royal lineage, because his sister was a lady-in-waiting to Reina Isabel II.

Fausto Lopez and Maria Amparo Gonzalez y de los Angeles had six goodlooking Spanish mestizo children:  Soledad, Jose, Joaquin, Rita, Carmen, and Francisco, who were given the surname Gonzalez y Lopez.

Soledad Gonzalez y Lopez married Mariano Gonzales [ a rich Baliuag hacendero ];  Jose Gonzalez y Lopez married Francisca Carrillo y Arriola [ also a daughter of a Spanish friar ];  Joaquin Gonzalez y Lopez married Florencia Sioco y Rodriguez [ one of the richest “herederas” / heiresses of Pampanga at that time, in the 1880s ];  Rita Gonzalez y Lopez married Jose Llora [ they settled in Spain ];  Carmen Gonzalez y Lopez became a spinster;  Francisco Gonzalez y Lopez married Maria Lloret [ the 14 year-old daughter of a Spanish ship captain ].


On __ November 1883, Dr. Joaquin Gonzalez de los Angeles y Lopez married Florencia Sioco y Rodriguez at 4:00 a.m. at the Apalit church in a ceremony officiated by Rev. Fr. Manuel Redondo, O.S.A..  Their principal sponsors were Florencia’s mother Matea Rodriguez viuda de Sioco, viuda de Arnedo-Cruz and Joaquin’s elder brother Jose Gonzalez y Lopez [ that is what I remember, I will have to check the old documents again ].

Joaquin and Eciang first lived in the old, 1830s house of her mother Matea Rodriguez in Barrio Sulipan, the residence of her first husband and Eciang’s father, Josef Sioco [ 1786-1864 ].  Soon after, Matea carved out the sprawling grounds between the old house and the old “visita” of Barrio Sulipan to Eciang so she could build her own house.  Joaquin, drawing on his mother’s large and elegant European-inflected Baliuag mansion and his own European education and exposure, designed and built a commodious house along contemporary lines influenced by the Beaux-Arts architecture of the Belle Epoque.  With his educated and excellent taste, Joaquin furnished his house with Spanish Isabelina furniture, French and Italian paintings, and various decorations he had brought from the time of his European studies.  In no time, Joaquin’s and Eciang’s new house rivaled the renowned Castilian elegance of the nearby “La Sulipena” mansion of Eciang’s far older half-sister, Maria de la Paz Sioco de Arnedo [ + April 1897 ].

Eciang was a fecund woman and she bore Joaquin ten sons in rapid-fire succession:  Fernando Leonardo “Dando” [ o 1884 ], Jesus Lope “Nuting” [ o 1885 ], Emilio Cosme “Miling” [ o 1886 ], Augusto Diosdado “Bosto” / “Titong” [ o 1887 ], Octavio Florencio “Tabing” [ o 1888 ], Virgilio Rufino “Vijing,” Francisco Javier Eligio “Javing,” Bienvenido Maria “Bindo,” Joaquin Jorge “Quining,” and Fausto Felix “Pasting” [ o 1893 ].

Fernando Leonardo Gonzalez y Sioco married Clementina Elizalde y Cacnio of San Luis, Pampanga;  Dr. Jesus Lope Gonzalez y Sioco married  1 ]  Ysidora Espiritu y Dungo of barrio San Vicente, Apalit, Pampanga,  2 ]  Mercedes Veloso of Palo, Leyte;  Emilio Gonzalez married Rosario Valdes y Liongson of Bacolor, Pampanga;  Atty. Augusto Diosdado Gonzalez y Sioco married  1 ]  Marina Escaler y Sioco [ first cousin ] also of barrio Sulipan, Apalit, Pampanga,  2 ]  Rosario Arnedo y Espiritu [ 2nd degree niece ] also of barrio Sulipan and barrio Capalangan, Apalit, Pampanga, 3 ] Lucila Batac also of barrio Sulipan, Apalit, Pampanga;  Octavio Florencio Gonzalez y Sioco died at 10 years old;  Dr. Virgilio Gonzalez married Rosario Singson y Chiong Veloso of Parian, Cebu;  Atty. Francisco Javier Eligio married Josefa Mercado y Espiritu also of barrio Sulipan, Apalit, Pampanga;  Bienvenido Maria Gonzalez y Sioco married Concepcion Rafols y Miravalles of Cebu and Leyte;  Joaquin Jorge Gonzalez y Sioco married  1 ]  Julia Salgado y Mendoza of San Fernando, Pampanga,  2 ]  Luz Manankil y Elizalde of Mexico, Pampanga,  3 ]  Lucila Batac also of barrio Sulipan, Apalit, Pampanga;  Atty. Fausto Felix Gonzalez y Sioco married  1 ]  Amparo de la Rama of Bacolod, Negros Occidental,  2 ]  Pastora Cordero y Gomez of Angeles, Pampanga,  3 ]  Marina Navarro of Malabon, Rizal,  4 ]  Belen Alava y Bartolome of Pila, Laguna.

The nine Gonzalez-Sioco brothers who married produced around 125 first cousins, legitimate and illegitimate.  In turn, the 125 first cousins produced around 750 second cousins.  There must be twice that number in the succeeding generation of third cousins…  So there are a lot of “Gonzalez de Sulipan” descendants all over the Philippines and the world.  Sheer Number Power!!!   😀   😀   😀




  1. chatillo buenaventura gonzalez said,

    June 21, 2012 at 2:20 pm

    im chatillo buenaventura gonzalez grandson of leonardo gonzalez and gloria buenaventura….ive heard alot of stories about our family tree and now i feel great when i knew that it was all true. i want to meet one of our cousins….just hit me up @ 0915 331 0332…

  2. laya gonzalez said,

    June 21, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    my great-grandparents are dr. jesus gonzalez and mercedes veloso.

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