In the field of beauty pageants, the Philippines ended 2018 with a bang, thanks to Catriona Elisa Magnayon Gray who was crowned Miss Universe 2018. On January 1, 2019, the Filipino-Australian model and singer took to Instagram to enumerate the reasons why 2018 was a crazy year for her.
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What can I say? 2018 has been one of the craziest, rollercoaster years of my life. I overcame fears and joined @bbpilipinasofficial ✨, trusted in my vision and creativity, found a family and support system in my friends and @favor.church 💙, I released my first music single #WereInThisTogether 🎶 for @youngfocusph, advocated for @loveyourself.ph, travelled my beloved country and raised the Philippine flag 🇵🇭 on the @missuniverse stage. Looking back, I can see that I've grown so much, as a person, in revelation and in faith. I have so much to be grateful for and in bidding farewell to 2018, my heart is full. 2019 you're bound to be one of the most unforgettable years of my life…I'm ready for you. ✨ Wishing you all an amazing start to your new year! Let's make this the most amazing year yet! 🤗💕 Photo: @niko.gonzales from my #WereInThisTogether music video. 🎶 Link in BIO.
Here are some details about the five things the reigning Miss Universe mentioned:
1. Binibining Pilipinas 2018
On March 18, 2018, Gray and 39 other Filipino women competed at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines. In the end, she earned the highest title, the Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2018 crown.
2. Favor Church
Described as “a vibrant, faith-filled church,” Favor Church was launched by Australian missionaries James Aiton and Kate Aiton in the Philippines in October 2015. Including Gray, its members meet every Sunday at 10:30 am, 3:00 pm and 5:30 pm at Shangri-La Plaza Mall in Mandaluyong City, Metro Manila.
3. “We’re in This Together” for Young Focus Philippines
“We’re in This Together” is Gray’s debut single. It was released on November 23, 2018 for Young Focus for Education and Development, a nonprofit organization based in Tondo, Manila, Philippines.
4. LoveYourself Philippines
LoveYourself was founded by Ten Outstanding Young Persons of the World Awardee Ronivin Garcia Pagtakhan in 2011. Gray is one of its volunteers who advocate HIV awareness.
5. Miss Universe 2018
On December 17, 2018, Gray bested 93 other candidates from around the world and was crowned Miss Universe 2018 at the Impact Arena in Bangkok, Thailand. It made her the fourth Miss Universe from the Philippines.
Watch the music video of “We’re in This Together” by Gray here: