CBCP official hopes Philippines will have more 'Pedros'-A A +A
Saturday, October 20, 2012
AN OFFICIAL of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) expressed hopes that the canonization of Blessed Pedro Calungsod Sunday would spur the revival of the time when parents name their children after saints.
In an interview, CBCP – Episcopal Commission on Youth (ECY) Executive Secretary Fr. Conegundo Garganta said it would also be a good way to honor and commemorate the introduction of the second Filipino saint if newborn children will be named after him.
“They (parents) can do that especially if the birth of their child happens to fall on the day he (Calungsod) was canonized or it can also be the couple’s way of thanking the saint for answering their prayer,” said Garganta.
He noted how such practice was common in previous decades but has since waned in recent years.
“The Church’s influence on the people before was strong, especially in terms of giving names to children, but when we became more Western in our ways and practices, people started naming children after popular personalities,” he lamented.
But more than just naming them after Calungsod, what is more crucial according to Garganta is on how they will they be guided by their parents.
“I would prefer that parents know their responsibility to their children that, as witnesses to the Christian faith, they should help their children grow in the faith,” said the priest.
“Just because you gave a name of a saint to your child it doesn’t mean that they’ll turn out to be good people. That’s why parents should properly mold their children especially in faith,” Garganta furthered.
Calungsod, along with six others, is set to be canonized Sunday in Vatican by Pope Benedict XVI.
He will join San Lorenzo Ruiz as the only two Filipino saints.
The canonization rites will kick off with a Mass at the Saint Peter’s Square and will be witnessed by thousands of Filipino pilgrims as well as some of the country’s Catholic prelates, led by retired Cebu Archbishop emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal, Manila Archbishop emeritus Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Tagle, and CBCP President and Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma.
Back here at home, the National Commission for Blessed Pedro Calungsod has put up a videowall in their gathering at the San Juan Arena in San Juan City in order to give chance to those unable to go to Rome to also witness the event via EWTN downlink live feed starting at 3:30 pm.
The event for Calungsod will start at 1 pm with a Mass to be presided by Manila Auxiliary Bishop Bernardino Cortez, chairman of CBCP - Episcopal Commission on Social Communications and Mass Media.
Former ambassador to Vatican Henrietta de Villa, secretary general of the Commission, said that the event is open to everybody regardless of their religious affiliation.
“We should all be proud whether Catholic or not because we have a new saint. That’s also the reason why President (Benigno) Aquino declared a National Day of celebration in honor of Pedro Calungsod,” de Villa said.
Born in the Visayas in 1654, Calungsod was doing missionary work in Guam in 1672 when he was killed at a young age of 17.
His canonization takes place 12 years after he was beatified by Pope John Paul II in March 2000.
Calungsod will officially become a saint 25 years after San Lorenzo Ruiz was canonized in 1987 also by Pope John Paul II. (HDT/Sunnex)