Vigils, movies for Calungsod held in Cebu-A A +A
Friday, October 19, 2012
CEBU CITY -- Masses and film showings are being held in several parishes in Cebu, ahead of the live telecast on Sunday afternoon of the declaration of the second saint from the Philippines.
Some parishes in this city have started triduum masses or a three-day series of masses in honor of Blessed Pedro Calungsod, as part of the thanksgiving and celebration.
Msgr. Vicente Tupas, St. Therese Parish priest in Barangay Lahug in Cebu City, announced there was a five-minute film showing on the life of the Visayan martyr just before Thursday night’s mass.
The film will be shown for the next three days. Tomorrow (Saturday), on the eve of the canonization, a catechesis on Calungsod’s life will also be held and this will be followed by a prayer vigil until midnight.
Live coverage of the canonization rites officiated by Pope Benedict XVI in Rome, Italy will be shown at the church’s social hall and at the church proper on Sunday afternoon.
At the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral, there will be regular masses throughout the day. By 5:30 p.m. Sunday, a thanksgiving mass on behalf of the Archdiocese Cebu will be led by Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Emilio Bataclan.
Similar activities will also be conducted at the San Isidro Labrador Parish in Barangay Talamban, Cebu City, said Fr. Daniel Daculan, parochial vicar.
He added that the parish is also busy in helping organize a proposed new parish that will be named after the first Visayan saint.
Daculan said the preparations are still in the initial stages, and the community would have to submit their intention to become a parish and collate requirements such as a list of communities, religious groups and infrastructure.
Celebrations are also being organized at the Blessed Pedro Calungsod Parish in Barangay Cantabaco in Toledo City, which is the first parish named after Calungsod, and at the San Gregorio Magno Parish in Ginatilan. Some town folk believe Ginatilan was the new saint’s place of origin.
The templete, where the National Thanksgiving Mass will be held next month, is 60 percent complete, said committee on venue vice chairman Fr. Brian Brigoli.
The construction work was hampered in the past week because of the rains but the foundation work is proceeding as scheduled.
Brigoli also announced that SM Prime Holdings Inc. will be laying cement on half of the venue.
The initial agreement was just for laying out filling materials and compacting work, but the additional cement will be in place to address unpredictable weather changes.
Brigoli said there will also be drainage canals around the 27-hectare site for the same purpose. All the foundation-laying work is scheduled to be finished by the first week of November.
As preparations in Cebu continue, preparations committee secretariat chairperson Margie Matheu announced that a group of Filipino pilgrims from Australia almost did not make it to witness the canonization rites after they were duped by their Italy-based travel agent.
Matheu said they only realized that they were unable to leave when they reached the airport, where they were told they had no tickets.
“They were resolved to attend the canonization; they paid again (for their tickets). They are now in Rome,” she added.
The group from Australia was known to Cebu-based devotees in 2008 after they organized a Blessed Pedro Calungsod choir.
“This behavior, all of this was not done overnight,” said Matheu, adding that the preparations committee also want to underscore the spiritual preparations of the pilgrims and the faithful.
About 2,000 personnel from Philippine National Police and Armed Forces will be mobilized during the National Thanksgiving on November 30.
Police Regional Office (PRO)-Central Visayas Director Marcelo Garbo told reporters they will beef up security, as many devotees and pilgrims will attend the religious event.
Senior Superintendent Melvin Ramon Buenafe, head of the Cebu City Police Office, has asked for more security personnel, who will be fielded for crowd control and traffic flow.
Garbo said they will look out for street criminals like pickpockets, as lawless elements from other parts of the province might visit to take advantage of the large crowd.
He instructed Senior Superintendent Louie Oppus, deputy director for operations of PRO-Central Visayas, to coordinate with the military.
Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Tampus, Central Command spokesperson, said they are prepared for the event, as well as other activities where Calungsod’s image will be toured after the canonization in Rome.
To ensure also a peaceful celebration, a gun ban will be in effect, Garbo said. All permits to carry firearms outside one’s residence are suspended.
Exempted from the gun ban are police personnel included in the security force and those who are on duty. Special arrangements will be made for intelligence officers on covert operations.
The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), in its website, reported that parishes in other parts of the country are also holding special events to celebrate the sainthood of Pedro Calungsod.
The Sto. Niño de Tondo Parish will host a program from 2:30-7 p.m. on Sunday, followed by a youth mass at 8 p.m. Another group at the San Juan Arena will host “San Pedro 10.21”, a live airing via satellite from 1:30-6 p.m. of the canonization rites in Rome.
The CBCP also confirmed that the Commission on Youth of the Archdiocese of Cebu and the National Shrine of St. Joseph in Mandaue City have organized “Barkada ni Pedro Live,” another live telecast of the canonization from 12 noon to 6:30 p.m. It will be held in the Mandaue Cultural and Sports Complex. (BAP/With DSM/Sun.Star Cebu)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 19, 2012.