Thousands pay respects to departed loved ones-A A +A
Thursday, November 1, 2012
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- Thousands of Kapampangans paid respects to their departed loved ones bringing flowers and candles in both private memorial parks and public cemeteries early Wednesday.
Some spent the night at the tombs since Wednesday, October 31, extending their stay on All Saints’ Day until dawn of November 2, All Souls’ Day.
“We have deployed hundreds of our people for All Saints’ Day to make sure everything is in order,” said City Administrator Ferdinand Caylao.
Caylao said security was tight in the cemeteries, as hundreds of uniformed police and plainclothes officers monitored the situation overnight, checking that no weapons and liquor were taken inside.
Traffic was heavy but manageable in most areas where cemeteries are located.
He added more cops were stationed in strategic points to assist motorists and those trooping to burial parks under “Oplan Undas” of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Land Transportation Office (LTO), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Department of Health (DOH) and volunteer groups.
“We have stationed emergency medical personnel, Oplan Habitat members and traffic enforcers to assist police to manage traffic and see to the safety of those going to parks and cemeteries. As far as the old Catholic Cemetery is concerned, we have provided sandbags and temporary foot bridges in parts that are flooded there. Just like last year, we hope that this year’s remembrance of the departed will be peaceful and solemn,” he added.
Sto. Tomas Mayor Joselito Naguit said: “The public cemetery is not flooded and is well maintained by the Municipal Government. Even the private cemetery here has been improved by us even as it has not been turned over to the municipality. We have implemented our Oplan Kaluluwa so that those going to our cemeteries here will be safe and find it convenient.”
Similar measures were also noted in Mexico, Sta. Ana, Arayat, Bacolor and other towns where police visibility was high, Naguit said.
But even as the mood seemed festive as the occasion is also a reunion time for families and friends, Archbishop Paciano Aniceto reminded the faithful of the true meaning of All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day.
“Let us not forget to remember our departed loved ones who have joined our Creator. Let us pray for them for as they continue to rest in peace,” Aniceto said. (Jovi T. de Leon)
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on November 02, 2012.