BACOLOD Catholic Bishop Most Rev. Patricio A. Buzon, SBD, D.D. has enjoined the Christian community to commemorate the Holy Week in union with Jesus Christ.
His Lenten message, which came out via ADSUM Diocese of Bacolod Facebook page as produced by the Commission on Social Communication, Diocese of Bacolod and aired over DYAF AM Radyo Totoo 1143 Lakas ng Katotohanan, on Palm Sunday, the Bishop asked the Catholic community to stay calm and feel well and to continue to be prayerful in this extremely difficult and exceptional situation brought about by Covid-19 pandemic.
This Covid-19, already present among us, is causing us great anxiety, uncertainty and fear. Many questions occupy our minds, when will this end? How will this end? Why is it happening to us? What shall we do? What can we do?
"I can still vividly remember the homily of Pope Francis, addressed to the victims of Yolanda in Tacloban, five years ago, wearing a raincoat and totally drenched, put aside his prepared text and spoke to the people straight from his heart as he said, "So many of you have lost everything, some of you have lost family members, all I can do is keep silent. Many of you have asked, why Lord? And to each of you, I have no words. Then he pointed to the Cross beside the altar and said, let us look to Christ, He responds from His heart to the Cross. He understands us because He underwent all the trials that me and you have experienced, " Bishop Buzon shared.
"Dear brothers and sisters, let us bring our questions to Jesus on the Cross. He too had experienced our insecurities and doubts, our helplessness and fears, our isolation and abandonment, feeling forsaken by all, He too asked why? My God, My God, why have you abandoned me?" He said.
As we enter the most sacred days of our faith, the Holy Week, this extremely difficult and exceptional situation brought about by Covid-19 makes our celebration of the Holy Week even more meaningful. Let this Holy Week be more than just a ritual we go through each year. But the real experience of following Christ and carrying our own cross to our own Calvary, he further said.
Let us spend these days in prayer and reflection. The enhanced community quarantine affords us with much time to pray. Let us pray for the world, for our country, for our Diocese and for all our loved ones. In a special way, let us pray for those who sacrificed themselves to take care of us and the sick - the front liners who heroically risked their own lives to save ours.
"Let us make this Holy Week truly holy by uniting ourselves with the Lord in his passion and death as we bear the inconveniences and sacrifices that this pandemic has brought upon us.
If at times, we feel like we are abandoned even by God himself, let our faith prevail and let us rise above our feelings.
Christ did not stay in His own feeling of abandonement, but surrendered himself with full trust to His Father, saying, "Into your hand, I commend my spirit."
And having put himself in the Father's hands, He conquered death and won one fullness of life for us all.
As I said in my last Pastoral letter; Let us put all our trust in God who is infinitely more powerful than this Covid-19 virus and who infinitely loves us. Let us put ourselves and our loved ones in His hands and all shall be well. Have a blessed and fruitful Holy Week and God bless you. Stay safe and keep well," the bishop said.