A CHURCH official urged the faithful to observe All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days by remembering their deceased loved ones and not by scaring others with ghost stories.

This is what Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus Emilio Bataclan said during the afternoon mass at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral’s mausoleum yesterday.

Bataclan, together with Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Dennis Villarojo, offered a mass for those interred in the mausoleum, who now include the late Cebu Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal.

In his homily, Bataclan lamented that younger people nowadays associate All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days with supernatural beings rather than remembering their deceased loved ones.

“In the past, we remembered our deceased loved ones as a reminder that there is eternal life awaiting us. Now, children associate our late relatives with ungo (monsters) or ghosts,” he said.

Bataclan also said that celebrating Halloween has no relation to the observance of All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day.

Hours before the mass, police officers assigned to secure the mausoleum said that a handful of people came to pray and offered flowers and candles at Vidal’s tomb.

Officials of the Archdiocese of Cebu also offered flowers and candles to the tombs of other clergy buried in the mausoleum, including Bishop Juan Gorordo, who was known as the first Bishop of Cebu, and Cebu Archbishop Julio Cardinal Rosales.

The mausoleum was ordered constructed by Rosales to serve as the final resting place of Cebu’s clergymen.

It was built in 1982, a year before Rosales died.

Msgr. Ruben Labajo, team moderator of the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral, said that since Monday, they’ve allowed the public to enter the mausoleum so they can pay their respects to Vidal and other deceased bishops and priests.

Labajo said the mausoleum will be open to the public from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days.

He, however, said that Vidal’s relatives will be allowed to stay in the area until 10 p.m.

On Friday until Sunday, he said the mausoleum will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

By Sunday midnight, Cathedral officials will close the mausoleum to allow the Archdiocese of Cebu to continue its renovation works.

Labajo reminded those planning to visit the mausoleum today to follow certain guidelines.

Labajo said offering candles and flowers is not allowed, especially for those who plan to view Vidal’s tomb.

To make the visitation peaceful and orderly, Labajo urged visitors to follow the instructions of police and security personnel assigned in the area. (JKV)