Novena massses for Pedro ongoing

Posted on October 15, 2012


SINCE Friday, Oct. 12, daily novena Masses in the runup to the canonization of Blessed Pedro Calungsod have brought people to his shrine at D. Jakosalem Street in Cebu City.

A glass-encased statue of Calungsod stands at the right side of the altar.

A stone lies near his feet. The pebble was taken from Tumhon, Guam where the boy martyr was killed in 1672 by angry natives. Another sculpture of Calungsod is placed outside the shrine.

“We invite people to visit the shrine and to participate in our preparations as we go into Blessed Pedro’s canonization,” said Fr. Bonnin Olivar, the diocesan priest in charge of the Blessed Pedro Calungsod Shrine.

“We’re more focused on the spiritual aspect of the preparations. We have to understand that spirituality lasts,” Olivar told Cebu Daily News.

Mass at 6:30 p.m. is preceeded by a rosary and the novena prayer to Calungsod.

On Oct. 21, Sunday, the Mass will be at 1:30 p.m. followed by a procession in the compound of the Archbishop’s Residence where the shrine is based.

People can also watch a live telecast of the rites in Rome on a wide screen mounted in the covered court beside the shrine.

The proceedings will start at 4:30 p.m. Philippine time and will be covered live by the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN) and the Cebu Catholic Television Network.

“The spiritual preparations are significant. How ready are we to celebrate the canonization? What good would it be if we’re only up to the externals?” said Olivar who temporarily took over from Msgr. Ildebrando Leyson as the shrine’s custodian.

Leyson left for Rome in mid September for his duties as chairman of the Rome Commission for the preparations of the canonization.

“I think people are drawn to Pedro because he’s like a kapamilya (family) to us. He is a Filipino. We feel at home with him,” said Fr. Olivar in Cebu.

Olivar said he hoped people would emulate the young man’s virtues. /Reporter Adol Vincent Mayol


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