Cebuanos should follow the example of Saint Pedro Calungsod whose martyrdom is relevant in this era where “a lot of people are unafraid of God’s laws.”
Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Julito Cortes stressed this last night in the second of three Masses or Triduum before tomorrow’s national Thanksgiving Mass at the South Road Properties (SRP).
“Nitalaw ba si Pedro Calungsod sa iyang pagtuo? Wala. Iyang giatubang ang kamatayon (Did Pedro Calungsod chicken out from his faith? No. He faced death),” Cortes told the churchgoers at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.
“We should possess the kind of faith that would make us ready to offer our lives for the glory of God, to live and practice the Christian faith,” he added.
Like Calungsod, who left his family for a missionary journey in the Marianas Islands, Cortes said it’s better to be far from home but grow closer to God and love rather than to remain home but be mired in sinful ways.
With Skype and social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, Cortes said connecting to loved ones working or residing abroad is easier.
Fireworks signaled the start of the motorcade that transported the three-foot image of Calungsod from the Archdiocesan Shrine of our Lady of Guadalupe to the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral at 3 p.m yesterday.
Close to 200 devotees young and old joined the foot procession, waving white and yellow flaglets.
During its day-long stay in the Guadalupe church, the Calungsod image attracted thousands of devotees who lined up to view the icon up close.
They wiped the image with cloth, prayed for a few seconds and took cell phone and camera photos.
There was a priority line for senior citizens.
At 4 p.m, the image arrived at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral where it was greeted by priests led by Msgr. Ildebrando Leyson.
The flower-decked sculpture of Calungsod was then carried and placed on the right side of the main altar.
Thousands of devotees then flocked to the image in long lines before the second Mass of the Triduum started. /Correspondent Peter L. Romanillos