THE legacy of Visayan martyr and saint, Pedro Calungsod, can continue in three ways.
According to Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Midyphil Billones, these are the giving of blood “literally,” the “quickening of blood” and maintaining a “spiritually healthy blood.”
Billones celebrated the pontifical mass for the 22nd annual fiesta celebration for the saint held at the Archdiocesan Shrine of San Pedro Calungsod in Cebu City on Saturday, March 27, 2021.
Billones, in his homily, said the ability to give and to share by participating in blood drives is an example of giving of blood.
“We also need today the ‘quickening of blood’ by becoming modern day missionaries,” he said.
“Where it is difficult to gather physically, become a digital missionary to connect people. When others are afraid, become a health missionary in the church so that others can pray safely,” he said.
Billones also encouraged the faithful to maintain a “spiritually healthy blood” by letting go of anger and pain, by asking for forgiveness in humility, especially during Lent, and by being charitable.
The bishop said being a martyr for the wrong reasons is different; the word martyrdom is not about allowing one’s self to be abused over and over again without doing something about it.
In its original sense, martyrs are “witnesses” and are actually what the world needs today, Billones said.
Aside from continuously praying, Billones said one way to show gratitude to the sacrifices of San Pedro Calungsod is to imitate him and acknowledge that an individual is gifted to give.
Billones recalled that Calungsod, before his death, had the chance to escape and save himself, but he chose to run back and testify his faith in God.
“The key is discovering that it is in loving like Christ, even to the point of laying down one’s life like He did on the cross, that we will find validation for our true discipleship,” he said. (WBS)