Faithful urged to celebrate 500 years of evangelization

·2 min read

INSTEAD of dwelling on the negative that happened in 2020, Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma urged the faithful to focus instead on Cebu celebrating 500 years of Christianity.

Palma, in his homily during the New Year’s eve mass at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral on Thursday, Dec. 31, said the event will push through this year with our without the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

“It’s good to talk about the wonderful reality that the first baptism, a gift, took place in Cebu,” the prelate said in a mix of English and Cebuano.

Although celebrations for the Fiesta Señor, which is this month, are going virtual and events for the quincentennial celebration of the arrival of Christianity in the archipelago have been postponed or revised, Palma said 2021 is still a blessing and a good year.

“Tonight, within our hearts, despite the adversities and trials, we can still claim that we still have the reason to be thankful to God because we are still alive,” he said. “We are here for a reason and this is because we have a mission,” he added.

Palma paid tribute to frontliners for their sacrifices amid the pandemic. He also asked the faithful to pray for the souls of the departed.

He said the year 2020 was not easy for Cebuanos and for everyone else around the world.

Last year also saw other parts of the country ravaged by typhoons, devastating properties and displacing thousands of people.

Although no one exactly knows what will happen in the future, Palma said the faithful can trust that God is in control.

He said he is optimistic that Cebuanos will not only survive this crisis, but they will also thrive in the years to come.

He asked the faithful to continue to pray and to take care of themselves and one another and to share their blessings.

Palma said he is glad that Cebuanos have complied with health protocols to prevent the spread of the highly infectious disease.

“Di g’yod ta gahi’g ulo (We should not be hard-headed). Social distancing, washing of hands, face mask, face shield and we continue sharing the best way to fight Covid,” he said. (WBS)