A send-off mass for the pilgrimage of the 2021 Jubilee cross in commemoration of the 500th year celebration of Christianity in the Philippines was conducted earlier today by His Excellency, Most Rev. Jose S. Palma, D.D, Archbishop of Cebu, in front of the Magellan’s kiosk, Cebu City.
Peaceful and fruitful celebration- is what the Archdiocese of Cebu looks forward as Filipinos remember the first Christian baptism that happened in Cebu in April 14, 1521 where people started to embrace the Catholic faith.
According to Archbishop Palma, the Archdiocese of Cebu and all the agencies concerned will do its share of preparation for the upcoming historical activity in the Philippines.
“We do our share of preparation, prayer formation, [and] celebration of different jubilees, visit Magellan’s cross, Señor Santo Niño, and preparation for big events in 2021…” he stated.
Archbishop Palma emphasized that upon the quincentennial celebration of Christianity, Cebuanos are blessed to experience unity because according to him, baptism and the way people received Christianity, Cebuanos become a family of God.
“Gusto nato ipaabot mga Kristiyano man o lain relihiyon, we feel sister, brother; we feel a friend; we feel one big family,” he added.
(We would like to address that Christian or not, we feel sister, brother; we feel a friend; we feel one big family.)
Before ending his homily, he shared the gratitude of God’s grace for choosing Cebu as the land where the first baptism took place that led to the start of Christian evangelization, among all the islands of the Philippines.
“It only shows that God has special love for us [Cebuanos] and special plan for us.” Bishop Palma added.
Blessed with a large number of attendees, the Eucharistic celebration successfully ended with a blessing of the Tindalo cross – a replica of the Magellan’s cross – and the unveiling of the countdown clock spearheaded by Archbishop Jose S. Palma, Bishop Midyphil Billones, along with the different heads of the religious orders including Rev. Fr. Andres D. Rivera Jr., OSA, Prior Provincial of the Augustinian Province of Sto. Niño de Cebu- Philippines.
A foot procession followed directly after the send-off mass; the Tindalo Cross or 2021 Jubilee cross together with the pilgrim image of Señor Santo Niño de Cebu first journeyed to the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral and welcomed by another celebration of the Holy Eucharist.
Through the celebration which marks the start of the 500th year celebration of Christianity, Christians are invited to take part of the big event as part of living the practice of the early church. /Analyn Conocono, BMSN Media Centre volunteer