Archdiocese of Caceres sends off delegates to Pope’s visit

NAGA CITY-- Around 30 priests and 200 seminarians, religious and lay from the Archdiocese of Caceres are expected to attend the mass of His Holiness, Pope Francis at the Manila Cathedral and Quirino Grandstand on January 16 to 18.

Aside from church and religious representatives, organized youth delegates from the province of Camarines Sur and this city are also prepping up to be a part of the huge crowd that will see Pope Francis at the UST grounds.

This, as the entire world awaits the historic apostolic visit of the highest head of the Catholic Church in the Philippines. This will also be the first leg of Pope Francis’ Asian trip after meeting the people of the island nation of Sri Lanka.

Pope Francis is set to deliver his message of “mercy and compassion” to all the Filipinos particularly to the ravaged populace of Leyte who suffered the wrath of Typhoon Yolanda. President Benigno Aquino III is set to welcome him at the Malacanang Palace before setting off to his designated route.

In line with this, Fr. Louie Occiano, Executive Director of the Caceres Commission on Communications (CCCoM) enjoined everyone to participate in the said gathering by asking them to also pray for the safe visit of the Pope here in our country. Occiano will be among the fortunate priests who will join the group for the Papal visit.

“We all know that not everyone will have this rare chance to personally see the Pope given the tight security measures and the physical distance, yet it should not hamper us from joining the entire Christendom in welcoming him in prayers.”

The Archdiocese of Caceres through its Archbishop, Most Rev. Rolando Octavus Tria Tirona, O.C.D., D.D., also invites everyone to be in solidarity with the church in the Philippines to welcome His Holiness, Pope Francis and to unite in prayers for his safe and successful visit.

The Archbishop also conveyed the message of Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines’ (CBCP) General Secretariat for all priests to be in unison in pealing all bells simultaneously on January 15 at 5:45pm to signal the arrival of the Holy Father. The gesture will be a symbolic act of welcome to the Holy Father as a way of calling on the people who will be unable to see him personally.

Archbishop Tirona will lead all the faithfuls in a special gathering on January 15 at the Metropolitan Cathedral grounds to welcome and pray for Pope Francis who will be arriving on the same day in Manila.

All the parishes, schools as well as religious institutions are enjoined to attend the said celebration. The assembly will start at 4:00 pm.

The song numbers and animations that will feature the theme song of the Pope's visit will be spearheaded by members of the Caceres Youth Ministry. There will also be a Concelebrated Mass with the priests, the youth and students, religious and lay faithful in Caceres. Catechesis and Audio visual presentations will also highlight the celebration.

The said gathering will also serve as a send- off event to all the delegates of the Archdiocese of Caceres who will join thousands of Pope’s well-wishers in Metro Manila. --PIA

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