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Cebu News

Let poor experience sacraments – Palma

Jessa Agua - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma has urged members of the clergy to initiate programs that will make the poor and needy experience the sacraments.

Palma made the call in his homily during yesterday's Chrism Mass inside the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral.

"Atong gipahinumduman ang atong kaparian nga ang sacrament dapat masinati sa tanan. We encourage the clery to make available to the poor the sacraments. Daghan ang wala mabunyagan ug makasal, patay nga wala mamisahan tungod sa kawad-on. Perhaps the parish can create programs to extend the sacraments to the poor," Palma said.

Catholic parishes usually hold weddings, baptisms, and funeral mass for a fee.

This is what the prelate wants to be minimized, though clarified that he is not ordering for the banning of these fees but is just emphasizing that the poor must not be deprived of the Sacrament because of poverty.

"It is up to the creativity of the parish priest on how to go about this program. We are not limiting what they can do," Palma said.

Vicar generals Monsignor Rey Penagunda and Monsignor Daniel Sanico are set to submit a report to Palma middle of 2016 on how the parishes in Cebu has implemented the request of the archbishop.

Earlier Chrism Mass

Taking into consideration the geographically isolated and far-flung parishes in Cebu, the Chrism Mass and renewal of priestly vows were done ahead of schedule.

The religious activity, usually done during Holy Thursday, was held yesterday so that the parish priests can focus on the Holy Week activities in their respective assigned parishes.

The annual Chrism mass is the blessing of the Holy Oil which is used for administering the Holy Sacraments.

The head of the Cebu Archdiocese was joined by 727 priests both from the diocesan (387) and religious orders (340) to show unity with each other while renewing their priestly vows.

Also done in this mass is the blessing of three oils: oil of catechumens, oil of the infirm, and holy chrism which will be used by the priests in administering different sacraments in their parishes throughout the year.

After a month of staying out of the public's eyes, Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal yesterday showed up and joined Palma in the Chrism Mass.

While he greeted members of the local media after the mass, he declined to grant an interview.

Vidal figured in a controversy last month when he was made to read a statement by National Transformation Council urging President Benigno Aquino to step down, in a mass supposedly celebrating his birthday and to offer prayers to those killed in the Mamasapano encounter. — (FREEMAN)

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ARCHBISHOP EMERITUS RICARDO CARDINAL VIDAL

CEBU

CEBU ARCHBISHOP JOSE PALMA

CEBU ARCHDIOCESE

CEBU METROPOLITAN CATHEDRAL

CHRISM MASS

EARLIER CHRISM MASS

HOLY OIL

HOLY SACRAMENTS

HOLY THURSDAY

MASS

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