Palma to faithful: Have faith that 2021 will bring more blessings
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Faith will bring blessings in 2021.
This was the message of Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma in his homily on the New Year’s Eve Mass at the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral on December 31, 2020, the last day of the year.
Palma, who celebrated the mass along with other archdiocesan priests, said in his homily that there is more to look forward to in 2021 because of the many sufferings people had to endure this year.
This New Year is filled with prayers and hopes for the end of the pandemic and for the betterment of the lives permanently affected by the tiny yet deadly virus, Palma said.
Yet he also urges the faithful to pray for the departed who succumbed to the virus and pray for strength for the frontliners who remain to fight the unseen foe in the hospitals and medical centers.
“Sa atong paglingi sa tuig nga naglabay, dako kaayo ang trial alang natong tanan. Mientras sa atong paglingi, karong gabhiona, sa atong kasingkasing hinumduman nato ang mga nangamatay. Atong pasalamatan ang mga heroes, frontliners, ug tanan nagsakripisyo aron kita maluwas,” said the archbishop.
Still, beyond the continuous threat of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), Palma reminded the public that there is something to look forward to with faith in 2021.
Primarily, the Fiesta Señor and Sinulog in honor of the Holy Image of the Child Jesus will push through amid limitations.
Althought it will be meager compared to past grand celebrations, with the Basilica Minore del Sto. Niño opting to forego the traditional processions, the Sinulog will still be a time to renew one’s faith in Jesus Christ.
Palma said that the Sto. Niño has given Cebu favor in His 500 years of staying in the province, and he urged the faithful to trust in the Lord that He will continue to protect Cebu in the years to come.
Following Sinulog, would also be the Quincentennial Anniversary of the arrival of Christianity in the country, a celebration still centered in Cebu as the cradle of the Roman Catholic religion in Asia.
The prelate said that despite changes of plans, the activities will push through until 2022 and people will have a chance to celebrate Filipino Christianity brought by the Spaniards in the 16th century cemented in the devotion of the Sto. Niño.
Aside from Sto. Niño, Palma also urges the faithful to remain devoted to the Virgin Mary and trust that the Mother of God and of the world will keep mankind safe.
“Pag-ampo ug pag-amping. Salig kita nga ang 2021 will be full of blessings,” said Palma.
The prelate hopes that the faithful will continue to pray for the end of the pandemic and will continue to follow health protocols to actively participate in the fight against it. /rcg
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