Papal Nuncio to be in Cebu for the closing of 500 YOC
CEBU CITY, Philippines — The Papal Nuncio to the Philippines, Archbishop Charles Brown, will be in Cebu on April 24, 2022 for the closing activities of the 500 years of Christianity (YOC) in the country.
The 500th year celebration of the arrival of Christianity in the Philippines will officially end on April 24 with a solemn procession and concelebrated Mass that the Papal Nuncio is expected to read the message of Pope Francis.
Archbishop Jose Palma said that it was an honor for Cebu to be the center of the 500 YOC in 2021 and the closing ceremonies would mark the start of the journey to a Millennium of Christianity in the Philippines.
On April 24, all parishes within the Archdiocese will hold a Mass in honor of the closing celebrations with the celebrating priest reading the message of the Archbishop to the parishioners during the Mass.
On the archdiocesan level, a procession will be held at 10:30 a.m. from the Magellan’s Cross to the Cebu Metropolitan Cathedral, where the concelebrated closing Mass will be held.
“We will start at the Magellan’s Cross because we want to form a connection on the first baptism. Those who were baptized in last year’s celebrations will be present,” said Reverend Father Mhar Balili, the 500 YOC secretary-general.
At least 15 bishops will be present including the Papal Nuncio, Palo Archbishop Emeritus Pedro Dean, Puerto Princesa Bishop Socrates Mesiona, Bacolod Bishop Patrick Buzon, Talibon Bishop Patrick Parcon, San Carlos Bishop Gerardo Alminaza, Kalibo Bishop Jose Corazon Talaoc, Palo Archbishop John Du, Tagbilaran Bishop Albert Uy, Baguio Bishop Victor Benedico, Calbayog Bishop Isabelo Abarquez, Cebu Auxiliary Bishop Midyphil Billones, and Cebu Bishop Emeritus Antonio Rañola.
Another procession will be held in the afternoon from the Cebu Provincial Capitol to the Cathedral traversing the Osmeña Boulevard, Jones Avenue, and P. Burgos Street.
There will be eight carrozas that people can follow starting with the Jubilee Cross, the Ecce Homo de Cebu, San Jose de Mandaue, Nuestra Señora Virgen de Regla, San Lorenzo Ruiz De Manila, San Pedro Calungsod, Nuestra Señora Virgen de Guadalupe, and the Señor Sto. Niño.
There are specific pilgrims assigned to follow each carroza with the general public encouraged to follow the Sto. Niño.
Balloons, pyrotechnics, glass bottles, liquor, and big backpacks are not allowed during the procession for security reasons.
The Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) will be deploying 231 personnel, while Cebu City’s Prevention Restoration Order Beautification and Enhancement (PROBE) team will be deploying 130 personnel to man the route.
The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) will be deploying emergency response teams along the route in case of emergencies as well.
The Cebu City Traffic Office (CCTO) will be employing the stop and go traffic management which means, the road will only be closed when the procession is passing through.
The Archdiocese is hoping the public would take the time to attend the closing especially since it is one of the few public events the Church was allowed for the 500 YOC due to restrictions under the pandemic.