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Thousands to join Sunday’s Mass

By: Ador Vincent S. Mayol, Edison Delos Angeles November 21,2014 - 12:06 AM

Streets from the Capitol to Plaza Independencia to be closed at 10 a.m.

Thousands are expected to gather for Sunday’s Mass  and procession in streets fronting the Provincial Capitol this Sunday to celebrate the Feast of Christ the King.

Roadblocks along the route will start as early as 10 a.m. till 7 p.m.

Get ready to walk, as the four-kilometer procession route will go through “the heart of Cebu City” and end with a benediction at the Plaza Independencia in the late afternoon, said Msgr.  Marnell Mejia, in a press conference at the Archbishop’s Residence yesterday.

Extra attention will be paid to crowd flow and security as the activity also serves as a dry run for the International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) in January 2016 when 15,000 delegates are expected.

“After the activity,  we will see what areas we can improve to prepare for the IEC,” said Cebu City Councilor Dave Tumulak.

Mass goers will  occupy  Escario Street from the corner of Don Gil Garcia Street to Gov. M. Roa Street.

Along  Osmeña Boulevard, delegations will be positioned in the stretch up to  Cebu Doctors’ University Hospital.

The Feast of Christ the King marks  the end of the liturgical year of the Catholic Church and the celebration of the Year of the Laity.

The next Sunday is the  start of the season of Advent leading to Christmas.

At least 200 police personnel and 175 traffic enforcers will be deployed at the Capitol area and routes.

Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma will preside over the Mass in front of the Capitol at 4 p.m.

A solemn procession will follow from the Capitol to the downtown area, Colon Street, D. Jakosalem Street, MC Briones Street, MJ Cuenco Avenue until Plaza Independencia.

The city government is deploying 12 ambulances with paramedic teams, nine firetrucks, portalets,  water stations, public address systems, barangay tanods, traffic personnel and street cleaners.

Loudspeakers along the route will allow prayers to be heard  during the procession.

Citom operations head Joy Tumulak advised those who have appointments on Sunday to leave early to avoid heavy traffic or just stay home.

He said  City Hall’s CCTV cameras will monitor the activity and  fly two video camera-equipped drones.

Don’t wear jewelry or bring large amounts of cash, he said.

The faithful were asked to bring candles for the  procession which will end around 8 p.m.

Parking areas are designated near the senior citizens park in City Hall for those from the south district.  Those from the north district are advised to park their vehicles along V. Sotto Street.

“We  appeal to the public  for  understanding and tolerance for the inconvenience that may be caused by the closure of several roads.

We’re  preparing for a bigger event in 2016,” said Msgr. Mejia, chairman of the IEC committee on procession.

Fr. Mhar Vincent Balili, chairman of the IEC committee on liturgy, shared that the Solemnity of  Christ the King is “the celebration instituted in 1925 in response to growing nationalism and secularism. It reminded everyone that Jesus is still the king of the world.

It’s actually a big celebration which ends the liturgical year,” he said.

Sunday’s event also marks the end of the Year of the Laity and starts the Year of the Poor as declared by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.

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TAGS: Christ the King, Plaza Independencia

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