Saturday, August 27, 2011

Young People: Stand Firm in Christ! - The Pastoral Letter of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines for the CBCP Year of the Youth 2011

This letter was promulgated on August 21, 2011 by Bishop Nereo Odchimar but hasn't been uploaded on any of the CBCP's websites. I am uploading this on my little blog for the record of events.

CBCP Pastoral Letter to Young People

Friday, August 26, 2011

Reminder: Day of Penance in the Archdiocese of Manila, August 26, 2011

This is a reminder that tomorrow, Friday, August 26, 2011 has been proclaimed by the Archbishop of Manila, Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, as a Day of Penance in reparation for the scandalous and blasphemous "art work" that was exhibited some weeks ago in the Cultural Center of the Philippines. In the Archbishop's words:
We also declare a Day of Penance for the whole Archdiocese of Manila on Friday, August 26, 2011. We suggest that for this day the Mass for the Forgiveness of Sins and purple vestments be used. We also encourage everyone to perform an act of penance or sacrifice on this day, such as fasting or other forms of mortification, as an expression of remorse for the sins committed against God’s majesty.

Truth be told, every Friday is still a day of penance. The only difference for tomorrow is that the Archbishop of Manila has asked his flock to offer the day's penances in reparation for the public blasphemy committed in the CCP.

I posted earlier this year about the laws of penance in force in the Philippines: Fasting and Abstinence in the Philippines and for Filipinos: Part 1. In a nutshell, the following is the law of the Church in the Philippines regarding penance on Fridays outside of the Sacred Triduum:

Fast and abstinence is to be observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. The general form for abstinence, which is binding on the faithful throughout the year, is abstinence from meat. It has been noted, however, that abstaining from meat cannot be considered a penance for a great part or number of Filipino people who can no longer afford to buy meat… The local norm is that, except on Good Friday and Ash Wednesday, abstinence may be substituted with exercises of piety, such as reading the Bible, going to Mass, visiting the Blessed Sacrament, praying the Holy Rosary, or with acts of charity, such as visiting the sick and prisoners, giving alms to the poor, or teaching catechism.

NB: The Archdiocese of Manila consists of the cities of Makati, Mandaluyong, Manila, Pasay, San Juan, and the Shrine of Mary, Queen of Peace ("EDSA Shrine") in Quezon City. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A million roses for the world: A Filipino campaign of prayer for the whole world

The Family Rosary Crusade - Philippines has launched "A Million Roses for the World", a campaign to get at least one million Filipinos from all over the world to pray one rosary every day for 200 days, from October 10, 2011 to May 30, 2012. A different country will be prayed for each day from Monday to Saturday (starting with Angola on the first day and with the Philippines on the last day) while the rosary for all Sundays will be for the Philippines and the for families of those who are praying. (The order in which the countries of the world will be prayed for can be found here.)

As of August 24, 2011, 134,659 people have pledged to take part in this campaign.

According to Mr. Howard Dee
, Co-Chairman of the campaign, the motive behind the "million roses for the world" campaign "to bring all the people of all the nations of the world to Jesus and His Father and the Holy Spirit...through Mary our Blessed Mother... to bring His Peace, Love, Joy and tranquility  to every people and every nation, no matter how great or how small, as a gift of love, faith and goodwill from the people of the Philippines".

The campaign has been endorsed by the President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippine (CBCP), Msgr. Nereo Odchimar, Bishop of the Diocese of Tandag, in the name of the entire CBCP.

To join the campaign and to send your pledge to Family Rosary Crusade - Philippines, click here.

The sheet music for the campaign's theme song can be found here.

The elaborate meaning of the logo of the campaign is explained here,

The campaign is not only about the daily rosary, though; it also includes a call for repentance and devout living, as the campaign's "Prayer of Commitment" clearly demonstrates:

Prayer of Commitment   
A Million Roses for the World: Filipinos at Prayer, Peace for All Nations 

Almighty God, we adore you and we praise you for blessing Mary among all women and creating her full of grace. 
Through Mary, we received Jesus your Son whose birth had made all things new for us here on earth. 
We seek your blessing through her praying hands, so that peace may reign in the world and harmony may be established among all nations. 
I commit to pray the rosary everyday, as much as possible with my family, for each and every nation on earth so that war may end, famine may cease, terrorism may stop, justice may reign and only your love and mercy may prevail. 
I commit to live in the state of grace, to avoid all occasions of sin and to receive Holy Communion as frequently as my situation may allow so that your name may be glorified and all peoples may kneel down before you God of Peace in worship, adoration and thanksgiving, now and forever. Amen.

In at least one Archdiocese (Lingayen-Dagupan), this prayer will be prayed in all Masses before the Post-Communion prayer.