The Chrism Mass, a Eucharistic celebration that manifests the unity of the priests with their bishop, started with much reverence and solemnity at the Cathedral Shrine and Parish of the Good Shepherd (CSGPS) in Fairview Park, Q.C. this Holy Thursday morning, March 24, 2016.
Attended by 187 priests of the Diocese of Novaliches including the parish priest of CSGPS, Rev. Fr. Mario Sanchez, and led by Bishop of the Diocese of Novaliches Most Rev. Antonio Tobias, DD, the Chrism Mass includes the blessing of three oils to be used in the administration of the sacraments throughout the Diocese for the entire year. These three oils were as follows: oleum catechumenorum or oleum sanctorum; the oil of the infirm (oleum infirmorum) and holy chrism (sacrum chrisma).
In his homily, Bishop Tobias reminded the Clergy and the Faithful that God has called each one of us by name, and was sealed with a gift of the Holy Spirit to call back to the Church those “…who feel far away from God,” referring to the “outcasts of the society”–those with failed marriage, broken family, same sex marriage, and even same sex attraction. He emphasized the calling for both the Clergy and the faithful to facilitate the requirements that will bring them into the light of the sacraments.
The Bishop also gave his heartfelt gratitude for all those who supported him for the last 13 years. In what seemed like a farewell message, he said, “This maybe my last Chrism Mass as Bishop of the Diocese. If next year, I still stand before you, it will be because of a gracious anointing.”
He then urged everybody to support his ongoing projects–the building of Kristong Hari, Shrine of the Youth, and the Bahay Pari, a retirement home for the Clergy.
He also expressed his sorrow at the demise of a brother priest, Rev. Fr. Romy Fedellaga due to bronchial asthma in exacerbation. He will be laid to rest in Catarman, Ilocos this April. He finished his homily by entrusting the Clergy and the faithful of the Diocese of Novaliches to Mary, the Untier of Knots or “Inang Desay.”
After Communion, the Social Communications and Media Ministry (SocCom) headed by Fr. Nonnette Legaspi showed a video clip of what transpired during the 51st International Eucharistic Congress in Cebu last February 2016.
Msgr. Romulo Rañada, Vicar General for Administration of the Diocese, explained the significance of the Jubilee Year of Mercy in gaining indulgences or “the forgiveness of sins”.
He reiterated that there are five shrines in the Diocese bearing the Jubilee door: (1) Cathedral Shrine and Parish of the Good Shepherd, (2) St. Peter Parish, Shrine of Leaders, (3) Our Lady of Mercy Parish Shrine, (4) Our Lady of Annunciation Parish, Shrine of the Incarnation, and (5) Sanctuario de San Vicente de Paul Parish, Shrine of the Poor.
The faithful who pass through any of the Jubilee doors are asked to pray for the intention of the Pope, an Our Father, A Hail Mary, and a Glory Be on top of attaining a state of grace by having Confession; shall gain forgiveness of all of their sins or of those who have already gone to their rest.
The Chrism mass ended in a high note with the Diocesan Choir of Novaliches, headed by Director for Liturgical Music Fr. Rino Tomas, and the Multi-Choir group composed of young children, singing in a spirit of joy, unity and peace. (~Dra. Jyn Aragon)