Wednesday, 14 October 2020 15:58

October Devotion to Mary Source of Strength during COVID-19 Pandemic


The Catholic Church celebrates the Month of the Holy Rosary every October to honor and thank the Blessed Mother for her maternal care to all the faithful.

On October 7, 2020, in the Vatican City during his first general audience this October, the month dedicated for the Holy Rosary, Pope Francis has urged the Catholic to pray the Marian prayer especially amid the “looming threats to the world”, such as the pandemic according to the Vatican News post.

“Even today, in this time of the pandemic, it is necessary to hold the rosary in our hands and pray for us, our loved ones and all people,” he said.

Image of Nuestra Señora del Santisimo Rosario de Sampaloc de Unibersidad de Santo Tomas | Photo by Earl Jerald Alpay/SOCOM-Our Lady of Loreto Parish

 

Also to celebrate the feast of Mary, Most Rev. Honesto Ongtioco, Bishop of the Diocese of Cubao presided over the celebration of the Holy Eucharist for the Feast of the Holy Rosary (Santissimo Rosario La Naval de Manila) at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary in Sto. Domingo Church last October 11, 2020.

In his reflection during the homily, Bishop Ongtioco emphasized the role of the Blessed Mother during this time of the pandemic. Mary, according to him serves as a model of hope, healing and unity. He told the faithful to imitate the virtues of Mary in order to receive God’s blessings and be able to share it with others.

 “Dito nakikita natin ang ating Mahal na Ina bilang modelo kung paano tayo tumtugon makiisa sa plano ng Diyos at ang bunga nito hindi lamang ikaw ang pagpapalain ng Diyos,” Bishop Ongtioco said.

During this time of quarantine because of COVID-19, the Bishop reminded the faithful to strengthen their faith through their devotion to the Blessed Mother. May this devotion according to him, bring inspiration to their fellow faithful.

 “Ang inyong debosyon ay magbunga sana ng maraming biyaya at ma-inspire din ang maraming tao sa inyo…‘Di ba sabi ng mga kabataan sana all? Sana all ng mga tao matibay ang debosyon, pananalig kay Maria,’” said the Bishop.

The Feast of La Naval de Manila is celebrated every second week of October. The image is the very first image of the Virgin Mary in the Philippines. Its canonical coronation was in 1907.

In Imus, Cavite, Most Rev. Reynaldo Evangelista, Bishop of Imus presided over the celebration of the Holy Eucharist for the Feast of Blessed Virgin of Del Pilar at Our Lady of the Pillar Cathedral Parish also known as Imus Cathedral on October 13.

In his homily, Bishop Evangelista who is also Chairman of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines - Permanent Committee on Public Affairs (CBCP-PCPA) reflected the obedience of Mary to the plan of the Lord for her.

According to him, the relationship between God and mankind was strengthened and restored because Mary accepted the plan of the Lord to be the mother of the savior named Jesus Christ who redeemed the people from their sin thus became the new people of God.

“Sa pamamagitan ng Birheng Maria, Birheng del Pilar, naibalik ang ugnayan ng tao sa Diyos. Sa isinilang n’yang tagapagligtas, tayo’y naging bagong bayan ng Diyos,” Bishop Evangelista told Radio Veritas.

The Bishop also encouraged the faithful to care, help and love one another especially during this time of crisis.

“Inaasahan ng Diyos na humirang sa atin, tumawag sa atin para maging bagong bayan Niya na tayo’y mabuhay sa bukluran, mamuhay tayo sa pagmamahalan, pagmamalasakitan. That we live in communion with one another,” said the Bishop.

The feast of "Nana Pilar", as how Cavitenos call Mary, Our Lady of the Pillar with endearment is celebrated every 12th of October and is the patron saint of the Diocese of Imus and the entire province of Cavite.

Its Canonical Coronation was on December 3, 2012, presided by Luis Antonio G. Cardinal Tagle, former Bishop of Imus and now Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of People in the Vatican. (Jheng Prado/RCAM-AOC) 

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