Most Rev. Broderick S. Pabillo, Apostolic Administrator of Manila led the celebration of the Holy Eucharist to mark the 29th World Day of the Sick at the National Shrine of St. Michael and the Archangels on February 11, 2021, Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes at 9 in the morning.
The theme for the celebration was, “’You have but one teacher and you are all brothers’ (Mt 23:8). A trust-based relationship to guide care for the sick.”
In his homily, Bishop Pabillo re-echoed the message of his Holiness Pope Francis to remember all those who continue to suffer from the scourge of coronavirus and to reassure the poor and the marginalized of the Church’s loving concern for them.
He then exhorted the faithful to keep human relationships with the sick people aside from providing them with their material and medical needs.
“At iyan po ang paksa na ibinigay ni Pope Francis sa atin ngayong taon na pagnilayan, na para sa pag-aalaga ng may sakit, totoo kailangan ng may sakit ng gamot. Kailangan ng may sakit ng pamamahinga at maayos na pagkain,” he said.
“Ngunit kailangan din nila ng relationship. Relationship sa mga mahal nila sa buhay, relationship sa mga nag-aalaga sa kanila. At isang relationship na pantay sa harap ng Diyos, tayo’y magkapantay pantay,” he added.
Bishop Pabillo also stressed in his homily that aside from having good doctors and medicines, one of the things that would heal a sick person is his faith in the Lord.
“Sabi natin para gumaling ang tao, hindi lang kailangan na magaling yung doctor, magaling yung gamut. Kailangan din may kagustuhan siyang gumaling. Kailangan din na siya’y may pananalig na gagaling siya at paano naibibigay yan? Naibibigay yan ng pananampalataya,” he said.
The Bishop also pointed out that religious services are “essential services” that the faithful need as they heal themselves from their sickness especially in these trying times. He then expressed that the Church be allowed to accommodate more people to attend public masses to help the sick nourish their spiritual needs.
“…pagbigyan niyo naman kami ng mas maraming mga taong makapasok sa simbahan kasi iyan po ay kailangan ng mga tao sa panahon ng pandemya. Kailangan nila ng Diyos at sila mismo ay naghahanap kaya huwag natin limitahan ang paglapit ng mga tao sa Panginoon.”
The archdiocesan celebration of the 29th World Day of the Sick was in coordination with the Archdiocese of Manila Ministry on Healthcare headed by Fr. Manuel Abogado and the Philippine Association Sovereign Military Order of Malta.
The World Day of the Sick is celebrated annually by the Catholic Church. It was initiated by St. John Paul II on May 13, 1992. The feast coincides with the Commemoration of Our Lady of Lourdes. (Jheng Prado/RCAM-AOC)