One of the effective weapons in the journey and the struggle against sin and evil is prayer.
In his homily during Mass to mark Ash Wednesday last Feb. 17, 2021, Most Rev. Broderick S. Pabillo, Apostolic Administrator of Manila urged the faithful to dedicate more time to pray to the Lord especially during the season of Lent.
“Ang sandata ng panalangin, ito po yung paglapit natin sa Diyos. Kaya ngayong panahon ng Kuwaresma, hinihikayat po sana tayo na mas maging madasalin. Dagdagan ang panahon ng pagdadasal o mas maging taimtim ang ating panalangin,” Bishop Pabillo said.
“At meron po tayong maraming dasal na nakaugalian natin ngayong panahon ng kuwaresma,” he added.
Among the prayers that the faithful may devote themselves to this Lenten season include prayerful reading of the Bible, the Way of the Cross, Pasyon, recitation of the Holy Rosary and prayers of devotion to St. Joseph, especially as the archdiocese prepares for the consecration to St. Joseph on March 2021.
Aside from dedicating more time to prayers, another weapon that a faithful can consider during this time of Lent, according to the Bishop, is penance.
“Ang sandata ng pagpepenitensiya. Yan yung pagpigil sa ating sarili. Pagtitimpi. Pinapakita po iyan sa pamamagitan ng pag-aayuno. At ngayong Miyerkules ng Abo ay araw ng pag-aayuno,” he said.
“Pero ang penitensiya po ay hindi lang naman ang pag-aayuno. Pwede ring magpenitesniya ng hindi muna pagkain ng karne, abstinensiya. Pwede rin natin gawin tuwing Biyernes o kaya kahit na araw araw o bawasan ang pagkain ng karne,” he added.
Besides self-restraint and abstinence, the Bishop encouraged small acts of sacrifice that faithful may practice during Lent.
“Isa pang penitensiya, pwede naman ang penitensiya ay bawas bawasan natin ang panonood ng Netflix, ang panonood ng TV. Pwede naman bawas bawasan natin ang pakikinig ng music sa mga panahong ito,” he said.
“At lalung lalo na ang penitensiya na tanggalin ang kasalanan. Kung mahilig tayong magmura, manigarilyo, uminom, magtaya ng Lotto, pwede bang mapigilan natin yan para masabing kaya ko naman na mapigilan ang ating sarili,” he added.
The Bishop emphasized that charity is a powerful weapon as well. This means a faithful can extend help and assistance to the needy by almsgiving.
He encouraged the faithful to donate whatever they save from fasting to the Fast2Feed program of Hapag-Asa and Alay Kapwa.
Hapag-asa uses the money donated to them by feeding the hungry and malnourished children in the archdiocese and other dioceses especially during this time of the pandemic while Alay Kapwa is the money raised from the second collection every Sunday of Lent that is used to help the victims of man-made and natural calamities. (Jheng Prado/RCAM-AOC)