2016-03-21 15:30:00

Bishops urge Filipinos not to inflict pain on themselves

With many Filipinos subjecting themselves to extreme forms of penance like crucifixion and flagellation during the Holy Week, the country's Catholic bishops are urging their faithful to engage in acts of mercy and give to the poor instead of inflicting pain on themselves.  "If you want to truly make a good Holy Week, love much, love more, give to the poor," said Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan, president of the bishops' conference.  "This pilgrimage to the poor will add to the holiness of our times," said Archbishop Villegas during Palm Sunday observance on March 20.  

"What makes these days holy? Not self-inflicted pain. Not publicized pious devotion. Not daydreaming meditation," Archbishop Villegas explained.  "What makes this week holy is the immeasurable, unequaled love that Christ poured into these days," he added.  Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila called on the faithful "to bring back mercy" during the observance of Holy Week.  "Where is compassion? Where is mercy?" Cardinal Tagle asked in his Palm Sunday homily at Manila Cathedral.   The prelate said "trust in God" was the "secret of [Jesus’] silent mercy and compassion even to an enemy."   Cardinal Tagle explained that the more the world relies on money, weapon, private armies and connections, the less merciful we become.  He said the call to being merciful is very significant not only during Holy Week but also during the observance of the Jubilee Year of Mercy.  (Source: UCAN)

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