Monday, October 21, 2013


On Sunday, October 20, 2013, after the Angelus prayer, Pope Francis invited the faithful to pray for the Philippines which have been struck by countless calamities, the latest of which is a 7.2 earthquake that struck the provinces of Bohol and Cebu last Tuesday, October 15, 2013 where more than one hundred people died.

Location of the Earthquake

cc Philippine map courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

cc Bohol and Cebu map courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

The pope told the pilgrims that gathered for his Sunday Angelus:

"I want to express my closeness to the people of the Philippines who have been struck by a strong earthquake, and I invite you to pray for that dear Nation, which in recent days has suffered different calamities."

These words from our beloved pope mean a lot to us here in Cebu. To my fellow Catholics, please pray for us that our faith in God will remain strong in spite of all the calamities that hit our country.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Good news to all Catholics around the world. At the consistory (a meeting where the Pope and the College of Cardinals discuss about the causes of beatification and canonization) held at the Vatican on September 30, 2013, Monday, Pope Francis announced that Blessed Popes John XXIII and John Paul II will be canonized on April 27, 2014, second Sunday of Easter which is the feast of the Divine Mercy.

On the light of their upcoming canonization, here are some few significant and interesting facts about Blessed John XXIII and Blessed John Paul II.

- Blessed John XXIII and Blessed John Paul II have one thing in common. Both popes have become Time Magazine's "Man of the Year". Pope John XXIII became "Man of the Year" in 1962, while Pope John Paul II became "Man of the Year" in 1994.

- Blessed John XXIII became Pope at the age of nearly 77 in October of 1958, while Blessed John Paul II was 58 years old when he was elected as Pope in October of 1978.

- One of Blessed John XXIII's most important achievements was the convening of the 2nd Vatican Council. Of those who took part at the council was Pope John Paul II who was then Bishop Karol Wojtyla along with Bishop Josef Ratzinger who in April 2005 became Pope Benedict XVI.

- Pope John XXIII was beatified by Pope John Paul II on September 3, 2000.

- The date of their forthcoming canonization, April 27, 2014 which falls on the feast of the Divine Mercy is very significant. Blessed John Paul II was the main key to the propagation of the message of the Divine Mercy. On April 30, 2000, he declared the 2nd Sunday of Easter as the Divine Mercy Sunday.

Blessed John XXIII, pray for us.
Blessed John Paul II, pray for us.