TACLOBAN City, Jan. 19, 2016 – “Please take care of your children and bring them to God,” Fr. Wilson Chu, co-pastor of the Sto. Niño Parish and oeconomus of the Archdiocese of Palo, exhorted parents in his homily on Jan. 18, Monday.
Chu gave this advice to parents during the concelebrated Mass in honor of Señor Sto. Niño whose feast is celebrated nationwide on Jan. 17 this year.
Gone are the days when children are the epitome of honesty and truthfulness, he said, when no lie would escape their mouths and they were the source of joy for their parents.
‘Bring back who you are’
Chu asked, “Is it still true until now? Where now are the virtues of the children? What happened?”
In the same vein, the priest affirmed that like the world resting in the palm of the Holy Child, each person is given the duty to take good care of those entrusted to him.
Chu likewise called on the people to, “Bring back who you are,” stressing that there is goodness in each person, no matter his identity.
“There is always something good in your heart because God has created each one of us good,” he said.
He decried how this goodness in many young people today has become a thing of the past.
“The celebration of the feast of Sto. Niño is inviting us to bring back who you are because (this feast) is not all about, but about all of us,” he said.
He underscored the need for the faitful to ponder on the virtues of a child that are now fading away.
“The Lord is telling us that we can make our family beautiful if you can restore who you are,” he added.
Chu challenged the faithful, saying, “If you learn how to take away the painful experiences that you have in your heart, when you learn to forgive and forget the traumatic experiences in your heart, you will be able to restore who you are and you will find fulfillment in your life.”
‘Like a child with his parents’
According to Chu, the Sto. Niño also reminds all to “find God in your life”, like a child feeling secure in the presence of his parents.
Meanwhile Palo Archbishop John Du, in his Mass at the Palo Cathedral on Sunday, spoke about the need for the faithful to be dependent on God like a child on his parent.
The image of the Holy Child, according to the prelate, portrays a child being accompanied by God in the same way Jesus accompanies the people and bring them to His father.
Besides the Transfiguration of Our Lord Parish and the Sto. Niño Parish, Brgy. Buscada in Basey, Samar also celebrated the feast of the Señor Sto. Niño.
An exchange of images (locally, balyu-an) of the Señor Sto. Niño between Brgy. Buscada and Tacloban’s Sto. Niño Parish is part of the annual tourism attraction during the feast of Señor Sto. Niño de Tacloban in June.
The Sto. Niño Parish continually celebrates the feast of Señor Sto. Niño on the third Sundays of January similar to Cebu and other parts of the country.
This is to keep the original fervor of the devotion that was introduced by the Augustinians to Tacloban in late 18th century. (Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros / CBCP News)