MANILA, Dec. 3, 2015 – Taking their cue from Pope Francis’ prayer intention for December, Filipino Catholics encourage others of their faith to have hope this Advent season and to take advantage of the coming Jubilee Year to confess their sins and be reconciled with the Merciful God.
“The pope’s intention for the month of December may be understood as an invitation to all to come to the merciful Lord through the sacrament of reconciliation. It is in that sacrament that all who comes to God with humility will experience God’s mercy,” shared Darwin Beceril, a volunteer catechist from the Diocese of Novaliches.
Religious educator Nestor Limqueco from Manila seconded, pointing out that Advent invites the faithful to avail of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and to be hopeful that all will be well despite their weaknesses and imperfections, thanks to a God Who is Mercy and Hope personified.
Greatest Love of All
“This season of hope and the commencement of the Year of Mercy gives us reason to celebrate the greatest love the world has known, that of the God Who has show it through the Incarnation of His Son,” he explained.
According to Limqueco, mercy is God’s greatest expression of His love for humanity, and hope is the response each faithful must give to to this loving mercy.
“The advent season reminds us that there is always hope to come. Jesus laid down His life to save us from our sins and bring us to eternal life. The Lord assures us there is always hope in our struggles, temptations, and problems. Never lose hope and always strive to do good things. God fulfills his promises,” said JM Tuazon, a Filipino accountant based in the United States.
‘Jesus never lets down’
Echoing one of the pontiff’s quotable statements on his visit to Palo, Leyte in January, Tuazon stressed that Jesus is Lord Who will not let the faithful down.
The Holy Father’s universal prayer intention for the month is: “That all may experience the mercy of God, who never tires of forgiving.”
Meanwhile, his intention for evangelization is: “That families, especially those who suffer, may find in the birth of Jesus a sign of certain hope.” (Raymond A. Sebastián / CBCP News)