JARO, Iloilo City, Sept. 20, 2015 – The most “persevering” parish weekly newsletter in the Western Visayas to date recently marked 24 years of continuous service and is on its way to celebrate its Silver Jubilee.
Candle Light, the weekly parish newsletter of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Candles (Jaro Cathedral) was published for the first time on Sept. 8, 1991, as a birthday present to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
The First General Assembly of Jaro Cathedral Parish on April 28 and May 5, 1991 recommended and approved the information and formation bulletin for the faithful so that they would remain updated about parish activities and developments.
“Dissemination of information was mainly through lengthy announcements during Sunday Masses. This had the problem of reaching out to the non-churchgoers. Thus, the publication of a parish weekly paper was approved,” recalled feature editor Ma. Rosario R. Tejada.
New Evangelization tool
In the current digital age, Candle Light as a parish newsletter continues to be relevant as a tool of the New Evangelization.
According to editor-in-chief Fr. Nathaniel G. Gentizon, Candle Light is striving renew its fervor, methods, and expressions, and “aims to reach the unreached, to go to the peripheries and spread the light of Christ.”
“Many people would get copies of Candle Light and share them with their relatives and friends, especially with those who were not able to attend Mass due to some reasons,“ Gentizon added.
Perseverance amidst difficulties
“Now, almost 25 years later, Candle Light continues to come out every Sunday without fail. Even the devastation caused by typhoons “Frank” and “Yolanda” did not stop the paper from coming out every week,” Tejada observed.
Gentizon revealed a secret behind Candle Light’s lasting power, “Human as we are, there are problems along the way, especially in relationships, but our love must be stronger than our own biases and prejudices so that we can always give Jesus through the quality of our witnessing and work.”
“I always remind the editorial board that in each issue of Candle Light we must always give Jesus to the people. This can be done when we love God and each other as well as love our work,” Gentizon underlined.
Above all, the present editor-in-chief highlighted the grace owed to the Lord and to Holy Mary.
“The upcoming 25th anniversary of Candle Light must be celebrated with gratefulness. We thank the Lord for sustaining the weekly paper for 24 years now. We also thank our Blessed Mother for Her intercession.” (Fr. Mickey Cardenas / CBCP News)