MANILA, April 28, 2011â€” A Catholic diocese hopes to attract Catholics with a new pilgrimage site in Bacolod City in honor of soon-to-be beatified Pope John Paul II.
Developing structures linked to the pontiff has been a priority for the diocese but the â€œPilgrimage for Life with John Paul IIâ€ is a nod to the growing number of his devotees.
Fr. Felix Pasquin, rector of San Sebastian Cathedral, said local activities have started since Holy Week at the John Paul I Tower ahead of his beatification on May 1.
â€œAfter the beatification Bishop Vicente Navarra is introducing in the diocese, Pilgrimage of Life with John Paul II,â€ Pasquin said over Manila archdioceseâ€™s Radyo Veritas.
He said there are ten shrines in the diocese so any group or individual can make and organize a pilgrimage by selecting at least seven shrines.
Every shrine, he said, features teachings of John Paul II. â€œItâ€™s a teaching on love, on forgiveness, on family, on the youth, etc.,â€ said Pasquin.
â€œThe pilgrimage will end up at the Tower where they will pray before the icon of John Paul II, and then they will receive the official certificate of the pilgrimage,â€ he said.
On Thursday, an icon of the pope was blessed during a Mass at the cathedral. And starting Friday to Sunday, Masses will regularly be held at 3:00pm.
On Sunday morning, the diocese will feed several indigent children. â€œWe know how John Paul II loved the children and the poor,â€ said Pasquin.
Then in the afternoon, the tower will show a live telecast of the late popeâ€™s beatification at the Vatican.
â€œWe shall have a wide screen and then we [will] invite parishioner[s], some people, to watch the beatification rights at about 3 or 4 oâ€™clock in the afternoon,â€ the priest said.
â€œAfter this, we shall have a floral offering at the statue of John Paul II because we have a 15 foot statue at the corner of the tower,â€ he added. (CBCPNews)