NAGA CITY, Feb. 20, 2015 — “Do not get tired of living out your faith, of helping the poor.”
This was the message of Caceres Archbishop Rolando Tria Tirona to the many young people he called the “hope of the country and of the Church” at the annual Way of the Cross observed during Ash Wednesday, Feb. 18.
Held at the Naga Metropolitan Cathedral grounds, the Carmelite prelate applauded the many young people present for “following the Way [of Christ]” and those older, for making the “little sacrifice for what Jesus has done for us”.
Focus on the ‘only’ Way
“The Way of the Cross is the way to the heart of Jesus,” Tirona had said. “There is no other way.”
In his message, Tirona said the Lenten season is a time for “silence, prayer and love”.
According to him, it is a time to “deepen [one’s] relationship” with [one’s] “self, God, [the] environment, and [one’s] brothers and sisters”. It is a time to be with those who are “close to Jesus’ heart” – the poor and marginalized, Tirona added.
However, the prelate noted 3 C’s that hinder man from being in total communion with God: comfort, convenience and cash. Thus, he said, there is a need to “focus on the way” for it is the way that will lead man to his “true home, heaven”.
Time for Renewal
At the paraliturgy observed prior to the Way of the Cross, Caceres Deacon Rev. Alfeo Catura mentioned that the ashes used during Ash Wednesdays for imposition come from the palm branches blessed during the previous year’s Palm Sunday. These branches, before being burnt, are brown in color, symbolizing one’s soul in a year’s journey: withered.
Hence, Catura said, Lent is actually a joyful season, a time to “return to God” and renew oneself in Him.
Themed “An Dalan kan Cruz ni Cristo: Dalan nin Pagmalasakit asin Pagkamoot sa mga Dukha”, the Via Crucis (Way of the Cross) is annually observed with the Caceres Archbishop and is attended by the youth, lay faithful, Clergy, and religious of the Archdiocese of Caceres. (Natalie Hazel Quimlat/CBCPNews)