Showing posts with label saturnino barace jr. Show all posts
Showing posts with label saturnino barace jr. Show all posts

Monday, January 26, 2015

Pope Francis is smiling!

Pope Francis is in the Philippines.
The world is watching.  We are all praying.
I feel so happy and blessed with the presence of Pope Francis. I have followed his every move from the time his papal cap flew away till his arrival at the Apostolic Nunciature, his trip to Tacloban and today’s outdoor mass in Manila.
Sights and sounds in Bohol amid Pope mania
 in Philippines.- LPU
I like the attitude and smile of the Pope. His smile is pleasant and genuine. His smile is just co contagious.
Since Thursday, the Pope mania has hit the road, cyberspace and the airwaves.
In Bohol, some kids brought flags and papers with messages “Welcome Pope Francis,” and “We Love you Pope Francis” while St. Joseph Cathedral's bells pealed to welcome the Pope.
It’s business for Edgar delas Eras who sold pope-inspired souvenir items in front of the St. Joseph Cathedral in Tagbilaran City.Key chains, button pins, mugs and posters with the pontiff’s pictures were some of the mementos being sold by delas Eras while there’s a free public viewing of the Pope’s arrival at the church’s entrance.  
There’s even a Pope Francis standee at Print All You Can (beside Our Deli Bread) in front of the UB Founders Building in Tagbilaran City.
In Manila, some Boholanos were lucky to see the Pope in person.
“Surreal. Unexplainable. Magical,” said Engr. Aprimel Lupot when she saw the Pope along Finance Road, going to Manila Cathedral in Intramuros. “I cannot describe the feeling of being so close to Pope Francis even for just a few seconds. Such an unforgettable moment. It's like I'm closer to God or something. I love you, Pope Francis!”
Lupot had told herself, "I have to see him!" It took her 10 minutes to make her way to Quirino Avenue. She even paid P150 for the pedicab.
“I guess I was lucky. I squeezed my way thru the crowd and into the center island of the street. About 25 minutes after, the Pope passed the crossing of Roxas Boulevard and Quirino Avenue. Everyone was cheering loudly. The pope mobile was too fast. All my pictures were blurred. It was a momentous 3 seconds seeing Pope Francis on his customized Isuzu D-max pope mobile,” narrated Lupot. 
Such an unforgettable moment: Pope Francis in Philippines. Courtesy: Engr. Aprilmel Lupot
She said, “My knees went numb. I can hardly catch my breath after the cheer of excitement I made. The hair all over my body stood up. Goosebumps! So that is how it feels to see the Pope!”
For the second time, Lupot saw the Pope with another Boholano JP Maslog. They called themselves “Popestalker.”
“This time, I had to step backward and allow my fellow ‪‎PopeStalker JP Maslog experience the crowd and see the Pope up close. As expected, he cried, turned cold and his knees were numb. The usual goosebumps when you see the Pope.”
Engr. Aprilmel Lupot and JP Maslog have to endure
everything just to see the Pope in Manila. 
Courtesy: Ape Lupot
JP Maslog also shared his experience, “So this is how it feels to see the Pope... I cried and I cannot explain why!”
The Pope had been a few feet away from couple Benjie Oliva and his wife lawyer Joan.

“Honored to have joined the crowd of Catholic faithful today at SM MOA and Roxas Boulevard to experience a personal encounter with Pope Francis, the vicar of the Lord Jesus Christ on earth,” said Oliva. “Father in Heaven bless the Pope and the Filipino people.”
Hundreds of thousands showed up for the Pope including Engr. Dionisio Neil Balite who was at MOA Arena to join the “Encounter with Families” with the Pope.
On Saturday, amid the storm threat, Pope Francis didn’t cancel his trip to Leyte. Pilgrims didn’t mind the cold weather and mud-filled road as they waited for the Pope.
Although the 160 Boholano pilgrims were not able to make it to Leyte due to typhoon Amang, there were some Boholanos who were among the thousands of people who braved the strong winds and rainfall to catch a glimpse of the Pope. 
Taclobanons were in tears as they listened to Pope Francis' impromptu homily that struck a chord with many, voicing compassion for their plight and encouraging them to look for Jesus’ love.
“I’m here to be with you. A little bit late I have to say, but I’m here.”
"I come to tell you that Jesus is Lord and he never lets us down..."
"Let us look to the Christ on the cross. He understands us because he endured everything..."
"We are not alone. We also have many brothers, who in this moment of catastrophe came to help you..."

The five Boholano quake survivors who
 have a lunch date with Pope Francis
in Leyte. –LPU
"With the power that comes from Jesus on the cross, let us move forward and walk together." 
"We have a Lord capable of walking with us in the most difficult moments of our life."
After his mass in Tacloban, the Pope went to Palo to have lunch with the Yolanda survivors and five Boholano survivors of the magnitude 7.2 earthquake.
It was last Thursday that I had the chance to interview the survivors before leaving for Leyte.
Niza Flores, Saturnino Barace, Jr., Salome Israel, Veneranda Gentallan, and Shirley Bongay-- all of them expressed nervousness and elation at the prospect of meeting with Pope Francis.
"Excited jud kaayo nga makauban..dili masabot ang feelings sa dugay pangandam naabot na gyud ang panahon.," Flores said.
"Wala ko makatug gabii sige hunahuna bah. Dili masabot akong gibati nga makakita ko niya personal nga naa siya sa akong atubangan," explained Barace.
I feel so much nervous na,” said Israel.
Bongay was “I'm glad to meet the Pope,” while Gentallan said, “I am very excited unya gikulbaan.”
Israel brought a nipa hut (accentuated with a small guitar) souvenir for the Pope. She explained that it symbolized her family's struggle to recover from the earthquake.
"This is very meaningful. This nipa hut means we are not yet totally recovered after the earthquake," she said.
Fr. Felix Warlie Salise Jr. of the Diocese of Tagbiliran said that while they were not left whole by the Bohol earthquake, they survived the tragedy and lived through the destruction.

Sila itong nag-survived sa dihang naglinog naguba ang ilang balay pinuy-anan, uban kanila naputlan og mga kamot, pero nabuhi sila ug sila matawag natong victim survivors," Salise said.
The five survivors were accompanied by Fr. Areston Limocon, parish priest of St. Augustine Church in Sagbayan.
I’d asked Israel to give my personal letter to Pope Francis during their lunch date. As of this writing, there’s no feedback from the five if Israel was able to give it to the Pope. But I am hoping....
When I saw on TV that the Pope had lunch with them and the other Yolanda survivors, I whispered, “May they finally find peace and comfort with the Pope.”
After lunch, Pope Francis was forced to cut short his trip to Leyte due to an incoming typhoon.
May Pope Francis continue to smile and spread his message of mercy and compassion.
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