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Delta to Papal Nuncio: Please bless Pampanga 

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Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines Most Rev. Archbishop Charles John Brown, D.D. signs the provincial government’s guestbook to record his momentous visit in the province as Gov. Dennis “Delta” Pineda, Vice Gov. Lilia “Nanay” Pineda, and San Fernando Archbishop Florentino Lavarias look on. Photo by Gerald Gloton/Pampanga PIO


 

CITY OF SAN FERNANDO— “Please bless all our citizens, local officials and hardworking frontliners so that we may be able to manage and overcome the coronavirus pandemic that has afflicted us.”

Thus Gov. Dennis “Delta” Pineda entreated Archbishop Charles Brown, apostolic nuncio to the Philippines, during the civil reception for the papal envoy at the Capitol here Tuesday.

Gov. Dennis Pineda, Vice Gov. Lilia Pineda, and members of the sangguniang panlalawigan present resolution expressing deepest appreciation and gratitude for the papal visit of Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines Most Rev. Archbishop Charles John Brown, D.D. Photo by Jun Jaso/Pampanga PIO

The papal nuncio is scheduled to celebrate the Holy Mass on Sept. 8 in San Vicente Ferrer Parish in Barangay Calulut to commemorate the canonical coronation of the Virgen de los Remedios in 1956 or 65 years ago. [To be livestreamed on Facebook page of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of San Fernando.]

The then Diocese of San Fernando’s first prelate, Bishop Cesar Ma. Guerrero, began the crusade of penance and charity in 1952 to end the social unrest in the province as a result of landlessness.

The Vatican, through Pope Pius XII, decreed the canonical coronation of the image in 1956, signaling the start of the sharing of lamac (offerings) that helped bridge the gap between the rich and poor in the province.

The Virgen de los Remedios has since been consecrated as the patroness of Pampanga.

To this day, the image of the Virgen and that of the Santo Cristo del Perdon (Lord of Pardon) travel from town to town, the crusade sustained by prayers and acts of generosity to poor families.

At the Capitol reception, an 18-inch image of the Virgen de los Remedios de Baliti (as the original pilgrim image was named) sculpted by Maestro Wilfredo Layug and a Capiz parol (lantern) handcrafted by Rolando Quiambao were gifted by Layug and Governor Pineda and Vice Governor Lilia Pineda to Archbishop Brown.

He was shown an exhibit of Marian images and was treated to songs by Arti Sta. Rita.

Gov. Dennis Pineda and BM Mylyn Pineda-Cayabyab hand over Pampanga’s symbolic key to Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines Most Rev. Archbishop Charles John Brown, D.D. upon arrival at the Capitol. With them are  Archbishop Florentino Lavarias, Vice Gov. Lilia G. Pineda, and Mrs. Yolly M. Pineda.  Photo by Jun Jaso/Pampanga PIO

Vice Governor Pineda and the sangguniang panlalawigan presented Resolution No. 6926 expressing the province’s deepest appreciation for the presence of the papal nuncio in the Sept. 8 event.

The papal envoy hailed the people of Pampanga for their “extraordinary way” of expressing the faith in their culture and heritage.

“There is a beautiful harmonization of Filipino values and Christianity in the Simbang Gabi, Giant Lantern Festival, songs and devotion to the Virgen de los Remedios,” he said.

He also expressed admiration for Filipinos who spread the faith all over the world. Archbishop Brown further relayed the love of Pope Francis for Filipinos. The Pope celebrated the Mass at the St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican City for the 500 years of Christianity in the Philippines.

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