MAKATI CITY, PHILIPPINES
- The Church\nin the Philippines has declared this year 2015 as Year of the Poor. This is\npart of the nine year novena in preparation for the 500 years anniversary of\nthe Christianization of the country in 2021. It was for this reason that the\ntheme of the parish celebration was: “Parokya ni Sta. Teresita, Halina’t\nSama-sama Tayo kay Hesus sa Piling ng mga Maralita.” (Parish of Sta. Teresita,\nLet us come together to Jesus in the presence of the Poor.) The Novena started\non September 25 and ended on October 3, 2015. Devotees filled the church for\nnine consecutive days with a firm belief that special graces can be obtained\nthrough the powerful intercession of the saint. It was led by Rev. Fr. Richard\nMagararu, SMM, the Parish Priest, and the members of the Apostleship of Prayer\nMinistry. SMM priests from different communities have taken turns in presiding\nthe daily Masses, with Fr. Richard Magararu, SMM and Fr. Angelo Pusikit, SMM\nconcelebrating. They were assisted by the deacon, Rev. Arnel Pagaduan, SMM. As\nagreed during the Parish Pastoral Council Meeting the intention for each\nNovena-Mass will be for different sectors of the parish experiencing various\nforms of poverty. Representatives from the different sectors were invited such\nas: a) single parents, widows/widowers; b) the sick and persons with\ndisabilities; c) the jobless; d) the below minimum wage earners, e) the out-of-school\nyouths; f) the families of detainees; g) the families of overseas Filipino\nworkers; h) the vendors; and i) the domestic helpers. Representatives of each\nsector gave their testimonies after the Homily. They shared about their day to\nday life situations and hardships, and how they survived through their firm\nbelief that God hears the cry of the poor and helps those who pray unceasingly.\nOne of the highlights of the festivities was the procession held after the last\nday of the Novena. This year the procession was held at four o’clock in the\nafternoon. Since it was still bright, the people can clearly see the different\ncontingents honoring our patron saint with dances. It is called “Caracol.” It\nwas more festive and livelier this year because the participants from different\nreligious organizations wore colourful and attractive Filipino attires\naccording to their assigned dance group. They danced along the streets to the\nmusic of vibrant Filipino songs played by the Brass Band. It was a joyful event\nand was well received by the participants and the parishioners as well. After\nthe procession, a Mass was celebrated by Fr. Norwyn Baydo, SMM. On the feast\nday, the following day, October 4, 2015, a concelebrated Mass was presided by\nMost Rev. Broderick S. Pabillo, D.D., Auxiliary Bishop of Manila together with\nRev. Fr. Richard Magararu, SMM, Rev. Fr. Angelo Pusikit, SMM, and the priests\nfrom the different SMM communities. His homily was so meaningful and touching.\nIt was centered on marriage and family life. He talked about the parents of St.\nTherese who will be canonized as saints on October 18, 2015. Their examples are\ninspirations for couples who are facing challenges in keeping harmony in their\nfamilies. Right after the Fiesta Mass, a Family Day was held at the Barangay\nCovered Court facilitated by the Couples for Christ. The different religious\norganizations prepared some common Filipino games. It was a fun filled event\nespecially to the winners who went home with their prizes. HAPPY FEAST DAY\nSAINT THERESE…VIVA SANTA TERESITA!!!!