The jubilee year of Saint Joseph will come to a close in a fitting celebration during the Feast of Immaculate Conception preceded by a nine-day novena in the different parishes within the Diocese of Baguio.
Vicky Bay-an, coordinator of the Commission of Family and Life in the Diocese of Baguio, the organizing committee of the event, also announced a series of activities are lined up during the novena.
The novena masses are as follows: Nov. 29 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Joseph, Mankayan, Benguet; Nov. 30 at 12:15 p.m. at Our Lady of Atonement Cathedral; Dec. 1 at St. Joseph; Dec. 3 at 5 p.m. at the Immaculate Conception Aurora Hill; Dec. 4 at noon at the Immaculate Conception, Bokod, Benguet; Dec. 5 from 7 to 8:30 a.m. at the Immaculate Conception-Sablan, Benguet; Dec. 6. from 8 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. at the Immaculate Conception in Tublay, Benguet; and Dec. 7 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Saint Joseph in La Trinidad, Benguet.
Part of the celebration is the recitation of the holy rosary by selected married couples which will be aired live at 6 p.m. over DZWT from Nov. 29 to Dec. 7.
The closing program of the year-long celebration will be held at Saint Joseph Husband of Mary Parish in Pacdal on Dec. 8 with Bishop Victor B. Bendico as the main celebrant of the 9 a.m. Eucharistic celebration.
This year marks the 150th anniversary of St. Joseph being solemnly declared as Patron of the Universal Catholic Church.
Pope Francis in his apostolic letter dedicated to the foster father of Jesus, entitled Patris Corde (With a Father’s Heart), shared his personal reflection on the spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
“Each of us can discover in Joseph, the man who goes unnoticed, a daily, discreet and hidden presence. An intercessor, a support and guide in time of trouble,” Pope Francis said.
The pontiff added, “St. Joseph reminds us, those who appear hidden or in the shadows can play an incomparable role in the history of salvation.”
In the same letter, Pope Francis reflected on the father qualities of St. Joseph as beloved, tender and loving, obedient, accepting and creatively courageous.
In his relationship to Jesus, Joseph was the earthly shadow of the heavenly Father; he watched over him and protected him, never leaving to go on his way. St. Joseph is courageous and working man yet in his heart we see great tenderness, also a man of silence and strength, the bishop of Rome added.
Part of the celebration is the consecration of St. Joseph in every practicing Catholic, search of Joseph-like pastoral worker and the formation of Men of Joseph apostolate in every parish, Bay-an added. – Fred Puntawe