Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
New archbishop takes the reins in Cebu
Prelate declares his mission of unity and growthCardinal Ricardo Vidal steps down after handing to Archbishop Jose Palma (left) the bishop’s pastoral staff
- ucanews.com reporter, Cebu City
- January 13, 2011
"In my small capacity, I know this is God’s will for me," he said during a dinner reception last night,Â referring to his appointment as archbishop of the country’s largest archdiocese.
"I hope that we Cebuanos will be united and will help each other for the growth of the Church."
Archbishop Palma said Cebu is a "wonderful province" that has produced Church and government leaders.
The archdiocese also has four million Catholics, 370 diocesan priests, 282 religious priests, at least 400 seminarians and about a thousand religious nuns.
"I am not overwhelmed," he said. "There is so much work but there are so many collaborators too."
Outgoing Cebu archbishop Ricardo Cardinal Vidal warned Archbishop Palma in jest: "Cebuanos has the reputation of slaying people they do not like. Think of (Spanish conquestador Ferdinand) Magellan, the poor fellow."
Lapu-Lapu, a local leader, killed Magellan at a battle in the nearby island of Mactan in 1521.
"But they also have a reputation of taking care of the little fellows whom they like. They kept the Santo NiÃ±o (Child Jesus) in good condition.... They accepted me as I am of the same height as the Santo NiÃ±o," Cardinal Vidal said with a smile.
"Archbishop Joe, Cebu might be a dynamo of progress in the Philippines, but as you will see later on in your first fiesta as archbishop of Cebu, it is also a dynamo of faith," the cardinal said.
The archdiocese will celebrate the feast of the Santo NiÃ±o on Sunday.
Archbishop Palma received a warm welcome from Cebuanos earlier in the day. Hundreds of students, workers, government executives and Church people lined the streets where his convoy passed from the airport.
The archbishop opened the car’s window several times to wave back at the crowd. He later told reporters that he was "overwhelmed by the warm welcome."
Cardinal Vidal welcomed Archbishop Palma by handing a crucifix and a vessel filled with holy water.
Archbishop Palma then recited the Profession of Faith and the Oath of Fidelity, a promise a bishop makes to the Holy See, in Latin.
Cardinal Vidal says his goodbyes to Cebu
Cebuâ€™s new archbishop plans extra dioceses
Security up in Cebu for feast of Child Jesus