Scaled down templete mulled for Calungsod MassBy Ador Vincent Mayol
Cebu Daily News
DUE to financial constraints, the budget for the templete or small temple for the Nov. 21 national thanksgiving Mass for soon-to-be-declared saint Pedro Calungsod was reduced to a fraction of its original P30 million.
Fr. Raul Gallego, chairman of the committee on venue, said they reduced the original plan from 1,500 square meters to 700 square meters.
“If the area for the templete will be huge, we also need to have a bigger budget,” Gallego said yesterday.
A P30 million proposed budget wasn’t approved by Archdiocese officials. It was caled down to P5 million.
“The design is still the same. Only the size was reduced. By the end of September we will finish with templete,” he said.
Gallego yesterday visited the project site at the South Road Properties.
Local and national media outlets were briefed about their designated area to cover the thanksgiving Mass.
The construction of road networks in in the open field are in progress. Some filling materials were donated.
Gallego said low lying areas which usually get flooded need to be backfilled.
“When we first scouted this area, there were low lying areas. We need to prioritize filling those areas,” he said.
Architect Ramon Vios said they are presently starting the mat foundation of the templete.
“Right now we are on schedule. We will proceed with the concreting works,” Vios said.
For pilgrims and visitors, finding a place to stay in Cebu for a modest price will be a big concern for pilgrims and visitors.
“We are coordinating with hotels and pension houses. Hopefully, they will grant considerations like discounts to the pilgrims,” said Fr. Jake Reyes in a press conference at the Archbishop’s Residence in Cebu City last Thursday.
Fr. Reyes who heads the committee on local pilgrims for the event said they are expecting 500,000 to 1 million people to attend the celebration.
Temporary shelters will be provided by the Cebu City government, like the container vans turned into a “Pilgrim City” during the Sinulog in January to accommodate Sto. Nino pilgrims.
Margie Matheu, who heads the secretariat of the archdiocese, said triduum masses or three-day masses will be held before the Nov. 30 thanksgiving Mass.
The traveling image of Calungsod will leave the country for Rome on Oct. 16.
It will be brought back to the country on Oct. 25 for the “Duaw Nasud” (national visitation) for trips to various parts of the Philippines before returning to Cebu on Nov. 27.
In a related development, Catholics in Cebu join the rest of the world in celebrating the birthday of the Blessed Virgin Mary with A Walk For Mary that starts from the Capitol grounds to the Archbishops Residence at 4:30 am today.
A Mass will be presided over by Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma at 6 a.m. at his residence.
Marian devotees are encourarged to bring “bundles of joy” which will be given to the poor in occasion of Mary’s birthday.
Masses in honor of Mary will also be celebrated in all churches in the country.
The theme for this year’s celebration is “Stand Firm in the Faith. Do All Your Work in Love With Mary as our Companion.”