As the day of his sainthood draws closer, more devotees are visiting the shrine dedicated to Visayan youth who will be declared the second Filipino saint.
Sales of posters, books, key holders and images of difference sizes have been brisk in the small office-cum-store beside the Blessed Pedro Calungsod Shrine in D. Jakosalem Street in Cebu City.
A fiberglass image of the young martyr, the height of a match stick, sells for P85. A bigger image of Calungsod holding the Doctrina Cristiana or the Book of Christian Doctrines is sold at P600.
The largest image, about 5 feet tall, sells for P15,000.
Posters of Calungsod are sold for P40 to P80 and keyholders for P180 each.
This is one of the only places you can find the 250-page official reference book on the life of Calungsod “Pedro Calongsor Bisaya – Propsects of a Teenage Filipino, Post-Beatification Edition” written by Fr. Ildebrando Leyson, the vice postulator of the cause for Calungsod’s canonization who prepared the documents for the Vatican’s approval.
“Sales have increased. We ran out of stock for some items,” said Carlomagno Bacaltos, the shrine’s secretary.
“Some bought images of Blessed Pedro to have them blessed in Rome. Others just want to have an image for their altars or for souvenirs,” he told Cebu Daily News.
Other images of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Blessed Pope John Paul II are also offered for sale to visitors.
“Although our shrine is quite small, we are preparing to accommodate people with the best service possible,” said.Fr. Bonnin Olivar, the priest in charge of the shrine.
Since last Friday, Novena Masses are being held at the shrine at 6:30 p.m. The Rosary and novena prayers are held before the Mass.
On Oct. 21, the day of Calungsod’s canonization in Rome, Italy, the Mass in the shrine will be at 1:30 p.m.
A procession within the shrine’s compound will follow. A wide video screen outside the covered court will show the live telecast of the canonization rites in Rome.
“I think people are drawn to Pedro because he’s like a kapamilya to us. He is a Filipino. We feel at home with him,” said Olivar. /Ador Vincent Mayol, Reporter