Tagle to Black Nazarene devotees : ‘Ang tunay na deboto, nagmamahal’
MANILA, Philippines — A true devotee is one who loves, and one who is loyal and unites with Christ, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle told devotees of the Black Nazarene during the Wednesday Midnight Mass at the Rizal Park’s Quirino Grandstand.
“Nagmamahal ka ba? Naranasan mo na bang magmahal? Naranasan mo na ba na maging tapat dahil lamang sa pagmamahal? Naranasan mo na ba na araw araw kahit ka masugatan maglilingkod ka? ‘Yan ang deboto,” Tagle told millions of devotees gathered to take part in the 6.4-kilometer procession of the Black Nazarene’s image from the Quirino Grandstand to the Quiapo Church.
(“Are you expressing love? Have you ever experienced how it is to love? Have you ever experienced being loyal because of love? Have you experienced choosing to serve despite being wounded every day? That’s devotion.”)
Fr. Hernando Coronel, parish priest of the Quiapo Church, presided over the Mass.
What sets devotees apart from fanatics, Tagle said, was one’s willingness to love, stay loyal and unite with God.
“Ang tunay na deboto nagmamahal… Ang panatiko kapag hindi na nakuha ang kanyang gusto titigil na ‘yan. Pero ang deboto, dahil nagmamahal, mananatiling tapat may nakukuha man siya o wala. Basta mahal kita, paglilingkuran kita at magiging tapat ako sayo ibigay mo man ang hinihingi ko,” Tagle stressed.
(“The true devotee loves… A fanatic who does not get what he wants, will stop. But a genuine devotee stays loyal no matter what. A devotee would continue to love, serve and be loyal regardless of whether his or her prayers were granted.”)
Tagle also said it was Christ who first exemplified the characteristics of a genuine devotee.
“Ang unang naging deboto sa atin, devoted to us, ay si Hesus mismo… ‘Yung ibang tao pag nasa langit ‘yan hindi mo na ‘yan mapapababa! Pero si Hesus nasa langit, bababa para samahan tayo,” he said.
(“Jesus Christ was the first true devotee, he was devoted to us… While others would refuse to go back to earth once in heaven, Jesus would go down to be with us.”)
“Pati langit iiwanan niya mapasama (lamang) sa mga kapatid na makasalanan, hindi para yurakan sila, hindi para sila’y parusahan, kundi para iligtas, that’s devotion,” he added.
(“He’d even leave heaven just so he could be with the sinful; not because he wants to judge or punish, but because he wants to save, and that’s devotion.”)
But Tagle said being a devotee does not always mean having a perfect connection with God.
“Ito ay ay araw-araw pinagyayaman,” he said.
(It is being nurtured every day),” he said.
Prior to the Mass, Tagle met Manila Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada, as well as Philippine National Police Director General Oscar Albayalde and National Capital Region Police Office chief Guillermo Eleazar.
The procession is expected to reach the Quiapo Church on Thursday, 2:30 a.m. /muf
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.