Papal envoy performs Sinulog dance at IEC
CEBU CITY – It was a rare feat and those who witnessed it considered themselves blessed.
Cardinal Charles Maung Bo, the Pope’s official representative to the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) On Thursday danced the Sinulog during his visit to a youth center here.
Holding the image of the Sto. Niño, Cardinal Bo danced the Sinulog for about 30 seconds, getting a loud applause from the audience at the Don Bosco Youth Center in Barangay (village) Pasil in Cebu.
Pasil is one of the poorest villages here stricken with problems of criminality and illegal drugs.
Before reaching the youth center, the Pope’s envoy passed by the slum area, where he was warmly welcomed by the residents.
During his speech before students of the youth center, Cardinal Bo urged them to work hard and never blame themselves or others for being poor.
“You can become priests, sisters, brothers [or] bishops. You can become the prime minister, president, doctors [or] engineers. Never blame your situation that because ‘I’m poor, I can’t do anything’. Don’t blame yourself, don’t blame your parents, don’t blame your situation,” the cardinal said.
“You must get up and work hard to become great for others. If you fall, all of us in one way or another we fall. But the ugly thing is some of us fall and never get up. Great people fell also but they always get up,” he added.
The pope’s envoy said he was happy to visit the youth center, which he said was “the pride of our Salesian brothers”.
Cardinal Bo is a member of the Salesians of Don Bosco, one of the congregations in the Catholic Church.
“It is so encouraging to hear and see that our Salesian values alive and vibrant on this part of the planet, [in] this area supposed to be the poorest of the poor,” the cardinal said.
Seventeen-year old Korina Tabay, a student from the Don Bosco who gave her testimony, thanked Cardinal Bo and asked him to pray for them.
“We ask you to pray for us, for peace and unity for our families. For us in Pasil, life is hard. Some of us are bound by the influence of drugs, others live with broken families. Most of us live in poverty,” Tabay said.
Junley Tura, who lives at the youth center and is now studying ath the University of Visayas, said he was privileged to give his testimony before the cardinal.
Asked about how he felt when he personally spoke to the cardinal, he said, “I can’t explain. I just feel so happy.”
Meanwhile, Honna Kyle Castro, one of the Sinulog dancers, also said she was so “blessed” to perform before the Pope’s envoy. CDG
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