CEBU CITY, March 29 — Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma has reminded the faithful to pray during the Holy Week instead of going into outing or vacationing. “We have 52 weeks in a year, one is intended for the observance of the Holy Week. This period of the year is dedicated for setting aside of routine to reflect on the passion of Christ.
“This is a moment of renewal and grace, not for vacation. As a bishop, I’m inviting everyone to participate in the several church activities. Afterall, Cebu is called the cradle of Christianity,” Palma said as he reminded the Catholics the Holy Week is the season when we remember that Jesus Christ “died poor on the cross” to save us from our sins.
The Cebu prelate reiterated that the church does not encourage the nailing on the cross and other “extreme” way of expressing one’s faith. But he said the church is not stopping anyone from such display of faith, as doing so is already disrespecting the individual’s capacity to decide on his own.
“We respect their vows. But we consider it an extreme expression to inflict punishment and pain to their body. As a general rule, we discourage that but we respect the people who do such. The true spirit of penance is reform and change for the better. It is living away from sin, the denunciation of sin, and to change into being more Christian. Not so much on the physical penance,” he said.