December 24, 2017, Christmas Eve – St. Peregrine Laziosi Diocesan Shrine. Presided by the Parish Priest, Rev. Fr. Pascual “Aloy” Ma. Salas, OSM, accompanied by Rev. Fr. Leonard Ma. Guiang, OSM, Rev. Fr. Waren Ma. Campilan, OSM and Rev. Fr. Albert Ma. Tulang, OSM, the Midnight Mass for Christmas Eve went underway at 9 o’clock in the evening right after the Nativity play “Panunuluyan” concluded.
At the singing of the “Gloria” and with the pealing of the bells, the image of the child Jesus was placed on the manger symbolizing the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, to Mary and Joseph. Traditionally, a designated family will be assigned (or offered to) to bring the image of the Child Jesus in a procession to the altar where the manger lays. This year, the Esporlas Family of Tiosejo Subdivision in Brgy. Tunasan was privileged to do this honor.
The angelic harmony rendered by the St. Peregrine Chorale, who just recently, successfully held a benefit concert for the Parish, brought a more solemn tone to the celebration of the Mass.
In many Western Christian traditions Midnight Mass is the first liturgy of Christmastide that is celebrated on the night of Christmas Eve and is a jubilant celebration of the Mass in honor of the Nativity of Jesus. The Midnight Mass is traditionally celebrated at midnight when Christmas Eve gives way to Christmas Day however in the most recent past, it has been celebrated a few hours earlier to allow families to celebrate the “Noche Buena” together in their respective homes.
Special mention of thanks from the Parish Priest on his Thanksgiving address went to the St. Peregrine Chorale, the Mother Butlers Guild, the Ushers and Usherettes, Lectors and Commentators, Altar Servers, Eucharistic Ministers, fellow priests and all the parish workers and laity present at the Shrine.
At the conclusion of the Midnight Mass, the faithful were given the opportunity to touch and kiss the image of the Child Jesus as a way of veneration and recognition of our Savior’s nativity.