All Filipinos know what Visita Iglesia means, though it is in Spanish, since their faith cannot be but closely connected to Spanish culture and language. Hopefully it would remain like this, since Spain has outstandingly carried the Faith to this country. Who would dare to strip this merit form it? Time? Power? Protestant nations?
Time moves forward and Visita Iglesia remains with its same name. Who would dare to change it? Time? Power? Protestant nations? No, no one is able. And what is more important is that most of the Filipinos actually carry it out during their kuwaresma (Lent season). Thousands of people go from church to church praying the Istasyon ng Krus (way of the Cross) and prepare themselves for the so-neared Semana Santa (Holy Week).
In order to increase and promote this wonderful tradition, we conducted several pilgrim groups for different Visita Iglesia. Most of them are from our apostolate centers and from the several chapels where we work with kids and families. Thus we have organized five Visita Iglesia during these past weeks.
The first group going through the pilgrimage was the “San Sebastian Cathedral Oratory”, second the “Sampalukan & Timbugan Oratories” (Santo Toribio) and afterwards “Mary Mediatrix Oratory”, “Papayahan Oratory” (San Celestino) and finally “San Isidro Oratory”. All kids and families who participated were really thankful and happy for being able to have their so special Visita Iglesia.
The other feature of this pilgrimage is the opportunity to see and visit old and historical churches, where one can experience how faith is so well rooted in this archipelago, as, for example, Taal Basilica and Caysasay Shrine; relics of both faith and arts. Catholicism is not recent here! On the contrary, it belongs to the very essence of Filipinos! And this does not need too much explanation… just do your Visita Iglesia and you would realize of it.
We hope that this Visita Iglesia might have been really profitable for all the pilgrims, and we ask God that faith may growth in this so Catholic country.