A festive atmosphere pervaded at the Carmel of St. Joseph in Bacolod City as thousands of devotees venerated the pilgrim relics of St. Therese of the Child Jesus on the second day of its third visit to the Diocese of Bacolod yesterday.
Sergei Tan, of the National Organizing Committee representing the Visayas, said that the outpouring of love is overwhelming as the faithful welcome the pilgrim relics as if a living St. Therese herself has come to visit.
The cloistered nuns at Carmel welcomed the relics with a shower of rose petals and expressed their gratitude to everyone who came , Tan said.
The turnout of the crowd at the Carmel is bigger this year compared to 2008 during the second visit of the relics to the diocese with more young people volunteering as marshals and ushers, he added.
Everything has gone smoothly since its arrival on Tuesday and volunteers told him that 1,500 bowls of aroz caldo, which they fondly call “Yahong ni Therese”, were distributed at the San Sebastian Cathedral where the relics stayed for about an hour, and the number has more than doubled at the Mt. Carmel where the relics stayed for two days, he said.
Tan said they are thankful to Bishop Vicente Navarra, who is one of the 47 bishops in the country, including those in the Mindanao area, who invited the pilgrim relics to visit their diioceses.
The pilgrim relics will leave for Roxas City, Capiz at 7:30 a.m. today with a brief stopover in Talisay and Silay cities before proceeding to the Bacolod-Silay Airport.
The relics will be met by the parishioners, students, villagers, and the members of the Philippine National Police at the `horno economico’ marker at the boundary of Silay and Talisay.
Students from Guinhalaran Elementary School, Oking Jison Elementary School, St. Theresita’s Academy, Silay Institute, Silay South Elementary School and Silay North Elementary School will be among those who will line up the streets to welcome the pilgrim relics, a press release from Silay City Hall said.*NAB