Monsignor Leonardo Z. Legaspi, OP, the archbishop emeritus of Nueva Caceres (Naga City) and the highest-ranking Filipino Dominican ecclesiastic, died last Aug. 8—feast of St. Dominic, founder of the Order of Preachers, or the Dominicans. He will be buried on Aug. 15, feast of the Assumption.
Legaspi died after a long battle with lung cancer last Friday. As archbishop of Naga City from 1983-2012, he promoted the annual Peñafrancia fiesta and the devotion to Our Lady of the Rosary (it is said that Our Lady gave the rosary to St. Dominic for the Dominicans to promote) and was in constant dialogue with then mayor Jesse Robredo on church-local government issues.
Diagnosed with cancer in 2009, Legaspi reportedly prayed to the Peñafrancia that he would continue to live so he could preside over the 300th anniversary of her fiesta in September 2010.
Legaspi achieved a series of firsts in his life. He was one of the founders of the Philippine Dominican Province and was the first Filipino rector of the University of Santo Tomas (UST). A priest-scholar with an MBA from Harvard University, he was elevated to the altar as auxiliary bishop of Manila. In 1983, he was named archbishop of Nueva Caceres, one of the four ancient dioceses of the Philippines, along with Manila, Cebu and Nueva Segovia. He was replaced in 2012 by Archbishop Rolando Tria Tirona.
As president of the Catholic Bishops of the Philippines from 1988-1991, Legaspi presided over the Synod of the Philippine Church.
Legaspi’s remains now lie in state at the UST Santisimo Rosario Church in Espana, Manila until tomorrow, Aug. 11; after which they will be transferred to the Basilica of Penafrancia in Naga City, where they will be exposed for public veneration, until Aug. 13.
Funeral Mass will be on Aug, 15 at the Santo Domingo Church in Quezon City. Burial will be at the Santuario de Santo Domingo afterward.
Fr. Roy Rosales writes from Pateros to inform us about the bicentennial of San Roque Church on Aug. 16, with Pasig Bishop Mylo Hubert Vergara celebrating Mass at 5:30 p.m.
“By the grace of God,” Father Rosales said, “our parish of San Roque is now 200 years old—1815-2015! I have never really imagined that I will have the honor and privilege of being the pastor of this parish on its bicentennial year.
“The parish itself will not be what it is today without the zeal and dedication of the former parish priests and the love and cooperation of the people of God.
“Our gratitude,” added Father Rosales, “goes especially to Augustinian friars led by our first parish priest, Fr. Andres Vehil, and his assistant, Fr. Manuel Pelaez, who were first assigned here on July 7, 1815.”
Pateros started as a barrio and a Visita of the church in Pasig since 1572. Though Pateros was made politically independent of Pasig in 1799, it took more than a decade before it became ecclesiastically independent from its mother parish. It was only in 1815 when Pateros was made into a separate parish called Parroquia de San Roque. The rest was history.
“In celebration of our bicentennial,” wrote Father Rosales, “we have revived our official parish newsletter, Ang Tinig ni San Roque. The parish is so glad that we have this again to give us information about what is going on in our parish. Thank you to our editorial staff for all their efforts.”
Incidentally, the church is also the Shrine of Saint Martha.
Viva San Roque! Viva Santa Marta!
Albay & Manila celebrate Salvacion fiesta
While Bicolanos will flock to Joroan, Albay on Aug. 16 to venerate the miraculous image of Our Lady of Salvation, the devotees in Metro Manila will attend the Novena Masses from Aug. 7 to 15 at 6 p.m. at the Parish of Our Lady of Salvation in the NDC Compound on Anonas Street, Sta. Mesa.
Bishop Broderick Pabillo will begin the Novena Masses on Aug. 7 at 6 p.m., while Msgr Hernando Coronel will say the fiesta Mass on Aug. 16 at 5 p.m.
Fr. Artemio Fabros is parish priest. Hermano mayor is Kid Marasigan.
Manaoag in Isabela
On the occasion of his 18th sacerdotal (or ordination) anniversary on Aug. 17, Fr. Floyd Codog will welcome the pilgrim image of Our Lady of Manaoag on Aug. 15 at 3 p.m. in his Parish of Our Lady of Lourdes in San Manuel, Isabela.
The pilgrim image will stay for 10 days until Aug. 24, when it will leave at 10 a.m. to go back to Manaoag, Pangasinan.
Masses on Aug. 16 to 23 will be at 8 a.m., 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. Sunday Masses are at 6:30 and 8:30 a.m., and 3 and 5:30 p.m.
Free retreat for priests
The Confraternity of Mary Mediatrix of All Grace is sponsoring a free retreat for priests, Aug. 11 to 15, at the Capuchin Retreat House in Barangay San Sebastian in Lipa City.
Invited speaker is Archbishop Angel Lagdameo of Jaro, Iloilo.
To register, priests are requested to text Brenda Padilla at 0917-5776846 or Bro. Tim Laws (married lay) at 0917-5401908.
St. Maximilian Kolbe Feast
The Franciscan Conventuals at the St. Maximilian Kolbe Seminary in John Paul Street, Multi-National Village will celebrate the feast of the saint with reflection on the life of the saint at 3 p.m. to be given by Fr. Jude Winkler, OFM Conv.
Earlier at 1:30 pm, those who wish to become members of Militia Immaculata will be given orientation.
There will be a Holy Mass at 5 p.m., followed by the imposition of the Miraculous Medal on new members.
Mission for the deaf
Richard Brown, president and Chair the Starkey Foundation, was recently in town for the foundation’s mission for the hearing impaired in in Lipa, Payatan and Batangas City in Batangas province in partnership with the UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery represented by Dr. Salve Olalia, director of the UST Health Services.
Nowadays, some spouses are disillusioned or bored with their marriage, anxious about the communication gap, and do not know how to recharge or save their marriage.
Many couples whose marriages are on the rocks think their only option is either separation or a life of misery.
Retrouvaille offers a third option. The Retrouvaille Weekend Program has healed many troubled married couples who have attended its weekend program. Ongoing is a marriage seminar until today in Tagaytay.
Interested parties may log on to www.retrouvaille.org; or call Fr. Dave Clay at 0918-9020511 or tel. 5226443, 5250308 and 5250364; Nes and Inday at tel. 9389719 or 0916-4438346 or 0921-5739481: or Danny and Neomi at tel. 6815746 or 0916-3954642.