“We don’t have any ministry!” Servite Fr. Albert Guiritan of the St. Peregrine Laziosi parish church in Tunasan, Muntinlupa, cried when Bishop Jesse Mercado of the Diocese of Parañaque canceled all public Masses during this “community quarantine.”
Muntinlupa churches are under the Diocese of Parañaque, and the Servite friars minister to the spiritual and pastoral needs of the people of Tunasan, the biggest barangay in terms of land area in Muntinlupa City.
Because of its vast size, Tunasan is dotted with private villages and real-estate developments whose residents motor to the huge and spacious St. Peregrine Laziosi church every Sunday.
On ordinary days, the Servite friars would go to the villages and elsewhere to administer the sacraments. They go even as far as Parañaque City to say necrological or other off-site Masses and administer the last sacrament in hospitals.
Now there’s nothing to do, lamented Father Guiritan.
But not for long.
The friar-priest, who belongs to the Order of the Servants of Mary (OSM), one of the oldest medieval mendicant orders along with the Franciscans and Dominicans, took to social media to hold Mass and other liturgical services.
“We say and stream the Holy Mass every day,” Father Guiritan said proudly.
The Servites say Mass twice every day, at 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. The Masses are streamed (www.facebook.com/stperegrine.ph)
The Servites have also posted a “Prayer Against the novel coronavirus through the Intercession of St. Peregrine,” patron saint of patients of cancer and infectious diseases.
“We also do Holy Hour,” Father Guiritan said.Holy Hour is the Catholic devotional practice of spending an hour in Eucharistic adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, the Communion host housed in the transparent monstrance.