In the last liturgy before the year 2018 ends, Fr. Robert Rivera, SJ, University President reminded the JHS community to channel all Christmas preparations and activities and “focus on Jesus, the Savior”.
In the mass held at the Pacol Campus Covered Courts, Fr, Rivera minced no words, and corrected common notions about Christmas. He initially asked the community, “When does Christmas start? September, as many Filipinos know? December 16, as it is start of the Misa de Aguinaldo or ‘Simbang Gabi’?”
As if doing a catechesis for everyone, he said, “Today, we are still anticipating for the coming of the Messiah – the Chosen One! This is not Christmas yet, as Christmas starts on midnight of December 24 – our traditional date of celebrating the birth of the Savior.”
He added further, that “there are three significant events in the months of December and January that Catholics should give emphasis to – Advent, Christmas and Epihany.”
“More than these, the readings in the Misa de Aguinaldo and the Sundays of Advent use readings from the Old Testament which all make references to the coming of the ‘Savior” and the ‘Christ – the Chosen One’”, he emphasized.
Finally, Fr. Rivera capped his homily as he said, ”For the One promised to the Jewish people to save them from captivity and the ‘Savior’ promised to the gentiles, what have we done to prepare ourselves for Him?”
The mass offerings for the Advent Mass will be donated to the alumnus, Lil Mariae Antonio of JHS Class of 2018. Antonio suffered burns from an accident at home while cooking.
After the mass, the administrators, faculty and staff sand Christmas Filipino and English-language carols for the students.