By Leslie Ann Aquino
Filipino Catholics may venerate and profess their pledge of devotion to St. Pope John Paul II whose Feast Day will be commemorated on October 22.
Devotees seeking healing and other petitions may visit the image of the saint at the Our Lady of Veritas Chapel in Quezon City from October 20 to 22.
A Eucharistic Celebration will also be held in the chapel on the last day to commemorate his feast day.
According to Radyo Veritas, prayer requests, petition, thanksgiving and other intentions will be offered at the Holy Mass and rosary prayer at the Chapel.
It added that the Catholic faithful who will pledge their devotion will receive a certificate and a small image of the late pontiff.
Karol Józef Wojtyła was born on May 18, 1920, in Wadowice, Poland. He was ordained in 1946, became the bishop of Ombi in 1958, and became the archbishop of Krakow in 1964. He was made a cardinal by Pope Paul VI in 1967, and in 1978 became the first non-Italian Pope in more than 400 years. He was a vocal advocate for human rights and used his influence to effect political change. He was Pope for 27 years from 1978 to 2005 making him the second longest-serving Pope in modern history after Pope Pius IX.
Pope John Paul II is the most widely traveled Pope in history, visiting 129 countries during his pontificate. He visited the Philippines twice—in February 1981, when he beatified the first Filipino martyr, Lorenzo Ruiz, and in January 1995, when an estimated of 4 million Filipinos attended the Mass he celebrated at the close of World Youth Day which was considered to be the largest single gathering in Christian history.
He died at the age of 84 at the Vatican on April 2, 2005, the vigil of Divine Mercy Sunday. He was beatified on May 1, 2011 (Divine Mercy Sunday) in Saint Peter’s Square by Pope Benedict XVI, his immediate successor and was canonized on April 27, 2014 (again Divine Mercy Sunday), together with Pope John XXIII.