Vatican to PH faithful: No banners of Pope please

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TACLOBAN City, Jan. 13, 2015 – To welcome the Holy Father, raise up banners with the faces of Jesus, the Blessed Virgin and the saints instead.

This was what Vatican officials told the Archdiocese of Palo in a set of instructions for Pope Francis’ motorcade set on Jan. 17 in the province.

Vatican officials encourage the Filipino faithful to bring banners or materials bearing the images of Jesus, Mary and the saints to welcome the Holy Father. (Photo: CBCP News)

Vatican officials encourage the Filipino faithful to bring banners or materials bearing the images of Jesus, Mary and the saints to welcome the Holy Father. (Photo: CBCP News)

According to Fr. Amadeo Alvero, head of the information and social communications committee of the Papal Visit to the Archdiocese of Palo, the faithful should bear instead tarpaulins with the images of Jesus, parishes’ patron saints or that of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

The Vatican’s suggestion is perceived as a sign of the Pope’s personal disposition of humility and submissiveness to Christ from whom his official title stems.

Engr. Dalmacio Grafil, a member of the Papal Visit local information committee member and publisher of Leyte Samar Daily Express, said the Vatican, however, will allow greetings in text form mentioning the pastoral visit’s theme “Mercy and Compassion” and images of Jesus, Mary or the parish patron saint.

Palo Archbishop John Du encouraged all the families who are survivors of typhoon Yolanda to join in welcoming the Pope, the papal Mass, and the motorcade, optimistic that this once in a lifetime experience will be an experience of “healing and hope.”

“This is a rare opportunity to experience the mercy and compassion of God through the apostolic mission of the Vicar of Christ on earth, the Pope,” he stressed.

Du particularly called on the faithful to carry banners that that say: “God is merciful and compassionate”.

The Holy Father will be spending an entire day in Tacloban and Palo, Leyte on Jan. 17. (Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros/CBCPNews)

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