Guest Columnists

Filipinos Celebrate Marian Feast

By Shirley Figueroa Lascano

p Flags of different nations were flying during the procession in Flushing honoring  the feast of the Most Holy Rosary-La Naval de Manila
p Flags of different nations were flying during the procession in Flushing honoring the feast of the Most Holy Rosary-La Naval de Manila

When the month of October arrives, we Catholics are excited to celebrate the Feast of the Guardian Angels. The birth of our youngest son, Michael was named after one of their leader, Michael the Archangel.

The Filipinos at St. Michael’s Church, Flushing, are blessed during the month of October. We also celebrate during the first Sunday, the feast of the Most Holy Rosary-La Naval de Manila.

This past Oct. 4 added an extra celebration of her feast! After more than 30 years of hope and dreams, an image of the Madonna under this title was enthroned in our parish of St. Michael. We Filipinos will now be able to share her with our parishioners, our community of faith and most of all, our Diocese of Brooklyn.

The Sunday began with a Rosary procession on the streets of Flushing. Father John Vesey, pastor of St. Michael, lead the way. He said he gets excited doing this kind of work and devotion. It was a good and long procession. Members of the different ministries in the parish were well representative.

The diversity of the parishioners of St. Michael and its united faith is clearly visible in the work of Father John.

Flags of different nations flew high during the procession. We enjoyed the presence of a number of priests who concelebrated the Mass with our main celebrant, retired Auxiliary Bishop Guy Sansaricq.

His words during the homily were inspirational, filled with hope as well – most especially since the readings and the Gospel for that Sunday were about marriage.

Just as Pope Francis understood the challenges of family and marriage at the World Meeting of Families (WMF) in Philadelphia last month, Bishop Sansaricq quickly reminded all of the importance of the sacrament of marriage.

Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio sent us a greeting that said, “While I am unable to be with you in person on this joyous occasion, I want you to know that you are in my thoughts and prayers as you gather to express your love and devotion to this enduring Madonna. Let us pray to Nuestra Senora de La Naval for her continued protection as we demonstrate her love and gratitude to her for her miracles of protection that took place centuries ago.”

We live in a world of uncertainty, times of turmoil in and out of our hearts, broken humanity. We should not be discouraged but instead through devotion to the Rosary we offer all our challenges and ills of ourselves. Devotion to the Rosary is a powerful prayer of humility, of forgiveness, of praise and most of all our surrender to our Creator and our God.

At St. Michael Church, during October, there is a Rosary hour that begins at 7:45 a.m., followed by a devotion of prayers for Our Lady of La Naval. Oct. 11 was celebrated with a Living Rosary by the different members of ministry in the parish.

On behalf of all the members of the Filipino Association of St. Michael and our President, Michael Pasion, we would like to invite you to visit Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary – Our Lady of La Naval. Join us during October to pray the Rosary.