Saturday, October 03, 2009

Viva Nuestra Señora La Virgen Del Pilar!

Today at the request of some of our Filipino parishioners we had a Mass and celebration for La Virgen Del Pilar. I had heard of this devotion in Spain, at Saragossa, but wasn`t aware of the Filipino equivalent. The actual feast is on October 12th but people`s commitments meant it bringing it forward to today. Our Lady of the Pillar is patroness of Zamboanga city in Mindanao. The history is very interesting and can be found here. The fortress was dedicated to Our Lady of the Pillar in 1718.

Wikipedia says:

On September 21st, 1897 the virgin made an apparition, according to the people who witnessed it they saw the virgin standing mid-air over the Basilan Strait, she had her right hand raised to signal the onrushing waves to stop, saving the city from a tsunami.

I learned at the party today that also in the 1970`s, Zamboanga City was saved from a tsunami. At the Mass we prayed for all the victims of the recent bad weather in the Philippines. After Mass there was a party in the parish hall. I was surprised to learn that everyone at the Mass and party was from Zamboanga. I had mentioned the Mass on the parish newsletter and hope that now I have the idea of what it is about we will have a celebration next year on the date and that the rest of the parish may want to join in. It is good to enrich our parish life with festivals like this. Here are a couple of pictures of the food and of course the lechón, without which no serious Filipino party is complete. (Vegetarians may wish not to look!)

At the end of Mass we had the hymn for the Virgin of the Pillar. Here it is:
Virgen Santa Madre mia
Luz Hermosa claro dia
Que la tierra Zamboanguena
Que dignaste visitar
Este pueblo que te adora
De to mor, favour implora
Y te aclama y te bendice
Abrazando a tu pilar...
Pilar sagrado, faro esplendente
Rico presente de caridad
Pilar bendito, trono de Gloria
Tu a la Victoria nos llebaras
Tu a la Victoria nos llebaras
Cantad, cantad himnos de amor y alabanza
Cantad, cantad a La Virgen del Pilar
Cantad, cantad himnos de amor y alabanza
Cantad, cantad a La Virgen del Pilar....2x


madame evangelista said...

Lol, just laughing at the lechon picture, which is, as you say, very Filipino.

Fr Michael Brown said...

At 47 kilos it was bigger than usual. It was hoped to have one at 37 kilos.

john said...