More dawn Masses (Simbang Gabi) starting December 16 are scheduled this year, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) said.
Strict health protocols and regulations implemented by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases will be strictly implemented, said Fr. Jerome Secillano, executive secretary of the CBCP’s public affairs committee. (Read: Catholic Church to Implement Contact Tracing in Parishes) Each church will have one entrance and one exit, body temperatures will be checked, and wearing of masks is required.
According to Quiapo Church parochial vicar Douglas Badong, churchgoers should include in their prayer list the end of the pandemic.
“These are nine days and the churchgoers all have wishes. It’s better that they include in their prayer list that the virus will be gone soon because this is also a preparation for the celebration of ‘traslacion’. The more people who will pray, the more prayers will be heard.” (Read: Quiapo Church Rolls Out Mobile App as Pandemic Continues)
He also said that the church is hoping to increase the seating capacity in churches from the current 30 percent to 50 percent by December.
More Simbang Gabi Masses
At Quiapo Church, or the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene, Masses will be held at 6 PM, 7 PM, 8 PM, 4 AM, 5 AM, and 6 AM, Badong said.
“We were told the new curfew hour will be [up to] 3:30 a.m., so the people will have time to go to church,” he said. (Read: Bishop Pabillo Appeals to Adjust Curfew Hours for Simbang Gabi)
Masses at 8 PM will be held at the Liwasang Bonifacio to accommodate those who will not be able to enter the Quiapo Church. The Masses will also be available via live streaming on Facebook and other social media sites.